Monday, August 17, 2009

Episode 139 - What's Up, Doc?

Season 6, Episode 139: What's Up, Doc?
Original Air Date: 1/30/78
Written by: Larry Balmagia

Directed by: George Tyne

During a session in O.R., everyone seems to notice how snippy Margaret seems to be. She gets frustrated at every joke Hawkeye utters, and puts a nurse on report for a petty mistake.

After O.R., Hawkeye asks her what's the problem, and after some cajoling she admits she's irritated because...she might be pregnant.

Hawkeye is ecstatic, but Margaret is not: her and Donald Penobscott are not exactly getting along, and if she is pregnant, her whole Army career is, as she puts it, "kaput."
But she's not positive she's pregnant, so Hawkeye helps her go about getting a test.

Meanwhile, a patient of B.J.'s, Lt. Martinson (Charles Frank) is furious over the idea of being sent back into battle. Because of his education, he was made an automatic Lieutenant, put in charge of other men. When some of them were killed due to his lack of experience, he flat out refuses to go back into combat. B.J. tries to console him, but Martinson will accept nothing less than being relieved of his command.

Hawkeye and Margaret turn to Col. Potter and tell him the news, and he is equally happy. They decide a pregnancy test is the next step, so they turn to the owner of the nearest rabbit they can find...Radar.

But when Radar is told that his beloved rabbit Fluffy has to die during the procedure, he is horrified, refuses, and storms out.

Hawkeye catches up with Radar, who it seems has let Fluffy free from her cage. Radar asks can't Hawkeye just remove the rabbit's ovaries (the part of the rabbit they test)? Hawkeye says its possible, but since Fluffy is gone, what's the point?

At that point, Radar produces Fluffy out of his jacket, tentatively handing her over to Hawkeye, who promises to care for her as best he can.

While Hawkeye and Margaret perform the surgery, Lt. Martinson gets angrier and angrier at B.J. Winchester tries to relate to him, Ivy Leaguer to Ivy Leaguer, but that doesn't work, either. Martinson then pulls a gun and takes Winchester hostage, demanding a chopper home.

This stand-off crosses over into the O.R., where Hawkeye and Margaret have finished the operation on Fluffy and are about to perform the pregnancy test. But Martinson demands they all leave. Klinger, upon hearing Martinson wants a flight back to Ohio, volunteers to replace Winchester as a hostage.

Instead of being scared, Klinger is downright gung-ho about their prospects, but Martinson, weak from his wound and a lack of sleep, can barely stand. In fact, he passes out just as the chopper arrives, dashing Klinger's hopes of freedom.

Later, Hawkeye and Margaret do the pregnancy test, and its negative. Margaret is happy, but Hawkeye admits he's a little disappointed. Margaret then pauses, and admits, "So am I."

Fun Facts: The actor playing Lt. Martinson also appeared in the Season Five episode, "Dear Sigmund."

Jamie Farr is a riot in his scenes with Charles Frank. When he walks out of the hospital, arms raised because he thinks Martinson is holding a gun to his back, he quickly notices Martinson is not in fact behind him. He looks around at every one, and yells, "Wait a minute, I'll be right back!"

Favorite Line: B.J. asks what kind of education Martinson has, and he admits, sort of embarrassed, "Art History...I was an Art History major."

B.J., not helping the situation, sarcastically responds, "I think the Marines are the only ones with an Art History division."


What the Parrot Saw said...

The A-plot here reads a little too precious on paper, but the principals involved pull it off; I've always thought that Radar's devotion to his menagerie as well as to animals in general (an invention of the series) was one of his character's more appealing traits.

I agree, Rob- Klinger's scenes with Martinson are hilarious ("look alive!") and the way in which both plots intertwine towards the end is inspired. I wish that more of the A/B plots in later seasons came together or somehow referenced each other more directly- it would defuse the occasionally lopsided feel that some of the those episodes have.

(Come to think of it, this episode has a similar feel to S10 "A Holy Mess")

Russell said...

My favorite line is when Margaret tells Potter she might be pregnant.
"Have you told Penobscott?"
"Should you?"

As a kid I didn't understand this, but as an adult I finally "got" that this is a series about adults, and the gentle humor is even more appreciated.

Anonymous said...

My favorite quote is at the end when Margaret says thank you to Radar for donating Fluffy's ovaries, and Radar responds with "I know you'd do the same for Fluffy." Puts a smile on my face just thinking about it. =)

Anonymous said...

If all Hawkeye had to do was check the ovaries with a magnifying glass, then why did Fluffy's ovaries need to be surgically removed? Poor Fluffy could still have had babies.

Anonymous said...

Why was Margaret drinking vodka in the Colonel's office when she thought she might be pregnant?

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