Mad Men is a work of historical fiction that was first initiated during the summer of 2007, and remained for the duration of seven Television seasons. The show’s primary focus is an advertisement agency, Sterling Cooper, during the socially and politically eventful decade of 1960. Mad Men preserves this era in history with impeccable precision, which in fact grants the viewer a retrospective glance in the opposite direction of time from a standpoint in lack of opinion. The show transcends bias, ignorance, misinformation, and other such substantial boundaries. Mad Men is truthful due to its stern ambition in providing an exceptional illustration of an American reality of the past. In many ways, Mad Men takes upon itself the responsibilities of a time capsule. The show brings to question a number of social stereotypes and standards from the past, as well as suggests to the relevance of similar issues of the present, by attaching to the depiction of each stereotype featured on-screen it’s harmful and oppressive product. This encourages the viewer to consider and compare the state of humanity between the era of today, and that of the 1960s.
Mad Men’s commitment to historical accuracy is verified by an extensive collection of social issues and events of the time that assimilate into each layer of the show. Events that provoked considerable national shifts, such as the death of John F. Kennedy, are sewn into the show’s fictitious plot line with striking detail. The significance and value held by JFK at the time of his demise is revealed by Mad Men’s representation of public reception of the news of his death, which was preserved remarkably.
In conclusion, the distinct, documentary-style approach to a specified period in time (America during the 60s) that meaningfully adheres to historical fact does not exclusively apply to Mad Men. This valuable attribute is shared among a grand assemblage of artwork, a prime example of which being present in a film by Sam Mendes, American Beauty. Similarly to Mad Men, this picture explores the reality of a particular sector and phase of human existence (in this case, life as a resident in an ordinary North American suburb, during the late 1990s). The unrelenting devotion of director Sam Mendes to the accurate depiction of his desired image of truth in American Beauty is made obvious by the power and merit of the film, rewarded in part by such an approach.