Judging by the universally glowing reviews and the spitfire personality overhaul of Don Draper — now finally impervious to the dead-eyed glare of that vapid bitch Betty — Sunday's Mad Men season premiere proved the show won't be relinquishing its status as must-see-TV anytime soon.
But while the newly minted Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce agency affords us more Pete Campbell screen time (always welcome), it also forces us to trudge along with them through the tedious setbacks plaguing their new venture. Jai alai and glazed ham? Really? That's the best your supposed super team of ad execs could land?
In the face of all this excessive handwringing, it seems like Madison Avenue could stand to learn a thing or two from us New Englanders, who are well aware that the big money lies in iced coffee and baseball. Luckily, last week also marked the return of "MA Men" — a Web parody of the AMC hit that answers the burning question "What if Mad Men took place in Boston?"
Conceived by Massachusetts native Jamie Denbo, the first episode debuted last fall at funnyordie.com and featured Sterling Cooper's Boston doppelganger landing a new campaign with Fenway Park, eventually settling on a commercial featuring a Sox player "balls deep in Derek Jeter's asshole."
To coincide with the season-four premiere, they dropped a second episode last week in which the brash collective of Massholes land their own Lucky Strike–size campaign with Dunkin' Donuts. Running through a list of potential successors for Fred the Baker and cramming every stereotype ever associated with Boston into four minutes, they eventually pin Tom Brady as the next Dunks spokesperson. No spoilers here, though — you'll have to tune in to see whom he ends up balls deep in.
While the most recognizable member of the "MA Men" team is New Kid and actor Joey McIntyre (as Rogah Sterling), there is also a considerable amount of under-the-radar talent on display with Nate Corddry, Nat Faxon, and Rob Delaney, begrudgingly handpicked by Denbo to fill the role of Don.
"I was initially enemies with Jamie. Her being from Swampscott and me from Marblehead. We had a built-in rivalry," says Delaney. "But I eventually warmed up to her, and she really is one of the funniest people I know and the mastermind behind this whole thing."