Five Characters We’re Eager to See Return on Mad Men’s 6th Season

Caleigh Flynn

Mad Men has the distinction of having one of television’s most interesting casts, both in main and recurring characters. Whether it’s the various women that drift in and out of Don Draper’s life (and bed), to the clients that Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce take on, there’s always someone interesting popping up from week to week. However, once some characters leave, they rarely, if ever, return- but when they do, Mad Men always makes it memorable. Not even death can stop some characters (Don’s poor brother Adam, etc) from popping up again.  And when someone turns up, you never know the circumstances, like when Paul Kinsey came back bald, following the Hare Krishnas and trying to make it to LA, forcing Harry Crane to bail him out. Or poor Midge, Don’s first mistress on the show, now reduced to a Village junkie, struggling to sell a painting.  As Mad Men plows towards it’s 6th season, we discuss the characters we’d like to see make a triumphant return to our TV screens.

5. Dawn: Okay, to be fair, Dawn never really went anywhere, but as the show’s first recurring African American character since Carla was fired, I really hope she gets a little more spotlight. It’s not uncommon for the secretaries of Mad Men to get some screen time, especially since they keep ending up marrying their bosses- Megan, Jane, but as SCDP’s first black secretary, I’d hope that the show would want to explore her story. Her most notable scene came when she stayed overnight at Peggy’s apartment to save her an unsafe train ride home and Peggy found out about some unpleasant internalized racism. But it’d be great to see her have her own story, not just exist to gauge SCDP’s racial thermometer. Plus, it’s just great that her name is Dawn and she’s Don’s secretary.

4. Duck Phillips: Duck has always been sort of a lamely tragic, grating sort of guy. People probably remember him for sleeping with Peggy (for some reason) but his most noted trait is how much he hates Don. Duck was brought in during the second season to manage Sterling Cooper and frequently clashed with Don, as well as struggling with his sobriety, his self image and his place in the Madison Avenue universe. This is a guy who abandoned his Irish Setter on the street in a fit of self-loathing. He was last seen in “The Suitcase” having drunkenly broken into the office and trying to drop a load on Don’s desk. (It was Roger’s office). In other words, I always want to see what this sad bastard is doing.

3. Sal Romano: Sal was Sterling Cooper’s art director for the first three seasons and also had the distinction of being one of Mad Men’s few gay characters. Sal lived the closeted lifestyle, afraid to divulge much about his sexuality, displaying an ardent crush on Ken Cosgrove and trying to fit in with his skirt-chasing colleagues. Don was forced to fire Sal at the end of season three when Sal was sexually harassed by Lucky Strike Owner and all around slimeball Lee Garner, Jr. Sal’s firing has always been one of series’ outstanding tragedies. We last saw Sal calling his wife from a Central Park pay phone before, presumably, cruising with the leather-clad men wandering in the background. We have no idea where Sal’s been or where his life has gone, and many mad Men fans have been asking for his return.

2. Lane Pryce: Bear with me. Yes, Lane is dead. He’s really super dead. Dead as hell. But dead people have a way of turning back up on this show, and since Lane chose his office as his final resting place, (remember those haunting words “I’ll be here the rest of my life.”?), it’d be morbidly fun to see Lane make a spooky reappearance. (Mad Men Christmas Carol Episode. The thing you never knew you wanted.)

1. Peggy Olson: As much as I’m all for Peggy giving Don the middle finger and blazing her own trail in advertising, I can’t bear to think of the show without her. It needs her, not just because of the overbearing male-female ration on the show, but because Peggy represents a type for women that has always been important to the show’s narrative. I’d love to see her go head to head with Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce on an account and win. I want to see more of her and Don’s relationship, but I sure as hell don’t want her crawling back to Don. I’m sure we’ll see more of Peggy before the show’s finish, but I want her to be more than just a footnote in the Ballad of Don Draper.

Anyone I forgot? Pining to see more Paul Kinsey or Jane Sterling, want to find out what happened to Carla or get another ghostly reappearance from Anna Draper? Tell us in the comments and tune into the 2-hour Season Six premiere of Mad Men tonight!! Sunday, April 7th, 9 pm EST on AMC.


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