M*A*S*H episode
“Goodbye, Cruel World”
Goodbye cruel world
Sidney Freedman arrives to talk to Sergeant Michael Yee, a war hero who has inexplicably attempted to commit suicide
Season 8, Episode # 21
Number (#194) in series (256 episodes)
Guest star(s) Allan Arbus
Clyde Kusatsu
Philip Bruns
Kellye Nakahara
James Carroll
David Kramer
Network: CBS-TV
Production code: S-622
Writer(s) Thad Mumford and Dan Wilcox
Director Charles S. Dubin
Original airdate February 11, 1980
IMDb logo IMDB Goodbye, Cruel World
Episode chronology
← Previous Next →
"Lend a Hand" "Dreams"

List of all M*A*S*H episodes

Goodbye, Cruel World was the 21st episode of Season 8 of the CBS-TV series M*A*S*H, also the 194th overall series episode, Directed by Thad Mumford and Dan Wilcox and directed by Charles S. Dubin, it originally aired on February 11, 1980.

Plot SynopsisEdit

Hawkeye and Dr. Sidney Freedman realize that a highly decorated Chinese-American war hero is only brave because he is trying to die in battle, and try to deal with his suicidal bravery. Meanwhile, Klinger decorates his quarters with some tchotchkes from home, but the resulting ridicule drives him to forge Colonel Potter's signature on his own discharge papers and attempt to desert. A Toledo Mud Hens pennant is among the tchotchkes.

Full episode summaryEdit

One of the wounded is Sgt. Michael Yee, a bona-fide war hero. Hawkeye works on him, and is amazed at the sheer number of wounds Yee has suffered.

Later, in Post Op, Hawkeye gives Yee (Clyde Kusatsu) the good news: he's going home. But instead of being overjoyed, Yee seems stunned, and even a little upset over the news.

After the delivering the news, Hawkeye and Margaret leave Yee alone, and we see Yee pound his fist in frustration. Potter and Klinger call an impromptu meeting in Klinger's office - he has filled the room with items from home, all of them with an Arabic flavor. The colonel references an infamous New York City madam when describing Klinger's decor with the question, "Why does my company clerk's office look like Polly Adler's parlor?" Potter puts it up to a vote from the doctors, but Klinger is less than happy when they all break down in guffaws over Klinger's version of good taste.

Later, Nurse Kelleye tells Hawkeye that Sgt. Yee tried to kill himself by slashing his wrists. Hawkeye, Margaret, and Potter check in on him, and the damage is so extensive that he requires surgery to patch it all up.

Meanwhile, Klinger, so mad at being laughed at, decides to pull a scam ending in him being discharged home. He fakes letters from Col. Potter (working hard to perfect Potter's distinctive signature) and Father Mulachy, planning on sending them into I-Corps. B.J. discovers the plot, and tries to talk Klinger out of it. Klinger pretends to go along, but then after B.J. leaves, resumes his plan, by sending the paperwork to HQ.

Sidney Freedman arrives to talk to Sgt. Yee. He looks over Yee's record - he also served in WWII, and while he had a solid record there, its nothing like the list of courageous acts Yee has attempted in Korea. Sidney talks to Yee, and subtly puts him under hypnosis. Later, Yee awakens, and he's shocked to learn that what he thought has just been a few minutes was actually two hours.

Hawkeye notices Yee, post-hypnosis, is twitching his arm like mad, and wonders if Yee is stable. Sidney insists that he is, telling Hawkeye that Yee is racked with guilt, fighting in a war against an Asian enemy {his previous service was in Europe}. He planted a hypnotic suggestion in Yee's mind to twitch his hand every time he feels stressed, instead of committing an act of violence against himself.

Sidney also surmises that all those acts of bravery on Yee's part were part of the same behavior. Later, Yee is released from the hospital, where Sidney will keep working with him until he's shipped home.

Meanwhile, Potter apologizes to Klinger for not letting him put up any of his personal items and hurting his feelings. So he tells Klinger he can put up any one piece, and also gives Klinger a three-day pass. Klinger, now feeling guilty about setting his plan in motion, hot-foots it to I-Corps, where he has to bluff his way out of it with a Colonel. He pretends to be Radar, telling the Colonel that "this Klinger fella" is pulling a scam, and the whole thing should be forgotten.

Once home, Potter reveals he knew about it the whole time, and even gives Klinger some helpful tips about how to better forge his name.

Guest stars/Recurring castEdit


  • Colonel Hedley: "I know you..your Radar"
  • Klinger: "Oh Golly Gee yes your Colonelship"
  • Colonel Hedley: "Funny you don't look Irish"
  • Klinger: "Black Irish Sir..Spanish Armada"
  • Potter: You put too much swoop in the T.