Time for Beany was an American television series, with puppets for characters, which aired locally in Los Angeles starting in 1949 and nationally (via kinescope) on the improvised Paramount... See full summary »

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1   Unknown  
1951   1950   1949  
Won 3 Primetime Emmys. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
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 Beany / ... (2 episodes, 1950-1951)
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 Cecil / ... (2 episodes, 1950-1951)
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Time for Beany was an American television series, with puppets for characters, which aired locally in Los Angeles starting in 1949 and nationally (via kinescope) on the improvised Paramount Television Network from 1950 to 1955. It was created by animator Bob Clampett, who later reused its core characters in the animated Beany and Cecil series. The principal characters were Beany, a plucky young boy who wears a beanie; the brave but dimwitted Cecil the Seasick Sea Serpent, who claimed to be 300 years old and 35 feet 3 inches tall; Beany's uncle, the pigheaded Captain Horatio Huffenpuff (whose name is a play on Horatio Hornblower), familiarly called Uncle Captain; Dishonest John, whose cape and handlebar mustache clearly identified him as the villain. Written by Randall Robinson

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8 February 1949 (USA)  »

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Trivia

Clampett integrated popular music into his "Time for Beany" puppet show....nightly! Famed organist Korla Pandit effortlessly blended so many musical cues in combination with Beany themes and story points that he could certainly have made a claim as an early innovator in music sampling. And of course "Raggmopp" which debuted the same year as "Time for Beany" was such a popular song on the show that it in effect became Cecil's theme song. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Full House: Sea Cruise (1987) See more »

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User Reviews

Wonderful, timeless production by Freberg, Butler and Clampett
24 October 2000 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Unbelievably, this show was done live 5 times a week for 6 years, from 1949 to 1955, on KTLA in Los Angeles. Stan Freberg and Daws Butler played, respectively, Cecil and Beany, and it was produced by Bob Clampett, with all 3 sharing writing credits. It was about the adventures of a boy and his seasick sea serpent, and was a hit almost from the first episode.

That said, it doesn't for a moment convey the incredible inventiveness and hilarious insanity that went on during the show, and behind the scenes. To understand that, you need to pick up the new Beany and Cecil DVD, and listen to Stan Freberg's audio commentary while 3 of the original live episodes play. His comments are priceless; I would have loved to be a part of this experience. I would pay any amount to hear more about the show from Freberg, too; his memory is unparalleled. He talks about one of the special effects they used, to portray bats in an episode. They used black balloons, which burst when they got too hot under the studio lights, causing children watching to scream when it looked like the bat had exploded, on purpose. He then tells us about all the letters they got from angry mothers on that episode, laughing as he talks. They frequently adlibbed, especially when they couldn't find the scripts.

The "Time for Beany" live show eventually became "Beany and Cecil", the animated cartoon that all us baby boomers loved. But the animation could never, no matter how much we loved it, surpass these live shows. If anyone in Production Land is listening out there, I'd buy more of them on DVD at any price.


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