Mad Men's Elisabeth Moss: I "Know Certain Things" About Peggy's Future
Elisabeth Moss | Photo Credits: Jordin Althaus/AMC
Although we cheered for Mad Men's Peggy Olsen (Elisabeth Moss) when she left Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce in her rearview in the waning episodes of Season 5, we soon were left with a scary thought: Could we never see Peggy again?
Have Mad Men fans seen the last of Elisabeth Moss' Peggy?
Things only got worse when cast member Jared Harris — who definitely won't be back (RIP, Lane!) — hinted that Moss had also said her goodbyes. But fear not: Moss says she'll be back, and she even knows a few pieces of Peggy's story. "I do know certain things about what's going to happen," Moss tells TVGuide.com. "I think that she's forever linked to Don in some way. Obviously, it's Don's show, but they're going to have some interaction."
Read on to get Moss' thoughts on Peggy's empowering journey this season, how Don (Jon Hamm) let Peggy down this year, and how Moss approached filming some of those tough final scenes. Plus: Where the heck did Peggy's boyfriend Abe go?
How did you react when you found out Peggy was leaving Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce?
Moss: My initial reaction was just one of feeling like there was really no other logical way to go for her. After everything that had happened for five years, she can't just keep butting her head up against that wall. ... She's becoming her own person and she needs to have her own place not under Don. So it made a lot of sense to me. At the same time, I didn't really see it coming necessarily.
So creator Matthew Weiner hadn't laid it out for you at the beginning of the season or anything, right?
Moss: It was very much script-to-script. Usually, he'll tell me something like that, but I think that Matt was a little concerned about me playing the ending if I knew. I think knowing what's going to happen can help, but then also, sometimes, it can be counterproductive.
I agree that Peggy eventually had to move on, but do you think she might have stayed a bit longer if Don hadn't thrown money in her face?
Moss: Yeah. I think that was probably a big push in that direction. But she needs to be on her own, and it's what Don taught her to do.
Do you think Peggy was also troubled by how disengaged Don had become at work? That maybe Don was not the man she once idolized?
Moss: I think she was disappointed by him. I think that made her have to try to step up and do things that he would have done and kind of take his place. But when she tried to do that, she'd get in trouble. I think it was just a general idea that they're too similar and she can't blossom under him. She's gone as far as she can go. Eventually, she will need to go out on her own and give that a try.
Tell me about that last scene in Don's office. I've heard that Jon Hamm did some things differently that made you cry in the take that was ultimately used.
Moss: It's kind of true. The kiss [on the hand] was scripted, but on one of the takes — I think the director asked him to — I tried to take my hand away and he wouldn't let go of my hand. They didn't tell me he was going to do that. That sort of made me lose it. It was a very emotional scene for both of us. It's sort of funny because I am going to probably keep working with him, but there's something about the ending of an era in a way. We were both very emotional about it. And I have to say that every single one of those tears in that scene was pretty real.