‘Mad Men’ finale a modern version of ‘The Wizard of Oz’

Don Draper, played by Jon Hamm, achieves enlightenment in the "Mad Men" finale.

Don Draper, played by Jon Hamm, achieves enlightenment in the “Mad Men” finale.

I don’t usually post here about things not related to New Jersey arts, but I had a thought I wanted to share about the “Mad Men” finale (SPOILER ALERT for those who haven’t watched yet):

It’s really just “The Wizard of Oz,” if you think about it.

Scarecrow Roger gets a brain, settling into a mature, sensible relationship with Marie. Tin Man Pete gets a heart, and is rewarded for it by winning back Trudy’s love. Cowardly Lion Peggy gets courage, standing up for herself at McCann, resisting the temptation of Joan’s partnership offer and professing her love for Stan.

And Dorothy Don finally realizes there’s no place like home (for him, the advertising world), and gets the idea that will allow him to return there and put his nightmarish road trip behind him.

The Wizard? Jim Hobart. The Wicked Witch of the West? Jim Cutler. Auntie Em? Bert Cooper.

Alas, there’s no Toto.


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Bob Mellman May 21, 2015 - 10:41 am

Interesting! For a follow-up, on your 350 NJ songs, how about the wonderful Wizard of Oz medley by NJ mandolin giant, Barry Mitterhoff? Speaking of Oz, it’s interesting that Don’s car breakdown and Pete’s new Lear Jet career were both set in Kansas. I think you’re on to something, Mr. Lustig.

njartsdaily@gmail.com May 21, 2015 - 10:47 am

Good point about Kansas. I hadn’t thought about that.

Can’t find a video for Mitterhoff medley but maybe I can find something else by him.

Bob Mellman May 21, 2015 - 11:01 am

Just found it: It’s from his mid-80’s “Silk City” cd/lp. It’s lovely, and features other NJ musicians, including Danny Weiss, Tony Trischka, and even “I’m From NJ” John Gorka. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CuZp7FwdZMI

Barry also wrote a tune, “Silk City”, that’s online and on the cd. (Silk City is a nickname for Paterson, which was a silk manufacturing center.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lg_v1uI9rss

There’s also online videos of Barry with the recently-deceased mathematician/fiddler, Tex Logan.

njartsdaily@gmail.com May 21, 2015 - 11:06 am

Thanks! Will check those out.

Bob Mellman May 21, 2015 - 11:16 am

I hope you enjoy them. They are from long before Barry became widely known through his collaborations with Jorma Kaukonen and his membership in Hot Tuna.

patrick May 22, 2015 - 5:27 pm

There is a Toto, has everyone forgotten Chauncey?

Steven Vargas May 25, 2015 - 10:13 pm

Diana being described as a tornado seemed to suggest a wizard of oz motif running, too.


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