High school is a trying time for most kids, but few ever had it as rough as poor Benjamin “Beans” Baxter, Jr., star of The New Adventures of Beans Baxter. When Ben Sr. was transferred to Washington because of his postal-carrier job, Beans dutifully followed along with the rest of the family. Beans’ homelife was further thrown into chaos when his father disappeared. His mother Susan and little brother Scooter believed that dear old dad was dead, but Beans knew otherwise. He discovered that his supposed postal-carrier father was actually a top-secret courier who had been captured by a subversive group known as U.G.L.I. (the Underground Government Liberation Intergroup).
Beans decided to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a courier for “The Network.” Working under Number Two, Beans delivered top-secret messages while trying to find out where his father was taken. At the same time, he had to avoid falling into the clutches of U.G.L.I. and their leader, the evil Mr. Sue, who plotted to kidnap Beans as leverage to make his father talk.
If all this wasn’t difficult enough to juggle, Beans also had to deal with the everyday hassles of being a high school kid. Given the nature of his work, he had to keep his dual life a secret from his mother and brother while trying to pass himself off to everyone as an average kid. Woodshop was Beans’ offbeat buddy, and Cake was the girl that Beans longed to get closer to, though a career in international espionage can make those kinds of things a little tricky.
The New Adventures of Beans Baxter lasted only lasted one season, but it was critically praised, and Jonathan Ward won a Young Artist award for his portrayal of Beans Baxter. And just to clear up any longstanding confusion, this show was not a sequel to some forgotten The Adventures of Beans Baxter series; the “New” in the title simply referred to Beans’ new lifestyle. Happy to be of service.
USA / Fox / x25 minute episodes / Broadcast 18 July 1987 – 9 April 1988
Theme Music: Joseph Birtelli
Jonathan Ward as Beans Baxter
Elinor Donahue as Susan Baxter
Scott Bremner as Scooter Baxter
Karen Mistal as Cake Lase
John Vernon as Number One
Kurtwood Smith as Mr. Sue
Shawn Weatherly as Svetlana
Rick Lenz as Ben Baxter, Sr.