Review: Mad Men, season 5, episode 1

After an extended absence, Don Frances Draper and co return for the fifth series of the lauded US drama period Mad Men.

The series, being broadcast in the UK by Sky Atlantic, returns to see an unusually happy Don who is set to turn 40.

Meanwhile, as plans are put in place for a surprise party, clients Heinz are also expected in the agency for a creative pitch that involves Ballet Dancing beans.

The writing is absolutely wonderful, with each of the lead actors offered at least one memorable line, and the cast are clearly reveling in being back in action.

One wonderful scene involved two characters on their way to work at the agency wonderfully highlights the issues that all ad people have in explaining what they actually do to their families, while there are perhaps many more particularly funny moments that were to be expected.

There's a long way yet to go however, as the episode sets up the issues being experienced by the breakaway agency, and hints that Don isn't convinced that the future won't be rosey for his own agency in the future.

This is television drama at its finest, with sublime writing, sumptuous photography, perfect costuming and incredible performances.

Trust me, there's nothing better on the TV when this is on, so don't bother looking.

Mad Men returns to Sky Atlantic with episodes one and two from 8pm tonight, with the channel being taken over by the series.

This will include Sky Atlantic's logo being broadcast in black and white, while several ads from the 60's and 70's will also air during the two episodes.

Stephen Lepitak

Stephen Lepitak is editor of The Drum, with responsibility for overseeing the day-to-day running of the content produced for the various platforms run by the publication. Over the years he has interviewed agency network bosses such as Sir Martin Sorrell, Maurice Lévy and Arthur Sadoun, as well as Cindy Gallop, Kim Kardashian, film directors James Cameron, Spike Jonze, Richard Curtis and Lord David Puttnam. With a keen interest in media and breaking news, Lepitak has been with The Drum since 2005 and is based across its UK, US and Asia operations.

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