Friday, March 13, 2009

Episode 13 - Edwina

Season 1, Episode 13: Edwina
Original Air Date: 12/24/72
Written by: Hal Dresner
Directed by: James Sheldon

The 4077th is throwing a birthday party for Nurse Edwina Ferguson (Arlene Golonka). She's a sweet girl, but a real klutz, and clearly insecure. So much so she runs off in tears during the party.

Nurse Cutler follows her out, asking what the problem is, and Edwina reveals that, even though she's just a few weeks shy of going home, she is depressed. Edwina is lonely, and has never attracted the attention of any of the men of the 4077th, which has crushed her self-esteem.

Shortly thereafter, all the various men of the 4077th start getting suddenly rejected by the various women in their lives, and Radar overhears (via a hole in the Nurse's Shower) that the nurses have decided to "cut off" all the men until one of them steps up to the plate and romances Edwina.

The men decided to hold a raffle to see who the "lucky guy" is, and of course its Hawkeye!

Hawkeye schmoozes Edwina during lunch and dinner, trying his best to be funny and charming. Edwina is such a clutch she barely notices, but finally Hawkeye gets to asking her out, and she accepts.

That night, they each prepare for the date in royal style--each of them wearing kimonos, Hawkeye crosses the camp and picks Edwina up, bringing her back to The Swamp.

During the date, everything that could go wrong does, with Edwina accidentally elbowing Hawkeye in the eye, knocking him over, smashing a glass onto the floor (which Hawkeye accidentally tramples on, with bare feet), scaring him half to death.

Hawkeye finally concludes that all this klutziness is some sort of defense mechanism of Edwina's, in an attempt to keep men away before they can hurt her. Edwina is touched by all the effort Hawkeye is making, and they share a gentle kiss where nothing goes wrong. Edwina is thrilled that she's capable of being affectionate and open with someone, and it doesn't immediately go all wrong.

Of course, just as she discovers this, she knocks The Swamp's chimney pipe over, spilling soot all over Hawkeye and his bed. Hawkeye can only laugh hysterically.

Hawkeye and Nurse Cutler see Edwina off as she heads for home, and Margie thanks Hawkeye for being so nice to Edwina. The enforced abstinence is finally over!

Comments: A very sweet episode, and a nice vehicle for guest-star Golonka, who has a huge part in this episode, bigger than any of the others except for Alan Alda.

Favorite Line: As Hawkeye tries to woo Edwina, he talks about himself, talking about all the various facets of his personality: "Underneath all that of course is Public Parking."

1 comment:

Robert Gross said...

I think this is the worst episode of all.

It's pure slapstick. The schtick, that a woman could be that klutzy, and that her virginity is owed to klutziness, and that the men would hold a raffle to date her because the women are holding out, is beyond ridiculous. It has no place in the M*A*S*H canon. It's just too far fetched and outside reality. And the scene with the ketchup on her face just nauseates me. I'd rather watch Comrades In Arms on a loop for two days before watching this episode.

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