This Milton Bradley game from the 1970s was donated to the Museum in 1991. The game is based upon the popular prime time television show which was telecast from 1973 through 1983 and continues to be seen in daytime re-runs.
M*A*S*H stands for (United States) Mobile Army Surgical Hospital. The content of the series was originally based upon a major motion picture of the same name. The motion picture was in turn based upon a novel by a physician (pseudonym Richard Hooker) who had served in a "MASH" unit during the Korean War (1950-1953).
The content of this anti-war comedy series dealt with the behind-the-lines activity in a MASH unit during the Korean War - elements of each episode were both humorous and tragic. The principal cast members were:
Captain Benjamin Franklin Pierce (Hawkeye) - Alan Alda (top picture on game box)
Major Margaret Houlihan (Hot Lips) - Loretta Swit (second picture on game box)
Captain B.J. Hunnicut - Mike Farrell (third picture on game box)
Corporal Maxwell Klinger - Jamie Farr (fourth picture on game box)
The game board (photograph on the right) repeats the pictures of the four principal characters in the television show - and these characters represent the four players in this "track" board game.
The intent of the game is to see which of the players can be the first to return to the base "hospital" with all of their helicopters.
The game is based upon the classic game of "Parcheesi". A chance device and player markers are used to represent each player's helicopters. Play starts on the "Chopper Pad" (bottom center of the board). Printed action instructions on the "track" explain the limitations which require each of the players to deviate from going directly to a "hospital".
The television series itself was so popular in the United States that it was reported that the final episode (a two-and-a-half hour presentation on September 19, 1983) was a "national event" and was seen by the largest audience ever to watch a single television program up until that time.
Last update May 29, 2010