M*A*S*H episode
“Der Tag”
MASH Episode -4x18 Der Tag - In the O Club with Frank
After being "ordered" by Col. Potter to "be nice to Frank", B.J. and Hawkeye treat him to a round of drinks in the O Club in "Der Tag".
Season 4, Episode # 18
Number (#90) in series (256 episodes)
Guest star(s) Joe Morton
Network: CBS-TV
Production code: G-522
Writer(s) Everett Greenbaum and Jim Fritzell
Director Gene Reynolds
Original airdate January 6, 1976
IMDb logo IMDB Der Tag
Episode chronology
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"Dear Ma" (G‑515) "Hawkeye" (G‑520)

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"Some 38th Parallels" (G‑521) "The Novocaine Mutiny" (G‑523)

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Season 4 episodes
List of all M*A*S*H episodes


Der Tag was the 90th episode of the CBS-TV series M*A*S*H, and, also the 18th episode of the fourth season of the series. Written by Everett Greenbaum and Jim Fritzell, and directed by Gene Reynolds, it first aired on January 6, 1976.


Hawkeye and B.J. place a toe tag on a passed-out Frank as part of a drunken practical joke. But the joke backfires on them when he is accidentally shipped out to the front lines.

Full episode summaryEdit

With Hot Lips in Tokyo for a medical conference, Frank is miserable - even more than usual. He's so miserable that Col. Potter asks Hawkeye and B.J. to do him - and the whole camp - a favor: be nice to Frank, buddy up to him. Reluctantly, they agree, first by having him play in the regular poker game. Even though he doesn't know the rules, he wins a bunch of the hands, giggling maniacally after each time.

They eventually take him to the Officers Club, where Frank gets loaded, flirts with Nurse Kellye, and then passes out. Hawkeye and B.J. drag Frank home, and in their drunkenness, write up a toe-tag and put it on Frank, declaring the body is "Emotionally exhausted and morally bankrupt."

In the middle of the night, Frank gets up to go the Latrine, still drunk. He wanders by an open ambulance headed back to the front, and falls into it. He's carted off without anyone noticing.

The next morning, a Captain Saunders, a battalion surgeon at a battalion aid station calls Col. Potter, telling him they have one of his doctors there. Potter instructs Hawkeye and B.J. to go get him, and while on their way there Potter gets another call from Saunders, saying the aid station is under enemy attack.

Hawkeye and B.J. arrive as bombs are falling, and help out with wounded. They don't even bother to wake up Frank, who is still passed out. Eventually, the shelling subsides and they cart Frank home. Just a few minutes later, Radar wakes up Frank for his shift, and surprisingly, he's refreshed and ready to go. He also tries to stir Hawkeye and B.J., who are exhausted. Frank assumes everyone is still friends, and is confused when Hawkeye and B.J. - sick of the sheer effort it takes to be friends with Frank Burns - tell him they're back to hating his guts, and being his friends was all a dream. Frank is happy again, though, when he sees Hot Lips return.

Research notes/Fun factsEdit

  • Potter dictates a letter to Lt. General Harrison Hardcastle at Letterman General Hospital, San Francisco, California - an actual hospital that was located in the Presidio in San Francisco. Built in 1898 and named after Civil War Army surgeon Major Jonathan Letterman, the hospital became the Letterman General Hospital. It was renamed the Letterman Army Hospital in 1950, and then the Letterman Army Medical Center in 1969. The hospital was closed in 1994 when the Presidio army base was handed over to the National Park Service. The Letterman Digital Arts Center opened in 2005 on the site of the old hospital. Jonathan Letterman developed methods of battlefield medical management and is credited as being the "Father of Modern Battlefield Medicine."
  • "Der Tag" is German for "The Day".
  • The comic book resting on Radar as he sleeps is Avengers #60, which was not published until 1969.

Guest stars/Recurring castEdit

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