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Mad Men's Ten Sexiest Scenes
With the fourth-season premiere coming, we pause for a highly
charged look back.
BY JAMES BRADY RYAN
When Mad Men returns for its fourth season next week, pulses will surely quicken — with its cast of knock-outs and pre-sexual-revolution setting, Mad Men might be the most sexually tense show on TV. While it was hard for us to narrow them down, these are the ten sexiest scenes in Mad Men's three seasons so far.
1) Betty picks up a stranger at the bar (Season 2, Episode 13)
Betty Draper is easily the most put-upon character in Mad Men (and that's saying a lot). For years she's put up with Don's philandering (see below), and from what we can tell she's never cheated herself — until the second-season finale, that is. After finding out she's pregnant, Betty does some impulse shopping and gets busy with a random stud at a bar, in a setting charged with the risk of getting caught. Maybe she and Don have more in common than we thought.
2) Joy seduces Don (Season 2, Episode 11)
"Why would you deny yourself something you want?" That's the kick-off to this adventure, and even though Don and Joy don't consummate their — brief, very odd — relationship until later, the sexual attraction between Don and the wealthy bon vivant is readily apparent here. Many of Mad Men's innumerable come-ons have been off-putting and demeaning. But this one — coupled with the indescribably glam image of Joy in movie-star garb in her convertible — encapsulates for Don the irresistable sexiness of escape.
3) Don and Betty roleplay in Rome (Season 3, Episode 8)
Don and Betty are not the ideal married couple. We see this quite clearly. But there are still a few times when we've seen them shine the way they must have before things got bad. Take their trip to Rome, during which Betty — with her working Italian — flirts with two men while Don waits for his moment to steal her away.
4) Peggy shuts down a suitor (Season 2, Episode 2)
Failed seduction — not very sexy, except in this case, when it shows off a newly wised-up Peggy coming into her own. She's willing to seize a little fun for herself, making out at a party, but she knows she's out of this guy's league, and crisply shuts him down when he asks for more. Self-respect is an alluring thing.
5) Betty gropes her washing machine (Season 1, Episode 11)
Much of Mad Men's allure comes from lust bubbling up through rampant sexual repression. And no relationship is as repressed as Betty's relationship with Don. After a run-in with an attractive salesman, Betty then has a close encounter with her washing machine. Admittedly, the washing-machine-as-vibrator thing is a bit of a '60s-sexual-repression cliche. But in this case, it's also sexy as hell.