Everyone who watches Mad Men knows that Christina Hendricks plays domineering bombshell (and fan favorite) Joan Harris (née Holloway). All the viewers also know about her commercials for Johnnie Walker that have been airing twice an episode since the show kicked off two months ago (even if just to fast forward through them). The problem with the episode that aired last night (you know, the one where everyone takes speed) was that Christina Hendricks got more screen time during the commercials than she did on the actual episode.
Last night, Joan didn’t make one appearance in the SCDP office — not even in a meeting or to walk by and tell everyone to get back to work (which has been most of her action all season). My conspiracy theory is that Bob Benson had her tied up in a supply closet somewhere. While she got 0 seconds of screen time on the show, she got 39 seconds of screen time during the commercials. Yes, Christina is good enough to help the show sell advertising, but not good enough to, you know, warrant her own storyline.
The breakdown is she got 12 seconds for each of her Johnnie Walker ads, which appeared in the first and final comercial breaks. She was also in two segments of Lincoln’s ad where the characters talk about different things on the show. She taught Peggy about “fashion” for seven seconds and “chastity” for five seconds. While being introduced to the concept, we see Joan three times for one second each. Those are her 39 seconds. It’s just really sad that if any of us want to see Joan, we have to watch the ads. Maybe next week she’ll get a full minute on screen!