The shot of Nellie running away from the crab is actually that of a stunt double. Alison Arngrim was going to try this shot on her own, but Michael Landon liked the stunt double's job, so he left it in. Arngrim did many of her own stunts later in the series, though.
In the scene where Mary runs to the creek to get Laura to come back to the house with her after Laura messes with the crab, Mary's hair is down, but when Laura and Mary enter their house, she has it pinned back.
"I don't play with dolls. I play in the creek," Laura tells Nellie when she asks her where her dolls are. While it's true that Laura was more of a tomboy than a girlie girl, there were episodes where she had dolls and treasured them, like in Season 1's The Raccoon and Season 4's Freedom Flight. Then, in Season 3's The Music Box, Laura longed for a doll for her birthday, so this comment from her doesn't make much sense.
Reply: This comment makes more sense when you realize that Laura is possibly just lying to cover up the fact that she either doesn't have a doll, or it's a rag doll, not a china doll, and she's embarrassed about it.
Goof: Charles tells Laura he's making a special horse shoe for Patty, but he traded Pet and Patty for the yoke of oxen in A Harvest of Friends, then traded the oxen for a team of 8-year-old horses in 100 Mile Walk. Obviously, the writers were way off here.
Notice the look on Mary's face when Caroline says that she is making apple fritters. Laura says she likes them, and Mary reluctantly says "Me, too," although she looks absolutely repulsed. I'm not sure if this was intentional or not, but it's very obvious. But in the next scene, Mary is eating them without a problem.
Notice how much calmer and less cruel Mrs. Oleson is in this episode, particularly during Nellie's party scene with her doll. Mrs. Oleson is gently reminding her kids not to be rude, and when the doll's dress is ripped, she is much more calmer when talking to Laura about it. She says in a slightly annoyed voice, "You really should take care of things that don't belong to you," but in later seasons, Mrs. Oleson would have been shamelessly nasty toward Laura if such a situation arose, and she almost definitely would have made a big fuss, insisting that Laura's parents pay for a new doll dress. The character was definitely brought up several notches as the show progressed.
Nellie and Laura have some of their best fights in the water. Laura's sneakiness causes Nellie to fall in the creek in this episode, and 5 years later, in Season 6, they have their classic "mud and water" fight.
Look closely when Nellie falls face-first in the creek and they do a close-up on her face. She is supposed to be angry and pouting, but you can totally tell how hard she is trying not to laugh.
Mrs. Nordstrom: Mr. Ingalls, my son is not like you think. He loves Olga very much. The two of them were always close. Only since the death of Olga's mother.....
Charles: Well, your son isn't the easiest person in the world to talk to, Mrs. Nordstrom, but I guess that explains some of it.
Mrs. Nordstrom: He would like to put a wall around Olga so she cannot be hurt. (pauses) But that would be wrong, because she would have no one when we are gone.
Olga: (about Nellie) No, I mean, it's good of you to invite her. It'll be good for her to come. Poor Nellie.
Mary: Poor? The Olesons? They're the richest folks in town!
Olga: Nellie is poor. She has no happiness inside.
Mary: You know, that's a strange thing to say.
Olga: My grandma says you can tell what's inside a person by the face they wear.
Mary: I guess. I never thought of Nellie that way, I mean, being poor and all. It kind of makes me feel sorry for her......almost.
Caroline: I ran into Mrs. Oleson this morning, and she invited you both to Nellie's birthday party.
Laura: Do we have to go?
Laura: Well, you know how Nellie is.
Caroline: I know that she was kind enough to invite you to her party. How would you feel if you were the only one not invited?
Laura: Worse than being invited.......I guess.
Caroline: (to Mary and Laura) I have a surprise for you two. You're going to a party.
Mary: We are?
Mary: You mean a real one?
Charles: I guess what I'm trying to say, Mr. Nordstrom, is that I'd like your permission to work on one of Olga's shoes.
Jon: You have a miracle in your body, huh?
Charles: No, no, sir, I told you this was gonna sound awkward, but I think that if I could work--
Jon: Olga was born crippled. She knows that. We accept it. So does she.
Laura: What makes cripples?
Charles: Well, accidents, mostly.
Laura: Not that kind. I mean like being born cripped, like Olga. Her legs don't match. One is shorter than the other.
Charles: That doesn't seem fair, does it?
Laura: No sir, it sure doesn't.
Charles: Well, I'll tell you, Half-Pint, I don't think I have an answer for your question that will satisfy either of us. Some people are just born that way. I don't know why, I don't think anyone else does either. But I do know that God seems to give everyone a special gift.
Laura: Is gumption a gift?
Charles: Sure it is.
Laura: I'm sure Olga has gumption.
Charles: And from what you've told us, it seems she has a pretty big heart, too.
Laura: And a heart's more important than a leg, right Pa?
Charles: Way more important.
Filming Locations: Filmed at Big Sky Ranch, Simi Valley and Paramount Studios, Hollywood, California.
Kim Richards (Olga) is the real-life older sister of Kyle Richards, who played Alicia Sanderson-Edwards on the series. Both girls grew up to be the aunts of Paris Hilton. Kim and Kyle were 16 and 12 when Paris was born, and she has said that they are almost like big sisters to her.
This series did not normally follow Laura Ingalls Wilder's original books very closely, but this particular episode is taken from a chapter in the book On the Banks of Plum Creek, from a chapter entitled Town Party, Country Party. Olga's storyline is fictional, but the events surrounding Nellie's birthday party, as well as the party that Laura and Mary had after that, really did happen in Laura Ingalls Wilder's book.
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