Friday, March 19, 2010

AfterM*A*S*H Episode 20 - Up & Down Payments

Season 1, Episode 20: Up & Down Payments
Original Air Date: 3/12/84
Written by: David Isaacs & Ken Levine

Directed by: Burt Metcalfe

Dr. Boyer seems to be adjusting to life at General General quite well: he's friendly with the patients, and they admire him greatly. He also flirts with some of the nurses, who seem to be interested in him right back. He's even able to make a self-deprecating joke about his leg, something Potter and D'Angelo notice from afar.

Meanwhile, the Klingers look for a new, bigger house. When the real estate agent learns that Klinger is also a veteran, he agrees to help get the necessary loan. Klinger is unsure, since the house is beyond what they can afford, but Soon-Lee loves the house so much, and the real estate agent is so bullish, that agrees to take it.

Back at General General, Dr. Boyer's good mood is spoiled when the elevator breaks, and he has to take the stairs. With his wooden leg, climbing the stairs is a slow, painful process, and it takes him a long time to respond to an emergency page. When he finally gets to the ward, he's furious, and barks at the patients who are staring at Boyer, who is drenched in sweat.

Klinger is overjoyed over his new house, and shows his lease to Father Mulcahy. Mulachy wonders how Klinger can afford it, and looks over his lease. He finds a clause in it that says Klinger has to come up with a huge payment (aka a "balloon payment") in just two years, or he loses the house. Feeling like he's been had, Klinger storms off to talk to his real estate agent.

D'Angelo wanders into the ward, picking the exact wrong moment to goof on Boyer's wooden leg. Boyer cuts D'Angelo's tie in two in front of some visiting officials, embarrassing him greatly. Within moments, Boyer is in Potter's office getting chewed out.

Boyer complains about how he feels like an outcast because of his leg. Potter is sympathetic, but has no time for Boyer's angry sad-sack routine. He tells him that if that's going to be Boyer's attitude, he can just get out, now.

Klinger confronts his real estate agent, and after some pressuring, he agrees to tear up the contract. But he insists on sticking the Klingers with the loss of a down payment, which Klinger objects to...physically.

The Potters throw a dinner for the Klingers, Father Mulcahy, and Dr. Boyer. Klinger shows up with bandages on his hand and head, saying he got hurt in a fall (Potter seems dubious).

Just as everyone is about to eat, the doorbell rings--its the police, here to arrest Klinger, for assaulting the real estate agent!

Potter, Mulcahy, and Soon-Lee follows Klinger to the county jail. Just as they slam the cell shut, Soon-Lee goes into labor! Klinger is left behind as the rest of them head for the hospital.

As we see Klinger watch helplessly from inside the jail cell, we see the words: "Continued Next Season."

Fun Facts: This is the final episode of the first season--the cliffhanger being a departure from M*A*S*H, will never did a two-parter that took place over the season break.

Father Mulcahy plants a Victory Garden, a nice callback to his penchant for gardening on M*A*S*H.

Favorite Line: A nurse has some forms she needs Klinger to sign, but since he's off for the morning, Potter volunteers to fill in. He asks what he's supposed to do, and the nurse points to some forms: "Just sign where it says 'Approved, Sherman Potter' and sign it 'Max Klinger.'"

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