Thursday, March 31, 2011

13 Hours of TV to Watch this Summer When You're Not Watching Mad Men

Look, Mad Men is good. It's really good. It's probably the best show on television. The Emmy voters certainly seem to think so. It might even be one of the top television dramas of all time. I don't know, I never watched The Sopranos or The Wire. But either way, it's up there.

And it won't air in 2011.

It might never air again, it might eventually air with dramatic changes, or it might come back in the winter of 2012 as strong as ever. But it definitely will not air in the Summer of 2011. (UPDATE: Mo Ryan of AOL is now reporting creator Matt Weiner has reached a deal with AMC for 2, and possibly 3 seasons. So Mad Men will be back in 2012. Hooray!)

So what will you do for those 13 hours of your life? You could rewatch some of your favorite Mad Men episodes of the first four seasons. AMC would certainly like you to watch The Walking Dead or Breaking Bad or whatever else they air in that slot.

But here are 13 hours of television I would suggest watching. Probably none of them are the quality of Mad Men, but they feature top notch performances from the Mad Men cast.

30 Rock- "Generalissimo" and "St. Valentine's Day"
Community- "Cooperative Calligraphy" and "Conspiracy Theories and Interior Design"
Dharma and Greg- "Unarmed and Dangerous"
Gilmore Girls- "But I'm a Gilmore"
Grey's Anatomy- "That's Me Trying"
How I Met Your Mother- "Return of the Shirt" and "How I Met Everyone Else"
Parenthood- "Seven Names"
Saturday Night Live- "34x6: Jon Hamm/Coldplay"
The Office- "Customer Survey"
The West Wing- "Commencement"
Will & Grace- "Big Brother is Coming" Parts 1&2

...and the network show perhaps most inspired by Mad Men (although far less successful)...

Lone Star- "Pilot" and "One in Every Family"

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