'Mad Men' actor bites off bigger role in season 6

Associated Press
This June 11, 2013 photo shows actor Kevin Rahm, who portrays Ted Chaough on the television series "Mad Men," in Los Angeles. Rahm's character appeared in a handful episodes in past seasons as the boss of a competing advertising firm. But the recent merger of his and Don Draper's companies _ along with a shocking kiss with Peggy Olson (Elisabeth Moss) _ has thrust Ted to the forefront of the 1960s ad world drama.  (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

View gallery

LOS ANGELES (AP) — No one is more surprised than Kevin Rahm that his "Mad Men" character Ted Chaough has become a major player in the AMC drama's sixth season.

"I'm always surprised," Rahm said of the series' many twists and turns. "It wasn't until Don said, 'Do you want to get in some trouble?' that I was like 'Oh, oh!' The first time I read (the script) I was like 'Oh, yes! Yes, we should merge!' And you know Matt (Weiner) had told me that there were big things coming for the character, but I didn't see it."

Rahm's character appeared in a handful episodes in past seasons as the boss of a competing advertising firm. But the recent merger of his and Don Draper's companies — along with a shocking kiss with Peggy Olson (Elisabeth Moss) — has thrust Ted to the forefront of the 1960s ad world drama.

In a recent interview, the one-time "Desperate Housewives" actor compared leading man Jon Hamm to Hollywood megastar George Clooney and discussed why he's staying tight-lipped about that Ted/Peggy lip lock.

AP: Initially you wanted to be a lawyer?

Kevin Rahm: My intent was to go to law school. ... And then what I realized quickly is what I wanted was to be on 'L.A. Law.' And ironically now I get to work with Mr. (Harry) Hamlin.

AP: You also share the screen with Jon Hamm. What's that like?

Rahm: The first scene two years ago when we met in the Benihana on the Honda episode — it was daunting. I mean Jon's the nicest guy, a genuinely good guy and so he makes it easier. ... He's just a good guy. I call it the 'Clooney effect,' when you don't get famous till you're 30 or in your mid-30s. Adam Carolla said in his podcast last week that he thinks of us (men) like cement and if it's still wet you can write into it, but once it hardens you're going to be the guy you are.

AP: What do fans usually want to talk about?

Rahm: It's weird. I had someone yesterday stop me from (my role on) 'Friends.' So I think it depends on whatever their milieu is, but more and more 'Mad Men.' ... They all want to know what is going to happen (with Peggy and Ted), if something is going to happen and if it does — when. I got to meet a lot of the 'Downton Abbey' cast last night and I'm a huge fan of 'Downton.' So I'm like 'Oh my god! I love your show!' And they in turn (ask about 'Mad Men') and I'm like 'Oh my god that's right. I'm on a show, too!'

AP: So you have fan moments too?

Rahm: Oh absolutely. I'm a fan first and foremost. I watch way too much television and like a lot of shows so I'm always excited to meet those people and hope they're not douchey.

AP: So what exactly was the deal with the Ted-Peggy kiss?

Rahm: You can argue that it's out of gratitude. You could argue that he's completely in love with her and he's fighting it. That's the other thing that is exciting about the show is that we don't know. It's not handed to you — or us — on a silver platter.

AP: It is impossible to get spoilers from 'Mad Men' actors. Why is that?

Rahm: For threat of life and limb! It's been pounded into us. Matt (Weiner) gives a speech before every table read and he says 'Welcome. We're really happy to have you here. You're part of the family now and if you say anything we will destroy you.' So yeah, he explains the commercial viability of the show is that no one knows. And that's rare these days. ... That's what creates the buzz about Bob Benson and Ted and Peggy and Don. What's going to happen to Don? Megan wears a shirt with a star and everyone all of a sudden goes to the (Sharon) Tate killings. But that's what can happen because of the secrecy.

AP: I understand you recently celebrated your one year anniversary with your wife Amy Lonkar, a cardiothoracic surgeon. How has married life been?

Rahm: It's the best decision I ever made. She grounds me in a great way. ... She puts my job in perspective real quick. You know any time people are talking about Emmys or something like that and you start to think 'Oh, I'm pretty cool' and then I talk to her about her day and I go 'Yeah, we (actors) play. We play.'





Follow Nicole Evatt at http://twitter.com/NicoleEvatt

View Comments (13)

Recommended for You

  • Luggage piece found on French island near possible MH370 debris

    Part of a bag was found Thursday on the French Indian Ocean island of La Reunion not far from plane debris which has fuelled speculation it may be from missing flight MH370. "The piece of luggage was here since yesterday but nobody really paid attention," said Johnny Begue, a member of a local…

  • Chicago man cleared after 17 years in prison shot dead

    CHICAGO (AP) — A Chicago man who served 17 years in prison for murder before being cleared of the crime has been shot and killed almost three years after being released from prison, police said Wednesday.

    Associated Press
  • Turkey onslaught on Kurds, after IS attack, fuels anger

    DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (AP) — Just when it seemed Turkey was getting serious about the fight against IS, it has turned its military focus to pounding its old foe: the Kurdish rebels.

    Associated Press55 mins ago
  • Family Pet-Sitter Helps Herself To Homeowner's Possessions

    DEAR ABBY: A trusted and beloved family member who takes care of my cats -- and therefore has a key to my house -- has been stealing things like cleaning supplies, knickknacks, family pictures, etc. Most of them have little monetary value. But imagine my surprise when I spotted some of my missing…

    Dear Abby
  • Russia reassures Israel over Iran nuclear deal

    Russian President Vladimir Putin told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday that the deal on Iran's nuclear program would improve security in the Middle East and guaranteed that Tehran would not acquire nuclear arms. Israel plans to lobby the U.S. Congress not to approve the…

  • An American Dentist Killed Zimbabwe’s Famous Lion

    Cecil the lion, a famous black-maned resident of Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park, died at the hands of an American dentist, conservationists claim. “Mr. Palmer shot Cecil with a bow and arrow but this shot didn't kill him,” Johnny Rodrigues, chairman of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, said in…

  • Dashcam catches off-duty cop threatening to put 'hole in head' of driver

    Technically Incorrect: A Massachusetts driver makes a wrong turn. What happens next, all filmed on his dashcam, has led to an investigation. And yes, it's now on YouTube.

  • Hidden Security Cameras Are Shocking Surprise For Daughter

    DEAR ABBY: I'm a 19-year-old woman in college who still lives with my parents. I found out something several weeks ago that's bothering me, and I need advice badly. Years ago, after a robbery, my parents installed security cameras outside our house. I knew about them because they were visible. But…

    Dear Abby
  • Jon Stewart signing off 'Daily Show' fake newscast for real

    NEW YORK (AP) — After more than 16 years and nearly 2,600 telecasts, Jon Stewart can feel proud of his scads of Emmys and his pair of Peabody Awards, his cultural gravitas (he hung with the Prez, both on and off the air!), even his reprobate status at Fox News.

    Associated Press44 mins ago
  • Taliban disavows Afghan peace talks after leader declared dead

    By Kay Johnson KABUL (Reuters) - The Taliban's official spokesman disavowed peace talks with the Afghan government on Thursday, throwing fledgling efforts to negotiate an end to 14 years of war into disarray. The statement came a day after the Afghan government said that Mullah Omar, the elusive…

  • Killer deal: Amazon will pay you $10 to buy a $30 Google Chromecast

    Google’s little Chromecast dongle is pretty awesome. The device plugs into the HDMI port on any HDTV or monitor and instantly gives users access to movies, TV shows, videos, music, photos and more that can be streamed from any Android device. Best of all, perhaps, the Chromecast is wonderfully…

    BGR News
  • Independent media battle on in Putin's Russia

    By Timothy Heritage MOSCOW (Reuters) - Alexei Venediktov, one of Russia's most prominent journalists, does not go out without a bodyguard and does not answer mobile phone calls for fear of being tracked. Such precautions do not seem out of place in a country where at least 17 journalists have been…

  • Play

    Custom truck built by father and son stolen in Lemoore

    A Lemoore man is on the hunt for his stolen pick-up truck. The classic custom ride holds significant sentiment to its owner, who built the truck with his late father.

    KFSN – Fresno
  • Police Officer Involved in Deadly Cincinnati Shooting of Samuel DuBose Indicted for Murder, Dismissed from Force

    "I'm treating him like a murderer," prosecutor Joseph Deters said during a news conference when describing the warrant out for a police officer who killed Samuel DuBose, 43, earlier this month. Footage released today from a police officer's body cam lasts about 10 minutes and shows the shooting.…

    ABC News
  • Internet mauls dentist accused of illegal kill of popular lion

    Technically Incorrect: Walter Palmer, a dentist in Minnesota, has his Yelp entry attacked by those not fond of his allegedly illegal killing of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe.

  • Boko Haram 'slits throats of 10 fishermen' near Lake Chad

    Boko Haram Islamists slit the throats of 10 fishermen in villages near Baga on the shores of the Lake Chad in northeastern Nigeria, a leading fisherman and a resident said Thursday. "On Monday around 4 pm (1500 GMT), Boko Haram attacked three villages on the shores of Lake Chad where they…

  • What an F-16 Pilot Sees—and Misses

    For now I intend to wrap this discussion up, until the National Transportation Safety Board or other authorities offer additional facts or news, with two very interesting letters from experienced military flyers. Since retiring, I flew 2.5 years as a civilian contract F-15SG instructor [for another…

    The Atlantic