Monday, June 15, 2009

Episode 89 - Der Tag

Season 4, Episode 89: Der Tag
Original Air Date: 1/6/76
Written by:
Everett Greenbaum & Jim Fritzell
Directed by: Gene Reynolds

With Hot Lips in Tokyo for a medical conference, Frank is miserable--even more than usual.

He's so miserable that Col. Potter asks Hawkeye and B.J. to do him--and the whole camp--a favor: be nice to Frank, buddy up to him.

Reluctantly, they agree, first by having him play in the regular poker game. Even though he doesn't know the rules, he wins a bunch of the hands, giggling maniacally after each time.

They eventually take him to the Officers Club, where Frank gets loaded, flirts with Nurse Kellye, and then passes out.

Hawkeye and B.J. drag Frank home, and in their drunkenness, write up a toe-tag and put it on Frank, declaring the body is "Emotionally exhausted and morally bankrupt."

In the middle of the night, Frank gets up to go the Latrine, still drunk. He wanders by an open ambulance headed back to the front, and falls into it. He's carted off without anyone noticing.

The next morning, a medic at a battalion aid station calls Col. Potter, telling him they have one of his doctors there. Potter instructs Hawkeye and B.J. to go get him, and while on their way there Potter gets another call from the medic, saying the aid station is under enemy attack!

Hawkeye and B.J. arrive as bombs are falling, and help out with wounded. They don't even bother to wake up Frank, still passed out. Eventually, the shelling subsides and they cart Frank home.

Just a few minutes later, Radar wakes up Frank, refreshed and ready to go. He also tries to stir Hawkeye and B.J., who are exhausted.

Frank assumes everyone is still friends, and is confused when Hawkeye and B.J.--sick of the sheer effort it takes to be friends with Frank Burns--tell him they're back to hating his guts.

Frank is happy, though, when he sees Hot Lips return.

Fun Facts: This episode opens with Radar asleep, with a comic book on his lap:
The only problem is that the title Radar is reading--The Avengers--didn't start until 1963, and this particular issue is from 1969. How'd Radar do that?

The poker game scene is a classic, with everyone having to deal with the reality of what its like to be friends with Frank.

Favorite Line: As Hawkeye and B.J. are carrying the drunken Frank back to the Swamp, Col. Potter happens by. Potter commends them for being nice to Frank, saying things "will be a lot better around here" from now on. Hawkeye responds, "Only if we bury him."

Potter, without missing a beat: "I'd buy that."


Russell said...

I really like this episode. I often wonder if Larry Linville had continued, if Frank wouldn't have changed his character a bit after Larry Gelbart and Gene Reynolds left. I often think he would have become more like he was shown here drunk...and daffy.

BTW, Rob, don't you think that's a different comic book in Radar's lap when the show first opens? Check the credits just doesn't look like the Wasp's wedding comic in that show to me.

rob! said...


you're right; its two different books in the same scene. maybe they shot the sequence over a couple of days, and the original book got misplaced?

Bill said...

Radar's uncanny future-sense is really on fire in this episode. First he gets his hands on a comic book that wasn't published yet, then a few seconds later, without bothering to awaken, he's already jumped ahead with an issue published four months later.

Too bad for him his prognostigatory powers were not enough to anticipate Frank's heart flush, or the major's ability to snag Nurse Kellye from him in mid-dance.

Mickie said...

I can't really tell, but is that the "other" Hawkeye on the left side of Captain America? Ironic and funny if they did that on purpose. :D

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