January Jones - Betty Draper Was Not in Original 'Mad Men' Pilot!

January Jones - Betty Draper Was Not in Original 'Mad Men' Pilot! In a revelation sure to enrage "Mad Men" fans who mysteriously feel that the show's only flaw is her presence, January Jones has revealed that when she first auditioned for the series, Betty Draper wasn't even in it. In fact, though Don was still married, we'd simply have never seen him at home.

In an interview with "W" magazine, Jones spoke about how it came down to her and Elizabeth Moss for the role of Peggy Olsen. Though Matthew Weiner ultimately went with Moss, he obviously saw something in Jones.

"There was no Betty in the pilot when I auditioned. Matthew Weiner, the creator of the show, had no intention of showing Don Draper's home life. I read for Peggy two times - it was between me and Elizabeth Moss, who eventually got the part. At the end of the scene, there was a casual mention that Don was married. Matt went home that night and wrote two scenes that featured Betty. I auditioned a couple of days later, and he made me a verbal promise that the character would grow. I took the part on faith - there was no script or fleshed-out character or Betty plotline."

Fans will recall that the pilot didn't even reveal that Don had a home life until the very end, so it's easy to see how they could have slotted that aspect in at the last second, and Jones does have a certain unique quality required for the part.

In fact, when my girlfriend, who has yet to see the show, asked if Jones was a good actress, I didn't even know what to say other than that she's perfect for the part.

I've never been onboard with the Betty Draper/Francis hate, and I cannot imagine the series without her (or, indeed, any part of Don's home life).

Though the feminist movement is mostly portrayed through Peggy/Joan dichotomy - one puts her career before everything else, the other relies on her feminine charms to stay ahead - Betty has played an important role in showing just how difficult the 1960s could be for women held down by the duties of a housewife.

In what we saw of their marriage, it was fascinating to watch Betty struggle with genuinely wanting what she has and denying the part of her that knows she'd do anything to get out of there. All the while, nobody on the show has made any bones about trying to make her at all likeable, a trait some have chalked up to Jones' performance, but whether intentional or not, her icy quality is key to her character.

We might not have known it, but "Mad Men" would be missing something absolutely essential if we'd never had Betty.

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