There’s nothing worse than an ardent fan of something you hate incessantly blathering on about it in front of you. Twitter’s a pretty good example of this – despite managing to totally avoid the World Cup, I knew exactly what was going thanks to a constant stream of hilarious accounts “set up” by vuvuzelas and fake Kim Jong Ils claiming glory for scoring 28 goals against Brazil. I inadvertently know so much about Twilight that I could write scathing critiques of the film without having even seen it (which is what most snarky journos did anyway).

But what’s worse is when everyone’s talking about something you desperately want to see, but can’t. Every Sunday night I now have to rip my internet cable from the wall and barricade the doors to avoid reading one smidge of information about the new series of Mad Men from any Americans I follow, as thanks to the BBC, we theoretically have to wait until JANUARY FERCHRISSAKES until it’s shown over here.

(If you’ve not seen it yet, set season one downloading, go and buy a bottle of scotch and a pack of Lucky Strikes, and get watching. Here’s a lesson from the Mad Men School of Seduction in the meantime.)

Thanks to the powers vested in thousands of slavering, deprived overseas Mad Men fans by Megavideo, we don’t really have to wait until January to find out whether the new Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce can live up to its name, or to get our weekly fix of supercute from Sally Draper.

Any diehard fan knows that Don and co would sneer at the self-restraint it’d take to wait that long. But given that Lost and 24 were screened over here either simultaneously or mere days after their US airings, why isn’t it the same for Mad Men?

After all, season three won shiny metallic plaudits from the Golden Globes, the Screen Actors Guild, Writers Guild and Directors Guild, and it’s currently sitting pretty on 17 Emmy nominations on top of past Emmy gongs for best drama on television. It counts Obama amongst its most vocal fans. It’s a cult TV show whilst it’s still on TV, unlike say Twin Peaks or Arrested Development, which were over and beyond reinvigorating by the time they got their cult followings.

Given the right exposure over here, it could easily become the next Sopranos-sized hit, equally popular amongst men and women, given its exquisite mixture of glamour, intrigue, darkness and sex.

At the time of the BBC Strategy Review, they said that they’d be cutting their budget on foreign imports like Mad Men by 20%, and a spokesman has said that the reason we have to wait until January for the new series is due to the increased cost of getting it sooner – that it would attract criticism to spend more on a show that’s not (yet) beloved by the whole country.

But the wait is only going to make eventual viewing figures dwindle as anyone craving Don’s smoulder is going to get it from the internet. Come on Auntie Beeb, do what any lady with her heart and loins in the right place would do and hop in bed with Don while you can.

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