Question: I've been catching reruns of Little House on the Prairie on TBS and there's a character on that show, Mr. Edwards, played by Victor French, who disappeared from the show around the third season. A friend of mine claims it's because they tried to spin him off into his own show, but I don't recall any other Little House spinoffs that didn't involve the Ingalls. Can you shed some light on this? Lucy, San Jose, Cal.
Televisionary: That I can, Lucy. French did indeed leave Walnut Grove at the end of the show's third season to star in his own series he was replaced by former Los Angeles Ram Merlin Olsen as Charles Ingalls's pal Jonathan Garvey but it wasn't a Little House spinoff.
French left for Carter Country, an ABC sitcom that debuted in September 1977, in which he starred as a hick police chief in the tiny Georgia town of Clinton Corners. The series lasted only two seasons, and there are really only two things worth noting about it: The writers managed to highlight the names of the only two Democrats to take the White House in the last three decades (one they obviously knew about and the other they got strangely lucky on) and a young Melanie Griffith came on board for the second season as a newspaper reporter.
Now, here's what may be confusing your pal. Olsen left Little House after the 1981 season to star in Father Murphy, another family-friendly frontier series created by Little House star and executive producer Michael Landon. In 1982, French's Edwards returned to the show, but only for a season.