While the much anticipated finale of "Mad Men" last night left the world without one of its favorite television shows, creator Matthew Weiner has been living without his baby for much longer.
Metro caught up with Weiner when he visited our offices last month. “Mad Men” finished shooting last summer, but creator Matthew Weiner was still not totally used to it being over. Still, he will have to talk about it for a long time.
Even now do you still get ideas for the show?
Yes. I’ve had ideas recently. I caught myself. I ran into a situation I thought could be in the show. That’s never going to happen again. I always have a piece of paper in my pocket or I call myself on the phone. I’ve learned to take those passing thoughts very seriously. It’s not as delusional as it sounds. But I did stop and not write it down. It was like the show was a phantom limb.
Could you use the idea for some other project?
I didn’t write it down, so maybe I won’t be able to. Maybe. Perhaps I should take it more seriously. But that one in particular I thought didn’t have any other use. I went to the LBJ library in Austin after I wrapped the show. And I can tell you that going through the museum was really a pleasure for me. I know that if I had done it while the show was on it would have been complete anxiety. “How come I didn’t know about that?” “That would have been an amazing thing to do!” But instead I was just like, “You know what? He was a great president, he’s fascinating.”
Are there forgotten or neglected events or historical moments you were really proud to have included?
I like things people have forgotten about. Like the computer coming into peoples’ lives. People were like, “Oh, [in the first episode with the giant computer in season seven] that’s a ‘2001’ reference.” It’s not. It actually happened. And “2001” was already out. “2001” presaged it. Arthur C. Clarke was talking about it and Kubrick was interested in that — what our relationship is going to be with these machines. By the time [a computer] came to the agency — as Don says, “It’s not symbolic, it’s quite literal.” It took over the lunch room. [Laughs] It replaced human beings. We have such a non-stop love affair with our cellphones that we forget there was a time when this was perceived as a threat.