Sunday, March 15, 2009

Episode 15 - Tuttle

Season 1, Episode 15: Tuttle
Original Air Date: 1/14/73
Written by: Bruce Shelly & David Ketchum
Directed by: William Wiard

Hawkeye and Trapper are making a secret donation of medical supplies to a local orphanage. When the Sister asks who is responsible for such a large act of generosity, Hawkeye sputters "Uh...Captain Tuttle." Trapper goes along.

Figuring this was the best way for the donations not to be tracked, Hawkeye and Trapper figure that's that. Except that the name Tuttle starts to spread through the camp like wildfire--Frank wonders why this Tuttle hasn't reported to him (since he is second in command, after all), Henry assigns him to be Officer of the Day, and he even manages to make Frank jealous, after Hot Lips mentions how attractive she finds the Captain to be.

Tuttle even manages to collect a huge wad of back pay (Hawkeye, with his surgical mask on, pretending to be him)--but not before telling the pay master that all his future pay is to go to the orphanage.

Sensing they need to beef up their lie a bit, Hawkeye, Trapper, and Radar break into the camp's personnel records, and forge Tuttle's profile. After giving him sterling medical credentials, Hawkeye throws in something for Hot Lips, making Tuttle a real looker.

The Tuttle lie grows so big that General Clayton arrives to give the captain a medal for his extreme generosity--now what?

During the ceremony, Hawkeye has to break the grim news that Captain Tuttle died while at the front helping wounded soldiers. Leaping from a helicopter, he had everything he needed--except his parachute.

Later, Radar wonders where Hawkeye and Trapper got the uniform and dog tags. Trapper insists they're on loan from Major Murdock--Tuttle's replacement.

Comments: A ridiculous, very sitcom-y premise like this would probably sink most shows striving for realism, but the performances--particularly those of Alda and Rogers--keeps this episode from collapsing in on itself. Its actually a very funny show.

This is the only time we get to see Radar's radio pal, Sparky, played by Dennis Fimple. He helps Radar pull one over on Henry by re-routing a call Radar has made right back to the 4077th.

Another minor sort of record is made in this episode--during the final credits, we see "Captain Tuttle as Himself", the only time the show would have some sort of joke in the credits.

Favorite Line: After creating Tuttle's supposed chisled-but-boyish good looks for his profile, Trapper pauses to mutter "Hawkeye...I think I'm in love."

1 comment:

paulyt said...

They were actually trying to pull one over on Hot Lips, not Henry.

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