The end is near! Our eyes are already welling over in anticipation of Mad Men's final season, which kicks off on Sunday, April 5. Thankfully, though, we still have seven episodes left to cherish — plus these exclusive clips of the cast reminiscing about their last seven-and-a-half years together.
In advance of the big goodbye, series stars Jon Hamm (Don Draper), Elisabeth Moss (Peggy Olson), Vincent Kartheiser (Pete Campbell), John Slattery (Roger Sterling), and Christina Hendricks (Joan Holloway) gathered for an intimate roundtable during which they reflected upon their characters' journeys from season one to season seven.
Moss' Peggy, for example, started as a mousy secretary but quickly became one of the most interesting and influential women on the show. Over the course of the series, she's really come into her own, both personally and professionally.
"When she starts out, she's just very unformed," the actress recalled, as seen in the above clip. "She tries on all these different characters and all these different personas — Should she be a man? Should she be woman? Should she be sexless entirely? — until, I think, she finally becomes who she is."
Moss, for one, has loved that evolution. "I'm deeply satisfied as well with where my character ends and where the show ends and the whole experience," she said. "And I don't think you can really ask for anything more."
Kartheiser's Pete has been through a lot of changes, too — but his trajectory has been kind of the opposite of Peggy's. Which is not to say he hasn't grown.
"Ten years of the world literally kicking him in his face over and over, it builds character," the actor mused. "I think those attributes lend him to be in a position of power, because I think when you've endured those things and you're still standing, you have a wisdom."
As Kartheiser put it, "Ultimately, I think his general arc is from a young man who thinks he knows everything about the world to a man who realizes he isn't that powerful and isn't going to change the world and doesn't really know that much."
The second half of the final season of Mad Men premieres on Sunday, April 5, at 10 p.m. on AMC.