Season 5 of "Mad Men" began as one of the most highly-anticipated seasons of TV ever. For most of the season, critics hailed it as the best "Mad Men" season yet. But Sunday night's season finale left many fans underwhelmed and disappointed, with many asking themselves, "Is this all there is?"
Note: Do not read on if you have not seen the Season 5 finale of "Mad Men," entitled "The Phantom."
The finale wrapped up several story arcs and had a few standout moments. Still, it felt like a letdown after the tragic penultimate episode "Commissions and Fees," when Lane Pryce committed suicide.
Pete Campbell did get punched in the face (twice), which is always a plus. Don and Peggy finally got some closure after they ran into each other in a movie theatre, and he told her how proud he was of her. Roger hooked up with Megan's mom again (and mooned the viewing public on another LSD trip). The agency had a good enough quarter to move into a bigger office space, and there was that cool shot of the partners staring out at their new office views. Then the final scene implied that Don may be sliding back to his old womanizing ways next season.
But the finale lacked any instantly-recognizable signature "Mad Men" water cooler moment, after a season that featured one nearly every episode. The final montage, set to the "James Bond" theme "You Only Live Twice," sent the season off on a high note, but the power of a suggestive Draper look does have its limits. Maybe the finale was a victim of how high "Mad Men" has raised its own expectations of awesomeness throughout the season, or maybe we're all just like Don Draper, incapable of ever being satisfied or experiencing true joy.
Below, check out a slideshow of "Mad Men" fans reacting to the finale on Twitter.
Jane Keltner deValle
Erin Gloria Ryan
Meg Fowler Tripp