An orphan raised in a brothel, Dick Whitman had little from his childhood worth remembering. During the Korean War, he switches name tags with a dead soldier and returns to the States living as Don Draper (with the eventual cooperation of Draper’s wife, Anna). With his new name, Don becomes the most sought-after man on Madison Avenue, plus a husband and father of three. After two divorces and nearly ruining his career by going MIA once again, a meditative retreat in California gives Don the peace of mind to think up “I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke,” one of the biggest ad campaigns of all time.
First appearance: series premiere; last appearance: series finale