M*A*S*H episode
MASH 4x20 Hepatitis - Hawkeye checks Frank
Hampered by a sore back, Hawkeye, who must administer Gamma Globulin shots to the camp to fight a Hepatits outbreak; in this scene he has to give one to Frank in the Season 5 episode "Hepatitis".
Season 5, Episode # 20
Number (#117) in series (256 episodes)
Guest star(s)
Network: CBS-TV
Production code: U823
Writer(s) Alan Alda
Director Alan Alda
Original airdate February 8, 1977
IMDb logo IMDB Hepatitis
Episode chronology
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"Hanky Panky" (U822) "The General's Practitioner" (U807) 

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"Hanky Panky" (U822)  "Movie Tonight" (U824) 

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Season 5 episodes
List of all M*A*S*H episodes

 Hepatitis is the 117th episode of M*A*S*H, the 20th in the fifth season of the show, which originally aired on CBS-TV on February 8, 1977. It was both written and directed by Alan Alda.

Plot SynopsisEdit

The 4077th has an outbreak of hepatitis and Hawkeye needs to inoculate the reluctant staff while dealing with severe back pain.

Full episode summaryEdit

Father Mulcahy comes down with Hepatitis, so the doctors snap into action, to make sure it doesn't sweep through the camp. Col. Potter talks to the cook, B.J. tends to Father Mulcahy, and Hawkeye has to give everyone in camp a shot of gamma globulin.

That's a big enough job, but it's made more complicated by the fact that Hawkeye is having back trouble - the pain is getting worse and worse, leaving Hawkeye stooped over. First, he gives a shot to Frank (who is nothing but trouble, of course), then Hot Lips, where he drools over her exposed tush. This, understandably, enrages Hot Lips, and barks at Hawkeye for ogling her. Hawkeye, realizing he was out of line, apologizes.

Wounded arrive, and a particularly difficult case is among them - one soldier's stomach is almost entirely gone. Hawkeye recommends B.J. take the case, since he has been reading up on the necessary procedure, which puts him one up over the rest of them.

Working from a text book, B.J. pulls the soldier through, the surgery having gone flawlessly. Hawkeye continues giving the camp shots, moving from Klinger then to Radar. While with Radar, he confides that he's been feeling insecure about how he's different than most of his other friends, who like to get drunk and consort with the various girls in town.

Hawkeye gives him some wonderful, tender advice, telling him he carries "a piece of Iowa with you wherever you go", and how he'll meet the one special woman he's been waiting for his whole life. Radar is comforted, and thanks Hawkeye, only to have Hawkeye ask him to drop his pants. Hawkeye has to literly pin Klinger to a wall for his shot (Klinger has gotten KP for a month after punching his mortal enemy Sgt Zale who dared to critize the Toledo Mudhens (Toledo home baseball team))

Later, Hawkeye finds B.J. - still in need of a shot - celebrating in the Officers Club, drunk and giddy he pulled off the surgery. B.J. gets so tipsy he collapses over a table, so Hawkeye pulls his shorts down in front of everyone, and gives B.J. the shot.

Even later, Hawkeye and Col. Potter have drinks in his office, and Potter gives him some advice about Hawkeye's back trouble: he believes Hawkeye is angry about news from home. A local Crabapple Cove doctor who, despite his average medical skills, is cleaning up back home because he has no real competition.

Potter reminds Hawkeye that he only really has to worry about competing with himself. Potter kindly adds, "And for you, that's tough enough."

Potter then suggests sending the quack back home an anonymous letter. Hawkeye smiles, starting to feel better, and suggests telling him he saw him cheating. When Potter suggests threatening a malpractice suit, Hawkeye laughs, and when he mentions a paternity suit, Hawkeye guffaws, "Doctor, doctor, I can walk!"

In a closing scene usually cut out of syndicated airings, Hawkeye wakes up a hungover B.J. the next morning, once again standing straight. He chastises B.J. for not getting enough exercise, stating that the cure for a hangover is getting "the blood out of your keester and into your head," which he promptly demonstrates by standing on his head next to B.J.'s cot. As B.J. tells him to knock it off, Hawkeye eventually falls backwards, feet first, onto the very aggravated B.J.

Guest stars/Recurring castEdit

  • Gwen Farrell as Nurse Baker (uncredited; dance with B.J. in the O Club. Hawkeye tells her to dip)
  • Carmine Scelza as Corpsman Carmine (uncredited; in Pre Op., Hawkeye tells him to prep a patient)
  • Other uncredited appearances: Roy Goldman, Kellye Nakahara, Dennis Troy

External linksEdit

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