Mike, one of a carpenter's four children, was only two years old when he moved with his family to Los Angeles after his father was offered a lucrative job at a movie studio. Mike caught the acting bug at an early age and was soon acting in high school plays. He briefly put acting aside for a two year stint in the U.S. Marines Corp. Then shortly after his discharge he began taking drama courses at UCLA and the Jeff Corey Workshop. He got his first big break in 1968, when he played architect Scott Banning on the NBC soap Days of Our Lives. However, he is best known for his work on M*A*S*H
Today Mike is active in many political and charitable causes, including CONCERN/America, an international refugee aid and development organization, Human Rights Watch in California, and Death Penalty Focus. He is also a member of the California State Commission on Judicial Performance. He is married to actress Shelly Fabares and has two children by screen-writer Judy Hayden; Michael Joshua, a martial arts teacher, and Erin, who works in the Los Angeles office of Jesse Jackson.