Listen to Alan Alda’s M*A*S*H Reunion Podcast

Alan Alda’s podcast, “Clear+Vivid with Alan Alda,” released a new episode today. Titled “The Actors from M*A*S*H — On How M*A*S*H Changed Our Lives,” the 68-minute episode sees Alda reunite with Loretta Swit, Gary Burghoff, Jamie Farr, and Mike Farrell to talk about their time on M*A*S*H and how communication helped them on screen and off. Here’s the official description:

M*A*S*H is the most beloved and one of the most watched TV shows of all time. It set viewing records that have never been broken and is ranked as one of the top 25 shows of all time. In this exclusive podcast, actors from this legendary show gather together for an uproarious and totally candid conversation about how they learned to connect with one another to create their special brand of entertainment on the screen and lifelong friendships off-camera. Join Alan Alda (“Capt.Benjamin Franklin “Hawkeye” Pierce”),Loretta Swit (“Maj. Margaret “Hot Lips” Houlihan”),Jamie Farr (“Sgt. Maxwell Q. “Max” Klinger),Mike Farrell (Capt. B. J. Hunnicutt), and Gary Burghoff (Cpl. Walter “Radar” O’Reilly) for this intimate gathering of your M*A*S*H pals. The gang invites you to share in the memories and the laughter. Mostly the laughter — after all this is the 4077th. This episode is sponsored by the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University, please visit aldacenter.org/vivid for more details.

You can listen to “Clear+Vivid with Alan Alda” through Art19, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, and Google Play.

A transcript for the episode can be found here.

I’ve listened to about half of the episode so far and I’m enjoying it. There’s a lot of laughter and joking around; at one point Loretta Swit calls Mike Farrell a “silly twit.” Alda occasionally tries to steer the conversation back to communication and relationships. Some of the stories may be familiar to hardcore M*A*S*H fans–like the real-life time capsule the cast buried or the practical joke David Ogden Stiers pulled involving Richard Attenborough.

If you’ve listened to the episode already, share your thoughts in the comments.

9 Comments

  • BDOR says:

    I actually didn’t know about the real-life time capsul, and how it was dug up by a construction crew when Fox was having half of the commissary torn down to make way for new offices.

    But either way, I listened to the podcast earlier in the afternoon, and honestly, you can just hear the love, respect, and friendship they have for each other as they speak, and it was really an emotional experience – I felt the joy and laughter when they were joking around and reminiscing about some of the sillier moments that happened on set, and I even found myself almost choking a little as they spoke about what the show and their fellow castmembers meant to them, not to mention the passing of some of the others.

    Alan Alda has also shared on social media an amusing little video that Arlene shot of him trying to teach Mike Farrell how to subscribe to a podcast on a phone – it wasn’t easy, but it was fun watching the two of them together again.

    Speaking of Mike, I don’t know why, but I think one of the most amusing things about the podcast was the little running gag Loretta Swit had with him about how much she “pre-missed” him before he was on the show.

  • B.G. says:

    I agree with BDOR above about being able to clearly hear the love and friendship in that group. I couldn’t stop smiling, they were having such fun and it was infectious. I’m delighted they did this. As Loretta said during the podcast, their ranks are dwindling, so any reunion at all is so much appreciated (at least by this fan). Very emotional listening experience.

    • BDOR says:

      I must confess that I’m surprised (happily so) that a good number of them are still with us at this point, when you consider so many other shows from around the same area only have maybe at least one still-surviving castmember, if not any. I was also just a little irked that Jamie said one question he’s often asked is if he’s still alive – that just kind of rubbed me the wrong way that people would actually ask him something like that.

      Speaking of whom, this isn’t a complaint or a quibble or anything, but rather, just an observation, but it seemed like during the podcast, neither Jamie nor Gary had the floor as much as Alan, Loretta, and Mike. Still, it was so wonderful listening to all of them, and I’m glad they’re able to still get together like this on occasion. I really had no idea Jamie was on a regular show right now, and I think I’ve seen glimpses of Mike’s recent role in this mini-series he was talking about.

  • 007 says:

    Just listened to this. So good. I especially like how they mention each of the departed comrades from the show. Something about hearing Mike Farrell talk about Wayne Rogers just gets me, and you can tell they all had respect for each other.

    That’s really too bad how Gary Burghoff got screwed over by his friend on the Teddy bear. Wish he could have gotten it. I know it sold on eBay last May, but we never found out who was the buyer.

    And crazy how some of the same people who were there during MASH still work on the Stage 9 Sound Stage!

    Does anyone know if David Ogden Stiers and Mike Farrell ever met McClean Stevenson? I can’t find any information online about it. I know Larry Linville and DOS met at the disbanding of the final MASH unit in Korea, and all the others who weren’t on the show together met at the 30th Reunion.

    Also for the life of me I can’t think of two episodes mentioned on the show. The first is where BJ is doing push-up’s that they had to do many takes on. I remember the scene but just cannot think of the episode.

    The other is Charles telling Father Mulcahy that he’s “being vague today, even for you”. I can hear the lines in my head but can’t think of the scene or episode.

    Really hope this is not the last time we hear from these guys while being together, but I fear there’s a pretty good chance it will be. Damn I need to watch some MASH tonight.

    • BDOR says:

      Hawkeye playing pretend basketball and B.J. doing push-ups were actually two different scenes, but I think they were just a few episodes apart, which is why they may be remembering them both happening at the same time. I can’t remember which episode had the pretend basketball, but I remember all the outtakes from that bit.

      B.J. doing push-ups I believe was from “Hepatitis,” because Hawk was complaining about his back, and also making wisecracks about Beej with his shirt off.

    • B.G. says:

      Hello 007,

      The Charles line is actually, “You seem in a daze, even for you.” It’s from the episode “Identity Crisis.” Father Mulcahy is preoccupied because of the secret that Corporal Mullen had told him. (Agree with Mike Farrell, it is a great line.)

  • RJ says:

    I finished listening to the podcast this morning and I agree with what everyone else has said about hearing these friends talking and laughing and sharing stories. I’m glad it was so loose. A structured interview would’ve seemed less alive somehow.

    My favorite bit, and a story I hadn’t heard before, was Loretta Swit and Gary Burghoff talking about the scene in “The Gun” when Radar walks in on Margaret and sees her leg (“It reminds me of my pony back home”) and how Loretta raved about it to Larry Gelbart and then worried she’d oversold it.

    • BDOR says:

      I received a copy of the “Ultimate Guide Book” for Christmas, and in reading about Gary’s biography, he mentions that he wish that he and Loretta had more scenes together than they did, because he saw potential for more humorous material between the two characters. I hadn’t thought about it, but I suppose it could be funny to see more of the brash and abrasive Margaret chewing out the timid and wimpy Radar.

  • Michael J Consolini says:

    I am happy for the cast to come back , I will always love
    Mash 4077th I cried when last 2 hour movie was on.
    Ron Howard was a guest star

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