M*A*S*H

George - S2-E22

Factual error: In surgery Trapper John is singing Frank Sinatra's version of "I got you under my skin". Although it was written in 1936, Sinatra did not release it until 1956, after the Korean War ended. The 1936 version sung by Al Bowlly sounds nothing like the version Trapper John was singing, which was mimicking Sinatra's version.

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Suggested correction: While it hadn't been released on vinyl until 1956, Sinatra had sung the song as early as 1946 on his radio show and during live shows.

Greg Dwyer

The version Frank Sinatra sang on his radio show was similar to the original version used in the movie "Born to Dance" (a movie he references before singing his two songs). He didn't change it to the big band version that Trapper imitates until 1956.

Bishop73

I Hate A Mystery - S1-E10

Plot hole: Hawkeye calls a number of people into the mess tent over the PA - the ones he allegedly suspects of being behind the thefts he is suspected of himself. Interestingly enough, Ho Jon, later revealed to be the guilty party, is not on Hawkeye's list - yet he shows up uninvited, just to be ensnared by Hawk's clever ploy. Note also that he had no way of knowing what the purpose of the meeting was, so we cannot ascribe to him the motive of wanting to find out how much Hawkeye knew.

Doc Premium member
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Suggested correction: Of course Ho-Jon would come to the tent; it makes perfect sense, since he is the "houseboy" of the Swamp and, consequently, a sort of personal assistant to the Swampmen (Hawkeye, Trapper, and Spearchucker). He simply followed Trapper and Spearchucker to the tent after the announcement, probably figuring they might need him in some way.

It's late evening. It's, as far as anyone knows, an official meeting. Ho Jon isn't "standing attendance", he's sitting at the table (which is very convenient for him to hide his hands later). If he WERE standing attendance, it would be the only time in the series he does so in the mess tent instead of the swamp. It would also be the only time he's attending a meeting anyone called. Also he isn't a "house boy" - that would be totally out of character for Hawkeye, see "The Moose" - he's more an adoptee and roommate who makes himself useful. And last but not least: What a convenient coincidence, that just the guy who turns out to be the culprit would turn up uninvited, because he "might be needed" instead of staying the hell away because he is guilty and suspicious of the whole affair! Had - HAD, which he hasn't - Trapper said "Ho Jon, you better come too", you could call it a Deus Ex, but the way it is, it's just a plot hole, to quote Margaret Houlihan, "period, end of sentence."

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Dear Ma - S4-E16

Factual error: When the South Korean Colonel and General are in the mess tent, their rank insignia are wrong. The insignia they are wearing are for the U.S. Army.

Movie Nut
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Suggested correction: They could have been Korean Augmentation To the United States Army (KATUSA) officers, who were Koreans drafted or volunteered into the US military to act as a liaison between Koreans and the US military. As such they wore US uniforms and rank.

stiiggy

I respect your idea. However, having served my time in Korea, and known a number of the KATUSA soldiers and a ROK General, the insignia shown is incorrect.

Movie Nut

You were in Korea in 1952?

stiiggy

1988, however I am familiar with the rank insignia of the time.

Movie Nut

Trivia: The pictures painted by Col. Potter throughout the show actually were painted by Harry Morgan, the actor playing Col. Potter, who is an amateur painter in real life.

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Suggested correction: According to all sources, Harry Morgan didn't paint the pictures. The prop master hired local talent as needed.

Movie Nut

Baby, it's Cold Outside - S7-E9

Factual error: As Hawkeye performs CPR on the hypothermic soldier, he pumps his arms from his ellbows. CPR is done by keeping the arms stiff and pumping with the whole upper body. Hawkeye as a surgeon would know that. Fun Fact: You can perform CPR one-handed in a pinch, but only as long as you keep your arms stiff.

Doc Premium member
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Suggested correction: True, but doing CPR the real way is going to likely seriously injure the actor it is being performed upon.

LorgSkyegon

Explaining why mistakes occur does not invalidate them.

Bishop73

Show generally

Character mistake: Major Houlihan is frequently shown with very long fingernails. This is against Army regulations and highly impractical in the Operating Room.

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Suggested correction: Margaret herself is the highest ranked nurse. As such, only the commanding officer of the unit would be able to put her on report. Neither Blake nor Potter seem to care about such things when they do not affect the stability of the unit. As well, Margaret herself is very well connected among the local generals and as such would be able to get away with minor details like that.

LorgSkyegon

The Winchester Tapes - S6-E5

Revealing mistake: While painting Winchester's portrait, the camera looks across Potter's position. As it does, the picture is totally finished, though Potter acts like he's working on it.

Movie Nut
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Suggested correction: As Leonardo da Vinci put it: Art is never finished, just abandoned. The fact that it looks complete to you or me is no reason why the artist couldn't find minor details he'd want to touch up.

Doc Premium member

Trivia: After Harry Morgan joined the cast as Col. Sherman T. Potter, the character is shown numerous times painting portraits of the main characters. However, he never painted them. The studio prop master farmed out the work to local talent who was happy for the work. None of those artists have been named.

Movie Nut
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Suggested correction: This entry is contradictory with another Trivia item which states that Harry Morgan, being an amateur painter in real life, did indeed produce at least some of the paintings.

Doc Premium member

Period of Adjustment - S8-E6

Other mistake: Rosie says she took the darts away from Klinger and BJ, but there are still plenty of darts sticking in and around the dartboard. (00:12:45)

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Suggested correction: Rosie said she took them away AFTER they began throwing them at the dartboard. Therefore there would be some in and around the dartboard. And since Klinger and BJ were drunk, they likely wouldn't have thought to grab them from the board.

When we later see them in Col. Potter's office, they are quite capable of semi-coherent reasoning, so them not realizing they could grab more darts from the dartboard isn't really in sync with that later behoviour.

Doc Premium member

Taking the Fifth - S9-E9

Other mistake: Charles starts a discussion on the army having forbidden the use of curare. The following chatter is all about how things in the M.A.S.H. OR have slowed after curare was banned, leaving us with no choice but to understand that the ban came into effect during the Korean War. Actually, curare was not approved for use by the U.S. Army at any time during the Korean War. (See "Notable Names in Anasthesia" - J. Roger Maltby, Royal Society of Medicine, Great Britain, pg. 14). (00:00:25)

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Suggested correction: The whole point of the discussion is to make it clear that curare was never allowed for use by the US military, however since the majority of the doctors there are not enlisted, they know of curare and how to use it on a patient. At no point is it mentioned that the banned occurred during the Korean war.

MasterOfAll

While they never specifically say that the ban occurred during the Korean war, at the beginning of the episode, Charles says "Ever since the army forbade our use of curare..." Then at the end of the episode, COL Potter says "It sure is the cat's P.J.s having our curare back." after they get some supply from another non-American unit. These conversations imply that the doctors had been allowed to use curare by the army until this point and the ban by the army is why they aren't using it any more.

Father Mulchahy says "I've noticed the work goes much faster with curare." Father Mulchahy's only experiences in operating rooms are from his deployment at mash 4077 (he mentions he used to work with children before the war), so he must have "noticed" it there. This makes it clear as daylight that curare was used at mash before it was banned.

Doc Premium member

Life Time - S8-E11

Continuity mistake: In this episode, as they come from the pad, Hawkeye told them to get his canvas tub. But in "None Like it Hot", he had one that caused a lot of trouble and they traded it away for ice cream.

Movie Nut
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Suggested correction: There is no reason he couldn't have gotten another one.

LorgSkyegon

Yessir, That's Our Baby - S8-E15

Plot hole: Charles has the money and family connections. Why didn't he try to get the baby girl sent to the US? Trapper and his wife almost adopted a seemingly orphaned Korean boy in an early episode, so it couldn't have been impossible.

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Suggested correction: There is a difference between adopting a child and merely sending it to the States without any support system to be put into an orphanage.

LorgSkyegon

The Abduction of Margaret Houlihan - S5-E6

Other mistake: As Frank cocks his gun in the Swamp, the slide locks open and he has to hit the slide release to get it to move forward. Next he fiddles with the hammer. Next we hear the shot go off. Burns' excuse later is that he was cleaning The Gun and it went off (although admittedly, Frank doesn't always stick to the truth that religiously in situations like that). The slide on a semi-automatic locks open only if the magazine is empty or missing. The Gun locking open is also a clear, unmistakable indication that the breech is empty. He would have to insert a filled mag, then pull the slide back again to chamber a round before The Gun even had the chance to go off. One never does that while cleaning a gun. One does what Frank did to begin with: Pull the slide back without a magazine inserted to make sure the breech is empty.

Doc Premium member
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Suggested correction: Frank has demonstrated on numerous occasions that he does not follow the rules of safe gun handling, so ascribing his failure to do so is not a mistake.

LorgSkyegon

You are missing the point. His gun is demonstrably unloaded when we last see it. He would either have to change his mind about cleaning it and load it instead, or load it first and then try to clean it (which makes even less sense), neither of which is not supported by anything in the dialogue.

Doc Premium member

Cleaning The Gun was the lie. He told BJ he was going to hunt for Margaret. He had every intention of loading his gun at that point.

Bishop73

You got me there. Frank talks about looking for Margret, fiddles with The Gun, and only after the shot goes off, he talks about cleaning it.

Doc Premium member

Bug Out (60 mins.) - S5-E1

Character mistake: At the end of the episode, while Col. Potter is in the helicopter asking where they are, the pilot says they are about 10 miles west of Inchon. Col. Potter says this is no good and he tells the chopper pilot to "head west, towards Inchon." If they are already west of Inchon, heading west will take them further from Inchon.

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Suggested correction: Potter tells the pilot to head to a different city, Chuksan (not sure of its spelling).

Bishop73

Tuttle - S1-E15

Character mistake: Hawkeye and Trapper make Tuttle an alumnus of "Berlin Polytechnic" and translate that (wrongly) as "Berlinishes Polytechnikum". Berlin's polytechnic university was named "Technische Hochschule Berlin" at the relevant time - and at no time offered a medical curriculum. To study medicine in Berlin, Tuttle would have to attend "Freie Universit├Ąt Berlin" instead.

Doc Premium member
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Suggested correction: And how are Hawkeye and Trapper suppose to know that? They are after all, making all this up. It is never meant to be factual.

MasterOfAll

It is intended to fool Margret and Frank, so it has to be assumed that they meant to pull it off. Hawkeye says "It can't be any place they'll check", which is why they select a German university in the first place. That shows it is indeed meant to be if not watertight, then at least convincing. To use an university you don't know the proper name of doesn't make sense under these circumstances.

Doc Premium member

Exorcism - S5-E12

Continuity mistake: In this episode, a "Spirit Post" is placed in the middle of the compound, later removed, then replaced at the end of the episode. It is never seen again after that.

Movie Nut
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Suggested correction: It was probably left behind during one of the bug outs that happen. We have seen at least 2 in the series.

M*A*S*H mistake picture

Divided We Stand - S2-E1

Visible crew/equipment: In the opening scene where General Clayton is explaining the 4077 to the psychiatrist, the scene changes to the outdoor set and the camera pans to the right. As the camera pans past the hospital, a white 1970s era shuttle van can be seen driving into the set in the upper right corner of the screen. (00:01:35)

John Hunt
More mistakes in M*A*S*H

Frank Burns: I know I'm a real asset.
Hawkeye: You're only off by two letters.

More quotes from M*A*S*H

Bug Out (60 mins.) - S5-E1

Trivia: Early on in this episode a scene takes place in the shower between Harry Morgan and William Christopher. Right before the scene ends William pulls the chain on the lever for the shower to turn on, but the water doesn't come on; in fact when he notices the water doesn't come on, he holds onto the chain and the lever actually comes off. You can tell by his facial expressions this was totally unexpected, but since this was the end of the scene and no further dialog was needed, it was left in.

More trivia for M*A*S*H

That's Show Biz - S10-E1

Question: Talking with stripper Candy Doyle, Potter remarks that he still remembers how she used to spin her tassels and that he is reminded of this every time he sees a C 42 revving up. On the net I do find references to a C40A, a C47 and others, but no reference to an aircraft of the time called a C 42. What would he have been referring to?

Answer: The C-42 was a military variant of the Douglas DC-2. Very few C-42's were built, so it's questionable that Potter would specifically have seen that particular model, but, given his military background, it's not entirely unreasonable that he might use the military designation even when the aircraft in question is actually a civilian DC-2.

Tailkinker Premium member
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