I did not have a good day today. I was checking Wikipedia’s 2013 Obits when I discovered that Allan Arbus died. He was 95. He played the Psychiatrist on one of my all-time favorite programs – M*A*S*H, of which I’m a trivia expert.
I could dazzle you with my memories of him, but the one that really stands out is in the final episode of M*A*S*H – Goodbye, Farewell and Amen. It surpassed the single-episode ratings record that had been set by the Dallas episode that resolved the “Who Shot J.R.?” cliffhanger (which you wouldn’t catch me watching).
In the final episode, Hawkeye (Alan Alda) is in a mental hospital after suffering a nervous breakdown and Dr. Sidney Freedman (Allan Arbus) is there treating him. If you’ve never seen the final episode, I’m not about to ruin it for you, so you’ll have to take my word that it certainly outshines Who Shot J.R.
The link above will take you the NYTimes.com obit of Allan Arbus, and in the middle there’s a link that says … Alan Alda, who played Hawkeye, recalled Mr. Arbus as a very believable therapist. Click that link and you’ll be whisked away to a YouTube video of Alan Alda saying that it took him a while to remember that Allan Arbus was NOT a real therapist.
- Video Fridays: R.I.P., Allan “Sidney Freedman” Arbus (fishandbicycles.com)