All the same, I found myself regretting the shortage last season of fun interplay between everybody’s private lives and the times they’re living through, especially since 1966-‘67 was when the decade became “The Sixties” for real. (My wife is still dumbfounded that Sally Draper never flipped for the Beatles or even the Monkees; Weiner has kept her weirdly cut off from the whole pop-culture cornucopia kids her age lived for.)
Tom Carson Reviews The Return of Mad Men: It’s Just Running On Mystique Fumes Now: The feed: GQ
Sally Draper did have a brush with Beatlemania in season 4—and she was also a fan of The Man from U.N.C.L.E.—but I tend to assume that the absence of many overt pop culture references on Mad Men is as much a budget choice as an artistic choice. There is only so much money available per episode, and Weiner prefers to put most of it on screen rather than in the pockets of 60s pop culture intellectual property rights holders. He splashed out for “Tomorrow Never Knows,” don’t forget, to make a point about Don being out of touch with much of what was coming.
Television has become the key history-telling instrument of our time, delivering to mass audiences a sense of the past that no previous civilization possessed.