Mad Men

I've been fascinated by AMC's summer series Mad Men. Its depiction of 1960 America is revelatory—even though I was alive then, if only eight. And, as Ellen Feldman observes, it's not just the details that make it so powerful, it's a throwback in terms of character development and, dare I say it, pacing. Although AMC has commercials, it doesn't observe the same rhythm other channels do, so some scenes develop for 11 or 12 minutes before a break.

Speaking of summer TV and commercials, have any other Burn Notice viewers been as irritated as I have over DirecTV's blatant product placement there? (Last week, in a wealthy man's house: "It's a 60" plasma with DirecTV HD—that's why the picture is so clear." Feh.)