Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Hamm: Draper is a good role model

Jon Hamm said playing lothario Don Draper takes a 'psychic toll'

Jon Hamm believes his Mad Men character Don Draper is a good role model, because he is a hard worker and a perfectionist.

The ad man may be a heavy drinking lothario and a heartthrob, but Jon insists there is a lot more to his popularity.

He insisted: "The central conundrum is why people think this is a good person to model their lives after. Don, I feel, strives for excellence and doesn't settle for mediocrity, and demands that of people who work for him.

"I think that's beginning to be a lost art in our current culture of '140 characters and that's good enough.' The fact there are people who still strive for excellence ... is inspiring. That is the one good thing about Don; not that he looks good in a suit, not that he can drink, not that he (expletive) a lot of women."

But Jon admitted has found himself tested over the years by his character's dark side.

"There's no vicarious thrill for me as an actor to doing any of this sort of bad behaviour. I don't get off on it... There's a psychic toll it takes," he said. "I'm not comparing myself to a bricklayer or construction worker or miner. But it does take a psychic toll."

And the actor confessed that, as the penultimate series is about to air, he does hope Don will eventually find what he is searching for.

"Well, that's the hope. And at some point it will be the journey of the series, finding that happiness, or a balance."

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