The good news is Mad Men will probably be on for a few more seasons. The bad news is that when it ends, Don Draper will have gone from a dashing figure in his 40s to a withered octogenarian.
During a public talk in Los Angeles last week, the show's creator, Matthew Weiner, said the troubled character will be transported to the present day when the series wraps up.
Draper, who is in his 40s after four seasons of the show, will be transported to his mid-80s.
"I want to leave the show in a place where you have an idea of what it meant and how it's related to you," said Weiner, who is also the show's head writer.
The move is reminiscent of another ensemble drama, HBO's Six Feet Under. After five seasons, the much-anticipated finale showed the characters who hadn't died already through to the end of their lives.
Weiner said the multiple Emmy-winning series – which begins its fifth season in March next year – will aspire at its end to depict the arc of Draper's complex life.
"It came to me in the middle of last season," he said. "I always felt like it would be the experience of human life, and human life has a destination."
Weiner also said he looks forward to ending Mad Men while the programme is still riding high with viewers. While he anticipates the end of Mad Men will come in season seven, Weiner said the details remain to be sorted out.
"All I want to do is not wear out the welcome," he said.