Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that this drama is set on the American frontier in the late 19th century, so aspects of daily life may seem foreign to younger viewers who lack historical understanding. The Ingalls family is a model of mutual respect and affection. Some story lines deal with serious matters such as the plague and other epidemics, infant mortality, the death of a parent, and the threat of neighboring Native Americans. Though the bulk of the show's content is gentle and controversy-free, occasional episodes touch on more serious subjects, from sexual assault to racism. Parents may find themselves answering questions about American history and geography, which is just one great reason to watch this epic series.
Budding romances sometimes are mixed into the plot, but, as was customary during the time in which the series is set, there's very little outright flirting and nearly no physical contact.
At least one gun usually is prominent and accessible in each home, and the men use them for hunting or -- more rarely -- self-defense. Physical punishment is the norm in some households, and children who break the rules often face their father's belt.
Episodes stress the importance and collective power of family, community, and the Christian faith. Some story lines also deal with mature matters, including death, illness, loss, and addiction.
Drugs / Tobacco /
The main adult male character smokes a pipe. When alcoholism or drug use is portrayed, the consequences are always severe. Heavy drinking is usually limited to men in saloons.