M*A*S*HCast #43 – The Chosen People

M*A*S*HCast -  Season 2, Episode 19: The Chosen People

Special Guest Star: Cory Drew

Air Date: January 26, 1974

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Theme music by Johnny Mandel

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12 responses to “M*A*S*HCast #43 – The Chosen People

  1. Great show as always. MASH addresses the topic of American soldiers fathering children with Korean women a few times, most famously with “Yes sir, That’s my baby.” That subject covers more of the horrific things that happened to the women and children. MASH was not at that time ready to cover a topic as hard as that is but this was a good way of bring up the subject with some lighthearted humor.

  2. Interesting Morita’s character made a joke about people confusing different groups of Asians when he was a Japanese person playing a Korean.

    Given the way the Japanese treated Korea during WWII, I wonder how Koreans felt seeing their people played by Japanese actors. Jack Soo (of Barney Miller) was another Japanese who played a Korean in a couple episodes.

  3. On the Mash Matters podcast, Mike Farrell stated that when his agent confronted him about possibly replacing Wayne Rogers, Farrell admitted he had never seen the show. He had received several pilot sitcom scripts and was disgusted by the shallow jokes that they had. He said he didn’t want to take part in a sitcom but he’d take a look. He then said he watched an episode that had hijinks but in the last scene there was a sincere and reflective moment between between “Radar and another”. It was that scene that sold him on the show. He never mentioned the specific episode but it sounds like he’s describing this one.

  4. Interesting thing with the term Ugly American it comes from the book The Ugly American. But in the book it has the opposite meaning as it has come to mean. The “Ugly American” in the book is the most hero like person. The engineer Homer Atkins, whose “calloused and grease-blackened hands always reminded him that he was an ugly man.” that is he was the ugly American because he was one of the few Americans in the book to work to understand the local peoples and not worry about looking proper.

    Yet now what he called the polished people are what we call an Ugly American.
    So from where we get the term Ugly American Frank would be one of the polished people.

    1. Also like MASH the Ugly American is about the Vietnam War but takes place somewhere else. In this case the fictional country of Sarkhan.

  5. So interesting thing also with the chopsticks. Those aren’t Korean style chopsticks that you see there Chinese style. Korean style are flater, shorter, and made of metal, Chinese are wood or bamboo long and rounded and Japanese length wise are in between the two wood or bamboo and pointed at the eating end.

    1. True! It’s so weird where I live because we have a sizable Korean community, and many have opened restaurants, but not all Korean food. It might be sushi places or Chinese food or whatever. But the chopsticks tell the real story.

      1. True. Also sometimes goes the other way to. Since I have had a few Thai friends and roommates when I go to Thai restaurants to eat I use fork and spoon or spoon and chopsticks depending on what the dish calls for and it’s kind of fun to see the two types of double takes. The one of the people who don’t know going why are you eating that with the spoon and not the fork and the other one of why does this non Thai looking person know how to eat that way *kool *

  6. This episode reminds me of how much harder I need to work at truly listening to, and understanding, others. It’s so easy to fall into the trap of not listening, and just assuming that I know what another person wants, needs, or believes. That’s the sort of attitude that leads to the ridiculous situations depicted in this MASH episode, where our attempts to “help” end up causing more harm than good.

    I also have to point out that The Chosen People contains one of my daughter’s favorite MASH moments. That scene where the cow wanders into Henry’s tent cracks her up every time she sees it.

    Thanks for another incredible episode, gentlemen.

  7. I really loved this episode and was so excited to tell people from work the story about Pat Morita’s connections to Red Foxx & Lenny Bruce, but my coworkers didn’t know who they were so I felt really old. Damnit. But I still loved it.

  8. I always loved these moments that Radar and Hawkeye share, the quiet moments that illustrate their wonderful brother/idol/mentor/father figure/hero dynamic, like the end of this episode and also in episodes such as Mail Call Three, with Hawkeye helping Radar work through his feeling when he learns his Mom has a boyfriend. Their relationship, and how it grew and changed over the course of the series, was definitely a highlight. Great show guys!

  9. Regarding Pat Morita’s stand-up career, and his connections with Redd Foxx and Lennie Bruce. If that sort of thing interests you, then you should read the works of Kliph Nesteroff. He has a book, “The Comedians; Drunks, Thieves, Scoundrels, and the History of American Comedy;” a site with his interviews of mid-century comics, ClassicShowbiz dot blogspot; and essays on the site WFMU’s Beware of the blog. His research on American comedy is invaluable and his writing is addictive! This is not a paid endorsement!

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