Monday, December 13, 2010

Notes on Pop Culture: JibJab Christmas Greetings, All Things 'Mad Men' & Christmas

JibJab Christmas Greetings

Our neighbors send us our first e-greetings of the season this week. They used the web site’s personalization option by uploading images of their family of four which were superimposed over musicians/dancers performing, “Feliz Navidad.”

I spent way too much time messing around with the site and saw that they offer an It’s a Wonderful Life video. You input photos of people and watch them re-enact a massively truncated version of the famous Jimmy Stewart/Donna Reed flick. I, being a major Mad Men fan, selected Mad Men characters and put them into a JibJab re-creation of my favorite movie.

Wonder what Don Draper – who Peggy Olson said “sees everything” -- thought of the movie, of Jimmy Stewart’s down-trodden family man?

Mad Men-Themed Gifts

Speaking of Mad Men and Christmas . . . here are a ton of official Mad Men-themed gifts available at Gold Label from T-shirts, hoodies, mugs and iPhone covers, to tote bags, greeting cards and calendars featuring cartoons of Mad Men characters. Among my favorites -- many featuring the illustrations of Dyna Moe --  are the ones of Joan and the one of Don saying, “Fear stimulates my imagination.”

Additionally, the Mad Men-obsessed Dyna Moe also has a cool book out, Mad Men: The Illustrated World, featuring her insightful images based on the AMC drama. (This is one I’d personally like to see under my Christmas tree . . .)

I also liked the thoughtful Mad Men Unbuttoned: A Romp Through 1960s America by Natasha Vargas-Cooper which examined pop culture and the 1960s world of advertising, placing the reader in the mindset of the era.

Another Mad Men book I read over the summer but would recommend only to those who like somewhat dense, scholarly examinations of what motivates people (or doesn’t motivate people) from ethical, pragmatic, moral and sociological points of view is Mad Men and Philosophy: Nothing Is As It Seems I personally enjoyed it, found it thought provoking, but it did remind me of something you'd read for a college class.

'Christmas Comes But Once a Year'

And, for those of you (including me) who miss seeing new Mad Men episodes, you can fondly remember the second episode of the recent fourth season, the one in which Roger Sterling played Santa and Don bedded his first of two secretaries that season. How ironic was it that by the season’s end, Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce lost the client for whom they put on the dog and pony show – as well as the Santa suit – and Don got engaged to his secretary?

Image credits: Gold Label,

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