MASH has been very much in the news lately thanks to Alan Alda’s podcast and word of a cast reunion taking place on it. We recently spoke with actress Loretta Swit, who plays Margaret “Hot Lips” Houlihan on the series, about that podcast reunion, but that was only a fraction of our chat with her. On this week’s edition of CloserWeekly.com’s Classic TV & Film Podcast, there is so much more discussed.
Among the subjects we covered are the public’s continuing fascination with the series, with Loretta’s theories on why the show endures the way that it does (“We became members of your family after 11 years of being in your kitchen, your bedroom, your living room, your den, and so forth”), her own extensive involvement with animal activism, the book it inspired her to create (SwitHeart: The Watercolour Artistry & Animal Activism of Loretta Swit), her feelings about the reunion podcast (“We’re all excited about it, too; it’s going to be fun!”), and much more.
As for the show itself, they say that those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it, but in this case, we can forgive CBS for suggesting that the Korean War lasted 11 years when in reality it was a little more than three. Seriously, without math like that, think of how little MASH we’d have to enjoy.
MASH, which is based on the novel by Richard Hooker and the 1970 film of the same name, aired on CBS from 1972 to 1983, and it gave us an unforgettable ensemble of characters, from Alan’s Hawkeye Pierce to Mike Farrell’s B.J. Hunnicutt, Harry Morgan’s Sherman Potter, Jamie Farr’s Max Klinger, and, of course, Loretta as Houlihan, among many others.