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

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

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Suggested correction: This isn't a mistake, especially since we don't see it hanging back up in another continuous shot.

Bishop73

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Suggested correction: Exactly. Hawkeye and Trapper cut the pole so that if it was knocked into the tent would collapse.

LorgSkyegon

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

Chest compressions can definitely be performed by pumping from the elbow, one or two handed. The first documented use was in 1891, so Hawkeye would be aware of it. However, modern CPR standards, including straight arm procedures, were not developed until at least 1960 by the American Heart Association. Using straight arms and bending at the hips uses the larger muscle groups of the core and legs, which provides more control, as well as stamina. This is not an error for the Korean War era.

Additionally, what Lorg said - you don't want to hurt the actor, you can see his shoulders rise as his arms straighten, giving the illusion of compressions. There is another episode where Hawkeye is performing chest compressions similarly, and yells at the unconscious patient that his arms are getting tired, which is what would happen with bent elbow compressions, and one of the reasons modern technique uses straight arms.

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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.

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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.

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Too Many Cooks - S8-E1

Factual error: While eating, General Haggarty was told about how Conway should be a cook. Haggarty said "Change his (Conway's) MOS. MOS means Military Occupational Specialty, your job in service. Since M*A*S*H was set in the early 50's, Haggarty wouldn't have said that, because 'MOS' wasn't used until 1965.

Movie Nut

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Suggested correction: "MOS" most certainly was used during the Korean War. In 1965, the MOS system was simply changed, not created.

Bishop73

I perhaps misspoke. It was titled PMOS, and revamped in 1965 as just MOS. My apologies and thanks for the info.

Movie Nut

According to "Introduction to Special Regulations SR 615-25-15, Enlisted Personnel Military Occupational Specialties" from the Department of the Army in November 1950, it's MOS. The "P" just means primary, but MOS was/is used way more than PMOS.

Bishop73

Dear Uncle Abdul - S8-E12

Factual error: When the bird Charles lands on the land mine, you can see thing bounce on one side of the explosion. If the bird had really landed on the mine, it would have been obliterated.

Movie Nut

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Suggested correction: Anti personnel mines are specifically designed to badly wound someone rather than kill them outright, as it takes more people to deal with a wounded casualty rather than if they were dead. Movies exaggerate the blast effect as anti-personnel mines don't actually blow anyone to pieces, even a large bird.

stiiggy

True, but in this instance, it was a small bird. The mine in question can severely maim or destroy limbs, therefore the bird shouldn't have been seen.

Movie Nut

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

LorgSkyegon

Show generally

Other mistake: Many times during the series, soldiers are around the OR carrying a loaded weapon (magazine attached for example), when there is a sign outside the entrance that says "all weapons must be cleared before entering the building" or similar.

stiiggy

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Suggested correction: With the rampant rule breaking seen in the show, why would this be a mistake?

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

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Trivia: Gary Burghoff's left hand was slightly deformed, and he often hid it behind his clipboard during filming.

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Dear Dad - S1-E12

Question: A number of times it is mentioned that the outfit is unarmed, yet several times, Frank has a rifle, or a pistol, and once Klinger had a grenade, and the guards and Klinger, while on sentry duty, has a rifle. Was this standard, or is this a mistake?

Answer: Even an Army field hospital would have SOME weapons for self-defense if the enemy attacked. What's meant is that it's not a combat outfit, and therefore wouldn't have enough weapons to actually attack anyone. (It's also mentioned a few times that the Officer of the Watch is supposed to carry a pistol at all times, but Hawkeye refuses to do it when he's in charge and Colonels Blake and Potter don't enforce the rule).

Captain Defenestrator

Answer: The Geneva Convention allows even doctors to carry a sidearm to be used in their self defense or the defense of their patients, however it is rare to do so.

stiiggy

Answer: As an old medical unit staffer, my experience is that med units have combat units assigned to defend them. Usually it was marines.

Answer: My old doctor (now deceased) served in Korea during the War. He was required to carry a sidearm anytime he was not in the hospital.

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