M*A*S*H (1972–1983)
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The Most Unforgettable Characters 

Radar becomes an aspiring writer after ordering a flier from a comic book, and Hawkeye and B.J. give Frank a surprise birthday present that only he will appreciate.



On Disc

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Episode cast overview:
Maj. Margaret 'Hot Lips' Houlihan
Father Francis Mulcahy


Radar takes a correspondence course from Las Vegas Writers' School which Potter thinks is the original shell game, but Radar says he really wants to improve himself. Col. Potter tells him to confine his literary work to a novel and not the Army daily reports. Radar has problems with his LVWS writing assignments because he thinks he needs a wider vocabulary. Frank is very cranky; it is his birthday and no one seems to remember. Frank acts weirder than normal, so BJ devises the perfect, Machiavellian gift...but it may have the power to backfire. Frank is delighted with his gift. Potter tells Radar the first rule of good writing is "Be yourself." Klinger is still on Section 8 Highway and his new idea is to threaten public self-immolation... until Potter changes water into gasoline. Frank blames Radar for "wrecking" Frank's birthday. Writing is safer than Radar's next hobby: magic. Who knows who/what will be next to be wrecked before Radar makes himself disappear? Written by LA-Lawyer

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

anecdote | See All (1) »


Comedy | Drama | War





Release Date:

4 January 1977 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Photophone Sound Recording)


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Father Mulcahy says that his sister can "slam dunk" wearing a heavy crucifix. That term, according to Webster's, wasn't used until 1972. See more »


Cpl. Maxwell 'Max' Q. Klinger: Who put gasoline in my gasoline?
See more »

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User Reviews

Famous Writers Course
19 March 2015 | by See all my reviews

Radar sends fifty bucks to a writer's correspondence school and begins to turn out wordy sesquipedalian missives (a little joke there). Anyway, he needs to follow through on the assignments, seeking out an interesting anecdote. As he goes around the camp looking for stories, he is able to get in on a number of events occurring around him. Also, each of his encounters ends with a story that is interesting to someone else. A subplot takes place when BJ and Hawkeye decide to give Frank a birthday present by getting into a fight in front of him. The odd thing is that BJ says things about Hawkeye that really hurt and so hey are actually angry with one another. This is a nicely done episode. By the way, we need to ask who Ethel Hemingway is.

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