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MASH

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On 7/6/2018 at 7:39 PM, Ailianna said:

It's on Sundance too.

And AMC. It's crazy, huh?

For anyone watching on Hulu: I have heard the episodes have been remastered. Anyone have any comments on that? 

(I remember when I got the DVDs, it was the first time I noticed how incredibly blue Larry Linville's eyes were.)

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I used to joke that you could turn on the TV at any time during the day and some channel would be playing MASH.

Glad to see that's true again!

On 7/8/2018 at 8:17 PM, stonehaven said:

The Hulu eps seem really sharp...although I watched the later ones and they seem to have laugh track...yuk...

Here's the background on the laugh track. 

DVDs apparently have the option to watch without it, which I never realized!

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M*A*S*H was a 20th Century Fox show. Disney is trying to buy out Fox. So would that make Corporal Klinger the newest Disney Princess? Link

Jamie Farr, now the oldest surviving member of the M*A*S*H cast at 84, is one of only two cast members to have actually served in Korea (U.S. Army; the other was Alan Alda, now 82, who served in the U.S. Army Reserve).

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4 hours ago, Driad said:

M*A*S*H was a 20th Century Fox show. Disney is trying to buy out Fox. So would that make Corporal Klinger the newest Disney Princess

Of course!  LOL

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On 7/11/2018 at 6:54 PM, ae2 said:

I used to joke that you could turn on the TV at any time during the day and some channel would be playing MASH.

Glad to see that's true again!

Here's the background on the laugh track. 

DVDs apparently have the option to watch without it, which I never realized!

Which is really great! Haven't seen that many other shows that offer that.

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Radar is playing the piano at the officer's club:

Trapper: Radar, don't you know another song?

Hawkeye: He doesn't even know that one!

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This is JMO, but I found the earlier seasons (Blake/Trapper/Frank) much more quotable and funnier than later ones, but I know that's an OLD debate and we all like what/who we like!  :-)

In that vein, as everyone knows, Harry Morgan appeared in an earlier season episode (the S3 premiere) as a looney tunes general in "The General Flipped At Dawn". One cute exchange was when Klinger, in his usual women's garb, encounters him as the general hisses, "Not now, Marjorie! I'm inspecting the troops!"

The ending of that episode, though, I'm pretty sure it wouldn't fly today. The part where the general tells the African-American chopper pilot how he did what he was told and not blamed. But before he was to testify, the general asks for a "number" and says it is in the pilot's blood, just before Not!Potter! breaks into song, dances away, and the MPs close the case against Hawkeye.

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It probably wouldn't fly, although if I remember that bit correctly, the point was that Not!Potter! was crazy, and what he said was not only not OK, it proved he was not right.

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On 4/1/2017 at 8:03 PM, Chaos Theory said:

Watching the late seasons I realized why I like them sometimes more then I do the early ones.  The main group act like a weird kind of family and not like two enemy camps.  One of the things I disliked about the Frank years was the the sole lead female character was often portrayed as a humorless shrew in the early seasons.  That was less so in the late seasons.

 

But, see, that was my problem with later Margaret, formerly Hot Lips. At least early Hot Lips, pro-Army, in love with power and Army men with power, and would probably hunger to be a general herself if not for the period the show was set (1950s), had a personality. She also had a funny, sexy streak, especially when drunk. (See her blinding smiles at Trapper as one example during one of those times.)

Later Margaret was no longer Hot Lips. Yes, I know. Treated with more respect. In the real world, I support it fully, as a woman myself. But on the show? She became dull as dishwater for me. No conflict with Potter. Friendly with Hawkeye and BJ. The "kumbaya, we are family" vibe of the later years may have been cozier, but I think the conflict between Margaret with Hawkeye/Trapper/then BJ generated more comedy.

And while the writing did ultimately limit Frank Burns, as even Larry Linville admitted, I loved their affair and their futile attempts at thwarting the circus that usually transpired, especially when Blake was in charge.

To each his/her own. But I will always, always prefer the earlier years in terms of tone/personality, etc.

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On 3/4/2018 at 2:24 AM, Utpe said:

Just read about his passing.  So sad.  I'll always remember the episode (The Life You Save) in which his character has a near-death experience.  Very fine performance.

R.I.P. David Ogden Stiers.

Others have mentioned scenes moments where Charles snobbish upper crust upper class standoffishness either melts or cracks or falls away, Radar and the toboggan cap, the handmade chocolates for the orphans, Charles and Hawkeye trying to get through to the asshat to try and get the Korean baby over to the US, His storyline with Hawkeye when Hawk's father has a serious health issue, I love that Charles didn't just pop in and out and leave Hawkeye alone, but stayed with him, and how eventually after a couple of hours (obviously not shown), Charles opoens up to Hawkeye on how unemotional, unaffectionate and dare I say it, unloving Charles father was, and how deeply that has hurt Charles.

But the episode I quoted was and is marvelous, it gets rerun pretty often on AMC or METV or TVLand. The scene at the aid station with the dying soldier, Charles holding his hand and desperately asking what the dying soldier sees and feels as his life drips out of him. But i also liked how Charles went at this THING that was in his head scientifically, going to the motor pool and such. Also his stubbornness and refusal to go to anyone else for help.

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What I loved about Charles was that he was a good man, he was a snob, but he cared about others. He wanted out, just like Hawk and BJ, he just dealt with it differently. But when the chips were down, he got in there and got his hands dirty. He was a great character because I could fully believe that one moment Hawk and BJ would be teasing and tormenting him and the next Charles could be comforting Hawk. I think he worked much better than Frank in that respect. Poor Frank became more and more a parody while Charles was more fleshed out. And DOS was an excellent actor who could likewise come across as a totally obnoxious snob and a caring and loving man. 

I, too, loved the episode where he was trying to learn what it was like to die. You could almost feel him spiraling a bit, like he felt that if he didn't find out he would lose his grip and he was desperate not to. It was beautifully acted. 

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I think we'd all agree that Hawkeye was a womanizer, but since he was single I've never had a problem with that. But on another message board where the topic of the week is some variation on sexual harassment of women by men a poster put forth that on MASH: 

Quote

Hawkeye often forced himself on women.

Seriously? I can't recall ANY instance of that or of Hawkeye getting a nurse drunk to get in her pants. But am I misremembering things?

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My memory is that women were really attracted to him. There was one episode where he backed off because the woman was wearing a wedding ring and she said she wore it to ward off unwanted advances.

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I loved Charles too. Unlike Frank he had more sides to him then just the one. He was snobby, but also could be very kind, and he really was a competent doctor. I liked his friendship with Margaret. Quietly sending food to the orphanage and his remark when he learned that had been sold about supper being first. His pain at seeing the musicians dead at the end of the war and saying that he played music to get away the war and now it would always remind him of it. His reaction to the stutter and learning his sister stuttered. Wanting to know what death was like. Telling Hawkeye that he had father and Hawkeye had a dad. Trying to help get the orphan baby to the U.S. He was such a great character. One part that doesn't really have any to do with him was learning how much his parents hit it off with Radar's mother and uncle. It was so surprising and really kind of cool.

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I’ve been watching MASH a lot lately in reruns, and while Hawkeye is persistent in his pursuit of women, when they say no, he does back off.  It seems like they all have his number — and in some of the earlier ones, he’s somewhat monogamous with recurring characters.

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Hawkeye was a flirt, and a bit persistent, but I almost feel like he did it as a diversion from the fact he was stuck in a war he never intended to be in and wasn't remotely prepared for. I think he was also trying to distract the women he flirted with. It was a bit of "normalcy" in an abnormal situation. A reminder of "real life". I never got the feeling it was anything more than fun or that he made any of the women uncomfortable. It's true, "they got his number" and they probably warned the new gals about him. I don't think he got quite as much play as he wanted, but I always thought he was a good guy. 

Hawkeye was my first major TV crush. I will always have a soft spot for him. I'm pretty sure I would have succumb to his charms. lol

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One Father Mulcahey scene I remember well, from the early years, was one of the Christmas-themed episodes, "Dear Dad" from season 1. Frank orders Klinger to remove a bandana. What starts as the usual Burns/Klinger repartee goes south as Klinger threatens Frank and Father Mulcahey with a grenade out of desperation. (Which was a rare dark moment for Klinger.)

Father Mulcahey talks Klinger down as he says to Klinger, "We're tired. We're all so very tired." And promises Klinger he'll have Frank let him keep his scarf.

Then the MPs come and Mulcahey begs them to let him handle it. I got a chuckle out of the line from one of the MPs, "I'm not even Catholic."

And Father Mulcahey replies, "Would you like to be?"

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On 4/21/2014 at 7:05 PM, The Crazed Spruce said:

Can't really speak for any reports of Alda's ego, but I do know that the show's shifting in focus to Hawkeye and away from Trapper was one of the reasons Wayne Rogers gave for leaving the show.

Which saddens me, because I preferred Trapper. To Hawkeye and especially to bland (IMO!) BJ.

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8 hours ago, WendyCR72 said:

Which saddens me, because I preferred Trapper. To Hawkeye and especially to bland (IMO!) BJ.

That's an interesting take because I always thought Trapper was sort of bland and BJ brought more personality to the show. Maybe not necessarily that he had more personality, but that he was better able to hold his own against Hawkeye, where Trapper was much more clearly entrenched in sidekick territory. 

I love Wayne Rogers, I just don't remember them giving Trapper much to do other than his repartee with Hawkeye. 

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I don't think they did, which is why he left. I think Trapper and Hawkeye were too much alike. B.J. was a different character than Hawkeye so he wasn't quite as much of a sidekick.

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On 9/22/2018 at 11:15 PM, WendyCR72 said:

 

But, see, that was my problem with later Margaret, formerly Hot Lips. At least early Hot Lips, pro-Army, in love with power and Army men with power, and would probably hunger to be a general herself if not for the period the show was set (1950s), had a personality. She also had a funny, sexy streak, especially when drunk. (See her blinding smiles at Trapper as one example during one of those times.)

Later Margaret was no longer Hot Lips. Yes, I know. Treated with more respect. In the real world, I support it fully, as a woman myself. But on the show? She became dull as dishwater for me. No conflict with Potter. Friendly with Hawkeye and BJ. The "kumbaya, we are family" vibe of the later years may have been cozier, but I think the conflict between Margaret with Hawkeye/Trapper/then BJ generated more comedy.

And while the writing did ultimately limit Frank Burns, as even Larry Linville admitted, I loved their affair and their futile attempts at thwarting the circus that usually transpired, especially when Blake was in charge.

To each his/her own. But I will always, always prefer the earlier years in terms of tone/personality, etc.

I think Margaret 'turned' as it were when she came back from her honeymoon early because Donald had turned into a bag of dicks and she talked about it with Hawkeye and BJ, and they were compassionate and sorry for her. I think Hawkeye ALWAYS liked and respected Margaret as a nurse, he always chose her if it was a tough difficult operation. What she didn't like was his utter and complete disdain and in her mind and eyes, complete DISRESPECT for the military and particularly the army, which hurt her even more because her entire life had been and was the army. She'd never been a civilian. And I think the episode where they had sex got them closer, as it would have had to. 

Of course, some of her personality changes were due to whatever the storyline called for

I've been watching it on MEtv, Tvland and AMC and a couple of things stand out kind of badly when it comes to continuity vis a vie the actual  war in Korea and the war in Korea on the show.

1)There's a scene where Hawkeye and Trapper are talking in the Swamp with Frank about Isenhower and how Nixon is Ike's problem. Which was true in the real world. Except that could only have been true from 1952 onwards as it was in 1952 when Ike picked Nixon as his Vice President. Except, there is a later episode which takes us through 1951 and Trapper and Frank are both gone. 

Then there's a scene where Hawkeye wakes Radar up and Radar has been reading an Avengers comic book. Except the Avengers comic book wouldn't start being published for just about another decade.

One fun thing was seeing future stars make appearances on the show. Hawkeye 'dated/fooled around with' Joan Van Ark, Terri Garr and Blythe Danner. Ron Howard, Patrick Swayze and George Went made guest shots. but there was one guest star that literally made me go, "ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?! SERIOUSLY!?! You'll never in a million years guess who it was. They were a VERY controversial figure in the late 1980's and early 1990's. THE DICEMAN!!! Andrew Dice Clay.

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On 9/5/2017 at 2:16 PM, Browncoat said:

Radar just seemed so terribly angry in his goodbye episodes.  I think the only time he wasn't was when he was talking to the nurse in the airport.  But I will always love that Hawkeye gave him a real salute, even if it was from the OR.

And when Radar got his Purple Heart. I also really like the scene where Hawkeye berates radar for deciding not to leave. the way Hawkeye says, "How DARE you!!", the vehemence and almost savagery always gets me.

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On 9/26/2018 at 2:31 AM, andromeda331 said:

Unlike Frank he had more sides to him then just the one. He was snobby, but also could be very kind, and he really was a competent doctor.

 

On 9/25/2018 at 3:43 PM, Mabinogia said:

What I loved about Charles was that he was a good man, he was a snob, but he cared about others. He wanted out, just like Hawk and BJ, he just dealt with it differently.

Charles Emmerson Winchester is one of those people you see in real life, where there is much more than meets the eye.  Look at the position Charles found himself in:

Surely this is a mistake!  A graduate of Harvard Medical School, and on track to be chief thoracic surgeon at Boston General.  Surely his fate cannot be wasting his career in Korea, 

And why can't Charles' family connections and family money help get him out of there?  It is hinted that his rivals at Boston General, who are competing against him for the big promotions and exclusive positions have no interest in helping Winchester return to the States, where he might outclass them and receive the promotions they covet.

Oh, yes.  Charles has many, many layers, and the writers only allow us to see those layers as time goes on.

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I always wondered, did Loretta Swit ad lib that? Because both Alan Alda and Wayne Rogers acted as though they were completely caught off guard by that line.

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On 2/23/2018 at 1:28 PM, rubaco said:

Oral History of M*A*S*H from the Hollywood Reporter. I've read or heard most of those anecdotes before, but this story from Loretta Swit (about a scene in "Goodbye, Farewell and Amen") was news to me, and I love it.

Swit: A few episodes before, Margaret had borrowed a book of poems from Winchester. He got angry with me at one point and made me return it. In real life, we had this running gag. I would tease David all the time that no one had his private phone number. He was very much his own person, very reclusive in a way. So, in the final episode Winchester gives Margaret the book back. I open it and read the inscription. David had written his phone number inside. That's my real emotion on camera.

Excellent read. I notice that they go into the back ground of Henry/Mac's departure. But they say very little about Wayne Rogers, who left at the same time. I think his was not pre-planned like Stevenson's was, and they opened the next season with Trapper being sent home suddenly and Hawkeye not being there and not being able to say good-bye. Rogers decided to leave during the hiatus between seasons, if I remember correctly, so there was no lead up to his departure, which is what Henry got (the pinstripe suit? OMG!)  Wasn't WR's reason for leaving being that he resented the fact that Trapper was a secondary character to Hawkeye (which was not the case in the original movie, where Trapper was Chief Surgeon and more of an equal to Hawkeye). 

 

Last year, I binged the entire series on Netflix, but since then, have caught it on almost a nightly basis on WGN, TVLand, Sundance, or whatever channel.  I am enjoying my second wind of watching the show. My son has even been caught laughing and watching with me at times. 

Edited by ChicksDigScars

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I really hate the episode where Radar might have been exposed to rabies.  You can't tell just by looking at an animal whether or not it's been exposed.  You have to examine its brain tissue.  So all of Radar's pets (especially the skunk!), plus the dog would have to be euthanized.  Not only that, but if the disease is in the early stages, if the animal isn't showing symptoms, it might not be immediately obvious from the brain tissue.

And if all that weren't enough, the series of rabies vaccinations don't make you sick/delirious.  Not the pre-exposure shots or the post-exposure shots. 

It bugs me so much because they get so much right on the show, but this is huge -- just like every time they have the MDs acting as veterinarians. 

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Just saw this episode and was wondering the same thing....It didn't make any sense that Radar was delerious from the rabies shot or that Col Blake could tell the dog wasn't rabid without examining its brain tissue.  I was also surprised that rabies vaccine was apparently readily available in  Korea.  Then again maybe rabies was prevalent there.

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6 minutes ago, abbey said:

 I was also surprised that rabies vaccine was apparently readily available in  Korea.  Then again maybe rabies was prevalent there.

Yes, Hawkeye has a line early in the episode where he says to Radar, "Dysentery and rabies are the two biggest numbers on the Korean hit parade."

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39 minutes ago, abbey said:

I was also surprised that rabies vaccine was apparently readily available in  Korea.  Then again maybe rabies was prevalent there.

I didn't even think about that -- they probably had to have to vaccines shipped.  Or do military personnel get the pre-exposure shots as a matter of course (like vet students)?  Even if they do, if there is a possible exposure, they still have to have post-exposure shots.

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On 12/1/2018 at 5:35 PM, Browncoat said:

I really hate the episode where Radar might have been exposed to rabies.  You can't tell just by looking at an animal whether or not it's been exposed.  You have to examine its brain tissue.  So all of Radar's pets (especially the skunk!), plus the dog would have to be euthanized.  Not only that, but if the disease is in the early stages, if the animal isn't showing symptoms, it might not be immediately obvious from the brain tissue.

And if all that weren't enough, the series of rabies vaccinations don't make you sick/delirious.  Not the pre-exposure shots or the post-exposure shots. 

It bugs me so much because they get so much right on the show, but this is huge -- just like every time they have the MDs acting as veterinarians. 

I’m not in the medical field, but is it possible that the shots taken in the 1950s did have those side effects?

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They didn’t affect my grandmother that way.  They were then administered in the abdomen and were very very painful, but they didn’t make her have to take to her bed.

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On 11/29/2018 at 12:36 PM, ChicksDigScars said:

My son has even been caught laughing and watching with me at times. 

My friends and I were in middle school at the time of the original run.  It is amazing how much the show had an affect on us back then.  We could study in school how young some of the soldiers were, but nothing drove the point home more than Hawkeye lamenting the young age of the soldiers being treated in the operating room:

"They couldn't ante up a chest hair between all of them".

Edited by TheLastKidPicked

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I don't know how medically accurate the show was (thought they did have a medical advisor), but there's one scene that bothers me every time I see it. At the end of the first season episode, "Chief Surgeon Who?" they're all in the OR and Frank -- who'd been battling Hawkeye over the Chief Surgeon appointment -- asks Hawkeye to help him with a patient. Hawkeye is still wearing gloves that are covered with a different patient's blood, but he just dives right into Frank's patient. It's supposed to be this nice moment between colleagues, but all I can think about is how someone's about to get Hep C.

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Margaret: 'He can crush a beer can with two fingers!'

Frank: 'Show-off.  I killed a gopher once with a stick.'

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Alan Alda got his surviving castmates* back together for a conversation on his Clear + Vivid podcast. They laughed a lot, and it just made me smile all the way through.

(*Meaning Jamie Farr, Loretta Swit, Mike Farrell, Gary Burghoff)

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The pilot is on Sundance as I type. And one thing I had never noticed is, in the pilot, the tent's...er, walls, so to speak, are not more tent, but more screen. Trapper and Hawkeye's beds are up against a screen and you can see the rest of the camp walking by.

Also read the pilot was filmed close to a year before the series had its debut: The pilot was apparently filmed in December 1971 and made its TV debut on September 17, 1972. (And - as if anyone cares - I made my own debut the following day. So you can say we literally grew up together!)

Weird to see a different actor [George Morgan] as Fr. Mulcahey and to see Trapper and Hawkeye not just with a houseboy in Ho-John (who served them their first martinis in the series) but with an additional bunk mate besides Frank with "Spearchucker" Jones. (That nickname sure would not fly today.)

Kind of cool to spot all the differences and see what would stick and what wouldn't. Pilots are always fun about that.

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1 minute ago, WendyCR72 said:

Weird to see a different actor [George Morgan] as Fr. Mulcahey and to see Trapper and Hawkeye not just with a houseboy in Ho-John (who served them their first martinis in the series) but with an additional bunk mate besides Frank with "Spearchucker" Jones. (That nickname sure would not fly today.)

Not only would that nickname not fly today, but their suggestion of selling Spearchucker to raise money may not make it into the script.  I know they were joking, but still.

The Swamp is more screen than tent throughout the series, except in the cold winter episodes.

It is curious, though, why Frank, a Major, has to bunk with the Captains, but Margaret, also a Major, gets a tent to herself.

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5 minutes ago, Browncoat said:

The Swamp is more screen than tent throughout the series, except in the cold winter episodes.

Really? More fool me for never noticing, but thanks!

And that's an interesting question about Frank and Margaret's living situation. Maybe Margaret got a special privilege since her father was some Army bigwig and pulled some strings?

Also agree that "selling" Spearchucker would also never have flown today, for sure!

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2 hours ago, chitowngirl said:

Margaret was Head Nurse, so that has it’s priveldges. I always wondered how Klinger rated his own tent.

Bribery?  🙂

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7 hours ago, chitowngirl said:

Margaret was Head Nurse, so that has it’s priveldges. I always wondered how Klinger rated his own tent.

Smelly Lebanese sausages?  But he only had that until he took over for Radar, and then had to sleep in the, um, reception area?  What do we call that place with the phones and the file cabinets just outside the COs office? 

Also, Hawkeye was Chief Surgeon.  Doesn't that count for anything?  Or does Captain cancel out Chief Surgeon?

bored loop GIF
 

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