Alexis Bledel made a cameo appearance on Mad Men as Beth Dawes, the neglected wife of insurance salesman Howard who shares a night of passion with Pete Campbell. Is this role the perfect segue into the role of Anastasia Steele for the Fifty Shades of Grey movie?
Alexis Bledel's name has been suggested by eager fans for the role of Anastasia Steele, a recent college graduate who falls for Christian Grey, the millionaire with a penchant for S&M, in the the big-screen adaptation of the best-selling erotica novel by E. L. James.
In an IBTimes Fifty Shades of Grey movie casting poll, Bledel scored 32.54 percent of over 2,900 votes casted for the role of Steele. She beat out fellow potential leading ladies Nina Dobrev, Shailene Woodley, Emmy Rossum, Blake Lively and Ellen Page.
The 30-year-old actress embodies the quintessential attributes of the character of Anastasia Steele - beautiful, meek, and unassuming. Bledel's biggest role yet, as Rory Gilmore on the CW's Gilmore Girls, could have provided preparation her the role of docile and eager-to-please Steele.
Her cameo on Mad Men adds yet another dimension to Alexis Bledel's resume, and echoes another side of Steele, as well.
Beth Dawes is the wife of Pete Campbell's (Vincent Kartheiser) friend, Howard Dawes. Howard has a girlfriend on the side and leaves Beth greatly unappreciated. In the Lady Lazarus episode of Mad Men, Pete gives Beth a ride home from the parking lot after she is stood up by Howard. Pete walks her inside where they proceed to kiss and ultimately sleep together. Pete then tries to get Beth's attention by inviting himself to Howard's for dinner one night, but Beth rebuffs his attempts.
Why do they give you a glimmer of hope in the midst of rejection? Pete rants to Harry. But he has got it all wrong. Beth is later seen in the backseat of a car with fogged windows, She draws a heart on the glass for Pete.
A glimmer of hope in the midst of rejection? This is a direct parallel to the Fifty Shades interplay between Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele.
In the role of Beth Dawes, the blue-eyed brunette is a temptress, a depressive and a sadist all at once, described Slate's June Thomas.
She has colors of all of those things, and I don't think the audience is supposed to be able to pinpoint her exactly, explained Bledel. What she does to Pete's character is to confuse him terribly. He has no idea what's going on in this woman's mind, and neither does the audience. He doesn't know if she's a stable person, or if she's going to hurt him or please him or anything, really. He has no idea what's going on. He completely loses his footing the day that he meets her. As does Don in this episode when Megan leaves the agency. They both are a little out of control and beholden to these women. They feel helpless, and I think that's the theme of this episode.
Despite the preconceived notions about a dominant-and-subordinate relationship, Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey shift roles in James' Fifty Shades of Grey. Alexis Bledel's Mad Men character played upon this fluctuation as well.
Slate's June Thomas referred to Bledel's final scene when Beth draws the heart on the fogged car window.
It's meant to confuse Pete, said the actress. She's told him, 'Think about me, and fantasize about what we had, and I will, but don't call me.' She's kind of torturing him. It means so much to Pete in that moment, but then she just takes it away. Maybe this is something she just does for herself, because it makes her feel better. I think it's surprising that this '50s housewife doesn't need him as much as he starts to fall for her. But she's meant to be a mysterious character and a confusing one.
If Bledel does land the Fifty Shades of Grey role, finding her perfect counterpart is the next hurtle.
Actors Ian Somerhalder and Alexander Skarsgard have both vocalized a desire to play Grey.
I absolutely would be up for it. It could be very, very amazing, the Vampire Diaries hunk said. I think [playing Grey] would be a pretty incredible thing, and hopefully, that could pan out.
The True Blood actor was quick to point out how similar the character of Grey is to his current character, Eric Northman. He's got a sex chamber? My character has that on 'True Blood.' He's got his little dungeon, Skarsgard said. I was born to the play that part.
Fifty Shades of Grey has been on the New York Times' Best Sellers List for nine weeks. The trilogy continues to hold the first, second and third spots.
Do you think Alexis Bledel would make the perfect Anastasia Steele? Who should play her Christian Grey? Leave your feedback in the comments section below.