M*A*S*H Episode Review: Divided We Stand (1973)

by StevenHelmer

A review of the M*A*S*H episode that first aired in September 1973.

Synopsis: The members of the 4077th do their best to impress a visiting psychiatrist charged with evaluating the team. When the psychiatrist sees through their ruse and is unimpressed with their behavior, the 4077th runs the risk of being broken up with the doctors and nurses being sent their separate ways.

Review

I had roughly a half hour before I needed to take my daughter to her skating lesson last night so, while I was eating some dinner, I ended up watching this M*A*S*H episode.

It's not the first time I had seen this particular episode. However, it had been a while and I didn't remember too much about it. After seeing it, while I wouldn't necessarily describe it as a bad episode, it definitely isn't on my list of favorites from this series.

On the surface, the description makes this sound like it would be a fun episode with some drama/suspense relating to whether or not they would be broken up by the visiting psychiatrist (Anthony Holland). But, unfortunately, I don't think this episode really lives up to its promise.

I think the biggest problem with this episode is it is way too predictable. Since the 4077th's whole plan is to pretend to like and be best buddies with each other, it's pretty obvious it would eventually fail, especially since Major Burns (Larry Linville) wasn't really living up to his end of the deal from the start. And, as a result of that, it came as no surprise when things fell apart right in front of the guy who was evaluating them.

The twist at the end, with him wanting to break them up only to change his mind when he sees them working in the operating room, also wasn't much of a surprise considering that plot twist has been used, in some shape or form in other episodes from the series. In other words, it (maybe) could have been a surprise twist when the show was new. But, if you've seen enough episodes, it's really not anything that wasn't done before.

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Final Opinion

The episode does have some funny moments. But, the overall plot is a bit too predictable for this installment to reach a level where I would consider it memorable. It's average, at best.

My Grade: C

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Updated: 12/12/2017, StevenHelmer
 
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StevenHelmer on 12/13/2017

I'm still writing them but the majority have been moved to my blog - www.stevenhelmerpublications.com

dustytoes on 12/13/2017

I love MASH and still watch the old episodes. I don't recall this one, but I'm sure I've seen it. I've missed reading your reviews.

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