Close-up of Dog Tags


Is anyone aware of episodes which include close-ups of a character’s dog tags? Any character. I’m interested in seeing if the dog tags have a notch in them or not. Based on some images I’ve just looked at there don’t appear to be any notches but I haven’t been able to find any close-ups. Dog tags used by the Army during World War II had notches and there are several stories about why the notch exists (see, and for more information).

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010 Update: After looking at a few more episodes I’ve come to the conclusion that the dog tags in M*A*S*H — or at least some of them — did have notches. Here’s a shot of Radar’s dog tags from “Check-Up” and you can definitely see a notch in the tag to the right that is turned toward the camera.

Radar's Dog Tags in Check-Up

Radar’s Dog Tags in “Check-Up”

And here’s a shot of Hawkeye’s dog tags from “Requiem For A Lightweight.” The tag on the bottom has a notch.

Hawkeye's Dog Tags in Requiem for a Lightweight

Hawkeye’s Dog Tags in “Requiem for a Lightweight”

13 Replies to “Close-up of Dog Tags”

  1. I’m not sure if klinger’s have a notch or not but the dog tags he wears are the actual ones amie Farr wore when he was in Korea in 1955?

  2. These are great images. But a little off the subject, Gary seems to have a tumor or something on his body below his left pectoral. Is that just a glitch in the camera?

  3. Radar is actually missing digits. If you notice he always hides is bad hand with a rag or clipboard or something. Once in a while you will catch a glimpse of his hand.

  4. Gary Burghoff “Radar” isn’t missing fingers. He suffers from a congenital deformity that affected the development of his left hand.

    1. He kept it hidden because obviously he wouldn’t have been enlisted with such a deformity.
      If you want to see his entire hand, just watch episode 1 season 1.
      Just before the opening helicopter credits, Radar is playing catch with a football.
      Seen here:

  5. in the episode “Edwina” When they draw straws and Haweye loses, his dog tags are very close up. However I do be leave they have to much information on them.

  6. Another example of a close up where you can see the notches in the dog tags is in Movie Tonight. When Margaret is singing during the episode, there is a close-up where you can see the notches in her dog tags.

  7. Notched dog tags were still standard issue in the Korean war.

    The formatting during the Korean war was as follows(using a MASH character as reference):

    T51 AB


    But in reality, the dog tags all the characters wear, have the formatting from the second world war, as follows:

    ER61109398 T51 AB

    The dog tags they wear on the show are probably WW2 issue surplus, as evidenced from the formatting of information on them.

  8. I was given a set of American-type dog tags,as a gift, a few years ago. I still wear them. Yeah Im that nerdy. But they are customised with my real name,blood type etc. Ive still never seen a decent close up of a MASH tag.

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