Catch-22 Season 1 Episode 1 Recap
Thanks to George Clooney and Hulu, Catch-22, the classic Heller satire is now a mini-series, with all six episodes available to stream. The series follows a group of World War II US Army air soldiers, who are subject to absurd rules. We’re recapping all six episodes of the mini-series, starting with Catch-22 Season 1 Episode 1, which opened with a flash forward of Yossarian screaming while naked with blood on his face.
Flight Training School
At the Santa Ana Army Air Base, we’re introduced to the core group: YoYo (Yossarian), Clevinger, Dunbar, Kid Sampson, McWatt, Nately, Major Major, Aarfy, and Orr. Scheisskopf berated the group on their marching techniques. Clevinger offered a suggestion of allowing them to practice in smaller groups, which got him and Yossarian into trouble. YoYo and Clevinger had to walk in a circle in the sun while carrying heavy buckets.
YoYo confessed to Scheisskopf’s wife Marion, whom he’d been sleeping with, that he chose to be a bombardier because it required more training and he figured he could wait it out. Even before shipping out, Yossarian tried avoiding his duties and pretended his appendix hurt to get out of marching in a parade. Doc Daneeka told him he should’ve complained about his liver and didn’t excuse him. The parade was going well up until Clevinger fainted. YoYo and Clevinger were back to lugging buckets in a circle.
Two months later, YoYo and the rest of his class were stationed in Italy on Pianosa. They needed to fly 25 missions before going home. YoYo had 9 left after a successful mission. Back at YoYo and Orr’s tent, they’re introduced to Henry Mudd, their new bunkmate. Milo Minderbinder arrived with a case full of Hershey’s chocolate bars. He let each of them take a few before going off to sell them.
Mudd headed for the administration tent to check in. YoYo gave him directions but mistakenly led him to the briefing tent. Being meek and quiet, Mudd goes along with orders to join a mission. At dinner, Orr told YoYo that Mudd’s plane went down. He died even before he could unpack his bag.
YoYo again tried to fake being sick and claimed it was his liver. Doc Daneeka remembered Yossarian. Again, he didn’t excuse him. Doc advised YoYo to just keep going since he was only 9 missions away from the quota. During the next mission, Dunbar’s plane was hit, launching him onto YoYo’s bomber. Dunbar briefly looked at Yossarian through the windshield and fell to his death.
The mission traumatized YoYo, and what’s worse, Col. Cathcart announced that they’re moving the quota up to 30 missions. Yossarian asked Daneeka to be grounded because he was crazy. Daneeka explained to him the Catch-22 rule. He could ground soldiers for being crazy, but they needed to ask to be grounded. But if they asked to be grounded then it proved that they are sane, so they needed to fly.
Mess Hall Officer
Major de Coverly was disgusted with the food served in the mess hall, and Minderbinder saw an opportunity. He brought de Coverly a plate of lamb chops for which he’d been able to negotiate. In exchange for the lamb chops, his contact wanted olives. Minderbinder successfully convinced de Coverly to appoint him mess hall officer, so he could keep the lamb chops coming.
What did you think of the first episode of Catch-22? Let us know in the comment section below!