Meet Mad Men’s John Hammi

02 juni 2015 - 13.06

In the final episode of Mad Men’s sixth season, Don Draper had hit an all-time low – losing (or on the verge of losing) everything that was important to him. As Draper’s epic journey turns toward the homestretch, with the seventh and final season kicking off this Sunday on AMC, we reached out to Jon Hamm, who opened up about what’s next for his character, the lessons he learned from James Gandolfini and why Mad Men kind of really is all about Peggy.

Can you tell me a little about where Don is? Last season, he lost or damaged a lot of things that were important to him – his job, his marriage, his relationship with his children?

– Well, I think it’s true. When we last saw Don, he was not in great shape. He was essentially unemployed, his marriage was not great, his relationship with his daughter in particular was fraught. The last scene that you’re talking about at least gave us a sort of glimmer of hope that perhaps he understood the severity of his situation. But we’ve seen Don in similar circumstances before, and sometimes he’s able to get out of the fire without causing too much damage. I think this time he wasn’t able to do that, and he recognized that, and realized that it’s time to take some serious stock in his life.


Something that Matthew Weiner said recently is that the story is all somehow going on in Don Draper’s mind. What do you think he meant by that?

– I mean, I think there’s a couple ways to look at the show. If you’re looking at from a certain viewpoint, then obviously Don is the protagonist of the main story. I think you can also look at it as, concurrently, a story about Peggy. I don’t think it’s a mistake that the whole show starts on Peggy’s first day, and watching her grow has been just as interesting, if not more interesting, than watching Don’s decline. I think Don is aware of that as well. I think we saw that when Peggy went to leave on her own, and we saw it last year when we saw Peggy sort of assume Don’s place at the agency.

Have you ever given any thought to what Don Draper would be doing now? Or if he would even make it this far?

[Laughs] I’d like to hope that he would be alive, and I would like to hope that he would find … I say this about Don a lot. I hope that he would be able to find some measure of peace in his life. He’s a tremendously damaged individual, and that damage tends to radiate outward from him. And often the collateral damage is as bad or worse than the original damage.


“When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hang on”


So I hope that the guy would be able to find some serenity, some peace, some happiness, and some stability in what has been for him a pretty unstable life – a couple of decades, a pretty rough patch. That would be my lasting hope, for the guy.