Monday M*A*S*H Discussions offers fans the opportunity to offer their opinions on a wide variety of topics relating to M*A*S*H. Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section. My hope is these discussion posts will continue to elicit comments in the weeks and months after they’re initially published. Have a suggestion about something you think might be worth discussing? Let me know and maybe it will become my next Monday M*A*S*H Discussion topic.
Today’s topic: What if M*A*S*H had another female main character?
Margaret and ???
Throughout its run, M*A*S*H had only one female main character: Margaret Houlihan, played by Loretta Swit. The evolution of the 4077th’s head nurse factored into numerous episode and storylines. Margaret never had another female character to interact with, only male characters like Hawkeye, Frank, Charles, and Colonel Potter.
But what if she did? What if M*A*S*H had another female main character? How would that have changed the series, changed Margaret?
Due to the setting, of course, there aren’t many options for an additional female main character. In fact, the only option would be another nurse, one of Margaret’s subordinates. There were several nurses who had recurring or supporting roles on M*A*S*H over the years. What would the dynamic of the series look like with a second nurse as a main character?
One obvious storyline for this hypothetical nurse character would be a romance with another main character. Hawkeye, perhaps, or Radar. But M*A*S*H already had a romance between Margaret and Frank when it debuted. It didn’t need another. Consider another scenario. What if a nurse joined the series when Radar left? A young nurse in her first posting, overeager and unaware of the horrors of war. Imagine the possibilities.
Can you think of any other scenarios in which M*A*S*H could accommodate a second female main character? Is it something you wish had happened?
Hit the comments with your thoughts.