More than twenty five years later, I wish we had done a better job of capturing Laura’s growing maturity in her transformation from girl to young woman in that arc of shows. I think we did nice job and I’ll always be proud of that work, but we could’ve told those stories much more thoroughly and I have no doubt that the audience would’ve absolutely loved it. Despite the relatively brief courtship we presented on television the audience was right there with us filling in all the blanks with their awareness of Laura’s beautifully written autobiographical story.
The above is taken from the blog of Dean Butler, whose effort and integrity continues to impress me in his quest to understand the hearts and minds of Laura fans. He embraces the books and their fans not as an opposition to the TV show, but as the catalyst behind it. He doesn’t have to dig in this way. He wants to. Finding the roots of the characters he would portray and interact with isn’t something that’s going to further his celebrity (well, not much) or land him a reality-show gig. He’s doing it because he wants to, and his honesty shows.
If you’re looking for evidence of harmony between the opposing corners of the Little House books and the TV show that was, sometimes recklessly, spun from them, you’ll find it threaded evenly through the life and work of Dean Butler.