Mad Men is one of the smartest, greatest shows on television. The name refers to the fact that it's about "ad men" working on Madison Avenue (get it?), with the show taking place in the 1960s (as it's been pointed out by many). I know many people come to this site for its reliability on telling you how appropriate different things in the media are for young people. That's one of the things I like about Common Sense. So, brushing aside the fact that critically, it's an amazing show, I'll go on to tell you what you should watch out for, whether you're a young person or a parent. In terms of comfortability, this show is definitely more likely to be enjoyed by older teens and most definitely adults. I think it's unfair to imply that this show is too intelligent for people under the age of 18 or any other age limits mentioned before me. I think it makes a lot more sense to say that this show is for intelligent people of any age. That doesn't mean that a 10 year old child (for example) is not going to be upset by the content. In fact, this content can be upsetting for ANYONE who is not comfortable with sex (i.e. discreet and brief depictions of sexual intercourse, brief flashes of skin, depictions of sexual fantasies, implications of on and off-screen sexual acts, etc.), drinking & smoking (i.e. heavy and constant, with the characters accurately unaware of the negative after-effects and health dangers), consumerism (i.e. featuring brands that both exist to this day and ones that have been discontinued, the entire show is mainly a social commentary on the growth of consumerism and the promotion of large influences in the 1960s), language (i.e. infrequent, but the strongest use being the f-word for example, in episode 1, season 1, "The Smoke Gets In Your Eyes" a little over 20 minutes into the episode, said under a character's breath), violence (i.e. VERY rare, but when featured it is not done discreetly or mild in the slightest way), and lastly, but not least, a vast array of likable but bad role models that you will occasionally cheer for or boo. To steer back on to a more critical viewpoint (in the sense that this is an incredible show), the writing blows me away, as well as the acting, and the authenticity of the show in general. This is what I call a perfect show, because everything is done in the best quality and talent. When explaining this show, people often point out the fact that this show is not about positive messages and role models, and yes, this is not for young children. But it is also an amazing piece of art. I love this show.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking