History TearJerker / MASH

15th Jul '16 9:04:55 PM weirdfantasy
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* In "Letters", Hawkeye has a teacher friend send letters from her fourth-grade class. Two of these generate {{Tearjerker}} moments.
** Margaret's letter comes from a kid got to know the staff of a hospital he had to stay at (tonsillectomy). He asks the letter's recipient if they ever really get to know the patients as well. Margaret has a flashback to a patient who was in really good spirits and talking about things back home. She finds out that the soldiers kidneys have shut down. This is on top of knowing the man has a severed spine and lying to him about why he has no feeling in his legs. After Hawkeye and [=BJ=] tell her he probably only has a matter of hours left, Margaret returns to the soldier's bedside and continues to talk with him as if nothing's happening. Margaret's final words seals just how much it affected her.
** Charles manages to garner a little sympathy for himself. His patronizing remarks and pompous attitude to the whole idea comes to an end with one letter from a girl who sent along a bright red maple leaf. Being from New England himself, Charles is so moved by the gesture (although he tries to hide it from the other Swamp Rats) that he sets aside his tape recorder, picks up his pen, and begins writing a very heartfelt response.
25th Apr '16 2:55:02 AM Mdumas43073
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* Similarly, try ''every other time a character is on the phone with a loved one back home.'' For example, "The Late Captain Pierce", when Hawkeye finally gets to tell his dad that yes, he is still alive. Most of the conversation comes across as a very real chat about nothing in particular, and it's still one of the most amazing bits of television ever.
** Relatedly, any scene when they watch home movies sent to them by their families, especially that one scene where Blake's wife gets the little neighborhood kids to line up with a sign that says, "Miss you." (Hawkeye: "Henry, if you don't give the order to cry, I will.") Also when they're watching Radar's family and his mom mouths, "I love you", and Radar tearfully mouths back, "Mommy".
*** Anything involving Henry and his family back home is almost unbearable to watch once you've learned the character's ultimate fate. In his last episode, he's in the middle of discussing homecoming plans with his wife when the phone connection is prematurely cut off, a scene that in retrospect is one of the show's saddest moments in its own right.

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* Similarly, try ''every ''Every other time a character is on the phone with a loved one back home.'' For example, "The Late Captain Pierce", when Hawkeye finally gets to tell his dad that yes, he is still alive. Most of the conversation comes across as a very real chat about nothing in particular, and it's still one of the most amazing bits of television ever.
** * Relatedly, any scene when they watch home movies sent to them by their families, especially that one scene where Blake's wife gets the little neighborhood kids to line up with a sign that says, "Miss you." (Hawkeye: "Henry, if you don't give the order to cry, I will.") Also when they're watching Radar's family and his mom mouths, "I love you", and Radar tearfully mouths back, "Mommy".
*** ** Anything involving Henry and his family back home is almost unbearable to watch once you've learned the character's ultimate fate. In his last episode, he's in the middle of discussing homecoming plans with his wife when the phone connection is prematurely cut off, a scene that in retrospect is one of the show's saddest moments in its own right.
30th Mar '16 2:18:11 AM Mdumas43073
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** Then there's his storyline in the series finale; see below.
30th Mar '16 2:17:12 AM Mdumas43073
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* Winchester gets quite a few of these, most likely put in to help differentiate his character from that of Frank Burns, the guy he replaced. Among the most memorable is the plot in "Morale Victory" in which he convinces the concert pianist that his piano skill is not gone just because one of his hands is immobile. One of his best lines ever comes in the coda: "Each of us must dance to his own tune."
--> '''Charles:''' I can play the notes, but I cannot ''make the music''.
** The episode where Winchester meets his soul mate, a woman he quickly, desperately loves, and at the end realizes that he can't bring himself to accept her because her values clash with his family's. And yet he ''still'' loves her...
** His HeroicBSOD storyline in "The Life You Save", where he's desperate to know what it's like to die. All of it, damnit.
*** That episode was the biggest tearjerker in the entire series, as far as this troper is concerned. Watching the usually supremely aloof Winchester shed a single tear while clutching the hand of a dying soldier and begging him, like a small child, to describe what he's feeling, all because he never got over his brother's death when he was a child was absolutely heartbreaking. This also marks a Crowning Moment of Acting for David Ogden Stiers.


Added DiffLines:

* Winchester gets quite a few of these, most likely put in to help differentiate his character from that of Frank Burns, the guy he replaced. Among the most memorable is the plot in "Morale Victory" in which he convinces the concert pianist that his piano skill is not gone just because one of his hands is immobile. One of his best lines ever comes in the coda: "Each of us must dance to his own tune."
--> '''Charles:''' I can play the notes, but I cannot ''make the music''.
** The episode where Winchester meets his soul mate, a woman he quickly, desperately loves, and at the end realizes that he can't bring himself to accept her because her values clash with his family's. And yet he ''still'' loves her...
** His HeroicBSOD storyline in "The Life You Save", where he's desperate to know what it's like to die. All of it, damnit.
*** That episode was the biggest tearjerker in the entire series, as far as this troper is concerned. Watching the usually supremely aloof Winchester shed a single tear while clutching the hand of a dying soldier and begging him, like a small child, to describe what he's feeling, all because he never got over his brother's death when he was a child was absolutely heartbreaking. This also marks a Crowning Moment of Acting for David Ogden Stiers.
30th Mar '16 2:16:35 AM Mdumas43073
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* ''{{Series/MASH}}'' is frequently depressing, but the finale? Forget a kleenex, you're going to need an IV for the dehydration from crying.
** [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sYjy7uUn7fc One of the big ones]] is TheReveal of what got Hawkeye [[HeroicBSOD sent to the crazy house]] before the beginning of the final episode: that a Korean woman [[spoiler: killed a chicken she was holding because Hawkeye was hissing at her to keep it quiet so they wouldn't be caught by nearby enemy soldiers. It is then revealed that it wasn't a chicken but a baby. Hawkeye replaced the baby with a chicken because he couldn't deal with the truth.]]
--->'''Hawkeye''': [[WhamLine You son of a bitch]], why did you make me remember that?
*** According to the actors in one of the "making of" documentaries, this was TruthInTelevision many times over. Alan Alda said he had heard of this happening in two different wars, and the cast and crew had spoken to many people who had either witnessed such a thing or knew about it happening.
** A near-tearjerker is the look on Hawkeye's face when he gets back to the camp and finds out that B.J. left in the same way Trapper did - no note, no goodbye, and while he was gone. Thankfully BJ comes back, but the look of devastation on Hawkeye's face...
** And speaking of Hawkeye and BJ, their conversation in the tent where Hawkeye acknowledges that they will probably never see each other again after the war. BJ tries to mutter something about staying in touch or getting together, but he can't even look at his friend. Even if they do see each other again after the war, the relationship that they have with each other now will effectively be gone.
** As Hawkeye's helicopter takes off, he sees BJ's final message to him, spelled out in white stones: "GOODBYE".
** While the finale was a heartbreaker, the moment where peace is declared is a moment of such pure joy. The look of relief on Winchester's face and the happiness afterwards is incredibly uplifting.
** Winchester's reaction to the Chinese musicians being killed. "Those men weren't soldiers... they were ''musicians!''" The heartbreak in that line, and his subsequent smashing of the record of Mozart's Clarinet Quintet...wow.[[note]]For added significance, it was a ''red'' LP, which were even then a prestige vinyl format.[[/note]]
** When everyone is saying where and what they are going to next, most of the stories are humorous (such as Rizzo planning on selling frog's legs to French restaurants or BJ pretending that he was going to leave Peg on the spur of the moment). Then, Bigelow stands up and says that, between World War II and Korea, [[ShellShockedVeteran she's had enough of the army and just wants to go home]].
** BJ almost getting home. He had made several legs of the journey and, while on a layover waiting for his next trip, gets the message that he has to go back to the 4077 instead of home to his family.
** The fact that most of them would never see each other again, ''ever'', is very sad even if the entire reason they were lumped together in the first place (most of them unwillingly) was because of a ''war''. It was especially hard even for people like Winchester to say a final goodbye and leave. Chances are, the majority of them lived out their lives and died without ever knowing what happened to the others, as the technology we have today for instantaneous contact wouldn't come until many decades later.
*** Other than the telephone and telegraph. Most likely, those who did stay in touch were using those plus letters and postcards. Given BJ's enthusiasm for the idea of reunion parties, he quite likely staged some.


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* Then there's "[[GrandFinale Goodbye, Farewell, and Amen]]". Forget a kleenex, you're going to need an IV for the dehydration from crying.
** [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sYjy7uUn7fc One of the big ones]] is TheReveal of what got Hawkeye [[HeroicBSOD sent to the crazy house]] before the beginning of the final episode: that a Korean woman [[spoiler: killed a chicken she was holding because Hawkeye was hissing at her to keep it quiet so they wouldn't be caught by nearby enemy soldiers. It is then revealed that it wasn't a chicken but a baby. Hawkeye replaced the baby with a chicken because he couldn't deal with the truth.]]
--->'''Hawkeye''': [[WhamLine You son of a bitch]], why did you make me remember that?
*** According to the actors in one of the "making of" documentaries, this was TruthInTelevision many times over. Alan Alda said he had heard of this happening in two different wars, and the cast and crew had spoken to many people who had either witnessed such a thing or knew about it happening.
** A near-tearjerker is the look on Hawkeye's face when he gets back to the camp and finds out that B.J. left in the same way Trapper did - no note, no goodbye, and while he was gone. Thankfully BJ comes back, but the look of devastation on Hawkeye's face...
** And speaking of Hawkeye and BJ, their conversation in the tent where Hawkeye acknowledges that they will probably never see each other again after the war. BJ tries to mutter something about staying in touch or getting together, but he can't even look at his friend. Even if they do see each other again after the war, the relationship that they have with each other now will effectively be gone.
** As Hawkeye's helicopter takes off, he sees BJ's final message to him, spelled out in white stones: "GOODBYE".
** While the finale was a heartbreaker, the moment where peace is declared is a moment of such pure joy. The look of relief on Winchester's face and the happiness afterwards is incredibly uplifting.
** Winchester's reaction to the Chinese musicians being killed. "Those men weren't soldiers... they were ''musicians!''" The heartbreak in that line, and his subsequent smashing of the record of Mozart's Clarinet Quintet...wow.[[note]]For added significance, it was a ''red'' LP, which were even then a prestige vinyl format.[[/note]]
** When everyone is saying where and what they are going to next, most of the stories are humorous (such as Rizzo planning on selling frog's legs to French restaurants or BJ pretending that he was going to leave Peg on the spur of the moment). Then, Bigelow stands up and says that, between World War II and Korea, [[ShellShockedVeteran she's had enough of the army and just wants to go home]].
** BJ almost getting home. He had made several legs of the journey and, while on a layover waiting for his next trip, gets the message that he has to go back to the 4077 instead of home to his family.
** The fact that most of them would never see each other again, ''ever'', is very sad even if the entire reason they were lumped together in the first place (most of them unwillingly) was because of a ''war''. It was especially hard even for people like Winchester to say a final goodbye and leave. Chances are, the majority of them lived out their lives and died without ever knowing what happened to the others, as the technology we have today for instantaneous contact wouldn't come until many decades later.
*** Other than the telephone and telegraph. Most likely, those who did stay in touch were using those plus letters and postcards. Given BJ's enthusiasm for the idea of reunion parties, he quite likely staged some.
30th Mar '16 2:14:59 AM Mdumas43073
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** Winchester's reaction to the musicians being killed in the series finale. "Those men weren't soldiers...they were ''musicians!''" The heartbreak in that line, and his subsequent smashing of the record of Mozart's Clarinet Quintet...wow.[[note]]For added significance, it was a ''red'' LP, which were even then a prestige vinyl format.[[/note]]

to:

** Winchester's reaction to the Chinese musicians being killed in the series finale.killed. "Those men weren't soldiers... they were ''musicians!''" The heartbreak in that line, and his subsequent smashing of the record of Mozart's Clarinet Quintet...wow.[[note]]For added significance, it was a ''red'' LP, which were even then a prestige vinyl format.[[/note]]
18th Mar '16 6:10:57 PM AnotherGuy
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* "Pressure Points" has a visiting doctor flown in to explain the newly invented phosphorus-tipped bullet and how to deal with the grotesque burning damage it leaves in the body. Pierce and Hunnicutt lay on the jokes, much to Houlihan's consternation, but to their surprise it's Potter who blows his top at them, but the end of his tirade lets on that there's more than just frustration at their wisecracking:

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* "Pressure Points" has a visiting doctor flown in to [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1exdpE_Ugro explain the newly invented phosphorus-tipped bullet bullet]] and how to deal with the grotesque burning damage it leaves in the body. Pierce and Hunnicutt lay on the jokes, much to Houlihan's consternation, but to their surprise it's Potter who blows his top at them, but the end of his tirade lets on that there's more than just frustration at their wisecracking:
16th Mar '16 9:09:56 PM Mdumas43073
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-->'''Hawkeye''': The hell does that mean?

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-->'''Hawkeye''': The What the hell does that mean?
11th Mar '16 10:29:38 AM Mdumas43073
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** Subtly sad is that of all the 4077, Father Mulcahy is unmoved by her plight, because he's already seen it dozens of times - and also what ''happens'' to mixed race children if they don't find refuge.[[note]]They're often euthanized, and ostracized regardless.[[/note]]

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** Subtly sad is that of all the 4077, 4077 staff, Father Mulcahy is the one unmoved by her plight, because he's already seen it dozens of times - -- and also what ''happens'' to mixed race children if they don't find refuge.[[note]]They're often euthanized, and ostracized regardless.[[/note]]
11th Mar '16 10:28:24 AM Mdumas43073
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*** Interestingly, Potter's facial expressions and body language in that scene almost perfectly mirror Radar's own reactions when saying goodbye to Henry Blake five seasons earlier, making the scene both a Tear Jerker and a beautifully subtle ContinuityNod.

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*** Interestingly, Potter's facial expressions and body language in that scene almost perfectly mirror Radar's own reactions when saying goodbye to Henry Col. Blake five seasons earlier, making the scene both a Tear Jerker and a beautifully subtle ContinuityNod.



** The note is even sadder after the ending and the effort the characters went through to try to avoid it. The mother probably hoped that the 4077 staff would be in position to get the child placement in the US so that she wouldn't have to be left at a monastery.

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** The note is even sadder after when you realize that the ending and the effort the characters went through to try to avoid it. The mother had probably hoped that the 4077 staff would be in position to get the child placement in the US U.S. so that she it wouldn't have to be left at a monastery.monastery, and after you've seen all the effort the characters went through to try and spare it that very fate.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=TearJerker.MASH