M*A*S*H episode
“The Kids”
MASH episode-4x9 Hawkeye and Klinger greet The Kids
Hawkeye and Klinger greet some of the kids from Nurse Cratty's Orphanage in "The Kids".
Season 4, Episode # 9
Number (#81) in series (256 episodes)
Guest star(s) William Christopher
Jamie Farr
Ann Doran
Kellye Nakahara
Haunani Minn
Network: CBS-TV
Production code: G-511
Writer(s) Everett Greenbaum & Jim Fritzell
Director Alan Alda
Original airdate October 31, 1975
IMDb logo IMDB The Kids
Episode chronology
← Previous Next →
"Dear Mildred" (G‑505) "Quo Vadis, Captain Chandler" (G‑513)

(broadcast order)

(broadcast order)

"Hey, Doc" (G‑510) "The Bus" (G‑512)

(production order)

(production order)

Season 4 episodes
List of all M*A*S*H episodes


The Kids was the 81st episode of the CBS-TV series M*A*S*H, and, also the ninth episode of the fourth season of the series. Written by Everett Greenbaum and Jim Fritzell, and directed by Alan Alda, it first aired on October 31, 1975.


The 4077th takes in Nurse Cratty's Korean orphans during a shelling attack, including a pregnant girl with a bullet wound. But Frank accuses one of the orphans of stealing his newly (and dubiously) awarded Purple Heart.

Full episode summaryEdit

The 4077th receives an urgent message from Nurse Cratty, who runs an orphanage thirty miles north of camp. They’re being shelled and have to evacuate, so Potter agrees to let them bunk at the 4077th.

As Hawkeye and B.J. set up extra cots in the Swamp, Frank shows up wearing his newly-arrived Purple Heart, earned when he had "shell fragments" removed after a sniper attack. The captains are infuriated and Hawkeye reminds Frank those were eggshell fragments and he suffered no real wound. Frank is unmoved, stating his record shows “shell fragments” and he’s entitled to the decoration.

Nurse Cratty arrives in camp with a truckload of young orphans. The kids are cleaned up and given physicals, and one enterprising youth gambles fifty cents off Frank, while another child is convinced Klinger is a woman.

Two kids bunk down in the Swamp, but before bedtime, Hawkeye and B.J. each tell them a story. Hawkeye tells a story of a “bad bad major” who took an award he didn’t deserve, but B.J. comes through with an utterly charming telling of Androcles and the Lion, complete with fantastic facial expressions and voices. Cratty arrives for a nightcap, worried a pregnant woman in her care has not returned from a family visit at a nearby village. (This scene is usually edited out of syndicated reruns).

She doesn’t have to wait long. The pregnant woman stumbles into camp and passes out in Klinger’s arms, suffering from a gunshot wound, courtesy of a local sniper. She’s rushed into the operating room where B.J. and Cratty perform an emergency C-section to save both mother and child. As the baby is delivered successfully, Father Mulcahy asks those gathered to pray for the mother. He notices Klinger with head bowed, and comments that he thought the corporal was an atheist. Klinger replies, "I gave it up for Lent."

The night hours have no loss of excitement: a paranoid Frank looks for children who might be stealing from him, a child prodigy entertains on the O-Club piano, and Radar sings a gentle lullaby to a slumbering child. Wounded arrive and a sniveling Frank is ordered by Potter to scrub up, so Father Mulcahy uses his boxing experience to cajole the major into the scrub room.

Later, Frank is frantic, for his Purple Heart is missing from the Swamp. Margaret helps him look, but is soon preoccupied with a peepshow of MacArthur in the nude. Frank chases the “Slicky Boy” he suspects, but B.J. corrals him and shows him where his Purple Heart went: Potter is pinning it to the blanket of the newborn boy, just as Margaret arrives and Potter asks where the Purple Heart came from. She tells Hawkeye she knows where the decoration came from, but gives a knowing grin of approval. Nurse Cratty and the kids return north next day, with one child almost absconding with Radar’s teddy bear. The whole camp gathers to give them a proper sendoff.

Fun Facts Edit

Anomaly: Colonel Potter has never met Nurse Cratty, having just arrived to the area at the same time as B.J. (who famously asks "What's a Nurse Cratty?"). Yet when Cratty and the kids arrive at the camp, Potter greets her as if they've known each other for years.

Guests/Recurring castEdit