May 23, 2014 at 1:00 am

Society confidential: 'Bob Benson' - straight outta North Farmington

James Wolk and Christina Hendricks on 'Mad Men.' (Justina Mintz / AMC)

With North Farmington High student Jena Irene Asciutto
going all the way to No. 2 on “American Idol” Wednesday, and North Farmington grad (’03) James Wolk shocking “Mad Men” viewers with his reappearance as the charming, sociopathic ad man “Bob Benson” on “Mad Men” last week, we’re starting to wonder, what’s in the water at that school?

Jena cited “the choir and the theatrical department” as being stellar, and said her brother Nick Asciutto just appeared in the musical “Carrie” at the school. Jena will see her classmates Wednesday, when she wears a white dress from Cache to her prom, on the arm of her date, “Idol” winner Caleb Johnson from Asheville, N.C.

As for Wolk, he raved to us about the school’s Dean and Sue Cobb, who directed all the plays “and still do.” It was Dean Cobb who encouraged Wolk to apply to acting school (he graduated from U-M). The actor isn’t allowed to say whether or not his character Bob Benson will be back on “Mad Men” Sunday or next year, but he finds the reaction he gets as Benson amusing.

After he returned to “Mad Men” as Benson last week, Wolk noticed that Twitter was “ablaze.” One guy Tweeted that his girlfriend screamed, “Bob is back!” causing him to drop a dish. “I had no idea that would be a response to Bob returning,” Wolk says, laughing.

Ironically, this season’s “Mad Men” narrative has Wolk/Benson tucked away in 1970 Detroit, working for Chevy. That meant, when as Bob Benson he proposes to Joan Harris and tells her she’ll love Detroit, it had special meaning. “As a true Detroiter, I could fill that line with honesty and emotion, because I do love Detroit,” Wolk says.

The finale for the show’s abbreviated Season 7A airs at 10 p.m. Sunday. And go say hi to his dad Robert Wolk, at his store Sundance Shoes in West Bloomfield Township.

A new design studio at CCS

The big dawgs came out Wednesday night to celebrate the dedication of the Jennifer and David T. Fischer Design Studio at the College for Creative Studies. About 50 of Metro Detroit’s most prominent were in attendance at the invitation-only gathering, including Al and Judy Taubman, Phillip Fisher, Keith and Mary Kay Crain, Syd
Ross of Great Lakes Wine & Spirts and wife Elizabeth, steel magnate Kenny
Eisenberg and wife Frances. “Jennifer and David are the Fred and Ginger of fundraising,” said big Al. CCS was able to raise more than $57 million for a capital campaign to renovate the A. Alfred Taubman Center for Design Education.

swhitall@detroitnews.com
chuckbennett@hotmail.com

David and Jennifer Fischer (Martin LeFlore)