How TV Made Us Root For Cheaters

mad men finale

"Mad Men" has made us cheer for a cheating husband.

We cannot get over the Mad Men season 3 series finale. Thought #1: Best show on TV since Six Feet Under. Thought #2: WTF, Betty Draper? Thought #3: Why are we rooting for the cheat-bag Don Draper anyway?
Now, we know. We know that it's about time that Betty stand up for herself. The character's ability to make you love and loathe her simultaneously is a gift from the writers. (And unfortunately, not the actor, January Jones. Pretty girl, but we hear Jon Hamm hates working with her…He totally carries every scene. But anyway…) Ex Ashton Told January Jones To Quit Acting
It's the Betty Draper Paradox. One minute you love Betty for standing up for herself, for throwing the shoebox of pictures and evidence of Don's former life on the kitchen table, for refusing to ignore her husband's lies and cover-up.
Then, on the other hand you think, c'mon, Betty. If Don can knowingly romp with one girl after the next (all striking brunettes, may we add) under the guise of happily married man, why can't you do the same? Have your affairs, but keep the family intact. Every male Mad Men character is a philanderer. Even if this is pre-women's movement, Betty could revolutionize the American marriage by doing the same. Open Marriage: Love vs. Sex
But she'd never. We'd like to think it's because Betty stands for something more. That she's unwillingly to do something morally offensive. She's going forward with a divorce because she wants a better life. But really she's just a spoiled brat. One that has to ruin everything if she doesn't get her way. We feel nothing for her, while we're sympathetic to Don. We truly can't blame her, but at the same time, we're mourning the loss of the Draper marriage.  Divorce Busting: A Step-by-Step Approach to Making Your Marriage Loving Again
The writers must truly be gifted, considering we're routing for the cheating husband. We want Don Draper to have whatever he wants. If that means a Barbie doll housewife available for grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup and weekend picnics, then so be it. Oh, Mad Men writers, what have you done to us?
What do you think readers? Is Betty doing the right thing by breaking up the marriage?
Photo: AMC