The Gothamist has a great write up of all the various locations and trends in 1970s Manhattan and beyond for those who have viewed Mad Men season 7’s “The Forecast,” an episode filled with references to the past while also pondering the direction, and meaning, of the future. If you haven’t watched “The Forecast” yet, you may want to stop reading here – consider yourself warned.

The Oak Room was a male-only New York City establishment for quite some time, until a National Organization of Women protest changed that status quo for forever. This is the location Joan chooses to meet her paramour, if that term is appropriate here (given the level of perceived scandal each party attempts to attach to what is otherwise the meeting of two single adults) and is appropriate given her trajectory in the series. Having moved from head of the secretarial ranks to cashed-out partner of an advertising firm, Joan is the evolving modern woman in Mad Men and this is what makes her so amazing to watch, and so endearing to fans. Again, this is an instance of the television show deftly interweaving layers of meaning into each and every scene.

Another interesting debut in the show is the arrival of Sesame Street, a mainstay children’s program worldwide. According to The Gothamist, this show was approximately one year old at the time of “The Forecast.” The show was revolutionary and was one of the most awarded debut shows of all time.

Sally is leaving for a fieldtrip touring the states and she’s going by Greyhound. The problem is – at this time in NYC – the Port Authority was one of the most crime riddled places in the city. Interesting starting point for a class trip. As a native of Virginia, I found it interesting that Gothamist notes that Carter Grove Plantation was given as a gift to the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation in this year.



When Betty references Jane Fonda, the video above gives you some idea of what she’s referencing. Quite an unfair comparison but Jane Fonda was one of the most vocal anti-war protesters and her fame only gave her message that much more of an audience. Sally’s fears for her friend Glen going off to Vietnam are well founded outside of the war protests. Vietnam was a brutal conflict and simply writing off Sally’s greater concerns about the war (expressed in her particular concern for her friend) is somewhat condescending on Betty’s part. Far from being radical, Sally’s views were shared by many young people in the United States.

Other things:

Don’s stack of magazines – all from January 1970. The theme of the episode being “the future” in a metaphorical sense.

Don’t real estate agent – women were first starting to get into this field in 1970, making his interactions with his agent interesting.

Be sure to check back here for our full write up review and synopsis of season 7 of Mad Men.

[Gothamist]