I consider it one of my finest parenting accomplishments in recent memory that my kids have begun picking their favorite M*A*S*H episodes. Specifically, “Dear Sigmund” (they find Hunnicutt’s “air raid” prank on Major Burns hilarious, as they should) and “Hawkeye Get Your Gun” (they get a kick out of Hawkeye’s goofily ambivalent gun-handling).
Up until now, we’ve mainly watched M*A*S*H’s sillier and more humorous episodes, but I think it’s time to introduce them to some of the series’ heavier ones, such as “The Interview,” “Death Takes a Holiday” and “Follies of the Living-Concerns of the Dead.” (Despite being one of the series’ most unique and fascinating episodes, I might hold off on “Dreams” for awhile, though; it gets pretty disturbing in places.)
M*A*S*H could get pretty preachy and heavy-handed at times, especially in its more serious and dramatic episodes, but M*A*S*H at its preachiest is still better than approximately 90% of everything else out there.
Related: Several years ago, I wrote a Christ and Pop Culture article about M*A*S*H and its treatment of faith and spirituality as seen in the character of Father Mulcahy.