Korea, 1950. They were a MASH (Mobile Army Surgical Hospital) unit stationed three miles from the front. Incoming helicopters full of wounded brought the horrors of war to them daily and sometimes bullets flew right outsid... more »e the operating room door. Occasional hilarity and constant hijinks were all that kept them sane. Loosely based on real-life MASH unit 8055, life at the 4077 revolved around the day-to-day routines of Captain "Hawkeye" Pierce, Captain "Trapper" McIntyre, Lieutenant Colonel Henry Blake, Major Margaret Houlihan, Major Franklin Burns and Corporal "Radar" O'Reilly. Through these characters, viewers traveled beyond the long hours and the horrors of the operating room to a place where friendships were forged, laughter was found and drinks were served.« less
"It's a classic series with a long-lost, intelligent sense of humor not seen on TV these days. It was relevant then and still is now. It was a series with a social conscious. The DVD delivers quality better than I remember on the TV of old. Not much to say other than that. I'm still buying a season or so at a time until I collect them all.
I will say that Amazon's DVD packaging is horrible these days. When I first started buying the series over a year ago, it came in a box. Now it comes in a padded envelope! That's nuts! I have returned many, many DVDs lately because they come crushed, the inner plastic holders broken, and the DVDs scratched.
No matter what DVD you buy from them now, if it comes in an envelope - check it out immediately and return it if damaged. They pay the return postage and send you another one free of charge."
Landmark Television Show Gets Its Feet Wet
Mark J. Fowler | Okinawa, Japan | 08/16/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"M*A*S*H the television show was loosely based on the book and movie and must have given the tv censors fits, especially back in 1972.
The show's creators knew that the zany comedy and elaborate set-ups and practical jokes had to be translated to the small screen. It would be several years before the cast had established themselves and worked together long enough to make those nuanced but meaningful journeys into our heart. It would also be a few years before the show developed into a platform for humanist ideals. M*A*S*H is loosely set at an Army field hospital during the Korean War, but the series makes not thinly veiled pokes at the Vietnam conflict, which was winding down as the show started.
Alan Alda will forever be beloved as the dedicated surgeon - but irreverent military man - Benjamin Franklin "Hawkeye" Pierce. Hawkeye is burned into our television consciousness as much as Ralph Cramden, Lucy or Jerry Seinfeld.
Hawkeye is joined by Wayne Rogers as best friend and roommate Trapper John McIntyre. They share a tent with right-wing nutcase and religious hypocrite Frank Burns, played by Larry Linville. Burns, a less competent surgeon than Hawkeye and Trapper, states that he is a happily married man, but the worst-kept secret in camp is Frank's affair with Margaret "Hot Lips" Houlihan, played by Loretta Swit.
The 4077th Mobile Army Surgical Hospital is commanded by Henry Blake, played by McLean Stevenson as a doctor who seems a comic dimwit - it is difficult to see why Frank Burn's surgical skills are denigrated when Henry is as flighty as a canary most of the time.
The heart of the 4077th for his time on the show was Gary Burghoff as Corporal Walter "Radar" O'Reilly - called Radar due to his sixth sense about impending things like ambulances bringing wounded. But in this first season Radar is not the innocent grape Nehi-drinking teddy bear soldier of later seasons. At the beginning Radar drinks alcohol in the swamp and is a wily behind the scenes wheeler-dealer.
Klinger and Father Mulcahy were very much characters under development - in the first few episodes the beloved chaplain is played by George Morgan, who doesn't have time to make much of an impression, before being replaced by William Christopher, who fleshes out the Father we came to know and love.
Season One is important for historians and completionists, but it would not be difficult to argue that the show was far from "hitting its stride."
Great TV show!!
Sam | 05/05/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I really like MASH. I remember when I first watched it with my dad back in the late eighties and hating it. Now I love it because the humor is something I can finally appreciate!
The series does start to stink as it ages, much like Frasier. There is something about the way the jokes are delivered by certain characters, which show that the creative team has changed a bit since the beginning.
However this first season will be thoroughly enjoyed by me.
Some of my favorite other shows: Frasier (first six seasons), I Dream of Jeannie, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Airwolf."
Egalitarian | California, USA | 10/21/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This has to be the best series on television for that decade, superb production, acting and writing, hilarity beyond expectation, all together exceptional. Even the serious episodes are marvelous, this should not be missed, since no other series has what this series had."
Scott M. Knode | spring valley, MN USA | 08/11/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"A great season to the start the beginning of a long but enjoyful show. MASH or known as the mobile army surgicial hospital is based in 1950 in korea. Filled with great characters including my favorite Dr. Benjamin Franklin Hawkeye pierce. Hawkeye played by the legendary tv actor Alan Alda is a gifted head suregeon and doctor and known as the best chest cutter in Korea. (in the book and movie MASH Trapper John was the best chest cutter and head surgeon. The show began in 1972 and had many other great characters such as Captain Doctor Trapper John Mcintrye who was Hawkeyes best friend and partner in crime during the shows practical jokes and hyjinks on other doctors mostly on Hot lips Hullihan Major Frank Burns. Show also features Lt. Colonel Blake and his right hand man Radar O`Reily. In season one also introduced to several characters who stay through the 11 seasons of mash including Father John Mulcany and Corp Max Klinger famous for his ways of getting a section 8. Season one is filled with laughs, drama, and shows the doctors caring for each other as well in a place that is hell. Like hawkeye said war is war and hell is hell."