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Characters / Mad Men Families

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The relatives, spouses, and children of the main cast of Mad Men. Beware of spoilers.

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    Bobby Draper and Gene Draper 
Bobby Played By: Maxwell Huckabee, Aaron Hart, Jared Gilmore, and Mason Vale Cotton

Don and Betty's sons. Much more in the background than Sally.

  • A Day in the Limelight: For Bobby in "The Flood" and "Field Trip"; both dealing with his relationship with his parents.
  • The Cutie: Bobby. Gene in Season 7B.
  • Dead Guy Junior: Gene is born soon after Betty's father dies, and she names the baby after him, much to the dismay of Don (who couldn't stand her father and vice versa) and Sally (who is having a hard enough time dealing with her grandfather's death without a Replacement Goldfish coming along).
  • The Klutz: As a young child, Bobby accidentally hurts himself and breaks a lot of things around the house. It's not that unusual, but Betty comes down on him hard over it.
  • Parental Favoritism: While Sally is more of a frustrating mystery to him, the few times we see him interact alone with Bobby have always been rather emotionally significant to Don, as his own baggage related to his father causes him to see a certain connection to him.
    • Gene is the one child Betty constantly holds next to her and treats tenderly.
  • Living Prop: Well, Gene is still a baby, but Bobby has been able to talk since we've known him and rarely avails himself of this ability.
    • This looks like it could change for Bobby as of the Season 6 episode, "The Flood."
  • Soap Opera Rapid Aging Syndrome: Inverted in Bobby's case. Due to multiple recastings (see below) he was somehow no younger than four or five in 1960 but not yet a teenager by 1970.
  • The Other Darrin: There have been four Bobbys so far. With Mason Vale Cotton's Promotion to Opening Titles, it looks like this has come to an end. Lampshaded in the episode "The Better Half" where Bobby mentions that (at his summer camp) he's known as "Bobby five" because there's so many, and that "Bobby one" left.

    Henry Francis
Played By: Christopher Stanley

An acquaintance of Roger Sterling's, Henry is a Republican political operative in New York State first for Governor Nelson Rockefeller, then for New York Mayor John Lindsay,note  whom Betty meets at a party. After her marriage to Don starts to founder, she begins an affair with him and eventually divorces Don to marry him. He himself is already divorced, with a daughter. He is eventually elected to the New York State Senate from a safe GOP seat in Westchester County.

  • '50s Hair: As he is a politician, he maintains this conservative look into 1970.
  • Mama's Boy: Implied, his mother is a very terrifying and domineering woman that looks down at Betty and he's more mild-mannered compared to her. He's shown to be in some denial after a heavier Betty dyes her hair black, resembling a younger version of his Mother.
  • May–December Romance: He's a good fifteen years older than Betty and while they aren't without problems, it's clear they love each other very much.
  • The Missus and the Ex: Having been through a divorce before, Henry tries to be the voice of reason with Betty to try to get along better with Don for the kids sake and her own future, but tends to be terse with Don every time they communicate in early years. By later seasons, he generally shrugs it off.
    • The one real flash of anger toward Don featured Henry passive aggressively nudging his car forward into boxes of Don's stuff after an argument with Betty, and while requesting he move his items in a later conversation, requesting Don not come on Sunday because that is the day of Don's son Gene's birthday party. Don shows up anyway and Betty lets him because he'd not risk losing contact with the kids for the sake of the fight.
  • Nice Guy: Betty seems to consider him this, in contrast to Don. He may not be so much of one.
  • Not So Above It All: "The Runaways" has him display some chauvinistic attitudes towards Betty, with him even referring to both her and a teenage Sally as "Girls! Girls!"
  • Only Sane Man: Usually is, but his old-fashioned ways do clash with Betty's Character Development in late seasons.
  • Parental Substitute: Justified since he's more around than Don and has far less issues than him. Don gets a little jealous of his good parenting skills.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: He might be the best parent on the show. In spite of this, Betty takes his advice about everything except when it comes to Sally.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: Defied, he doesn't invoke his clout to dodge petty things like car tickets and doesn't like it when his relatives try to. He explains to his Mother that his approach to dealing with a speeding ticket is "to pay it".
  • Silver Fox
  • Standard '50s Father: In the most ironic way possible, given the context.

    Mona Sterling 
Played By: Talia Balsam

Roger Sterling's first wife, who he divorces and leaves for Jane, a secretary at SCDP.

  • '50s Hair: Starts off with very conservative hair until she loosens up towards the end of the decade.
  • '60s Hair: She longer, bigger, flipped out teased hairdos.
  • Amicable Exes: Settles on this kind of relationship with Roger, as they have a daughter and a grandson together. After his divorce with Jane he virtually has no other family.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Hmmm, so that's what they saw in each other....
  • Foot-Dragging Divorcee: She refuses to divorce Roger until she gets a lot of money from him after 20 years of marriage.
  • Grande Dame: Oh so much.
  • Hidden Depths: "The Monolith" points out that she struggled with drinking and depression while raising Margaret as a young mom and that she was often lonely, likely when Roger was at War or when he came back and spent most of his time at the agency or with mistresses.
  • Only Sane Family Member: A mediator for both her ex-husband and daughter, this is well shown in the 3rd season when Margaret's wedding was being prepared.
  • The Missus and the Ex: With Jane Sterling, even after Roger and Jane are divorced, Mona makes sure to be more poised in comparison to Jane and has a hard time being neutral during the wedding plans in regards to Jane.
    • Played with in scenes with her and Joan, as she isn't aware of the relationship between Joan and Roger and respects Joan's beauty and fashion know-how.
  • Pretty in Mink: She puts on a very fancy white fur coat in Season 7 episode "The Monolith", which is entirely ironic as she's surrounded by dirty-looking hippies.
  • Rich Bitch: Her first appearance shown her to not show any sympathy to Betty when she mentions that she still is reeling from the death of her mother, Roger complained about her being judgmental; she is a more sympathetic example than most.
  • Shadow Archetype: Was set as such to Betty in the first seasons. She looked cold and distant as her marriage to Roger is clearly unhappy. Also in Season 2 she bitterly laughs at Betty's humiliation by Don as if she already went through something similar. Her eventual divorce and much happier second marriage foreshadowes Betty's divorce and second marriage.

    Margaret Hargrove (née Sterling) 
Played By: Elizabeth Rice

Roger and Mona Sterling's only daughter. She is married and has one child. She later leaves her husband and son to live in a Hippie commune and changes her name to "Marigold".

  • '50s Hair: Has a ponytail later cut into a bob in Season One and maintains wavy hair and beehives.
  • '60s Hair: She gets her hair cut into a Sandra Dee esque style and grows it out into a elaborate braided bun.
  • '70s Hair: Her hair gets looser as the show goes on and ends up a hippie with long, loose hair.
  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: That doesn't change much even when she is over 20.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: After being asked how she could live with abandoning her family by her father, she brutally points out the hypocrisy in that, considering how he was a distant, incapable, apathetic parent who abandoned his wife and kids to marry his secretary, so why can't she do the same as him.
  • Like Father, Like Daughter: Lampshaded in the first season when Roger complains about how bratty she is, with Joan pointing out that she's only taking after Roger; she also turns out to be as self-centered as him.
  • Missing Mom: Becomes this to her son when she runs off to a commune.
  • Skewed Priorities: She is seen crying hysterically at Kennedy's assassination, only because her wedding (scheduled a few days after that day) will be disrupted.

    Anna Draper
Played By: Melinda Page Hamilton

The wife of the real Don Draper, who lives in California. Through flashbacks, we find out that she tracked "Don" down after he came back from the war and demanded an explanation, but was very forgiving when she got one. She and this Don never had a romantic relationship; instead she was, as they both said at different times, the only person who knew all about him. She dies of cancer in season four.


    Trudy Campbell
Played By: Alison Brie

Pete Campbell's wife, from a Nouveau Riche family. They had a rocky start, but have grown into one of the most stable and loving couples on the show for a brief period of time.

  • '50s Hair: Starts the series with chic updos of the later 1950s and early 1960s, only to loosen to bouffants as the series goes on.
  • '60s Hair: She wears her hair in flipped and elaborate bouffants that get longer as the decade goes by.
  • '70s Hair: When she isn't wearing her hair up, she wears her hair lose and when we see her again in 1969 and 1970, her hair is long and loose with some curls. The finale sees her traveling with long, loose but styled hair.
  • Amicable Exes: She settles in this kind of relationship with Pete in late seasons, for their daughter's sake. And eventually rekindling their marriage.
  • Brainy Brunette: A cunning, witty, vivacious brown-haired woman who coaches her husband through his career and reads "the Classics" as opposed to modern short stories and paperback novels.
  • Daddy's Girl: She's her father little princess, and nothing is ever too much for her (which her husband resents, given his upbringing). To the point of throwing out of the window a years-long partnership with Pete when his father-in-law finds out he cheats on his daughter.
  • The Dog Bites Back: Having had enough of Peter's lies and adultery, Trudy unleashes a "The Reason You Suck" Speech before kicking him out of the house in season 6. A completely unintimidated Pete then bites back himself, stating "You're going to sleep alone tonight. And you will realize you don't know anything for sure." In this show, he's right.
  • Happily Married: Played with.
    • Pete and Trudy's marriage takes work (and isn't always so happy), but as pointed out above, it's on much solider ground than most of the other SCDP marriages. However, she eventually becomes quite naggy (see entry on her husband.)
    • They're in the process of divorcing by Season 7 and then call it off in 7B before moving to Wichita.
  • Hidden Depths: Trudy can dance a mean Charleston and apparently really loves watching boxing.
    • It was also shown that she is known among the office as a notoriously adamant party host, who won't take no for an answer when inviting people. She was even able to force Don to attend a party he wanted out of, and Betty couldn't even get the guy to show up to his kid's birthday party.
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: Gets pregnant just as she and Pete decide to adopt, after trying for three years with no luck she gives birth to their daughter. In Season 2, her inability to conceive is also framed in contrast to Peggy's unwanted pregnancy in Season 1 (by Pete, no less) and Betty's at the end of season 2.
  • Nice Hat: Has a wide collection of hats for her going-out outfits, the image shown is just one of many.
  • Nouveau Riche: Her father is a Self-Made Man of humble background, and she married into an old money but impoverished family.
  • Silk Hiding Steel: Appears to be a young, bubbly, sociable upper-middle class housewife with classy manners and a fashionable wardrobe, she always proves herself to be tougher than what her husband expects.
  • Social Climber: Much of the earlier season has her courting the attention of more established women and planning dinner parties, she doesn't abandon this activity but focuses more on their daughter Tammy.
  • Spoiler Sweet: She is a only child and her parents' little princess. She is usually kind and considerate but later seasons shows that she is used to get what she wants. Hers and Pete's biggest crisis starts when they move out of Manhattan and she really can't see that Pete is deeply unhappy with living in suburbs.
  • Stepford Smiler: Downplayed. She has a habit of hiding negative emotions behind a bubbly smile, but is still capable of putting her foot down and asserting herself when she feels the need to.
  • Women Are Wiser: She is sometimes more adult than Pete. Other times she can be naive or overly optimistic, and Pete needs to tell her what's what.
    • In 7B she clearly tells him that she looks back and sees things as they are rather than how she wants to see them as, so she has grown a lot from the young, wide-eyed bride she was in the early 60s.

    Emile and Marie Calvet 
Played By: Ronald Guttman and Julia Ormond

Megan's French-Canadian parents, whose marriage is decaying from the inside out.

  • Actually Pretty Funny: Emile seemed amused at Pete fooling him about admiring his work on Marxism.
  • The Alcoholic: Marie is rarely seen very far from a glass, and in "For Immediate Release" she pulls out a wine glass and then chooses to just drink out of the bottle.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Two funny foreigners who argue in French. One is a communist Knight Templar and the other a Lady Drunk with a tongue sharp like a guillotine.
  • Brutal Honesty: Marie tends to be amazingly blunt (see above). Another thing Roger likes about her.
  • Dating What Daddy Hates: Emile is a Marxist. Megan is married to Don Draper, who does advertising (the epitome of capitalism) for a living.
  • Dirty Communist: Roger has this reaction when he hears about Emile's political affiliations.
  • Evil Parents Want Good Kids: Not "evil", per se, but both Emile and Marie are both very spiteful and unhappy people, who nonetheless have raised a happy and functional daughter.
  • Freudian Slip: After seeing Sally dressed up for dinner in a very Megan-esque outfit...
    Emile: There is nothing you can do, Don. One day your daughter will spread her legs and fly away.
    Roger: (laughs)
    Megan: Wings, Daddy. You mean wings.
  • Happily Married: Marie to Roger in "Person to Person".
  • Jerkass Has a Point: They each have their moments, in "At the Codfish Ball" and "The Phantom", respectively. In the former, Emile convinces Megan to quit her unsatisfying job at SCDP and follow her dream. In the latter, when Megan has hit a wall in her efforts to pursue an acting career, Marie convinces her to use Don's influence to get work through nepotism. Thanks to this advice, she is a famous soap opera star by the beginning of Season 6.
  • Mama Bear: Marie takes all of Don's furniture in retaliation for divorcing Megan.
  • Nice Hat: Marie has quite a number of them to match her outfits.
  • Pet the Dog: Emile, who has spent the entirety of the episode "At the Codfish Ball" wallowing pathetically in self-pity and resentment for all those around him, finally has a one-on-one conversation with his daughter in the final sequence, convincing her to follow her dreams.
  • Screw Politeness, I'm a Senior!: Marie, not that she's so much a senior (she's younger than Roger) but she is a piece of work, a grandmother, and she does insult people in French, as seen when she dines out with Don and Megan when they met with Mr. and Mrs. Rennet.
  • Silver Vixen: Marie looks young for her age and is fiercely attractive and sensual.
  • Your Cheating Heart: Emile was caught crying to a female college student on the phone, though it's never made explicit the exact nature of their relationship. It's suggested that Mari knows about his occasional indiscretions and doesn't much care, but that him going to someone besides her for emotional support really hurt her. Marie sleeps with Roger.

    Greg Harris
Played By: Samuel Page

Joan's fiancé and then husband, a doctor. In the first episode in which he is featured (he is seen before briefly), he rapes her on the floor of Don's office, which she keeps a secret and hasn't mentioned since. He fails to get his residency when they planned, then joins the Army instead. In Season Five, he and Joan have a huge fight and he files for divorce.

  • Ambiguously Jewish: Harris — like Miller and Siegel — is sometimes but not always a Jewish name; Joan says he's not Jewish, but Roger thinks he "used to be."
  • Disappeared Dad: He hasn't been seen since "Mystery Date" and Joan stated that if she died, Kevin would live with Greg's parents or her mom; "Person To Person" reveals that he met a nurse, married her, and had twins and hasn't bothered to visit Kevin... and he's still unaware that he isn't the boy's biological father.
  • Jerkass: He seldom thinks about anyone other than himself.
    Joan: (about why he doesn't see Kevin anymore and if he knows about Joan and Roger) No. He's just a terrible person.
  • Happily Married: The scene that's hardest to watch may not be the one in which he sexually assaults Joan and then acts like nothing happened, but rather the ones later on where they have every appearance of a normal loving relationship. The marriage does have more mundane low points. Joan's contempt for him for sucking at his job and wangsting about it, a huge contrast to the professional life she's giving up to marry him — which he doesn't even seem to realize. In Season 5, this is finally subverted when Joan kicks him out of her apartment for good after he volunteers for a second tour of duty in Vietnam without her approval. While doing this, she also calls him out on raping her.
  • Marital Rape License: Takes Joan against her will whilst she's his fiancee.
  • Married to the Job: In season 4, he signs up for another year in Vietnam without discussing it with Joan first; she is is less than happy.
  • Pet the Dog: He does have a few moments where he's quite nice and sweet to Joan, like in season 3 when he treats her cut. It's not enough to take the sting out of him being a rapist though.

    Katherine Olson 
Played By: Myra Turley

Peggy's widowed mother.

  • Apron Matron: A tough, middle-aged, stout, Irish Catholic, take no fools woman who can be harsh and critical of her daughters.
  • Beehive Hairdo: Wears her hair in a similar style, was chosen for her by her hairdresser.
  • Basement-Dweller: Some dialogue stated that she and her husband lived with Peggy's grandparents (likely implied to be her parents) until after Anita was born, judging by the ages of Anita and Peggy, it was The Great Depression and would have been harder for Mr. Olson to afford a house.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: She is unpleasant and is responsible for her daughters' insecurities, but she really does love them.
  • My Beloved Smother: Has more than enough guilt for her daughters to partake in, she even made Peggy feel bad about wanting to move to Manhattan, acting like Peggy was moving to Nairobi rather than a train ride away.
  • Racist Grandma: Might appear to be this when she expresses surprise that the Jewish Abe eats pork and might have a problem with Swedish people; she is very amiable to Abe up until he and Peggy announce they are cohabiting and she was an Irish Catholic who married a Norwegian Protestant with half-Italian grandsons and really likes Nat King Cole.
  • "Well Done, Daughter!" Gal: It's lot easier to bathe a cat than to try to get any approval from Katherine.

    Anita Olson Respola 
Played By: Audrey Wasilewski

Peggy's homemaker older sister.

  • '60s Hair: She wears her hair in a less chic and slightly mussed updo.
  • Apron Matron: She's pretty young for the trope (despite her matronly look, she is about the same age as Betty and Joan who were born in the earlier part of the 1930s) but she has the strong-mindedness, well-knowing attitude, the homemaking and cooking skills, and the figure for the trope; however a few episodes imply that the toll of raising three boys, having a husband in and out of employment, and being a hostess to impress the priest and the neighbors can be hard on her.
  • Awful Wedded Life: Her marriage to Gerry looks to be that way in the Second Season and she is implied to envy her sister's single life, her marriage has seemed to have gotten better.
  • Foil: To Megan's sister Marie-France, both are devout Catholic mothers with dissatisfying marriages and look down on their sisters' life choices. But Anita has evolved past her resentment of her sister, while Marie-France gets called out for being a "ghoul" who cannot see anyone make radical choices to gain happiness.
    • To Joan, both have flaming-colored updos and wonder (often out loud) why Peggy is not following their line of choices. But Anita's path is less glamorous, more domestic, and the marriage is dissatisfying while Joan champions a more sophisticated, sensual, stylish femininity.
    • To Betty, both are young housewives in dead end marriages with disapproving parents and have moments of resentment towards more modern women. But Anita lacks Betty's wealthy background, education, and isn't compared to movie stars like Betty (or even referred to as having a pretty face like their mother refers to Peggy), she does however learn to get past her resentment of Peggy and seems to be slightly more assertive to their mother, trying to carve out her own point of view rather than ape her mom.
  • The Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry: Has this with Peggy, who works in Madison Avenue and lives the more "glamorous" single girl life and is a professional success while Anita stays home with three boys and a husband who is on the mend.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Is very jealous and resentful of any (sometimes positive) attention Katherine and Father Gill give to Peggy, in retaliation, she tells Father Gill about Peggy being pregnant and even embellishes the story.
  • Housewife: A more realistic one for that time. She stays home with three young boys at the house and hosts Sunday dinners; her day to day life is not very glamorous, with a husband with chronic back problems.
  • Karma Houdini: Anita never faces any sort of punishment for what she did to Peggy, but truth told only Father Gill and herself know it.
  • May–December Romance: Her husband Gerry looks a lot older than her.
  • The Resenter: Is resentful to the point of hatred in Season Two of Peggy, because Peggy isn't as beholden to the repressive attitudes of their family and community, she gets over this by Season Three and is more supportive of Peggy and stands up to their mother.
  • The Unfavorite: In her way, while Peggy's choices are the subject of their mother's scorn, it seems to be implied that Anita doesn't receive positive feedback for her life choices and the look she makes when Katherine comments on Peggy's beauty seems to imply that she never got the same attention.


    Gayle Holloway 
Played By: Christine Estabrook

Joan's mother.

  • '60s Hair: She consistently wears her hair in permed or wavy bouffants with a lot of volume.
  • Apron Matron: Played with. She's a lot kookier and more glammed up than the usual trope but her background implies she was The Alcoholic who raised Joan mostly by herself and she worked outside the home while being a domestic goddess; she also has old-fashioned standards for Joan's behavior.
  • Cool Old Lady: Has a camaraderie with the hippie-styled babysitter of Kevin and with Joan's childhood friend.
  • Foil: To Katherine Olson and the late Ruth Hofstadt, she does stress Joan out and is responsible for how Joan uses her looks to operate throughout the world and for submitting to men in relationships, but her relationship with Joan has grown enough for her to see that Joan is a grown woman who can take care of herself while Peggy and Betty have clearly been scarred by their Mother's disapproving behavior.
  • The Gadfly: Joan says Gayle loves to "stir the shit" and Gayle seems to find ways to manipulate Joan into obeying her or trip over her insecurities, for instance the SCDP ad to take the piss at Y&R.
  • I Am Not Pretty: She raised Joan to put care and attention to her appearance, to be the most beautiful woman in the room and is implied to feel she isn't so attractive. When Joan's friend Kate gives her a Mary Kay makeover, Kate remarks "if you look at little rusty, it's because I'm a little rusty" and Gail replies "I need all the help I can get".
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Is meddling and messes with Joan's mind, but she is very supportive of her daughter and her career; Gail is even welcoming to Joan's friends and later helps start a production company with Joan.
  • Men Are Strong, Women Are Pretty: She raised Joan to be "admired", as in for being beautiful and subservient to men, rather than for any personal and professional merits Joan can achieve.
  • My Beloved Smother: She is one of the few people who can try to make Joan waver in confidence, it seems her influence has been slipping somewhat with Joan as an adult woman who is learning to live life the way it makes her happy. Implied she is competitive with Joan about attracting men and is the reason Joan attaches a great value to her looks.
    Gayle: You aren't at your fighting weight
    Joan: Try Me.
  • Silver Vixen: Clearly wants to be this, inviting the plumber in to enjoy his company (deliberately putting a lemon peel in the garbage disposal, and plays stupid when Joan tells her she can ask him out and she states he is married with four children. Later on his wife refuses him into Joan's apartment because of Gayle's behavior.
  • Stay in the Kitchen: She has these ambitions for Joan, urges her to be submissive to men especially her husband, despite having to had to work when Joan was growing up.
  • Two Decades Behind: She dresses like it's still the 1950s or early 1960s, even more so than Joan.
  • "Well Done, Daughter!" Gal: She is even surprised herself that she is more proud of her daughter being a Madison Avenue agency partner than for her being a Surgeon's wife.

    Pauline Francis 
Played By: Pamela Dunlap

Henry's Mother and Betty's new mother-in-law.

  • Abusive Parents: Her father once kicked her clear across the room and said "that's for nothing".
  • Accentuate the Negative: She tends to have a negative opinion of everything and plenty of people. Heavy traffic on Thanksgiving? The country is being run to the ground because of divorce. Her new daughter-in-law trying to please her? She's a silly woman. One episode had Sally try to trick her into voicing her true, negative opinions of Betty and the Draper children.
  • Fat Bitch: Very unpleasant and obese.
  • Grande Dame: Upper-class, older, and serious.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Very unpleasant but she really cares for Henry and even for her step-grandchildrens' welfare.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: She is not a pleasant person but her instincts about Betty are right on point.
  • My Beloved Smother: She is very involved in Henry's business and family, is implied to have been a controlling mother.
  • Obnoxious In-Laws: She doesn't think very well of Betty, to say the least. She even had the gall to criticize Betty about gaining weight even though she is heavy herself.
    She's a silly woman


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