Monday, October 5, 2009

Sheila White - Mad Men

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Sheila White, though short-lived, only appearing in two episodes, was Mad Men's sole non-help Black character. Every other African-American on the show, Carla, Viola, and Hollis, are featured in domestic capacities, as the maids and elevator operators. Other Black characters have been featured in passing: a Black waiter in the opening scenes of the series pilot, the friend of one of Don's mistresses (Midge), and I'm sure there were more. But none were like Sheila.

Paul Kinsey, arguably the most prominent leftist character on Mad Men, was in a romantic relationship with Sheila - and accused of dating her only to further his Bohemian image. Their bond was tested when Sheila asked Paul, a white man, to accompany her to Mississippi to register voters.

And remember, this is set in 1962.

But let's talk about her look! Both times Sheila appeared on screen, she was dressed immaculately. A pillbox hat, a flawlessly tailored polka-dot suit, a purple off-the-shoulder wiggle dress, AND THAT HAIR! Always flipped and perfectly coiffed.

I only wish we'd gotten to see more of her!

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