Lynette Mettey played four different nurses on M*A*S*H

She was Baker, Able, Griffin and Anderson. Phew!

"The General Flipped at Dawn" might confuse newcomers to M*A*S*H upon first viewing. The season three premiere lightly spoofed the 1970 Academy Award sweeping military drama Patton. It also introduced Harry Morgan to the 4077th — as an entirely different character.

Before you say, "Horse hockey," remember that Morgan's beloved character Col. Potter was not introduced until the following year, in the opening of season four. "The General Flipped at Dawn" featured Morgan as the visiting Major General Bartford Hamilton Steele, giving fans the rare chance of seeing Morgan and his predecessor McLean Stevenson (Henry Blake) together.

But this is not the only instance of double casting in "The General Flipped at Dawn." There is a much more confusing case of quadruple casting here. Well, double-quadruple casting, really. Scratching your head? Let us explain.

This episode also co-stars Lynette Mettey as Nurse Baker. You can see her in a scene with Hawkeye above in the lower right. Mettey was the second of four actresses to play Lt. Baker (the others being, in order, Patricia Stevens, Bobbie Mitchell and Jan Jorden). 

Additionally, Lt. Baker was just one of four nurses that Mettey portrayed in on M*A*S*H. That's what we meant by the whole double-quadruple thing.

Eagle-eyed fans would have recognized her as Lt. Nancy Griffin from season one. That character popped up in three episodes, making her debut in "Sometimes You Hear the Bullet," wherein she shares a martini and some cuddling with Hawkeye. A year later, Mettey turned up in "Carry On, Hawkeye," playing Lt. Sheila Anderson. Knowing that viewers might be confused, the writers had the character announce her full name and rank, just to hammer home that this was not Lt. Griffin, despite being identical. 

"You look new," Hawkeye tells her. "Only one owner," she says.

Finally, after she played Nurse Baker, Mettey made one final guest appearance as Nurse Able in "Some 38th Parallels." Hawkeye, ever the ladies' man, stuffs an Oreo in her mouth, as you can see up top.

Now, to make things extra confusing, M*A*S*H featured nine — yes, nine — different actresses as "Nurse Able" over the course of the series, most notably Judy Farrell, wife of Mike Farrell (B.J. Hunnicutt). 

So you are excused if you've ever come down with a case of déjà vu or nurse confusion.

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2Old2Boogie 20 months ago
There were at least 5 actresses who played Lt. Baker. One was Gwen Farrell in Season 3, Episode 6. She was the black nurse Radar questioned to get close to Mary Kay Place's character.
JohnGibbons 23 months ago
Surprised the “beat your feet on the Mississippi mud” sequence and references to “darkies” is still airing what with the woke and pc crazies out there.
TheDavBow3 43 months ago
Whenever I'd see her on TV back then when I was a kid, I'd get her mixed up with Barbara Eden 😉😊
WordsmithWorks 44 months ago
Except for Margaret, Nurse Kellye, Nurse Bigelow and maybe Lt. Dish, the nurses names really didn't matter.
You left out Nurse Margie Cutler in 6 M*A*S*H episodes (1972-73), marvelously played by the late Marcia Strassman, who later played Julie Kotter on "Welcome Back Kotter" (1975-79). She died at only 66 from breast cancer in Oct. 2014.
LadyJaneFromParis 44 months ago
No matter the name of her character in M*A*S*H, she was a delightful addition to those episodes. Her intelligence, her beauty, and her sense of humor in her scenes with Hawkeye showed that her characters were handling the horrors and the surreal nature of war with grace and understanding. I think of her, as well, as Lt. Kojak's love interest in an episode of "Kojak". I thought she was in more than 2 episodes, and I did look up her TV credits, but -- she was in only two, playing two different characters. Thanks, MeTV, for this article !
MarkSpeck 44 months ago
Lynette Mettey also played Quincy's girlfriend Lee in the earliest episodes of that series.
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DebbieCohorst 44 months ago
She always reminded me of a blonde Mary Tyler Moore.
44 months ago
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AgingDisgracefully 44 months ago
I'm pretty sure she's in The Fabulous Babe Hall of Fame.
romanmoll 44 months ago
My parents watched MASH when I was a kid, which meant I watched it too, although I didn't fully understand it. It disappeared after the the 1983 series finale, still the most watched TV episode in history. Then it came back on TV when I was in my early 20's and I remembered a lot of the episodes. Then it started showing up on different channels and I always watched when I could. I realized I had become a super fan of one of the most ground breaking shows in it's time. Fast forward to now, I'm 49 years old, and I can say it's my all time favorite TV show followed closely by Breaking Bad and The Sopranos. MASH is always on somewhere, I remember a few years ago it came on four times a day on four different channels. My point is I love MASH and always will. I hope I could meet one or all of the five remaining major cast members some time. Since I'm basically a life long fan of the show, I can honestly say whenever I have it on, MASH brings me comfort, a life long friend. I hope Alan, Loretta, Mike, Gary, and Jamie have lots of life left.
Hogansucks1 romanmoll 44 months ago
‘Damn good Joe’
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Kenner 44 months ago
And happily she’s still with us at age 77!😀
Kenner 44 months ago
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Wilbur88 44 months ago
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Hogansucks1 HalPritzker 44 months ago
RODNEY ? Welcome back !!! 😆
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