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June 26, 2006



That was a wonderful episode, a perfect example of the balance of comedy and drama that made M*A*S*H so great.So, it's safe to say you started your M*A*S*H stint on the right foot.


I saw that episode exactly once -- the first time it aired -- and I know exactly the speech you mean.But for some reason I can't explain, my favorite bit is when Hawkeye asks a patient to read a chart to him, not realizing...well, you know.

Ann Wesley Hardin

This is such awesome blog, Ken! I'm so glad Beth C. pointed me here through the massive blogosphere. Your memoirs are fascinating, amusing and educational and it's a beautiful thing for a baby comedy writer to get a glimpse into the mind of a master. Looks like you worked on every single one of my favorite TV shows!Reading this is an absolute thrill. Thanks so much for sharing!


Not sure if you heard this sad news, but Moose, aka "Eddie," the beloved Jack Russell terrier on "Frasier" and arguably the best dog actor since the legendary Asta, has died at 16 1/2, a ripe old canine age.http://people.aol.com/people/article/0,26334,1208083,00.htmlI'm sure over the years, a few of your "Frasier" scripts had scenes involving Eddie. How difficult was it to write a scene involving a dog? Any interesting stories in that vein?

Joshua James

OUT OF SIGHT is one of the best episodes of the series -


question about writing a spec script... not sure if this is the best place to post a question, especially since it doesn't pertain to your current blog, but when writing a spec script for say HOUSE, which I hear is the best hour drama to write a spec for, how should you handle the medical speak? Should I research it? or since they have hose people already on staff would I just write jibberish, like "medcal jargon, medical jargon, medical jargon"?


LOVE,LOVE,LOVE talking about MASH. I watched a 2 hour block last night, and was able to do most of the dialogue from each episode. This drives my boyfriend bonkers BTW. At some point on this wonderful blog, we need to discuss continuity on MASH, because I notice, after all these years,there are A LOT of inconsistencies. For example: is Hawkeye an only child, or did he in fact have a sister? In season 1 I swear he has a sweater knitted for him by a sister; but then I think he refers to himself as an only child later on, than in season 4, he says the only deleiver he has ever made was taking his nephew to his sister's house. HELP!!

Mr. Hollywood

Great anecdotes Ken ... keep them coming! Not sure if this is the best place for it, but I remember the first meeting my writing partner and I had many years ago with a producer. We had about 10 ideas to pitch for his sitcom. He greeted us and told us to pitch away. I had barely gotten the first sentence out of my mouth when he got buzzed by his secretary. He takes the call and it's his wife. He proceeds to have an argument with her that slowly builds to the crescendo of FUCK YOU BITCH! He slams down the phone, takes a beat, then says "Go ahead with your funny stuff!" Needless to say, our 10 "great" ideas were dismissed in about thirty seconds and we were back to our car in about 2 minutes. Call it bad timing...REAL bad timing. I call it "The Mazel Factor"! We had none that day!


For a show that ran as long as MASH did, and with numerous writers coming and going over the years, some discontinuity is going to happen. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_continuity_errors_and_anachronisms_in_M*A*S*H

Ken Levine

For Thursday's post I'll answer some misc MASH questions -- medical jargon, continuity, other stuff. Stay tuned.


The fact that there were SO MANY writers for MASH has always been my personal explaination for the lack of continuity; in fact I was having this same coversation with the boyfrond last night about that. I can't wait for the Thursday's post.BTW Ken, I still love the fact that you got Tom Sullivan to play the blinded soldier; brilliant casting.

Paul Duca

Ken...I actually remember watching JOE AND SONS. Did you write the particular episode I still can summon after three decades? Noting the old "write what you know" credo....the one were one of the sons dealt with his bedwetting problem?


I'm trying to find an episode in which a USO troup stops in while on of the performers has her appendix removed. Particularly, a song called "love, love be mine." Can anyone help?


M*A*S*H was a brilliant show for the first three seasons.

What happened after that? Can you explain why it became so bad so quickly?

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    Ken Levine is an Emmy winning writer/director/producer/major league baseball announcer. In a career that has spanned over 30 years Ken has worked on MASH, CHEERS, FRASIER, THE SIMPSONS, WINGS, EVERYBODY LOVES RAYMOND, BECKER, DHARMA & GREG, and has co-created his own series including ALMOST PERFECT starring Nancy Travis. He and his partner wrote the feature VOLUNTEERS. Ken has also been the radio/TV play-by-play voice of the Baltimore Orioles, Seattle Mariners, San Diego Padres.
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