Why Mad Men Needs ME as a Sixties Consultant
One of my favorite shows is Mad Men. I should probably say that in the past tense though because it has started off as a little boring this season and I am losing interest.
Although it is 1966, and they are using current events for conversation, I find myself bored enough with the events this season to look for errors in the period.
I was in 6th grade in 1966 – turned 11 in May of that year, so I was keenly aware of culture, and the world surrounding me. It irks me that they misused modern conveniences and gadgets constantly this season because I know what was being used then.
A simple check on the Internet confirms my suspicions that things like push button telephones, featured in the Draper apartment, though introduced in 1963, were mostly used by businesses until the late 70’s when it entered the common household. The Draper’s couldn’t have called Ma Bell and said give me one of those push button ones in 1966 – no matter how mod they were – it is just not believable to me. My parents still have this one (featured in a previous blog) – a rotary phone installed in the 1970’s.
I know for a fact that remote controls on TV’s as shown on a recent episode were not in use until the late 70’s as well. No normal family with a normal television set had a remote control to turn on the TV like Sally Draper did in her stepfather’s home.
I also knew that dresses or skirts were mandatory for girls until about 1969 or 1970 in most public schools. We were allowed to wear pants under skirts on very cold days but other than that, no pants were worn in school by girls until much later than 1966. Yet this week they showed a high school girl wearing a pair of tight slacks in school. Wouldn’t have happened.
A hooker girl they showed in a leopard bra and panties was wearing the wrong sort of underwear for the 60’s. There were no soft-cup push up type bras, they were all cone shaped and had under-wires back then, except for training bras. In fact, there was no Victoria’s Secret in 1966 – they weren’t established until 1977.
Boxes from the Bakery were ONLY IN WHITE. No colored pink cardboard used in the 1960’s. That’s totally the generation later. Small, but annoyingly incorrect details.
It is things like this that irk me because I realize the writers are all at least a generation down from me (and possibly two) and they have no clue as to what really happened in the 60’s. There is only so much that the research dept. can turn up about things, and the rest, of course they have to guess. If push button phones and remotes were invented before 1965, then surely Don Draper and his kin would have these things. Not even J. Paul Getty had these things in the 60’s!
See how bored I am!
So hey guys at Mad Men – I was alive and alert then! How about paying a real live person as a consultant, like ME, to give you advice on how to not mess up on the period details. I am available!