En route to R&R, Hawkeye is flagged down by a North Korean soldier who holds him at gun point, forcing him to treat his wounded comrade. Back in camp, the officers change partners in a bridge tournament.
To fight an ongoing infection in the O.R., the staff decides to remove the old wood floor and make a concrete one. The surgeons do the menial labor while Klinger acts as foreman (he knows cement and it's not that hard); while an Italian soldier falls head-over-heels for Margaret.
While local orphans attend a Christmas party in the mess tent, Hawkeye, B.J., and Margaret try to save the life of a critically injured solider so that his family won't think of Christmas as the day that their father died.
As the year 1950 comes to a close, the 4077th staff and surgeons hope 1951 is "a damn sight better" and hopefully they'll be going home. The year 1951 is not uneventful: Klinger makes a bet on a baseball team Charles is sure will lose, Hawkeye and B.J. build a kidney machine, Margaret knits a scarf which soon becomes a bed sheet, and Father Mulcahy plants a garden. By the time New Year's Eve rolls around again, they all hope 1952 will be "a damn sight better" and that they will be returning home.
B.J. and Hawkeye try to get a hardship discharge for an immigrant Marine whose Mom is being deported before he can get home. Winchester becomes C.O. for a few days, using his new position to get himself silk sheets and other "basic necessities of life".
Klinger happens upon a bottle of vintage French wine and Hawkeye uses it to lure a nurse into his clutches. Winchester deals with Klinger to get more bottles of the wine. Col. Potter trades with the Canadians for a special anesthetic forbidden by the U.S. Army.
When the steam generator explodes in O.R., Klinger pushes Charles out of the line of fire just in time, but B.J. catches part of the blast and has a serious arm injury. For saving his life, Charles declares he is fully indebted to Maxwell Klinger and becomes his personal assistant. But after several days of bowing to Klinger's ever command, Charles begins to wish he HAD been killed. Meanwhile, Hawkeye doesn't like the doctor called in to help treat B.J., who refuses to admit there is anything wrong with him.
We're having a heat wave! The 4077th deals with a sudden heat wave in their own personal ways: Klinger disassembles the P.A. system, Charles goes through all of his tax returns and bonds, B.J. stresses over a letter from Peg, Margaret develops a severe case of prickly heat, and Colonel Potter can't get a good night's sleep.
When Winchester goes to inspect the sanitary conditions at another camp, the failing mark he gives the commander is met with physical violence. Meanwhile, the gang comes up with a surprise for B.J. on his anniversary.
Margaret's good friend Captain Helen Whitfield visits the 4077th and it seems like old times again, but what the Major doesn't know is that Whitfield is still a raging closet-alcoholic; Meanwhile, Hawkeye pulls one prank that goes too far when he drops Charles' pants in O.R.
Col. Potter's blood pressure is too high and he has two weeks to get it back down, causing everyone to mollycoddle him, much to his dismay. Meanwhile, the malaria medicine they are sent makes Klinger sick.
Father Mulcahy is not acting like himself at all. An upcoming visit by his superior, Cardinal Reardon, has the good padre behaving like a petty, competitive child. On the eve of the biggest oration of his career, Hawkeye calls Father Mulcahy away from his sermon writing to the bedside of Pvt. Gary Sturgis (Patrick Swayze). Sturgis wants to remain at the 4077th, to watch over his unconscious buddy; and if compatible, he wants to be a donor for his friend. On Sunday morning, feeling unprepared to deliver his sermon, Father Mulcahy stands up in his bathrobe and quietly, ...
Klinger accidentally breaks Potter's eyeglasses, requiring a visit from traveling optometrist Dr. Bud Herzog. The 4077th receives fresh vegetables from a grateful Korean. Potter questions the authenticity of an upbeat letter from Radar.