Must-See Cult TV Shows

Whether you’re a fan of ebullient musical numbers or
sleek period dramas, there’s never been a better time to love television.

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Mad Men

Plot Summary: A team of advertising executives—led by
the brilliant but enigmatic Don Draper (Jon Hamm)—struggle to keep up with the
rapidly changing world of the 1960s. At heart an office drama, Mad Men follows the impact of
shifting cultural mores on the personal and professional lives of Draper and
his team.

Appeals To: Anyone attracted to exquisitely produced
historical dramas (the costumes!), smart and subtle dialogue or a tortured
antihero with an enviable jawline.

Proof of Rabid Fans: Mad
single-handedly put AMC back on the map five years ago,
garnering a level of adulation that has raised it from a hit to a cultural
icon. Among various books,
blogs, apps and
the show inspired a revival in vintage fashion, even spawning its own capsule
collection at Banana Republic, with suits and dresses inspired by the wardrobes
of the show’s main characters. (Look out for a new collection coming this
spring.) In July 2010, 7,000 fans flocked to Times Square in Manhattan to
attend the fourth-season première party—most of them in period costume—hosted
by stars January Jones and Elizabeth Moss.

Where to Watch: After prolonged, antagonistic contract
renegotiations that had fans biting their nails about whether the series would
be renewed, Mad Men is set
to begin its fifth season on March 25 with a two-hour episode. Past seasons are
available on Netflix and iTunes.