They say that absence makes the heart grow fonder, and a Don Draper-starved audience spoke volumes last night as Mad Men made a triumphant return to TV after a 17-month absence with its biggest ratings ever.
The two-hour, season-five premiere on AMC brought in record ratings with 3.5 million viewers, making it the most-watched episode ever of the series, which left audiences hungry for more at the end of season four back in October, 2010.
AMC's president, Charlie Collier, declared proudly, "Almost five years ago, with a focus on distinction and quality, AMC launched Mad Men as the first series in its commitment to original scripted dramatic television. Mad Men is the only cable drama to ever win the Emmy award for outstanding drama series four years in a row and the Golden Globe for best television drama series for three years in a row. Mad Men set the bar high and we are incredibly proud that it continues to engage audiences looking for unexpected, unconventional and uncompromising television."
Mad Men airs Sunday nights on AMC.