‘M*A*S*H’: Who Did Ned Beatty Play on Classic Show?

by Joe Rutland
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Ned Beatty played in a number of memorable movie and TV roles in his career. What character did the actor play on M*A*S*H?

According to IMDb, he played Col. Hollister in a Season 4 episode called Dear Peggy.

But we’re not just leaving old Ned with a simple M*A*S*H appearance.

Beatty, who died on June 13, 2021, at 83, appeared in Deliverance, Nashville, Superman, The Toy, and Charlie Wilson’s War for movies. TV work also included Roseanne, Law & Order, and The Boys.

‘M*A*S*H’ Series Finale Had A Number of Writers Involved In The Process

Millions of people tuned into the M*A*S*H series finale, Goodbye, Farewell, and Amen.

Did you know, though, that there were a number of writers involved in the process?

Well, Outsiders, it is true.

David Pollock, who wrote the book on M*A*S*H, said producers split that finale into different chapters.

What does that mean? Well, a different writer or team focused on just that one chapter. Among the writers involved was Alan Alda, Burt Metcalfe, John Rappaport, Dan Wilcox, Thad Mumford, Elias Davis, David Pollock, and Karen Hall.

This would be the most people involved with the writing of an episode for M*A*S*H.

Alda said selecting writers for it was tough. Everyone wanted a chance to work on it.

“All the people who were writing on the show at a time wanted to take part in it,” Alda, who played Benjamin Franklin “Hawkeye” Pierce, told the Television Academy Foundation in 2000. “We worked out a system where I wrote head to head with each of them on a segment of it. I collaborated with each of them separately.”

Two Stars Of Long-Running Show Appeared In Both First, Last Episodes

While longtime M*A*S*H fans might know this answer, it’s still worth looking back on them.

Who were the two stars that appeared in both the first and last episodes?

None other than Alda and Loretta Swit, who played Maj. Margaret “Hot Lips” Houlihan.

The records indicate both Alda and Swit starred in the show’s 215-episode run. Yet there is some speculation around both the first and last episodes.

Alda and Swit got credited because editors reused footage from Season 5’s opening episode.

Yet there are some hardcore M*A*S*H fans that want to point out Gary Burghoff, who played Cpl. Walter “Radar” O’Reilly, was in a clip from the episode Bug Out Radar. Meanwhile, the Father Mulcahy character also was in the first and last shows.

But actor George Morgan played Mulcahy in the series pilot. Of course, William Christopher would play the “Padre” as Sherman Potter would respectfully call him.

Then there’s Jamie Farr, whose voice is heard in the pilot. Yes, he appears as Cpl. Maxx Klinger in the final episode. 

Outsider.com