'Mad Men' Season 7: What's in Store for Don Draper & Co.?

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mad men don draper elevatorIn recent interviews, Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner has claimed that even he doesn't know where certain characters and plot points will stand when we see Don Draper and Co. next. And that may very well be true, being that he recently revealed that he won't start writing season 7 until the middle of this month, and the rest of the writers return in August.

Still, that's not stopping us from piecing it together from clues he's been dropping all over the place! He can't even throw us off by saying, "I don’t know if we're going to come back [in 1969]." (Suuuure, Weiner! We'll believe that the next season takes place in the '70s or beyond when we see it.) And though of course we can't really know until we see it -- do we ever?! -- here, clues to where our favorite characters will stand come the Mad Men season 7 premiere ...

  1. Megan and Don: Although everyone seems to want to jump to the conclusion that Megan's angry speech and door-slamming on Don in the season finale means they're on an express train to Divorcetown, it sounds more like they'll be separated, if apart at all. Weiner told Vulture.com, "Megan appears to be done with Don, and it feels permanent because, unlike Betty, she has no kids with him. ... It certainly looks bad, and she does say, 'I can't take this right now.' ... So for me, it was literally just like the partners putting Don on leave. At a certain point, [everyone's] like, 'Really? Forget it.' ... I feel like we left her in a place where she's had a realization." He also noted, "That beautiful scene between Don and Megan where he says, 'It got out of control -- I got out of control,' I think that he is recommitting himself to her." And there you have it. If it really is "just like" his situation with SC&P, then there's a sliver of hope that they're NOT actually going to be over when we see them next. But it certainly sounds like their relationship is headed for a revolution of its own.
  2. Ted and Pete: They're both headed to California. Does that mean we'll never see them again? Pfft. No, of course not. Weiner says, "All I can say is, when Don divorced Betty, everybody thought that we'd never see her again. No matter whether they're in California or not, these characters are part of our story." Of course they are. Further, if Megan is gonna go out to Cali by herself, I'm guessing the show is going to get even more bicoastal next year ...  
  3. Sally and Don: One of the biggest season 6 cliffhangers was of course whether Don's relationship with Sally would be able to recover from the devastating moment in which she caught him with Sylvia. We got a hint of what's likely to come when he showed his children where he grew up. Weiner admits, "I honestly think that that act and that look that is exchanged so beautifully between those two actors is a moment that many of us have never even had in our life, and if nothing else, that moment in itself is an improvement. So is it the beginning of something? Who knows?" Eye roll. He knows. And yeah, how could it NOT be the beginning of something? That's a plot that must be addressed in season 7.
  4. Don ... and Dick Whitman: As Weiner notes, "The season started with Don saying, 'I don’t want to do this anymore.' There is an indication that he doesn’t." So does that mean he's going to finally pull back the curtain 100 percent? I'd imagine, given what we know so far, the chances of that happening are pretty high. 
  5. Don and SC&P: Weiner hasn't dropped too many clues about how we can expect Don's professional life to evolve. But either way, surely he'll have to learn from his inappropriate behavior and the many mistakes he made over the course of season 6 in order to move forward.

How do you see these cliffhangers playing out at the start of season 7?

Image via AMC

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nonmember avatar Fritz Franklin

Hopes for season 7:
1. Megan & Don are divorced to start the season. I don't think I can take them trying to work out a long-distance marriage. Her character was so passive & forgiving throughout Don's unacceptable behavior in season 6 that I don't think Megan is worth trying to redeem. I hope her presence in the show is minimal.
2. More Joan. Her meetings with Avon were a couple of the most exhilarating parts of season 6. Hopefully, we will be informed early in season 7 that Greg Harris was killed in Vietnam between seasons 6 & 7.
3. A more dynamic, complex, and contradictory Peggy. Her character has become increasingly flat over time, which is really unfortunate. We need to see the Peggy who goes beyond the simple successful woman in a man's office. Remember the scene where Peggy does the twist while dancing toward Pete? I want to see THAT look in Peggy's eyes again.
4. Speaking of Pete, I think that character was MVP of season 6. They did so well with him, juxtaposing it all with Don Draper as they have been since the first episode of season one. Now each of them is potentially "free" (in Trudy's words) on opposite sides of the country. It will be fascinating to see how Don & Pete handle each of their exiles in season 7.
5. The return of Paul Kinsey in LA. I'd love to see him come back, even for just a short time.

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