Monday, July 20, 2009

The Madness of January Jones

One of my favourite shows on TV is AMC's Mad Men. And one of my favourite characters on Mad Men is Betty Draper, the seemingly perfect wife of John Hamm's Don Draper. She is the perfectly dressed, perfectly coiffed, icy blond blue eyed housewife who is continually on the edge of cracking.

Betty is played by the curiously named January Jones. What is curious is that is her actual name. No stage name required. She was named after a character in one of Jacqueline Sussan's trashier novels - Once is Not Enough. January is gracing the August cover of Interview Magazine (coincidentally the same issue that has the interview with Twilight's Taylor Lautner), and her interview for the article is done by the great and amazing Jack Nicholson (at Jones' request). The two appeared together in 2003's Anger Management.

I find the idea of actors interviewing fellow actors very intriguing. I think they can pull a lot more out of an interviewee than a typical journalist. They know how to pull answers out and how to turn a question to elicit a more telling response.

Jones speaks about how she would have been "rebellious" if she had lived back then, and how she has little in common with her character or the way Betty handles things. Says Jones: "With her, it’s all a facade. It’s interesting, though, that in terms of education, marriage, jobs—women are still not where they should be. Women still get paid less. Women still . . . [laughs] whatever. But even though things are better now than they were before, I think women of my generation take a lot for granted.....Things like getting to go to an Ivy League school, getting work as a high-powered businesswoman or as a studio executive. Anything you would think."

Jones is also candid about her start in the modelling industry and how naive she was when she moved to new York from South Dakota, not knowing a soul and quickly learning to "shut down" as she figured out the way things worked. So sad and adorable that she ordered a "pop" at a pizza joint and they looked at her like she was crazy for using the word pop.
I like this girl. She completely acknowledges that a large part of her success is luck. She also is not one to rest on her success. She is one of the stars of one of the most successful and critically acclaimed shows on the air, yet rather than feel "safe" she knows that the fight still continues. I am hopeful that her love of Tyra Banks & ANTM is like my of Twilight. I know it is bad for me and making me a little less intelligent every time I read about it or watch it, but I just can't help myself.
Season 2 of Mad man was released on DVD today, Season 3 airs on AMC beginning August 16th.


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