As the fourth season opens, Hawkeye returns from a 3-day R&R pass in Tokyo to find Trapper has been sent Stateside. Hawkeye races to the airport but arrives just as Trapper┬'s plane takes off. Too late to tell his friend g... more »ood-bye, he in nevertheless just in time to welcome Trapper┬'s replacement, Captain B.J. Hunnicutt. Once Hawkeye gets over his anger and disappointment, he realizes B.J. is a worthy ally and takes the newcomer under his wing. ┬"The first thing you learn here, B.J., is that insanity is no worse than the common cold. You┬'ve heard of a military post? Ours is a compost. Only the wounded are new. The tedium is relieved only by the boredom. So pitch in, muddle through, pip-pip. Never mind the reason why, ours is but to do and not let ┬'em die.┬" Then Colonel Sherman T. Potter arrives to take over command of the 4077. Not only are Frank and Hot Lips outraged that Frank has lost his command so quickly, but Hawkeye and B.J. know that a ┬"lifer┬" Army commander could spell big trouble for them. But then a single reminiscence from Potter puts the docs at ease: ┬"Had a still on Guam in World War II. One night it blew up. That┬'s how I got my Purple Heart.┬"« less
Abraham K. from KIRKLAND, WA Reviewed on 11/11/2009...
The best television series-ever.
The genius of MASH is that it kept you laughing without "totally" shielding you from the grim realities of war.
A new beginning?
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Season four of MASH had it rough. Two of its major actors left the series after season three.
Wayne Rodgers (who played Trapper John), was tired of Alan Alda's Hawkeye character getting all the spotlight. I read that Wayne made a deal with the creators of the show, during the first season, that this wouldn't happen, but it did.
McLean Stevenson (who played Col. Blake), wanted to quit the show for various rumored reasons. After his character got his discharge in the final episode of season three, his character was killed off, on his way home, over the Sea of Japan.In this box set, season four, we are introduced to two new characters, who stayed with the show until the end. First, there's Trapper's replacement: BJ Hunnicut. A married man, who stays true to his wife, back home. That was heavily emphasized, different than Trapper. BJ sure had some corny humor.
Then there's Col. Blake's replacement: Col. Sherman Potter (played by Harry Morgan). Harry Morgan appeared in a season three episode, as a different charactor. That of a crazy general...it's been said that because of that role, he was asked to play Col. Potter.Due to some trouble back home, Gary Burghoff who plays Radar, wasn't in as many episodes than before. This family problem continued, until finally, he quit the show at the beginning of season eight.There are some great episodes in this box set. "The Late Captain Pierce", where Hawkeye's dad is notified that he's dead, when he hasn't. "The Bus", where the characters are on a bus ride, and get lost, and the bus stalls. "Quo Vadis, Captain Chandler", where a wounded man claims that he's Jesus Christ. "The Interview", where a TV reporter interviews the characters at the MASH 4077th. This episode is fimed in black and white."
Another Great Season Box Set From Fox
Rob Keil | San Francisco | 07/16/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm so glad that Fox has been good enough to release this great series on DVD, and that they have done such an excellent job. The picture quality on these DVDs far outshines the syndicated reruns on TV, and the full 25-minute-plus cuts of the shows haven't been seen in ages. As with the other box sets, the menus and functionality of the disc are very nice. I would however like to see a "play all" button so you don't have to click through as many menus to see all the shows.As far as the actual content of the shows goes, I enjoy this period in the series more than the earlier seasons. Contrary to what some other fans think, the addition of Mike Farrell and Harry Morgan improved the show and made it a little more real and less lighthearted. Eventually these new characters really grow on you and become like old friends. The cast changes definitely move the show in a more comedy-drama direction, which I feel is part of what made this show so great, and so different from other sitcoms. A couple of great unconventional episodes are included in this season set, including "Hawkeye" which is essentially a 25-minute monologue by Alan Alda, and "The Interview" which is an all black-and-white documentary-style episode that again breaks the rules of what a sitcom is "supposed" to be like. Great writing, strong characters, top-notch acting talent. What more could we ask of this show?I can't wait to buy season 5 in December. Now I hope Fox will lavish this same high-quality treatment on more great classic sitcoms like "The Bob Newhart Show" and "The Odd Couple", the rights to which I believe they also own."
Good bye Trapper and Blake. Hello Honeycutt and Potter.
Randall Banks | Lansing, MI USA | 10/22/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This year was the beginning of many changes on the show. Unlike most other shows I personally think that MASH got better. More in depth shows. More emphasis on the characters, their families, and their reactions to the war.
Hawkeye's cohort Trapper John left the show at the end of season 3. They had to write him out without him actually being there. B.J more than apply filled the role as Hawkeye's ally against the war.
Colonel Blake also left after season three. Colonel Potter(excellently played by Harry Morgan) was the total opposite of Henry Blake. Blake was an Illinois doctor who was put in charge of Mash. Potter was a veteran of both world wars, and a former cavalry man.
Welcome To Korea - Hawkeye returns from R&R&R&R. Frank is in charge. Hawkeye gives him a box, and says. "It's a McArthur doll. Wind him up and he returns from anywhere!" He heads straight for the showers and Radar informs him that Trapper left. Hawkeye, against Frank's orders, heads to Kimpo to try and catch Trapper. He runs a checkpoint, lies to an M.P, but still misses Trapper by 15 minutes. He does, however, get to meet Dr. B.J Honeycutt. Honeycutt is, like Potter to Blake, the total opposite of Trapper John McIntyre. He's a straight laced family man with a good sense of humor. They get involved in several surgical incidents on the way back to camp. They stop at Rosie's Bar. "We need to get him started on his ulcer" is the reason that Hawkeye gives. The first thing that B.J says upon reaching the 4077th is "How's it going Ferrett Face" to Frank. Hawkeye falls down grabbing onto Margaret.
Change Of Command -Mail Call Brings some great news. The 4077th is getting a new commander. Hawkeye and B.J are overjoyed until they find that the new guy is a regular army veteran who's not been in surgery for two years. When Potter arrives everyone is on pins and needles. Frank, having not gotten the command, is AWOL. After a night of surgery Hawkeye asks what time it is. B.J tells him and Potter says "I can use a belt!" B.J and Hawkeye smile, and invite Potter to the swamp for a few drinks from the still. Their earlier worries were without merit. Potter is fine.
The Late Captain Pierce - Klinger wakes up B.J with a phone call from Hawkeye's father. All B.J can get from Hawkeye's father is "How and Why?" This leads to confusion, and Hawkeye stays in the office all night. That next morning, as Hawkeye is heading to the showers, a bus shows up. It's the morgue detail searching for a body. "I believe Corporal Klinger can assist you in this undertaking" is Hawkeye's responce. Turns out that the body is Pierce, who's been reported dead. Hawkeye finally gets a hold of his father after having a wake is his honor.
The Bus - The doctors, and Radar, are lost after the bus that they are in breaks down. Frnak, on a 2 way radio continuously talks into it, even though everyone tells him that it's mate is at the camp, miles away, way out range, and broken. Frank tries to talk to a fighter, thousands of feet up, moving very fast. A Korean gives up to them, Frank watches him gun at the ready. Eventually, after Frank gets some sleep, the Korean fixes the bus and they head back to camp.
Dear Mildred. Potter writes his wife for their 27th anniversay. He tells of how he's adjusting to life at the camp. Meanwhile, Radar talks to B.J and Hawkeye about how he can't get comfortable around Potter. They both assure Radar that Potter is O.K. their conversation is interupted by a chopper bringing mail. The pilot also says that there is a horse that he wants to put out of his misery. Radar, ever the animal lover, convinces Hawkeye and B.J to get the horse. They save the horse which turns out to be the anniversary gift that Radar gives to Potter. Potter an old Cavalry hand is overwhelmed. Potter slips in manure and Frank says that's gross. Potter however says "To me that's a tiptoe through the tulips.
Dear Peggy - B.J writes home, for the third time that week. "It's the only way I can keep my sanity" is his reason. He writes about Klinger's many attempts to escape, which include a huge raft, dressing up like an older Korean woman, and dressing like a bush. He also talks about the taskmaster chaplain that is visiting the camp, much to the dismay of Father Mulcahy.
Of Moose And Men - B.J writes a letter for Zale, and fixes his broken hand when he punches a stove. Hawkeye gets the ire of a colonel. Frank's paranoia is at an all time high. He thinks that someone is trying to blow up the camp. He checks his toothpaste for explosives. Classic Frank Burns.
Mail Call Again - Frank gets a letter saying that his wife wants a divorce because she knows about Margaret. He calls her and tells her that Houllihan is "an old war horse" and "an army mule with bossoms. Potter finds that he's going to be a grandfather and a pool is set up for guessing the day the child is born.
Der Tag - Margaret is on R&R which makes Frank impossible. To appease him Hawkeye and B.J treat him like a friend. He ends up at the front with a dog tag on his feet that Hawkeye and B.J put there. "Emotionally exhausted and Morally Bankrupt" is what is on the dog tag. Hawkeye and B.J are ordered by Potter to go up and get him. They end up in the middle of a huge push and B.J gets a rude introduction to an aid station.
Some 38th Parallels - Frank tries to sell the camp's garabage for profit. Hawkeye, going through some personaly issues, buys it all. A Colonel visit the camp. He's famous for sending troops in, no matter the cost, to retrieve bodies of American soldiers. He's proud of how he got all the bodies and kills "reds" even though he lost several other American soldires in doing so. Hawkeye has the garbage that he bought, dropped on this colonel.
The Novacaine Mutiny - An attempt to court-martial Hawkeye leads to two very different views of O.R, a poker game, which Frank banned, and a hunt for $300 that was lost in that poker game. "Gambling has been banned from this camp, therefore the money was stolen." Frank gets Radar to help him. He searches Mulcahy's tent, Klinger's dresses, of course the swamp, and Radar's belongings. He never finds if of course, but never accepts that it was lost in a poker game. After the guy overseeing the tribunal to see if charges are warranted says that Hawkeye won't face charges, frank asks him what he thinks of his medical skills. "If you hadn't been drafted as a doctor, I think you would have been assigned as a pastry chef. The end, which has been cut from many showings, is classic. Must see.
Two new members of MASH 4077th didn't change anything except for the role call. Some ways it got a heck of a lot better. I've always thought that the slapstick of the first three years got to be too old."
KUDOS to no laugh track!!
Andrew Woodward | Salem, VA United States | 08/06/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have been a frequent buyer of MASH on DVD. Especially since there is the option of watching the episodes without that hideous canned laugh track. Season four was a turning point, yes, but I was suprised that no reviewer on Amazon mentioned that you can still view the episodes without the laugh track. I'm sure that Fox will continue to release the seasons on DVD that way. For the record, it's irrelevant to buy these on video because there is no sans-laugh track option so why bother putting them out on tape. NO ONE will buy them on tape."
"The Interview" - One of the Top 10 Best M*A*S*H Episodes!!
Mr. | USA | 07/08/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Season Four of M*A*S*H will always be remembered as the big transitional season, with two major character changes as well as the slow push from "Comedy with stabs of drama", to "Drama with stabs of comedy".Obviously not everyone enjoyed the changes. Some fell in love with the early seasons of M*A*S*H for their comical hyjinx and laugh out loud lunacy. But the actors and filmmakers were constantly testing the boundaries, going for a much more dramatic and/or realistic interpretation of what life at a M*A*S*H station was really like with early episodes such as "Sometimes You Hear The Bullet", "Dr. Pierce And Mr. Hyde", "O.R.", and of course the very memorable "Abyssinia, Henry". They realized the positive impact these episodes were having on their audience and would continue to push the envelope with each future season.Season Four gives way to many more serious storylines shown than any previous season. The opening double episode: "Welcome To Korea" welcomes us to Captain BJ Hunnicutt as Hawkeye tries in vein to reach Trapper before he is shipped stateside. I must admit, I wished there had been a bigger sendoff for Wayne Rogers as Trapper John McIntyre, but he refused to return for even one more episode to say goodbye properly, apparently due to feeling betrayed by the staff who seemed to turn everything into the Hawkeye Pierce show. "O.R." was the very first (and only) episode without a laughtrack from Season Three. Season Four would have many more episodes without laughtracks, including "The Bus"(and enjoyable roadtrip outting), "Quo Vadis, Captain Chandler?" (the famous episode of a bomber pilot who thinks he's Jesus Christ), and "The Interview"."The Interview", which was shot in black & white to give it a documentary style, is about a news journalist who goes to the 4077 because of its 97% lifesaving success record and interviews the main characters (except for Margaret Houlihan). Some of the responses were scripted, while others were completely improvisational by the actors who even get to swear obscenities for the first time (but have them bleeped out). It's a very haunting and realistic episode with William Christopher giving one of the best speeches in M*A*S*H history. Arguably one of the Top 10 shows of the entire series.
Season Four marked the end of M*A*S*H for some...for others, a new beginning. For those of you who fell in love with the later seasons like I did, I'll see you at the Swamp for a nice dry martini (and future seasons of M*A*S*H on DVD).M*A*S*H Season Four - It only gets better!"When the doctors...cut into a patient...and it's cold, you know...the way it is now, today...steam rises from the body...and the doctor will - will warm himself over the open wound. Could anyone look on that and not feel changed?" - William Christopher as Father Francis Mulcahy
M*A*S*H - Season 4 - Episode #96: "The Interview""