As the 11th season of M*A*S*H* got under way in the fall of 1982, everyone involved with the series knew it would be their last (the program had already lasted eight years longer than the actual Korean War!) Looking back, the cast and crew could take pride in the series' many accomplishments, not least of which was its making palatable and entertaining a number of hot-button issues that had previously been verboten on American network television. The series had also come a long way from its zany, iconoclastic, hit-or-miss "anything for a laugh" origins, maturing into a thoroughly credible blend of comedy, drama and tragedy (its credibility enhanced by the decision to complete eliminate a canned laughtrack), with fully rounded, three-dimensional characterizations. The fact that the series had managed to win eleven Emmy awards further served to enhance the participants' sense of achievement. Viewers were honestly saddened that their favorite series, which had long since transcended the boundaries of standard sitcomery to become a national institution, would cease production at the end of season 11. Perhaps because the faithful fans were determined to savor every final moment of the series' existence, M*A*S*H was propelled from the ninth most popular TV program of 1981-82 to number three in 1982-83, with the now-legendary 2 1/2 hour finale, "Goodbye, Farewell, and Amen, being seen by the largest audience ever to watch a single TV episode. Although this landmark episode would bring M*A*S*H to a poignant close, it was not quite the end of the story. Debuting September 26, 1983, the CBS sitcom AfterMASH detailed the further adventure of several M*A*S*H regulars, all hired by a Missouri VA hospital upon the Korean cease-fire. Carryovers from the original M*A*S*H included Harry Morgan as Sherman Potter, Jamie Farr as Max Klinger, William Christopher as Father Mulcahy, and a character that had been introduced in the penultimate M*A*S*H episode "As Time Goes By, Klinger's Korean-born wife Soon-Lee, played by Rosalind Chao. Suffering the ignominous fate of most such spinoffs, AfterMASH failed to live up to the standards of its distinguished predecessor, and was cancelled after only a season and a half on the air.