It’s been almost a year-and-a-half since we’ve seen a new episode of “Mad Men” and the audience at the show’s Tuesday (March 13) Paley Fest panel didn’t get even the sneakiest of peeks at Season 5, which debuts on Sunday, March 25.
After screening Season 4’s final episode — the one where Don spontaneously proposes to his secretary — showrunner Matthew Weiner was joined by stars Jon Hamm, January Jones, Kiernan Shipka, John Slattery, Vincent Kartheiser, Jared Harris, Aaron Staton, Robert Morse, Rich Sommer and Jay R. Ferguson for an in-depth discussion of that season — which wrapped up in October 2010.
There were some calculated faux spoilers about the upcoming season.
At one point Hamm, talking about his character Don Draper’s engagement, said, “Don got engaged, he didn’t necessarily get married,” suggesting that things could perhaps go off the rails for Don and the lovely Megan (Jessica Pare). But knowing the absolute lockdown on leakage of Season 5 details, Hamm was just having a little fun.
Weiner did give an answer — if vague — about the show’s shelf life.
“The plan is for seven seasons,” he said. “I don’t want to overstay our welcome. But this is the first season we went into knowing there would be more seasons. Trying to think about plotting out three seasons at once makes me sick.”
But, he added, “I know everything — exactly how it’s going to end.”