M*A*S*H: Season 8, Episode 20

Lend a Hand (4 Feb. 1980)

TV Episode  |  TV-PG  |   |  Comedy, Drama, War
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 119 users  
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Irritated that the 4077th is planning a "surprise" birthday party for him, Hawkeye aids a wounded surgeon at the front and habitually disagrees with wisecracking medical advisor Dr. Anthony... See full summary »



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Title: Lend a Hand (04 Feb 1980)

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Episode cast overview:
Robert Alda ...
Antony Alda ...
Cpl. Jarvis
Sergeant Herbert
Shari Saba ...


Irritated that the 4077th is planning a "surprise" birthday party for him, Hawkeye aids a wounded surgeon at the front and habitually disagrees with wisecracking medical advisor Dr. Anthony Borelli. Constant interruptions prevent Klinger from frosting a cake in Hawkeye's honor. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama | War





Release Date:

4 February 1980 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Photophone Sound Recording)


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The cast featured a guest appearances by Antony Alda, Alan Alda's brother. According to Alan Alda and Robert Alda, his father. "Lend a Hand" was his way of reconciling with his dad; he was always giving suggestions to Robert for their vaudeville act and in "Lend a Hand" Robert's character was always giving Hawkeye suggestions. It was Robert's idea for the doctors to cooperate as "Dr. Right" and "Dr. Left" at the end of that episode, signifying both reconciliation of their characters and in real life as well. See more »


Lt.: With all due respect corporal, get the "h" out of there.
See more »


Happy Birthday to You
Written by Mildred J. Hill and Patty S. Hill
Performed by William Christopher, Mike Farrell, David Ogden Stiers, and Loretta Swit
See more »

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User Reviews

Dr. Borelli Would Drive the Most Stable on Earth Mad
20 April 2015 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The episode begins with the 4077 bored to death and freezing. In order to counter boredom, B. J. tells everyone it is Hawkeye's birthday and they should have surprise party for him. Of course, he is incredibly annoyed. There is another fly in the ointment. The reappearance of Robert Alda (Alan's Dad) is dynamite. He is a control freak, sticking his nose in everyone's business. Making pronouncements about people's habits, arranging chairs, criticizing surgical techniques, on and on. The thing is that this character is an incredibly innovative surgeon with advanced knowledge of treating nerve trauma. Still, Hawkeye is driven to distraction by this guy. They are at each other's throats constantly (I would have been, too). In order to avoid his "non" birthday party, Hawkeye volunteers to go to a battalion aid station to treat a man who has been injured by a land mine. Of course, Borelli insists that he go along and the get into a huge fight. Great conclusion.

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