MeTV Remembers the M*A*S*H Finale

Discussion in 'Now Playing - TV Show Talk' started by sharkster, Nov 28, 2019.

  1. sharkster

    sharkster Well-Known Member TCF Club

    10,954
    2,866
    Jul 3, 2004
    NV
    I'm a little late to the game, as I recorded this piece on Veteran's Day, but I'm finally watching it today.

    As a major M*A*S*H fan, of course, I've seen every episode of the show many, many times. But it seems like they don't air the finale. With the passage of time, and the unfortunate passage of most of my memory, I really haven't recalled anything of the finale other than the rocks - I think they spelled out 'Farewell' or something. ( I haven't finished it yet, as it's a 3 hour piece, w/commercials)

    This piece that MeTV has done includes a lot of little interview bits (current) with pretty much all the main actors who are still alive as well as behind the camera participants. I enjoy that very much. But it's nice to get to see the finale again after all these years. Ha- I just remembered that I have all the DVDs of the show. D'oh!

    Gary Burghoff told a cool story about a retired serviceman who came up to him and told him what the show meant to him.

    Anyway, I was wondering if anybody else has viewed this and enjoyed as I have been. It was such a brilliant show and I love seeing the perspectives of the actors, writers, etc, who did these interviews.

    I would imagine that there are ways (OD maybe?) of seeing it, if anybody is interested and missed the airing. I can't believe I had it sitting in 'My Shows' for over two weeks. I just really wanted to choose a time where I could pay it the 100% attention that it deserves.

    BTW, it seems to be in HD and full screen, even though this is an SD channel.
     
    Mikeguy likes this.
  2. justen_m

    justen_m Cheesehead

    9,480
    428
    Jan 14, 2004
    Boise, ID
    No, I just remember watching CNN. And my parents crying.
    [edit]and my dad leaving. and then my mom beating the **** out of me when I denied all the other scholarships, and went to Annapolis.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2019
  3. cmontyburns

    cmontyburns Excellent.

    19,231
    1,879
    Nov 14, 2001
    Houston, TX
    MeTV has aired this presentation each Veterans Day for the past 2-3 years. I make sure to record it every time.

    Watching it this time almost made me start a M*A*S*H discussion thread. Maybe I still will. I can quote almost every episode from memory, it seems, although the finale has aired seldom enough that I still get little surprises when I watch it. I think the first time MeTV aired this presentation was the first time I had seen the finale in at least 10-15 years.
     
    justen_m likes this.
  4. NorthAlabama

    NorthAlabama tabasco rules

    9,942
    2,199
    Apr 19, 2012
    sweet home, al
    i remember i watched it, but that's all - i was just a kid - i'll try to remember to record it next year.
     
    Mikeguy likes this.
  5. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

    23,218
    7,104
    Jul 28, 2005
    I still remember Col. Potter riding off on his horse; B.J. riding off on his motorcycle; and Hawkeye's final view of the camp from the helicopter, of B.J.'s "GOODBYE" to him spelled out in the rocks. :disrelieved:
     
  6. Regina

    Regina I've got Jewbs!

    2,219
    298
    Mar 29, 2003
    Indiana
    I remember the "chicken" that the woman strangled on the bus (spoiler alert-it wasn't a chicken) that haunted Hawkeye and I remember Winchester being fascinated by a troupe of classical musicians - they were South Korean IIRC - he took them under his wing, conducted their music, etc-was so proud as they played as they drove away-only to hear later that they had all been killed. He then said that music was his sanctuary from the horrors of war and he would never be able to think of music the same way again...that broke my heart. They had slowly humanized Winchester over the years and I teared up at that storyline.
     
  7. Aaron Malloy

    Aaron Malloy New Member

    24
    7
    Oct 30, 2019
    After a steady diet of watching single-camera contemporary comedy shows (Larry Sanders, 30 Rock, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Arrested Development, Etc), it's quite jarring to see an old episode of MASH with a laugh track. It takes me right out of it. If there was a show that did not need a laugh track, MASH would certainly be it. I've watched videos of the producers discussing how they were against it, but CBS insisted. That's such a shame.
     
  8. astrohip

    astrohip Well-Known Raconteur TCF Club

    13,497
    2,754
    Jan 6, 2003
    Houston/Bren...
    By Ken Levine: Can the canned laughter
     
    Aaron Malloy likes this.
  9. Aaron Malloy

    Aaron Malloy New Member

    24
    7
    Oct 30, 2019
    I believe I read in in a forum once that when the show was broadcast in the UK, it had no laugh track. They didn't want it. it would be great if one could get that version on DVD/ Blu-ray or even streaming. MASH shouldn't sound like a silly show like Gilligan's Island.
     
  10. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

    23,218
    7,104
    Jul 28, 2005
    What I read today is that one has the option, with the DVD set, of having the laugh-track turned on or not. :thumbsup:
     
    Steveknj and Aaron Malloy like this.
  11. astrohip

    astrohip Well-Known Raconteur TCF Club

    13,497
    2,754
    Jan 6, 2003
    Houston/Bren...
    From the link:

    The MASH DVD’s give you option to watch with or without. Which would be my recommendation? Definitely watch without the laugh track.
     
    Aaron Malloy likes this.
  12. MScottC

    MScottC Well-Known Member

    1,185
    367
    Sep 11, 2004
    A little bit of personal trivia here regarding the M*A*S*H finale. I had started at CBS in September of 1982, the finale aired in February of 1983. I was one of two technicians that played back commercials for this episode. I don't think that CBS had any idea the viewership would be as great as it was, as they aired commercials via a machine called an ACR (Ampex Cassette Recorder) that was used for pretty much all commercial playbacks.. However during big ticket items such as Super Bowls, they'd play commercials off of standard VCRs, typically editing them into a copy of the actual show tape. The ACR was incredibly flexible and was the first broadcast quality VTR that could roll on an instant hit, but it was incredibly complex and would occasionally not play the next spot. This was acceptable most of the time but obviously not during a Super Bowl type event. Yet CBS did choose to go with it for the M*A*S*H finale. Well both the "air" and "standby" machines dumped out during a 30 second local commercial, which was to be followed by a 1 minute KODAK national spot, that didn't make it to air.

    FYI, that showing had the highest audience rating of any TV Show till the 2010 Super Bowl.
     
    astrohip and Mikeguy like this.
  13. Michael S

    Michael S Member

    484
    16
    Jan 12, 2004
    They do have it on hulu if you don't want to wait.
     
  14. Steveknj

    Steveknj Lost in New Joisey TCF Club

    50,454
    2,543
    Mar 10, 2003
    New Jersey
    Re: Laugh track. I remember M*A*S*H had a few episodes where they didn't have a laugh track and it was very controversial in it's day. Remember pretty much all sitcoms had laugh tracks in those days.

    I have a love / hate relationship with this show. The first three seasons (the Henry / Trapper years) to me were some of the funniest TV ever. I know some episodes by heart I've watched them so many times. S4 and S5 were still good. But to me, it lost it's mojo with the introduction of Winchester. I couldn't stand the character and it took me out of the show quite often. Then, there were lots of continuity issues with the show. For example, I believe the original seasons of the show took place in 1952 (around the time Ike promised to go to Korea), yet in one of the last seasons, Winchester makes a bet with the gang that the Brooklyn Dodgers would win the 1951 pennant (and baseball fans know they blew a big lead and the Giants caught them and won a playoff). So how could it take place BEFORE the early seasons? Plus the show got more preachy than funny. Some fans like that sort of humor, and that would have been fine if the show had always been light on humor and more serious. But they went that way. Was not a fan. So now, I always try and watch the early episodes when they come around on MeTV or WGN or Sundance, but skip the later episodes.

    On the finale, along these lines, I watched it when it aired and a few times since. I know it's kind of sacrilege but, I never loved it, and only kinda liked it. I thought the last half hour was very good, but I didn't like the whole chicken thing or the Winchester part. I should probably re-watch it to see if I like it better after so many years (Contrast this with the Seinfeld finale which I initially hated, but watching it over the years have grown to like it).
     
  15. Generic

    Generic Now in Dolby Digital

    1,953
    691
    Dec 26, 2005
    SoCal
    Many Californians were not able to watch the final episode due to large scale power outages caused by storms. I think my local station re-aired the episode 6 days later.
     
  16. Jonathan_S

    Jonathan_S Well-Known Member

    18,356
    1,126
    Oct 23, 2001
    Northern...
    I seem to recall that M*A*S*H had more New Years episodes than there were years of the Korean War.
    Continuity's going to get tricky when your show runs 8 years longer than the war it is set during.
     
  17. samsauce29

    samsauce29 Active Member

    278
    41
    Nov 30, 2007
    Erie, PA
    I just started rewatching this for the first time in at least 25 years. I agree so far. Henry, Trapper, and Hawkeye together are tremendous. I think I was too young to remember these seasons the first time around.

    To the date question... I'm watching season 2 and Radar was typing out reports for some date in late 1951.
     
  18. Steveknj

    Steveknj Lost in New Joisey TCF Club

    50,454
    2,543
    Mar 10, 2003
    New Jersey
    I think there were other episodes where they mention Ike saying "I will go to Korea" which was late 1952. But really didn't notice the continuity issues until it was so blatant I couldn't ignore them. The episode I mentioned took place over the course of the spring and summer of 1951, so before November 1951 for sure.
     
  19. cmontyburns

    cmontyburns Excellent.

    19,231
    1,879
    Nov 14, 2001
    Houston, TX
    The Brooklyn Dodgers bet episode spanned an entire year. If you’re going to do that, who cares what year it’s set in.
     
    Saturn_V likes this.
  20. Steveknj

    Steveknj Lost in New Joisey TCF Club

    50,454
    2,543
    Mar 10, 2003
    New Jersey
    If your going to have the show set in late 1951 with the original cast, and then their REPLACEMENTS have an episode that set BEFORE then, well that's a continuity issue. I usually don't let that kind of stuff bug me, but for some reason this time it did.
     

Share This Page