Melissa Gilbert Once Spoke on the Last Episode of ‘Little House on the Prairie’
Actress Melissa Gilbert, best known for “Little House on the Prairie,” once shared her thoughts on the last episode of the show, including how Michael Landon blew everything up.
Melissa began her career in the entertainment business when she was just a girl, taking gigs in TV commercials. Her breakthrough, though, came in 1973 when she was cast as Laura Ingalls on “Little House on the Prairie.”
“There was no question that this would never happen again."
Melissa Gilbert after the show
Her time on the show eventually came to its end and most of the projects that the actress worked on after that were not as fruitful as the previously mentioned one.
By 2012, Melissa made headlines when it was announced that she was included in the 14th season of “Dancing with the Stars.”
She competed next to Maksim Chmerkovskiy, and, during the fourth week, they shocked the audience as the actress had to be taken to the hospital after hitting her head in the middle of their routine.
Thankfully, the accident only caused a mild concussion. The couple came back after Melissa’s recovery and stayed in the competition until the eighth week. They finished in fifth place.
As per her romantic life, she was married to actor Bo Brinkman from 1988 to 1992. Together, they have a child. In 1995, she married Bruce Boxleitner, and, a few months later, they welcomed their only son.
Nowadays, Melissa is married to actor and director Timothy Busfield. They said “I Do” in 2013 and have been together ever since.
The last episode of “Little House on the Prairie”
It consisted of a two-hour special that aired in February 1984 and was directed by Michael Landon, who also served as the main character, Charles Ingalls, throughout the show.
In the episode, a land development tycoon named Nathan Lassiter acquired title to all the land in Walnut Grove, leaving the inhabitants with little-to-no options to fight back.
After failing to win the case on legal grounds, all the people of the town, inspired by Laura Ingalls, destroyed the buildings and left to start new lives somewhere else.
Melissa on “The Last Farewell”
According to Melissa, blowing up the entire town was Michael Landon’s way of not letting anybody else use the set to shoot anything else. The only buildings that survived the last episode were the church and the little house. About seeing the town destroyed, the actress said:
“They were all of these buildings that we had all of these experiences that I grew up in and around. I laid inside on hot days if I had a cold with a fan on me. I got my first kiss behind the church – for real, in real life. I got stung by a bee. […] I learned how to ride a horse.”
After listing some of the things that she did while growing up in the set, she pointed out that watching everything destroyed was “crushingly sad” for all members of the cast and the crew.
She confessed that they even cried on the last day of shooting. While it was undoubtedly difficult for them to leave behind such a significant period of their lives, the actress admitted that having an opportunity to say goodbye was “great.” She added:
“There was no question that this would never happen again. And that it was time to move on. And it was scary, and it was sad, but it was also very freeing.”
Finally, Melissa recalled that, at the end of that day, she went back to the set once again to take a last look before leaving, and Michael was in the middle of it surrounded by all the debris.
Michael Landon’s advice to Melissa
At that point, both of them cried together, and she took the chance to tell him that she was scared. Michael told her not to be as, for her, it was just the beginning.
Melissa confessed that he didn’t make her feel any better on that day, but years later, she realized that Michael was right and that it was really just the beginning.
Nowadays, Melissa is focused on her career in the entertainment business. In April 2019, her most recent film called “When We Last Spoke” was released. In it, she portrayed Ruby, one of the main characters.
Apart from that, she made headlines in October this year by uploaded a photo posing next to Tom Cruise, whom she dated in the 1980s.