To COVID or Not to COVID, M*A*S*H has the answer

Come near to God and he will come near to you.  Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.

  • James 4:8

I was looking for a video for something entirely different, and finding it, but the following video was too good to not share.  I loved M*A*S*H.  I grew up a sports nut and nothing could distract me from Monday Night Football, until M*A*S*H moved to Monday night.  Then there was a mystery show on A&E with Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries as part of the series rotation, and I started forgetting that Monday Night Football even existed, never watching it after it went to ESPN.

It is strange watching this video and remembering the scenes, remembering the laughter.  But now with this take on the COVID crisis, it reminds you of everyday life.

It is strange how this hilarious video is from a show that has masks being worn in every episode and that was not covered in the video.  But that is good as well.  They could simply take away the COVID at the beginning and this could be a public service announcement for improved hygiene.

But as for watching the show when it was on, I was dumbfounded how M*A*S*H had such an effect on those in the Army.  I was in Germany in the late 70s when the show was a hit.  The Armed Forces Network stripped off the commercials.  Thirty-minute programming became 20 minutes.  Hour programming became 40 minutes.  When you watched something live, you had commercials, but none at any other time.  But you only had that one channel and the programming from, at the time, three major networks trying to sell their shows.  Over three years, if your favorite show did not make the cut, you were lost in the story line when you got back or wondering why the show was cancelled.  So, to show programming in Germany, most shows never made it there.  Some shows got there six-months later, some a year, but only M*A*S*H episodes got there about a month after airing in the USA, and people would rather watch reruns than have it replaced until the new episodes were available.  I think if the great Red Menace had attacked during that twenty minutes each week, they would have won the war before anyone noticed.  Okay, maybe not that bad, but each episode was discussed at work the next day.  I knew of no one that was not glued to the television for those brief minutes.

And to think that M*A*S*H had a non-apologetic theme of being antiwar and the characters had no respect for authority whatsoever, why would it be the favorite show among those in the Army?

Then again, I answered my question.  There was always that officer that would remind you of a Frank Burns type or a Charles Emerson Winchester III type or ignoring gender, the most militaristic was Margaret Hot-Lips Houlihan.  With so much focus in your daily 9 to 5 and working with military bearing and such, it was fun seeing people that did not worry about whether their gig line was straight or not.  And it is absolutely the best medicine to laugh at yourself, especially when others are not laughing at you.

My wife is into binge watching old television shows.  After years of watching M*A*S*H reruns, I could probably quote from the script, but watching these clips, I am wondering how long it would take to binge watch all eleven seasons.

Soli Deo Gloria.  Only to God be the Glory.

4 Comments

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  1. I loved MASH, back in the day. Still enjoy the reruns now and then.

    When I was in my late 30s, I went to a vocational place for ‘displaced homemakers’ — meaning I was going through a divorce and needed to figure out how to support myself. I was given an aptitude test that was supposed to tell me what line of work I was best suited for.

    My results: I would make either an ideal lawyer or a top notch Army officer. Apparently, years of watching MASH and Perry Mason had an effect!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow. Two of my often watched shows. I remember one church youth group meeting that lasted a little too long. When my mother drove us home, she lectured me on how we were going to miss the beginning of Perry Mason and we would have no idea what was going on – as if I could rush the youth group leaders to finish on time. And I finally quit watching every MASH rerun when I pretty much had the dialogue down.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I left my comment before watching the video. It’s hilarious — and so timely. I’m bookmarking this post so I can share it, probably day after tomorrow, after the last post in my Seconds from Death mini series saga.

    Liked by 1 person

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