8 things you never noticed in the M*A*S*H episode ''Good-Bye, Radar''

You might have missed these Dodgers references and Arabic insults.

"Goodbye, Farewell and Amen" remains the greatest series finale in television history. It's not the only goodbye that brings tears to your eyes on M*A*S*H. The series was exceptionally skilled at farewells, beginning with the shocking departure of Henry Blake.

Another exit that never fails to tug our heartstrings is "Good-Bye, Radar," the final episodes with Gary Burghoff and his lovable character Radar. (The teddy bear stayed behind.) Look, when Potter cries, we cry. 

The two-part tale aired early in the eighth season. It was meant to be the finale for season seven. The network worked a deal with Burghoff to briefly return to his role for the Fall '79 season, at least through sweeps. 

Here are some more things you might not know about this brilliant piece of television.

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1. They took Radar's head out of the opening credits.


For seven seasons, M*A*S*H began every episode with helicopters arriving over the mountains. Radar is the first to hear him — after all, that's why they call him Radar. The back of Gary Burghoff's head appeared as the first shot in those opening credits. At the start of season eight, Burghoff announced his departure from the show. The producers thus removed his head from the opening. In addition, in those first few episodes of season eight before "Good-Bye, Radar," the opening altered his credit to say, "Also Starring Gary Burghoff as Radar."

2. It is also the last episode with Zelmo Zale.


Radar was not the only character to bid adieu in "Good-Bye, Radar." Johnny Haymer made his first appearance as Sergeant Zelmo Zale in season two, and was last seen at the 4077th in "Good-Bye, Radar: Part 1." The electrician character was known for manning the generator, which plays a major part in the sub-plot of "Good-Bye, Radar." Maybe he washed out after the generator failed?

3. It is the last time "Hot Lips" was uttered on the show.


You call her "Margaret." Here's another lesser-known "Last" from that episode. The "Hot Lips" nickname was better associated with the MASH film and the character's depiction in the early episodes M*A*S*H. By this point in the series, Major Houlihan had evolved into a far deeper, headier character. In "Part 2," she kisses Radar, who then exclaims to Winchester, "Wow! Hot Lips!"

4. Klinger says, "You son of a dog!" in Arabic.


Meanwhile, Klinger seeks a new generator. He nearly succeeds at one point, until Maj. George Van Kirk claims the machine. Klinger then "mutters in Arabic," according to the subtitles. He actually curses, "Ya ibn al kalb!" That means "You son of a dog!"

5. Radar's love interest was also Rose's daughter on Golden Girls.


Radar meets the love of his life while waiting in an air transfer hut. Lt. Patty Haven even loves Grape Nehi — that's how you know this is serious. After a mere hour together, he vows to find her following the war. Marilyn Jones, who charmingly played Patty, made her television debut in this episode. Seven years later, she turned up in an episode of The Golden Girls as Bridget Nylund, daughter of Rose (Betty White). Look for her in the episode "Family Affair."

6. "Patty Haven" was an ex-girlfriend of the screenwriter.


Ken Levine was one of the masterful scribes in the M*A*S*H writing room. "Good-Bye, Radar" would also be his last episode for the series, along with co-writer David Isaacs. "We wanted to title the show 'Goodbye Levine & Isaacs' but CBS nixed it," Levine joked on his blog. He also admitted, "We named [Radar's love interest] Patty Haven, one of my former girlfriends."

7. Burghoff did not want to wear his hat in the end.


Ken Levine also confessed that Radar's trademark cap became a sticking point in production. "Gary decided he didn’t want to wear his hat. This became a big issue and remains a sore spot with me to this day," Levine wrote in 2006. "Our contention was that without the hat he no longer looked like a kid, he looked like a balding man rocketing into middle age. Also, for reasons I still can’t fathom, he chose to play the character somewhat angry throughout."

8. There are characters named after L.A. Dodgers pitchers.


Other minor characters in "Part 1" include "Sergeant LaGrow," "Private Hough," "Forster" and "Private Reuss." LaGrow hops aboard the crowded Jeep, forcing Radar off his ride. Longtime Los Angeles Dodgers fans might recognize the names. Terry Forster, Lerrin LaGrow, Jerry Reuss and Charlie Hough were all pitchers for the team in 1979.

SEE MORE: 8 things you might not know about the M*A*S*H finale


"Goodbye, Farewell and Amen" set ratings records and affected New York City plumbing. Did you know it was not the last M*A*S*H made? READ MORE

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joycemeyers4077 26 months ago
Walter O'Reilly came as a boy and left as a man. He learned to run a MASH, and be the guy you could count on. His idyllic life in Iowa was shattered when his Uncle Ed died - a father figure because his own Dad had passed away when Walter was young. He saw war up close, personal. When Henry was killed it was VERY personal. Walter saw waste of human life, saw kids die that were his own age. That will change you. My Mom, a WW2 Army Nurse, talked about the boys she cared for that were the age of her younger brother. I can totally get behind Gary playing the character the way he did. It was brilliant and stands up decades later as a remarkable performance.
ChristineLocke 26 months ago
I think he played it as "angry" because he's now carrying a VERY heavy burden. He just learned his father figure uncle just died (whom he loved dearly!). He'd been running the family farm, which now fell on Radars shoulders. (This was why he got the automatic discharge.) That's an awful lot to face coming out of the service.

VictorCalderone 36 months ago
I know Klinger stayed after the war was done, but did Father Mulcahy also stay with the orphans
Lily VictorCalderone 33 months ago
No. If you consider AfterMASH as a sequel, which it was, Mulcahy, Klinger and Soon Lee all moved to Missouri to work with Potter, who ended up going back to work in a hospital.
hootrs23 37 months ago
it was time for him to leave the series. he was radar from the mash movie years before the tv series began. he was burnt out.
Dario hootrs23 31 months ago
Burnt out and fed up with the role. Burghoff did not want to exclusively known for M*A*S*H, and, he did not want to be stereotyped as Walter "Radar" O'Reilly forever, but it did, unfortunately.
kaziil 38 months ago
I remember in one episode that they reported Radar had died ( no not Henry) has any one else seen that one
Lily kaziil 33 months ago
No, but you might be thinking of Fallen Idol, season 6. Hawkeye convinces Radar to go into Tokyo for some R&R, and he ends up getting wounded and taken back to the 4077th.
DarrenLaughlin 40 months ago
I got 38 of 40. But I actually got 39. I accidentally pushed the wrong answer on the finales year I knew it was 1983 I just hit the wrong one. The other one was the name of the author of the MASH book. I didn’t know and guessed wrong. I have every episode recorded on vhs. My mother started recording the show and reruns in the early 80’s not to long after we got our first vcr. I just noticed though that a lot of the reruns I watched over the years have been so chopped up so they could put in more commercials. I started watching episodes on Hulu and they are complete. It’s like watching a new series. I am seeing parts of the show’s I have never seen before. It’s wonderful. Shame on networks that cut out parts of shows to add more commercials, they cut out scenes then parts of the episode make no since, it’s criminal.
Rob DarrenLaughlin 30 days ago
I agree. I also have Hulu and it's the only place that I watch MASH. It really is amazing, the amount of content that gets removed from each episode to make room for more commercials.
oldiesdude 42 months ago
Radar was a career soldier. So was LTC Blake, Maj Hoolahan and Maj Burns who were career officers. Blake would never go home. Radar either. Also who was the non-commission officer in charge. In the movie it was SFC Vollmer credited as sgt Maj. He had three stripes above 2 below thats SFC. He was also the voice on the loud speaker. There was no one that was liaison between the officers and enlisted in the tv series. As an retired SFC it is upsetting. My buddy was a SFC NCO IC of a CASH which they was that kind of mobile hospital 10 years ago. As retired military i just wanted to point that out. But, that is TV and I enjoyed the Show since it started. I bought the whole tv series on dvd and watch it all the time!!!!
TimChapman 42 months ago
"Hot Lips" was mentioned again tn the Are We Now Margaret episode
rycki1138 TimChapman 37 months ago
Are You Now, Margaret? aired two weeks before the first part of Goodbye Radar.
RedSamRackham 47 months ago
As a root-beer drinker I admired Radar as a non-drinker preferring Grape Nehi! ☺
Kahuna RedSamRackham 28 months ago
RADAR has had maybe 5 drinks with Hawkeye over the years, so he wasn't a total tea totaler.
lmahabhashyam 51 months ago
Radar had played angry before when he felt Hawkeye had let everyone down because he left the O.R and when he had bought shoes with lifts because he was tired of being called little. Playing it angry was well done he after all was battling the inner conflict of ties to his mother and having the responsibility of being the man of the house, and his ties to his unit having to train someone who if supples did arrive on time lives could be lost. However the fact that he didn’t have his hat on showed that the actor was much older then the part he played and the perm really didn’t look good and definitely not in a M*A*S*H unit.
madmark1 52 months ago
well the reason Radar I think in the last episode that he was in seemed angry is pretty simple.War had hardened him and I think the people that produced MASH wanted to get that point across that war can make a person grow up rather quick. he entered Korea as a naïve kid and he left Korea a man because of all the horrific things he seen from war. I think that was the point that that particular episode was trying to make.
OldTVfanatic 52 months ago
My guess about Burghoff’s mercurial approach to Radar in his final appearance was that he’d been suffering from depression caused by personal issues, and Gary allowed that depression and anger to seep onto the set. I read that during the fourth season of MASH, Gary was getting burned out and struggling to keep his family life together all while working on such a monumental show that was the juggernaut MASH.
HerbF OldTVfanatic 47 months ago
It was around 4th season where Gary renegotiate his contract to only appear in 13 episodes per season - that's why we start seeing episodes without RADAR.
RedSamRackham OldTVfanatic 42 months ago
* He'd been RADAR since original M*A*S*H movie & perhaps was typecast by the time he left the TV series. But his character's love of animals was real and he did a PBS pet-care show! ☺
OldTVfanatic RedSamRackham 42 months ago
Yeah, I remember that show.
ndebrabant 52 months ago
To all you saying there were reason's for him to play it angry, in my humble opinion, he played it too angry. Actually, I always felt they had Radar too innocent throughout the series. I could have understood had they let him grow a little as the series went on. He went from a "teddy bear" type to an angry person within an episode. I actually preferred the "Radar" of the movie who was a sharp hustler type always being able to get things done.
JanineRandall ndebrabant 47 months ago
There were a few episodes in the first season where Radar played it that way. For whatever reason, he went from hustler to innocent clerk in one or two episodes.
RandallHamm 52 months ago
Also, Radar had a perm ?
OldTVfanatic RandallHamm 52 months ago
Not so much a perm as a rapidly receding hairline.
bigjimbroni 52 months ago
Johnny Haymer left the show due to an illness. he later died while M*A*S*H was still on. G.W. Bailey took his place as Sergeant Rizzo.
OldTVfanatic bigjimbroni 52 months ago
Johnny Haymer died in late 1989, almost seven years after MASH left the air.
rycki1138 bigjimbroni 37 months ago
Johnny Haymer went on to do Madame's Place a few years later and he worked on other projects right up until he died in 1989, years after MASH went off the air.
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