All major storylines of the series were addressed by the series finale of Mad Men and it managed to wrap each one in a moving way. Peggy Olson finally found love and that too where she least expected it; with Stan Rizzo, a colleague. Roger Sterling married Megan Draper’s mother, Marie Calvet. Is this his third or fourth wife? Pete Campbell whisked his daughter and his ex-wife Trudy on a Lear jet to Wichita where they can start their new life together. Joan was offered some freelance work by Ken Cosgrove relating to production of industrial films, which re-ignited her ambitions of being her own boss. It got her moving and she broke up with her super-rich boyfriend from LA, Richard, which was too good to be true in the first place.
Sadly, with the progression of the lung cancer, Betty Francis had gotten too weak so her role of looking after the household was taken up by her daughter, Sally Draper. But, Don and Betty’s final conversation was the highlight of the final episode. The goodbyes were definitely worthy of an Emmy. Of all places, Don went to a California retreat center to face himself where he participated in encounter groups with Stephanie, Anna Draper’s daughter. When he calls Peggy, she tries to convince him to return to New York and his job, but he is paralyzed because of the guilt he feels for his sins and ends the call.
In a group meeting, he encounters a man similar to himself who confesses how insignificant he has felt for most of his life. Don is moved because and embraces the man. We see him by the Pacific Ocean, meditating with other hippies. He utters the Buddhist chant ‘Om’ after closing his eyes. While the finale of The Sopranos may have been abrupt, viewers got what they were after with the Mad Men finale. They saw the rebirth of Don Draper and were able to get closure as far as other characters are concerned. The hippie scenes may have been a bit weird, but it was the 70s and Don ended up getting the happy ending.
In its seven seasons, the Emmy-winning series has given TV drama an air of depth and sophistication that it doesn’t strive for most of the time and the finale was fitting for such a show and an amazing character in the form of Don Draper. It is probably the most adult show ever that has been created for mainstream audiences and takes a step away from traditional storytelling to portray the search of identify by one man. Mad Men will forever be remembered as a show that made every office worker yearn to be a part of the conga line at the Sterling Cooper party.
Furthermore, the show proved that it wasn’t the movies, but TV that could provide people with classy entertainment. However, the finale also gives people a reminder as Stan says to Peggy, ‘Work’s not the only thing in life’.