Little House on the Prairie (1974–1983): Season 5, Episode 16 - Blind Man's Bluff - full transcript

Laura Ingalls is horrified to witness the fall from a tree that blinds her friend, Jordan Harrison, while he's performing a circus stunt. But when she finds out that Jordan's sight has ...

Woman: A sugar bowl!

Man: What's wrong
with the jar we use?

Woman: I happen to prefer
my sugar in a sugar bowl,

and since you broke
the one we had...

Man: You don't care what you
spend your money on, do you?

Woman: It costs 18 cents!

Man: Which could have gone
for something we needed!

We don't need this!
Take it back.

Woman: I will not.

Ask your pa if he'd
like more coffee.

Tell your
mother, "no."

He doesn't want
any more, ma.

Tell your mother...

I'll be in the north
field come lunchtime.

Mother: Tell your father
I'm going to town.

He can get
his own lunch.

Finish your
breakfast, Jordan.


Why are you and pa
always mad at each other?

Lot of reasons.

Too many.

You might as well
know now as later.

You're old enough.

In the fall, when
the crops are in,

your pa's going
to leave us.

Well, where's he going?

It doesn't matter.
He's not coming back.


Mother: I don't
know that either.

We're going to...

We're going
to be divorced.

Do you know
what that means?


I must say,
you take it calmly.

Where are we going?

We're staying here.

He's leaving us
the farm.

You're big enough now to
handle most of the work,

and he'll send us money
whenever he can, he says.

We'll get along.

You do understand
what I'm saying, Jordan?

Yes, but why are you
getting a divorce?

Because we can't
live together.

Now, you've seen us,
and you've heard us.

Mother: Had another
fight this morning.

About a sugar bowl.

Mother: Well, it could have
been about anything, Jordan...


Now, that happens
to some people.

God alone knows why,
but it happens.

It happens.

But it was just
about a sugar bowl.

I don't want to
talk about that.

You finish
your breakfast.

I'm not hungry.

Bet you fall.

Go ahead, but I bet
you fall off.

I better not.
It's 100 feet from the ground.

It doesn't look more
than 4 feet to me.

And there's no net.

A fall could break
every bone in my body.

You wouldn't even
skin your knees.

Don't distract
the magnificent Jordan.

He's risking his life.

Ahoy, magnificent.

Do something.

All right.

The greatest thrill
of all...


Look out!

Are you all right?

I'm dead.

You sure don't sound it.

I broke every bone
in my body.

You did, if they're
all in your behind.

Laura: You been
practicing long?

Well, I'm ready.

Next time a circus comes to
mankato, I'm going to be in it.

Your folks will have
something to say about that.

No, they won't.

Why not?

They just won't,
that's all.

Where are you going?

To the blind school.

I wrote a story in braille for
Mary to read to the children.

Jordan: I'll go with you.
I'll race you.

You can't!
You're dead!

Dead or alive,
I'll beat you!

Laura: Ha ha!

We're just as proud as can be

of what you've done, darling.

Mrs. Kendall said she's never seen
anyone catch on as fast as me.

That's true,
Mrs. Herzog.

Man: Gets it from
her ma, she does.

- Laura: Beat...
- Hester-sue: Shh.

Laura: Sorry.

Hi, Mary.

I declare, Laura,
you make more noise than a team of horses.

I wrote you a story in
braille for the children.

I'll read it
later, Laura.

Hannah's parents are visiting
all the way from Minneapolis.

We want to
spend some time.

Go to
the kitchen.

I have doughnuts
for you.

Laura: Doughnuts?
I'll be in the kitchen!

That was my shy
little sister.

Ha ha!

Jordan will get first choice
as a consolation prize,

since you
came in second.

That's because I walked on
my hands part of the way.

Oh, you walked on your
hands, did you?

Well, get over there
and wash your hands good

before you touch
a doughnut.

Thank you.

That little girl...

I guess her parents don't
get to see her very often,

not if she lives
in Minneapolis.

What, Hannah?

Hester-sue: Her parents came
to see her about 3 months ago.

Well, does it bother
her not seeing them?

I mean, not having
them with her?

Well, she gets homesick,
just like all the rest.

But distance doesn't make
any difference about loving.

Hello, son.

Ma said you were
going to leave us.

I guess she figured it
was about time you knew.

Will you tell me why?

All she said was,
"it happens."

That's about the sum of
it, I guess.

That doesn't
explain anything.

Is it because we don't
have enough money?


I don't know that
it can be explained.

It's a heap
of little things...

All piled up till
they got too big.

You mean you don't
love us anymore?

I'll always love
you, Jordan.

I'll come and see you,
when I can.

If you need me,
I'll be there.

What about ma?

Jordan: Is she any
different from what she was?

It's not a matter
of... Different.

I, uh...

I don't know.

But I'll tell you
one thing...

We'll both love you
as much as now.

That won't change.

It's just...

I won't be here.

Then neither
will I.


Father: There's no
point dragging this on.

You and him will have
to manage with the crops.

The sooner I get out,
the better.

Whatever you want.

Father: I'm not
saying what I want.

I'm saying what's
best for the boy.

It's the same thing.

Father: I'll leave by
the end of the week.

What are you doing?

a tightrope.

You're going
to walk on it?

Yep, and when
I get it right,

I'm going to
join the circus

and make more money
than you ever saw.

Are you going to do a
backflip on the rope, Jordan?

I might...

After I get
the hang of walking.

What about school?

I'm not going.

You'll catch it.

I don't care.

Oh, any monkey
can walk a rope.

Come on, we're late
for school already.

Laura: I don't care
if I'm late.

I'm going to
stay and watch.

You should have put some hay
bales down here in case you fall.

I'm not planning
to fall.

Wh... whoa!




Dr. Baker!

Apparently, there are
no bones broken.

I can't tell about
internal injuries.

Why doesn't
he come to?

Open your eyes,

Look at me.

Easy, belle.
He'll come out of it.

Look at me,


Dr. Baker: He's
beginning to come around.


Oh, here I am,

Are you all right?


I'm here, son.

Your ma and I
are both here.

Don't leave me.
Don't leave me.

I can't see.

Oh, my god.

take her outside.

- Belle: He can't see us.
- Timothy: Come on, belle.

No! I don't want
to leave my son.

We'll wait

Give the doctor
a chance.

Dr. Baker: Jordan,
it's doc baker.

I'm going to
check your eyes.

Oh, pa, it's
all my fault.

If I hadn't stayed
to watch him...

Don't start
blaming yourself.

You know Jordan
was always up to

some trick
or another.

He'd have fallen whether
you were there or not.

I keep seeing
him falling.

If only he had
grabbed the rope.

All right, I don't want
you to think about it, now.

I want you
to go on home.

There's nothing we
can do for Jordan.

I'll stay here,
and I'll let you know what happens.

Come on, now,
I want you to go.

From what I've been
able to determine,

the problem is caused by
pressure on the optic nerve.

Apparently, he hit the back
of his head when he fell,

where the nerve passes
very close to the skull.

Will he stay blind?

I wish I could
answer that, belle.

There is some vision.

He can distinguish
light and dark...

Dr. Baker:
But there is impairment.

I'd like to keep him here
a while and watch him.

He has to
see again.

It's going to be
all right, Jordan.

Dr. Baker just wants
you to stay for a while.

He told me.
Are you here, pa?

I'm here.

Don't fret, now.

We'll fetch
you home

as soon as
the doc says.

But you said you
were going away.

You won't be here.

I'll be here.

You promise?

I promise.

I couldn't sleep.

I warmed up some milk.

Would you like some?

How could something
like this happen?

I don't know.

Always dreaming
about that circus.

Damn fool circus.

That circus, that
circus, that circus!

Belle, stop it,
now, stop it!

He'll be all right!
He'll see again!

We don't
know that!

He will.

I pray he does.

But if he doesn't,

he'll need us
to help him,

to give him strength.

He'll see again.

Don't say that
in front of him.

We'll make him believe
something that might not be so.



How's the boy?

No change.

It's only
been a week.

Charles, I'm not looking
for miracles like belle is.

I want Jordan to
start blind school.

That's why
I stopped by.

I wonder if you'd talk
to Mary about it for me.

Certainly, I will.

I wanted belle to talk to
her, but she wouldn't.

She... doesn't
want him to go.

Says it means
we're... Giving up.

How does Jordan
feel about it?

He says he'll do
anything we want.

He's been the brave one
through all this.

Timothy: Been in good
spirits the whole time.

Charles: Look, I'll talk to Mary, and
I'll stop by your place right after work.

Much obliged.

No problem.

Laura, you tell Carrie and
Albert to get ready for school.

I'll drive you in.

Charles: See you
kids after school.

See you, pa.


Yeah, darling?

If Jordan starts
school here,

I can help him...

Like, walk him
to school and all.

Sure. I'll ask
Mr. Harrison.

I could help him
with his schoolwork, too.

I could teach him
to use a braille writer.

Hey, now, come on.

I know you're
upset about Jordan.

I shouldn't have
let him do it.

I should have told him.

All right.
Now, that's enough.

We've been through this
before, haven't we?

It's nobody's fault.

Look, I don't mind
you helping Jordan

as a friend,
but I don't want

you helping him out of
some false sense of guilt.

Which one is it?

As a friend.

You sure?

All right.

I'll talk to
Mr. Harrison.

you get yourself on to school.

I wish you
hadn't done it.

I don't think we
have much choice.

He'll need learning,
blind or not.

But sending him
to that school...

Timothy: It makes
it seem final.

Maybe it is.

Come on.

Come on, now.

We promised we'd be strong for
him, didn't we?

Didn't we?


All right, then.

All right.

I'll go check
on the boy.


Thank you.

Give us the strength
to help him, god.

Albert: Hi, Jordan!

Laura: Hi, Jordan.

See you after
school, son.

Jordan: Okay.

Be sure and thank Laura
for helping you.

I will.
Bye, ma, pa.

- Laura: Bye.
- Belle: Bye-bye.

Mary: What is
that letter?


You're catching on
very quickly, Jordan.

It's not so hard
after all, is it?

No, ma'am.

another one.

Hester-sue: Lunchtime
in about 10 minutes.

And how is our boy,
Jordan, doing?

He's doing
just fine.

You think you're about ready
for some of my cooking?

I could eat
a horse.

Well, that's
not on the menu,

but you think you could
stand some chicken?

As long as the
feathers are off.

Mary: And thank you, lord,
for the food we are about to receive.


All: Amen.

Now, Jordan,

it's kind of like
telling time.

You'll find your
chicken at 12:00,

mashed potatoes
and gravy at 3:00,

string beans at 6:00,

and beets at 9:00.

You know what
that means?

Yes, ma'am.
Eating time.

All right, you eat.

Get ready, go!

Come on!

Oh, Mark,
you can do better than that.

Back, back,
hurry up!

You're behind.

Come on,

Catch up.

All right, get going. Get going.

Now, Jordan,
the ropes are to keep you

from bumping into
one another.

Here we go.
Come on.

There you go.


What are you...

Oh, you're
something else.

I don't want you to stop
all your stunts, honey.

Just the ones that
will hurt you, okay?

All right,

it's time to go
back to class.

Anything wrong,

I'm just resting.


Well, supper will
be ready in a bit.

Something you
and your pa both like...

Veal and ham pie.

Well, we haven't had
that in a long time.

Ha ha!
I know.

I'm enjoying
cooking, again.

- Ma?
- Mm-hmm?

You and pa are getting along good
again, ain't you?

Well, I think so.

Do you think
he'll be staying on?

For good, I mean.

Oh, I don't know.

That's something that we
haven't really talked about yet.

Why not?

I don't know.

Supper will be ready
in 5 minutes, okay?

Mrs. Kendall?

Yes, Jordan?

May I leave the room?

Certainly. Would you
like me to take you?

No, ma'am. I can
find my way easily.

All right.


Has anybody
seen Jordan?

What is it,
Ms. Terhune?

Well, he's gone.
He's wandered off.

Is Mrs. Garvey

Yeah. Do you want us to
help you look for him?

Ms. Terhune: Well, yes,
if it's all right with Mrs. Garvey.

She'll say it's
all right. Come on.

No! Don't everybody
go the same way.

Split up.
Go different directions.

You're not blind.

You're not blind!

You ought to be
ashamed of yourself!

I'm sorry, Laura.

Laura: Making everybody
think you were blind.

You made everybody
feel just awful!


I had to.

Nobody else would do
a thing like that.

What's got into
you, Jordan?

Do you realize how bad you
made your ma and pa feel?

Were you faking
all the time?

Even in the
doctor's office?

At first, I wasn't. Honest.

was blurry.

Well, why, then?


Because when I came to,

I saw my ma and pa...

And he was holding her,

and she was crying
and hanging on to him.

Well, you only
made her feel worse

by pretending
you were blind.

Jordan: No.
I made her feel better.

Pa, too.

They... they were going
to get a divorce.

They used to get
awful mad at each other.

And that was all
stopped when they

thought I was blind.

Well, that's just because they
were so worried about you.

Well, it made them
stay together,

and they get along,
so I keep on pretending.

Don't you see?

I have to.

I want to tell them,
Laura, I really do...

Only I'm scared
they'll be mad at me.

They'll go back to being
the way they were.

Pa will leave us
like he said he would.

Maybe not.

But I'm scared
to find out.

You're in a pickle, Jordan.
You really are.

I know. You won't
tell on me, will you?

Well, it's a sin to lie.

Jordan: It's not lying if
you don't say anything.

Yes, it is, sort of.

Not really.

Well, how long do you plan
to keep on pretending?

I don't know.

Laura: Well,
you've got to stop sometime.

Albert: Jordan!

Jordan, where
are you?

It's Albert.

He's been
looking for you.

Everybody in the school's
been looking for you.

Don't tell
on me, please?

All right, I won't
unless they ask me.

He's here!
I found him!

Come on.

Hey, half-pint.

What's the matter?

You look like you got the woes
of the world on your shoulders.

I've got
a problem.

Do you want to
talk about it?

Trouble is, I can't
talk about it.

Well, that is
a problem, then.

Well, it's not mine,
that's why.

I'm just sort of
mixed up in it.

Pa, is it lying if you
know about something

and you don't say
what it is?

Well, I don't know.
You got to give me a "for instance."

I can't.

Well, all I can say
is that it depends.

I mean, is not telling
hurting somebody?



Little bit
of both, huh?

Which one do you think
is the bigger of the two?

I don't know.

I wish I could
give you some advice,

but I know I can trust you
to make the right decision.

I hope so.

I'd best get
to my chores.


Well, I think we've
done enough for today.

Yeah, pa.

Let's go sit
with ma.

You getting tired, son?

Jordan: Not really.

Belle: No? Here. Here we go.


Well, got to
get to work.

Don't be gone
too late, tonight.

- All right.
- Bye, pa.


Want to help me do some
beans up for supper?


That's a boy.

Put them right in
that bucket, there.

Laura, what are you
doing over this way?

I made a batch of cookies,
so I brought some over.

Oh, how nice!

Well, I think that
calls for some lemonade

to go with
them, hmm?

Yeah. To wash
the taste out.


Well, have you
made up your mind?


I'm figuring
out a way.

Well, you got
to hurry up.

I'm just not going to go
along with it any longer.

Laura, please, just
give me till Monday.

Why not now?

It has to be Monday.

Let's have
our party inside.

It's much cooler.


- Ma?
- Yes?

It takes so long walking
me to school every morning,

I was wondering
if Laura

could lead me on
horseback starting Monday.

I don't know.

Well, you don't
have to worry.

I can sit
a horse okay.

Well, we'll ask your pa.
How's that?

- Jordan: Fine.
- Belle: Okay.

Belle: Laura?
Come on.

Yes, ma'am.

Whoa, boy.

What are you
up to, anyway?

You haven't told
them a thing.

I got a plan.

It'll work,
you'll see.

Dr. Baker said
my blindness

came from pressure back here,

and if the pressure's relieved,

well, maybe I
could see again.

Maybe if I fall on another
bump, it would do it.

You're going to fall
off the horse?

Jordan, that's the meanest,
rottenest, cheatingest thing

I've ever heard of,
and I won't have anything to do with it.

Laura, please.

Well, you just got to tell them
straight out that you been faking.

I can't.

Well, I'm not going to let you
pile one fake on top of another.

I'm just going to
tell them myself.

Laura, please!

All right,
you went ahead and did it, anyway,

but it's not going
to do any good.

I'm still
going to tell.

Do you hear me?

Jordan Harrison,
you get up off that ground this minute.

Laura: I've had about all the
faking I'm going to take from you.


Oh, dear god.

I cleansed the wound
and stitched it,

but he's
still unconscious.

I want
to see him.


There is
something else.

What is it,

A possible
skull fracture.

He's not responding
to stimuli.

If he remains

I would recommend
taking him

to Minneapolis
for surgery.

Oh, my god.

Is he going
to die, pa?

We'll pray
he doesn't.

Does god really punish
people like the Bible says?

Well, sometimes
it seems so.

I don't think so

Why? Do you think god's
punishing Jordan for something?

I don't know.

You don't have to go to
school if you don't want to.

I don't feel
much like it.

Why don't you just
go on home, then, huh?


I think I'll just
take a walk...

Do some thinking.

I'll be at the mill
if you need me.


Jordan was just trying
to help his ma and pa.

That's why he did it.

Maybe he was going against
what you wanted,

what with him
lying and all,

and I guess I shouldn't
have gone along with it,

but he just loves
his ma and pa so much.

He only wanted
to see them happy.

That's why he did it.

And it just don't seem right
for you to punish him for it.

I didn't mean that, god.

I know you know
what's best,

and I guess
it was part my fault

for not telling
when I should have.

Please help Jordan.


No change.

Is it all right
if I stay for a while?

Dr. Baker?

When you get older,

do you understand
things better?

In some ways.

Not everything.

Dr. Baker: The one thing we do
learn when we grow older, Laura,

is how little we know.

I don't know
how to help him.

Jordan: Ma? Pa?

Right here, son.

Belle: We're both
here, darling.


My head hurts.

You had
a bad fall.

And Dr. Baker...

I'm in your office.

How'd I get here?

Oh, dear god,
thank you.

Thank you.

You can see.

Well, sure
I can see, ma.

Dr. Baker:
You were blind, son.


No, I wasn't.

Don't you remember falling
and hitting your head?

I remember,
I fell from a rope.

Dr. Baker: Don't you remember
falling from a horse?

No. When?

Dr. Baker: Do you
know your name?

Jordan: Sure.
Jordan Harrison.

Dr. Baker:
Your birthday?

June 17th.


what about today?

Do you remember
what happened today?

I told you.
I fell from a rope.

Laura was there.
She saw it.

All right.

He's had
a concussion.

Partial loss of memory
is a common result.

Belle: Will he
ever remember?

Dr. Baker:

It doesn't
really matter.

Will he be all right

Dr. Baker:
I think so.

Anyone who can come out
of the tumbles he has

is a pretty tough

I'd like him to stay
with me for a day or so.

he's got to be a little more careful.

Young man,

I suggest you stay off
slack ropes

and wild horses
for a while.

You go on.

I want to
see Jordan.

Isn't he going
home, today?

Yeah, but I want
to see him, anyway.

See you.


Can I see Jordan
for a minute?

Well, sure, for as
long as you like.

His folks will
be here any minute.

He's supposedly


I want you to
tell me something,

and I want you to tell me the
truth, Jordan Harrison.

Are you
faking again?

What do you mean,


You know what I mean.

Faking and pretending
you're blind.

I don't!

You mean you don't
remember being blind,

or going to
the blind school,

or all the pretending
you've been doing?

No, I don't.

And why do you keep saying
"faking" and "pretending"?

Do you swear to god on your
life you don't remember?

I swear to god
on my life!

Come on, Jordan,
your folks are waiting.

There you go,

We thank you, doc,
more than we can say.

I didn't do

He's a wonder,
that boy.

Just keep an eye on him
for the next few days.

If he shows any signs of drowsiness
or bleeding, I want to see him.

Nothing drowsy
about him, now.

Dr. Baker:
Huh. He'll be fine.

Take care, Jordan.

I will, doc.

Thanks again,

Jordan: Pa?

Yeah, son?

You know, there's lots
I don't remember.

I know. The doc said
not to worry about it.

Jordan: Let's go home.

Laura: There was no reason,
now, for me to tell anyone.

God had made up his mind
how he wanted it.

Jordan never did remember.

If he had, I think he would
have told his folks...

I think.