46th Anniversary of M*A*S*H


Has another year gone by already? It’s hard to believe sometimes how fast time flies. Here we are in 2018 celebrating the 46th anniversary of M*A*S*H. “M*A*S*H — The Pilot” aired on CBS on Sunday, September 17th, 1972 at 8PM ET.

Like many M*A*S*H fans, I didn’t watch the first episode back in 1972. I wasn’t born yet. I started watching M*A*S*H in the late 1990s on cable channel FX. I have no idea when I saw “M*A*S*H — The Pilot” for the first time. If you’re one of the lucky fans who watched the series premiere, what do you remember about your first reaction to the show?

All About Premiere Episode

If you’re like me, you probably don’t have time to watch “M*A*S*H — The Pilot” today in honor of the show’s 46th birthday. So, here’s a look at some of what I’ve written over the years about the very first episode:

I wonder, are there any M*A*S*H fans who’ve never seen the first episode?

4 Replies to “46th Anniversary of M*A*S*H”

  1. I did not see the pilot episode when it premiered in 1972. I was seven years old at the time.

    Since then, I’ve seen it a number of times, but without the original opening sequence. In most syndication packages, the usual opening credits are used. But I think it was on one of the networks currently showing it in it’s original form–including the closing where the characters are introduced–in the last year. It may have been AMC, over Veteran’s Day weekend, when they also showed the original 1970 movie (albeit heavily edited).

    Does anyone know?

    1. MeTV runs the pilot with the original open and close.

      For years, I was under the impression that the original version of the pilot didn’t air in syndication, but turns out it could show up occasionally – in some markets, at least. I’ve got an old recording of the pilot that aired right before the finale, and it retained the original opening and closing credits. I know many markets ran the pilot right before GFA, but given the trashed nature of this particular print, it wasn’t one given to this station by CBS, so I don’t know if it was part of that market’s syndication package or what. (I’ve got another one from about two years later, different market, that used the syndicated credits.)

  2. I was also 7 years old when MASH premiered and probably 8 or 9 when I first saw the show at all. I first remember seeing the pilot right before GFA, as the local ABC station in Nashville, WNGE-TV, which had the rights to MASH reruns at the time, ran the pilot, preempting whatever ABC was running during that half-hour, and the local announcer even admitted that most people would be watching GFA, saying “Before you watch the last episode of MASH, watch the first one”. I may have seen the pilot before that date on a CBS or even local rerun, but this is the first time I specifically remember seeing it.

    CBS preceded GFA with a new episode of ALICE. It was once a high-dollar question on WWTBAM (above $100K) which program CBS aired just before GFA. I knew the answer, though I didn’t watch ALICE that night myself.

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