March 25 a 17-month hiatus that has shaken the world to its very core will come to an end: Mad Men will return to television with a fifth season. To celebrate the imminent return of AMC’s acclaimed series, the starring cast and creator Matt Weiner paid a visit to The Today Show March 19 to discuss the extended absence of their show, and excitement on returning to the air.
In explanation of the lengthy hiatus, star Jon Hamm joked, “We were hiding. We decided to take some time off and solve some issues. Several of us had gender reassignment surgeries.” These comments are a lot more tame than John Slattery’s recent outburst on the issue.
Although the viewers have suffered through almost a year and a half of no Mad Men, Weiner explained, “We have not been away from this show for as long as the public has. There was a decision made by the network in 2010 that the show would be on in 2012. So, I went back to work in May, and they came back in August. So it was really just three or four months longer than normal.”
As far as the future of Mad Men is concerned, Weiner continued: “We’re talking about doing seven seasons. That’s the plan for right now. People keep asking me [how I’m going to end the show], so I had better get on it. I have a vague idea of what it is. I think it’s interesting that people keep asking about it. I think that they want the tension alleviated that there is a plan, or something. For me, I don’t even want to think about it ending yet.”
Hamm was asked to speak on his recent heated commentary about reality stars Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton, and reality television in general, which he accused of being a celebration of idiocy. “I don’t think [the remarks] were careless. I think they were accurate. It’s a part of our culture that I certainly don’t identify with. And I don’t really understand the appeal of it, other than in a sort of ‘car crash’ sensibility.”
Costar Vincent Kartheiser came to Hamm’s side, supporting his colleague’s opinion. “I agree. He said it very eloquently. I agree with everything he said. I think our society enjoys to turn on the television and maybe awful, and say ‘Well, at least I’m not as terrible as that person.'”