–Sharon Armstrong, Attorney

Last Sunday was an exciting day for me, as it marked the return of my favorite TV show, Mad Men.

For the uninitiated, Mad Men details the personal and professional drama of everyone from the top executive to the switchboard operator of the Sterling Cooper Agency, a Madison Avenue advertising agency working with some of the best-known brands during the so-called “golden age” of advertising, in the late 1950’s, early 1960’s. On its surface, Mad Men is about advertising and the prosperous, post-war American life that embraced the consumerism that gave the ad men of Madison Avenue a green light to create the images of products, many of which are still in commerce today. At its core, however, Mad Men is (among other things) about the creation and maintenance of identity – a personal brand, if you will – that may encompass truth, deceit, dreams and reality simultaneously.

One of the many things I love about this show is how each episode manages to intertwine its surface and core concepts, often showing how successful advertising and branding often taps into consumers’ emotional responses, a concept beautifully encapsulated in this clip (which unfortunately we were unable to embed here).

Notably, Kodak’s registrations for CAROUSEL – nearly 40 and 50 years old, respectively – are still alive today.