Season 1 Episode 17 – The Squad

Directed: Herman Hoffman
Written: Harry Brown
Released: 29 Jan 1963

This episode was a lighthearted affair. Involving a new replacement Private Moseby Lovelace that joins the outfit.

Right after he joins, the first thing he wants to know are where all the southern boys in the outfit. He starts off with Georgia then works his way around the southern states.

Moseby arrives at the squad wearing a brand new pair of Army issued combat boots. He says that it’s the best thing the Army gave him next to his rifle. He continuously rebuffs Sgt. Saunders’ offer to buy it off of him, the price going as high as $60. His reason was that if his grandpa could see him now, he would turn over in his grave knowing that his kin was in the Yankee Army. But if he was to sell his boots to a Yankee, he would roar right out of his grave and kick him bowlegged.

Moseby boots
Pvt Moseby Lovelace’s brand new boots that Saunders offered him $60 bucks for

This guy is full of southern sayings and platitudes. He’ll say something to the effect of how he was sent there to kill Germans and how the draft board expects that of him. He would be pretty surprised to find out that the draft board could care less that he was an infantryman or not and was actually killing Germans.

This episode also has Shecky Green as Braddock. Also, I noticed that Sgt. Saunders wasn’t wearing his trademark camouflaged helmet cover and was using a M1 Carbine instead of his Tommy gun.

They move out to a position previously occupied by I Company. While the rest of the squad are digging foxholes, Moseby lectures Saunders on how he was sent there to “fight” and not to be digging foxholes. Saunders has to tell him off for referring to the Army as a “Yankee” Army and not the U.S. Army.

Moseby not digging foxhole
Moseby sharpening his knife and lecturing Saunders on how southern boys get up to fight and not hunker down in a foxhole

I’m a bit surprised that they used a script like this after only a few episodes into the series. This wasn’t exactly what you would call a very strong script. You could always identify when a comedic scene will come up with either Moseby or Braddock by the goofy music that they start playing. For Braddock, it was always using a bass heavy goofy song and for Moseby a country ditty.

Saunders gets a patrol together to see how far the  Germans have pushed back their lines. Moseby eagerly volunteers to go on the patrol. Saunders also chooses Braddock (because he needs the exercise), Wolinski, Reichar because he’s a German speaker.

Patrol Turkey Shoot
Moseby asks Saunders what the patrol is like. Saunders says it’s like a Turkey Shoot in Georgia, only they’re the Turkey

While out on patrol, they are crossing a river. Moseby stops to take his boots off so as not to get them wet. He gets told off by Saunders for it.

They find out the German positions and come back across the river. Moseby, once again, stops to take his boots off. In the meantime, the squad has gone on ahead and Moseby hears them come under machine gun fire.

This is where he gets really excited. He sneaks up behind the German machine gun position and first takes out the German that they sent to flank the squad. He then picks up the German’s MP-40 and use it on the other 2 machine gunners.

After Hanley tells him “good job”, he says that he has to go back and get his boots which he left behind at the “crick back there”, meaning the river that they had just crossed. Hanley gives him 5 minutes to go fetch his boots and return.

Before he could get back to the river though, some German Engineers who had been laying mines come across his boots lying on the far bank where Moseby left them. They leave the boots out as a trap and wait for whoever comes back to retrieve them. They sent one German across the river to guard the near side.

Moseby fires MP-40 into river
Moseby fires MP-40 into river convincing the Germans to surrender

Moseby uses the clicker to lure the German back into the bushes and then he points the MP-40 right at his head. He tells the German “Raus! Ah said ‘Raus’ Y’all!” He makes the German stand on his side of the bank and commands the 3 Germans on the other side to surrender and then to bring his boots across the river to him. Before he does that, he kills one German that took a shot at him.

He brings back the 4 Germans to their lines, however, they have to cross a mine field that they had just planted. Moseby makes them walk across the field reasoning that they’re the ones that planted the mines, they should know where they’re located.

Next thing we hear an explosion and Braddock identifies it as a “Bouncing Betty”, a anti-personnel mine that will bounce up and cut a man at the waist.

Moseby then shows up to where the guys are dug in with the prisoners. He tells Saunders and Hanley that he started off with 4 of them but “one feller stepped on a mine and the other feller got involved in it.”

Moseby was excited when he found out about a couple of boys from Biloxi being in B Company which he intends to visit. So the only thing according to Moseby to be a decent human being is being from the south of the Mason Dixon line.

Sgt. Saunders or Hanley doesn’t kill any Germans but Moseby kills 4 and 2 of them got killed by mines.

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