Little House on the Prairie

Season 2 Episode 17

Troublemaker

1
Aired Wednesday 12:00 AM Feb 25, 1976 on NBC
8.5
out of 10
User Rating
69 votes
3

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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Miss Beadle is asked to resign when she is unable to handle certain students. The school board hires a man in her place with rigid ideas of discipline.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • There is no doubt about Miss Beadle's excellence as a teacher, but when she has trouble controlling some of the older, bigger boys in the school, the Board decide to replace her with a male teacher instead.moreless

    9.0
    It's very hard to teach when several of your older male students are deliberately being disruptive, as Miss Beadle soon finds out, to her cost. When it is found that some of the bigger boys are out of control, the School Board, regretfully, decide that Miss Beadle will have to be replaced by a male teacher who will be able to deal with the issue.



    Mr. Applewood turns out to be a very strict disciplinarian indeed. Even young Laura finds herself getting into trouble for minor infractions of the rules. When Charles finds out, he approaches the teacher, who manages to smooth it all over, and, as a result, will not listen when Laura says that things haven't changed. Mr. Applewood, however, soon oversteps the mark completely and it isn't long before Miss Beadle is reinstated.moreless
  • Seems like Walnut Grove's new teacher has a serious anger management issue.

    8.9
    When sweet Miss Beadle can't handle the flood of testosterone that's invaded her schoolroom when the older boys return from harvest, the school board votes to oust her in favor of a male who can get the job done. Little do they realize that their new hire has a serious anger management problem, which manifests itself in an outpouring of rage on unsuspecting and unoffending Half Pint. Harriet meddles in the mix and escalates the already unfortunate series of events by putting the idea in Mr. Applewood's – the new teacher – head that Laura used to be the teacher's pet.



    An episode that stands out in my mind from the time I was a kid, this season two treat is Little House at its best, with the Olson and Ingalls kids getting into it physically, tension when the scary new teacher arrives, and hilarity when Applewood fails to incite fear into the older boys.moreless
  • Another excellent episode from Season Two.

    8.2
    Another excellent episode from Season Two. After a series of practical jokes by classmates, Ms. Beadle resigns from the school. The school board determines a male teacher would be better suited for the class. Hannibal Applewood arrives the following week, and on recommendation from the Olesons, proceeds to torment Laura as much as possible, even suspending her from class for something she didn't do. When Charles realizes Applewood's true nature, he has Mary and Laura go to school without their homework intentionally so he can catch the mean teacher in the act. But the true "troublemaker" of the episode's title turns out to be two older students who caused the trouble in the first place. Eventually, Applewood is driven out of Walnut Grove by the Town Council..

    moreless
Melissa Gilbert

Melissa Gilbert

Laura Elizabeth Ingalls/Wilder

Melissa Sue Anderson

Melissa Sue Anderson

Mary Amelia Ingalls/Kendall (1974 - 1981)

Richard Bull

Richard Bull

Nels Oleson

Karl Swenson

Karl Swenson

Mr. Lars Hanson (1974 - 1978)

Charlotte Stewart

Charlotte Stewart

Miss Eva Beadle/Mrs. Simms (1974 - 1978)

Michael Landon

Michael Landon

Charles Ingalls (1974 - 1982)

Richard Basehart

Richard Basehart

Hannibal Applewood

Guest Star

Jack McCulloch

Jack McCulloch

George Jackson

Guest Star

Sean Kelly

Sean Kelly

Sven Jacobsen

Guest Star

Alison Arngrim

Alison Arngrim

Nellie Oleson

Recurring Role

Jonathan Gilbert

Jonathan Gilbert

Willie Oleson

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (7)

    • The actor who plays Herman also plays Etta Plum's fiance in the Season 10 movie Look Back to Yesterday.

    • It is interesting to note that despite her troubles with Mr. Applewood, Laura laughs freely and uproariously along with the rest of the class when he is mocked by Herman, and she laughs again later when his bag is ruined with ink. You'd think she would keep her mouth shut to avoid incurring his wrath further.

    • Early in the episode, Miss Beadle tells Charles that Laura needs to work a little harder on her fractions. However, on a progress report from Miss Beadle at the end, it says that Laura has shown "exceptional effort" with her mathematics. It is heavily implied that this report was written before Miss Beadle got fired, so this seems very contradictory. "Exceptional effort" means that there is very little need for improvement, and yet earlier in the episode, Miss Beadle claimed that Laura needed to try harder.

    • In this episode, Mary gets right in Nellie's face and threatens to slap her. Needless to say, sweet little Mary didn't lose her cool like this too often, so it's really something to see!

    • When Nellie is tormenting Laura, Mary says to her, "You say that again, and I'll slap your face!" Laura said the exact same line to Christy Kennedy in Season 1's The Voice of Tinker Jones, when the two girls were arguing about their fathers.

    • When Laura is walking home from school after being expelled, notice how thick and foggy the sky is. It wasn't that way when the children were playing outside a few scenes earlier. You can tell that this little scene with Laura and Pa was probably shot very early in the morning.

    • When Charles shows Mr. Applewood a progress report that Miss Beadle filled out about Laura, Mr. Applewood dismisses the positive remarks on it, claiming that Miss Beadle only wrote them so she could get her job back. But if she did that progress report before Mr. Applewood even started teaching, how is that possible?

  • QUOTES (5)

    • Nellie: It's all Laura Ingalls' fault.
      Mary: You say that again, and I'll slap your face!
      Nellie: If you try, then I'll pull your hair out by the roots!

    • Mr. Applewood: (after whipping Herman) That'll teach you to be late for school.
      Herman: It taught me that you can't hit hard enough to tickle.

    • Mr. Applewood: (when Charles shows up while he is preparing to whip Laura) Mr. Ingalls, what brings you here?
      Charles: My daughter forgot her homework. Mary, Laura, I want you to go home.
      Mr. Applewood: You caught me at an awkward time. I was in the middle of a little classroom problem.
      Charles: I heard your little "problem" all the way down the street.

    • Mr. Applewood: Mr. Ingalls, I will not have you disrupting me while I am teaching. If you want to see me, I'll be here after school.
      Charles: Oh, I'll be here, Mr. Applewood, and so will the school board.
      Mr. Applewood: Yeah. Every parent who has a problem child wants to call an immediate meeting of the school board!
      Charles: Mr. Applewood, I think the teacher is the problem.
      Mr. Applewood: How dare you-- (Charles grabs him and slams him against the door, then stops)
      Charles: You owe my wife a thank-you. She asked me to be nice to you.

    • Charles: (about Laura, during school board meeting) Mr. Applewood, why is my daughter failing?
      Mr. Applewood: Mr. Ingalls, I hardly think this is the time or place to go into your daughter's grades.
      Charles: But there must be a reason.
      Mr. Applewood: Yes. Some children just do not do as well as others.
      Charles: I have a portfolio here from Ms. Beadle with some papers and a progress report on my daughter. Would you look at it, please?
      Mr. Applewood: I see no need. I'm only concerned with how your daughter has done since I've been her teacher.
      Charles: Well, so am I, Mr. Applewood, very concerned, because I'm just trying to figure out how my little girl could go from above average grades to failure.

  • NOTES (3)

    • Filming Locations: Filmed at Big Sky Ranch, Simi Valley and Paramount Studios, Hollywood, California.

    • Richard Basehart, who guest starred as Mr. Applewood in this episode, was known on TV for being the Admiral in Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea.

    • This is one of Charlotte Stewart (Miss Beadle)'s favorite episodes, although she has said that it's tough for her to pick just one favorite.

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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