‘Mad Men’: What Is Joan Harris Actor Christina Hendricks Doing Now?

When Mad Men debuted in 2007, people weren’t sure what to think about it. It was a big change from the formula for success on TV, and few people expected it to last. But over the next eight years, the show managed to wow both audiences and viewers alike. An unusual quality that the show impressed people with was how multidimensional the characters were. One of these complex characters was Joan Harris, a gorgeous redhead with impressive levels of ambition. The role was played by Christina Hendricks, and it won her critical acclaim and award nominations. What has she been doing since the show ended in 2015? Here’s what we know.  

Christina Hendricks in front of a purple background
Christina Hendricks | Rich Polk/E! Entertainment/Getty Images

The surprise of ‘Mad Men’

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When Mad Men first aired, people had no idea how popular it would be. According to Business Insider, this original series by AMC didn’t look very promising. After all, AMC didn’t have a large audience like the bigger networks. On top of that, the industry hadn’t yet realized how huge original programming could be for smaller networks. The show’s star, Jon Hamm, was mostly unknown, and even the show’s writers hadn’t made much of a name for themselves yet. The first season seemed to live up to these tepid expectations, with not many people tuning in to watch.

But the critics and awards shows loved the series, and it got glowing reviews and a number of prestigious nominations. Before long, their enthusiastic attention drew an audience to the underrated drama. Mad Men told the story of Don Draper, an advertising executive in the 1960s with a complicated past and a loose relationship with the truth. Don was a complicated character who didn’t fit neatly into any stereotype and kept people guessing. And he wasn’t the only compelling, challenging character on the show. 

Christina Hendricks as Joan

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One of the multi-faceted characters in the Mad Men world was a bombshell named Joan, who was played by Hendricks. According to AV Club, Joan shared some of Don’s characteristics, such as relentless ambition and robust sexuality. Unlike Don, as a woman, Joan often ran into negative reactions because of these qualities. Hendricks’ nuanced portrayal of the stunning redhead earned her six Emmy nominations and two Critics’ Choice Awards. Although she had previously made guest appearances on other popular TV shows, such as ER and Firefly, it was Mad Men that made her truly famous. 

What is she up to now?

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By the end of the series, Joan was an unexpected success. Through determination, she had made an impressive life for herself in the male-dominated business world of the time. But what about the actor who played her? How well has she done? According to Esquire, Hendricks also seems to have landed on her feet. Since 2018, she’s been seen in the popular NBC comedy/drama series Good Girls.

She and her co-stars, Rhetta and Mae Whitman, play a gang of suburban moms who turn to crime. She’s even kept her signature red hair, although these days her locks are more of a strawberry blonde. Hendricks proved her acting ability when she appeared as the multi-layered Joan in Mad Men. In the years since the show ended, she’s continued to work as an actor. She’s shown Hollywood that she’s not done impressing her fans yet.