Ever since up-and-coming actress Megan Draper (Jessica Pare) donned the same T-shirt that Sharon Tate wore in a 1967 photo shoot, “Mad Men” conspiracy theorists have been writing the character’s obituary, believing she’ll meet a tragic end along the same lines as the fate that befell the '60s sex symbol. The logic (and we use the word loosely) is that the show hasn’t skimped on showing the social upheaval prevalent in 1968 New York, what with all the wailing police sirens, the riots and Peggy stabbing (albeit accidentally) her then boyfriend Abe with a makeshift bayonet.
So when The Envelope hosted a round table with “Mad Men” creator Matthew Weiner and the show’s lead actresses the other day for a conversation, we couldn’t help but inquire about the general health of everyone’s characters going forward.
“I don’t want to spoil anything for people, but after Lane ...” Weiner began, referring to the late, great Lane Pryce, who was the ad agency’s financial officer until he hanged himself at the end of last season.
“They’re barking up the wrong tree,” Elisabeth Moss, who plays Peggy, added.
Weiner: “It’s just not part of the show. No one’s going to die.”
At this point, Pare exhaled loudly and sang out: “Thank God!”
“This season,” Weiner interjected, laughing. “I didn’t say never!”
So what was with the T-shirt? And why was young Sally Draper, Megan’s stepdaughter, seen reading “Rosemary’s Baby,” Ira Levin’s bestselling horror novel that Roman Polanski, Tate’s husband, adapted for film? (That is a lot of hints,” Moss said, eyeing Weiner.)
“Yes, Sharon Tate wore that T-shirt, but that was just my costume designer Janie Bryant and I solving an argument,” Weiner said. “Women’s T-shirts had not come into fashion. I always wanted Megan in a Disneyland T-shirt and Janie kept saying, ‘They’re not around yet.’ So I said, ‘There’s got to be a women’s T-shirt,’ and Janie brought [the photo of Tate] in and asked, ‘Is this OK?’ And I said, ‘Yes. I want that exact T-shirt.’ Little did I know ...”
As for “Rosemary’s Baby," the book and movie were huge in 1968. In fact, we may not have seen the last of it this season. To learn more, you’ll just have to watch the season’s final two episodes. We got to the bottom of the whole Megan murder mystery. We can’t do everything.