Little House on the Prairie

Season 2 Episode 12

His Father's Son

Aired Wednesday 12:00 AM Jan 07, 1976 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (3)

Write A Review
out of 10
68 votes
  • Mr. Edwards tries to make his newly adopted son, John, more like him--with near fatal results.

    This episode tenderly explores the relationship between the grizzled, blustering Mr. Edwards, and his gentle, bookish, newly adopted son, John Junior. When John's birthday arrives, his new stepmother, Grace, fittingly presents him with books of literature and poetry. John, the budding writer, is thrilled. But when Edwards presents him with a shotgun, a horrified John barely manages to keep it together as he squeaks out a simple, "thank you". When Edwards announces that the two will go hunting that week, Grace tries privately to reason with him, to no avail. John even writes his stepfather a letter explaining his total inability to shoot another living creature, which Edwards brushes aside; unbeknownst to John, his stepfather can't read. Flash forward to the hunting trip: before the first shot can be fired, a bear tears out of the woods and savagely attacks Mr. Edwards while a terrified John stands by, frozen. As Edwards recovers, John blames himself for failing to act. The episode concludes with a father and son heart-to-heart about their love for each other, in spite of their differences.

    It's nice to watch the fine example of male bonding in this episode. I also like that the writers didn't have Mr. Edwards "blame" John for his inaction; rather, they had him fault himself for forcing the boy into an impossible situation. Viewers be warned: the bear attack, while brief, is intense, realistic and frightening and should not be viewed by younger children.
  • Poor Mr. Edwards, he really is such a decent man that it's a pity he and his newly-adopted son can't find some middle ground.

    Both Grace and Isaiah Edwards are thrilled that the three young Sanderson children have joined their family. For Mr. Edwards, in particular, having a son is wonderful and he can't wait to teach John all about hunting and fishing and other things he loves. The trouble is, young John is more interested in books and poetry and the outdoor life of his new father doesn't appeal to him. Things are very difficult for both of them, but are made far worse when Mr. Edwards insists that the boy accompany him on a hunting trip which turns out to be a very bad idea indeed.
  • It's better than most...

    John Jr. only appears in FIVE eps of LHOTP. Remember Me both parts, I'll Ride The Wind, the one with Mary in Chicago, and this one...His Father's Son. It's really covers an essence not genuninely covered until later "Little House" years and that is the essence of father/son relationships. I have viewed this episode on at least several occcasions and I never tire of it. The acting in this one probably supars other performances in this particular season (with the expection of the appearance of Richard Mulligan in a later ep). It's one of those eppys that you can view 220 thousand times and want to watch a dozen more. But be wary parents, this is a somewhat graphic episode.