Friday, March 5, 2010

AfterM*A*S*H Episode 6 - Shall We Dance

Season 1, Episode 6: Shall We Dance
Original Air Date: 10/31/83
Written by: Ken Levine & David Isaacs

Directed by: Will Mackenzie

Mike D'Angelo holds a morning staff meeting, and everyone's concerns are ignored except for his own and Alma Cox's. D'Angelo tells them a troupe of dance instructors are coming to the hospital to put on a dance for the patients (something he
was against until the Mayor called and told him what a great idea it was).

Alma Cox's main concern is the banning of the book From Here To Eternity, because of its "suggestive" nature. To prove her point, she begins reading a lurid passage from it, and from there we enter a flashback of Col. Potter's, remembering an experience he had with Mildred in a similar setting to the scene from the book.

The staff argues over Cox's censorship, so D'Angelo hands the book to Father Mulcahy to read and decide whether it should be banned. The meeting ends with not one medical issue discussed.

After the meeting, Dr. Pfeiffer asks Alma Cox's assistant Bonnie out on a date, but she's not interested--she only has eyes for Klinger, who has to keep giving Bonnie the brush-off. Bonnie tells Dr. Pfeiffer about another girl named Margie, who will go out with any doctor.

Pfeiffer and Margie meet for a "date" in an OR, and within a few moments of meeting they're tearing off their clothes. Alma Cox catches them and stops it, deciding to lord it over Pfeiffer in perpetuity.

Father Mulcahy agrees to fill in for another priest at his church, and he happens to be hearing confessions when Alma Cox stops by. She professes her unrequited love for her boss, and even going to see the movie version of From Here To Eternity.

Father Mulcahy comforts her, and tells her her feelings are understandable. He gives her a way to unburden herself, by forgiving someone else their failings. Later that night, during the dance, Cox follows through on Mulcahy's advice, and forgives Dr. Pfeiffer, promising not to rat him out.

Just as she's about to leave, Mike D'Angelo shows up, and offers to dance with her. Alma is overjoyed at this little bit of personal time with her boss, the man she loves.

Fun Facts: One of the biggest problems with the show so far to my mind is the general cartoonishness of the show's two "villains", Mike D'Angelo and Alma Cox. This episode though does a nice job at fleshing Cox out a bit, making her more of an actual person. In many ways, her rigid demeanor is a lot like Hot Lips' was in the first couple seasons of M*A*S*H.

Favorite Line: After Bonnie turns down Dr. Pfeiffer after a second date request, she tells him about a girl named Margie, who is a "pushover" for doctors. Pfeiffer asks for his gift of flowers back, but Bonnie tells him, "You won't need them with Margie."

Pfeiffer is elated: "Finally it pays being a doctor!"

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