|Starring a perpetually smiling boy with a hat so essential to his wardrobe that he was named after it, Time for Beany was a puppet show that premiered on local Los Angeles station KTLA, but proved popular enough to hit the national market the very next season. Beany's co-star, Cecil, was a serpent plagued by constant seasickness.
Time for Beany outclassed other puppet shows by refusing to limit itself to the simplicity of its contemporaries. While most puppet shows had been setting up static shots on single backgrounds, Time For Beany used elaborate sets, connected stages, and various camera tricks to bring the boy and his serpent to life.
Satirical script writing also kept the quality high. One of the chief writers of the show was Bill Scott, who would later work on Rocky and His Friends and The Bullwinkle Show. As he would demonstrate on those shows, Scott was a master of puns, a talent which helped the show maintain wide appeal for both children and adults.
Adding to the humor were some of the characters that creator Bob Clampett (a former Bugs Bunny director) introduced, such as Marilyn Mongrel, Lone Shark, and Dizzy Lou (after Desilu productions).
The star voice actors, Daws Butler and Stan Freberg, improvised much of their dialogue, which probably drove the director and cameramen crazy, but provided the audience with many magical moments.
In 1962, the boy and his sea serpent were brought back to television, this time as animated characters on the show Beany and Cecil.