What you call "free AMC access" was invented by guys like me to sell nylons.
August 14, 2009 11:59 AM   Subscribe

I am crazy-excited about Mad Men season 3 airing this week. Unfortunately, my friends and I are frugal New Yorkers who don't get extra channels like AMC. Are there any bars in NYC that play Mad Men where we could actually hear the show? Or are there places where we could rent a TV and a room without going broke?

Last year I bought all the seasons on iTunes and watched (agape!) on my little laptop, but I'd love to see season 3 episodes a) the night they air, and b) on a larger teevee screen. This is mainly because I want to gather loads of friends together who are equally obsessed, and maybe have a dress-up theme party.

I know that Times Square is playing the first episode this Sunday, but that only takes care of the first episode. Bars often play certain shows if you request them, but the TVs are usually small and in loud areas.

This hope seems a little dim, but I thought I'd invoke the Hive before I resigned myself to my small, lonely laptop screen. If anyone figures out this conundrum, I will take your secret identity to the grave.
posted by zoomorphic to Media & Arts (8 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Since it airs on a weeknight, and since you're talking about a bunch of people, I would just pick a local favorite bar and call and ask them if you can have a room with a tv and that you'll have a bunch of people. We do this all the time for a young adult group I belong to, and they are typically happy to accommodate because we tend to eat, drink, and be merry.
posted by dpx.mfx at 12:10 PM on August 14, 2009

As a fellow Mad Men fan, these tags make me laugh. I would pick a local bar, maybe one with a retro feel, and look into this as well. I hate to tell you that it won't compete with Sunday Night Football at most bars, and I personally watch it with my family. (I'm a teenager, going off to college in a year. -invoke mandatory aww-).

It might be possible to find it on at a local hotel bar in New York. I know some hotels this week are doing Mad Men-themed cocktails, but I'm thinking that a place like that is a bit more upscale than a sports bar and would air it on Sundays at 10 over Sunday Night Football.

STAY seems like a bar that would air it weekly - retro themed and very kitschy 60s, but I'd call and ask.

Don't drink too much or you'll end up like Roger Sterling ;).
posted by seandq at 12:14 PM on August 14, 2009

AMC is usually considered a basic cable channel on most systems. Maybe start by calling the cable company and see just how much money you're talking about here.

Also, perhaphs one of your friends has a workplace with TVs in conference rooms or the lounge/kitchen. You could all have a little office party and watch it there. A round of stiff sinks for everyone enjoying Mad Men at the office seems very appropriate.
posted by zachlipton at 12:15 PM on August 14, 2009

A round of stiff sinks. (zachlipton)
I want to see what the flexible sinks look like.

If you're going the "get a room at a bar" route, scope the place out beforehand. I did that for a party to watch the Tonys earlier this year, and was surprised to discover that the room we were using didn't have doors that closed out the rest of the bar noise. In order to hear the show, we had to turn it up so loud that we couldn't hold a conversation. This may be less important for Mad Men (why would you converse when you're staring rapt at the screen?), but it's something to consider.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:23 PM on August 14, 2009

Find the friend with the biggest TV, and pool your money to upgrade their cable for two-three months. It will certainly be cheaper than the drinks you'd buy at a bar.
posted by smackfu at 12:26 PM on August 14, 2009 [2 favorites]

Groan. Stupid iPhone keyboard. Sink (and drink) up!
posted by zachlipton at 2:37 PM on August 14, 2009

Or, find someone who has directtv satellite. I downgraded my package, didn't like the lack of programming, and upgraded two days later. They allow you to change your package every 24 hours, so I think you can also do the reverse and incur just a $10 surcharge (in addition to the day or two of premium pricing). Cable tv may have the same options. But check to make sure that they don't charge you a full month. Mine was definitely prorated.
It would probably be cheaper doing this and buying beers at the corner deli than going to a bar.
posted by newpotato at 3:30 PM on August 14, 2009

Here's a Yelp thread where people seem to be trying to get together for weekly viewing parties. Looks like it's exactly what you're looking for.
posted by dancinglamb at 4:18 PM on August 14, 2009

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