Monster M*A*S*H
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In Love and War was the 130th episode of the CBS-TV series M*A*S*H. The episode, which was the eighth episode of Season 6, was written and directed by Alan Alda. It originally aired on November 1, 1977.

Plot synopsis[]

Hawkeye has to take care of the mother of an aristocratic South Korean woman, who he later falls in love with. Meanwhile, Margaret learns that her husband Donald may have been making time with a new nurse assigned to the 4077th.

Full episode summary[]

During triage, Hawkeye sees an unusual sight - an actual car - not a jeep, a car - drive onto the compound; inside it is a woman named Kyung Soon (Kieu Chinh), who talks with Col. Potter. Potter then asks Hawkeye to take care of the woman's passenger, a young child with a broken clavicle. Hawkeye resents being dragged away from his duties by Potter to attend to Kyung Soon's mother. But his resentment won't last for long...

At first, Hawkeye is angry about being told who to treat, and in what order. He assumes this woman is a local countess and is using her influence to butt ahead in line of wounded soldiers, which angers him.

Potter, irritated at Hawkeye's insolence, tells him basically to "clam up". After consulting with her again, he says that since the load is light, Hawkeye should go with Kyung Soon to look after her mother, who is sick.

Hawkeye climbs in the car with her, and is nasty and rude. But his attitude changes when he gets to the "estate", and sees its nothing more than a bombed, burnt-out husk of a building, where Kyung Soon is taking care of several people, older people and young children, all of whom are displaced because of the war. Hawkeye, impressed at Kyung's grit and dignity, quickly goes from skepticism to admiration, and then quickly develops a bit of a crush on her. Despite a warning by Col. Potter that "war and romance don't mix", Hawkeye asks Kyung out on a date, which he manages to patch together.

Hawkeye falls hard for Kyung, and he spends every waking moment not on duty with her. While in O.R., he gets word Kyung's elderly mother has taken a turn for the worse, and he rushes to her side.

But it's too late - Kyung's mother has died, leaving Hawkeye only able to comfort her in her grief.

After the funeral, Kyung reveals to Hawkeye that she plans to leave, and head further south. Without her elderly mother, they can travel, and try and get away from the brutality of war. With a number of young girls to look after, Kyung has to be coldly practical - she has sold her car, her phonograph, almost everything she has of value so they can travel as far away as possible. Hawkeye is hurt and angry, but Kyung says she has no choice.

Later, as she prepares to leave in an ox-cart, they say goodbye. They promise to write letter after letter, staying in touch, but deep down they know they'll never see each other again. They embrace one last time, and with tears in his eyes, Hawkeye watches Kyung leave.

In a side story, Margaret overhears a newly-transferred nurse chatting with Nurse Bigelow about a colonel she met in Tokyo named "Donald" who was a bit of "a cluck", and the Major can't help but think it's her Donald. She tries to dismiss it, but continues to drill the new nurse for details, which she is obviously reluctant to give. Unfortunately, it's enough to convince Margaret that the nurse's fling was, in fact, her new husband. In an attempt to help, Col. Potter has the new nurse transferred as far as possible from the 4077th so Margaret wouldn't have to see her again. Unfortunately, he ended up sending her back to Tokyo, much to Margaret's chagrin.

At the end of the episode, Hawkeye and Margaret drown their sorrows with booze in the Swamp, commiserating with each other over "how much this place stinks." Hawkeye asks Margaret what she's going to do; she says she's going to take Donald back. She returns the question, and Hawkeye says he's going to let Kyung Soon go. Margaret says, "That stinks." and Hawkeye sadly agrees.

Trivia[]

  • Gary Burghoff receives billing, but Radar is not seen, heard or even mentioned in this episode.
  • Hawkeye falls in love for the first time since his relationship with his former common law wife Lieutenant Carlye Breslin. He tells Kyung to write to him and they will stay in contact. Yet, we never hear of her ever again, not even a mention of a letter. Yet, Hawkeye will later on mention Caryle, though not by name: "I couldn't do it in med school for the woman I loved, and I won't do it now for an army I hate" ("Stars and Stripes").
  • In a short scene usually edited from syndicated broadcasts, Hawkeye attends the funeral of Kyung Soon's mother, which is shown to be an abbreviated version of a Korean funeral procession.

Guest stars/Recurring cast[]

Uncredited appearances by


Image Gallery[]

External links[]

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