Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Battle Royale: Draper v. Moody
As promised here is the battle royale for best male character in a television drama. In the suit corner standing 5'11" weighing in at 188 lbs Don Draper. In the self-loathing artist corner standing 6' 0½" at 187 lbs Hank Moody. I made the weights up. So I thought this was going to be a tough one but it actually wasn't.
Clearly a bad-ass. He basically is Sterling-Cooper. He's the best at what he does and it shows. He has a bravado about him that is unmistakable. If I had to sum him up it would be all business all the time. Even in his extra-marital relationships it's a very businesslike approach. Hell even when he smoked weed he was business-like. Draper is the quintessential Alpha Male who doesn't take shit from anyone and can seriously dish it out. What makes him so compelling however is also his greatest flaw. The amount of stress he places on himself is insane. Between his long lost step-brother, his affairs and work, he's slowly destroying himself. As we learn more about him it's becoming apparent that something has gotta give. It's the constant lying (to himself and to others) that ultimately hurts him.
Now see, this is a human being. He knows his flaws and owns them. While he seriously hates himself at times he definitely does not lie to himself. He knows what he wants. Whether he can get it is a completely different story. In addition, he's an extremely talented writer which is a huge bonus. Not to mention he's hilarious. What makes him so enjoyable is that he's true to who he is at all times. He doesn't pretend to be something he's not. Ultimately, I believe this is why he gets so much ass. While who he is may be a totally fucked up individual, he's not pretending.
So to go a little more in depth. Let's look at the similarities between the two. They both smoke like chimneys, they both drink, and they both bang a ton of women. So those are the washes. Where I think Moody gains the edge is his vulnerability. It's easier to sympathize with him than it is Draper. I mean I guess if you're a powerful business executive and that's how you roll than that might not be the case. Humor is also in Moody's favor, plus he has the cooler child. See, Draper drinks as a way of life, Moody drinks to cope. Something about self-medicating artists is very appealing.
I could probably go on and on and examine the minutia of their daily lives but I think I've made my point. In case you haven't been able to tell Moody wins in the 8th round with a KO.
So I'll leave it up to you general public, who's better Moody or Draper? Poll.