The New Adventures of Beans Baxter is an adventure/comedy television series that originally ran between 1987 and 1988 on the Fox television network.
The show revolves around the spy activities of Benjamin "Beans" Baxter Jr., a Kansas teenager who just moved with his parents and younger brother to Washington, D.C., as part of his father's reassignment as (Beans assumed) an employee of the US Postal Service. Beans witnesses his father's (presumed) assassination via a bomb placed in his postal vehicle, then gets hired by the mysterious "Number Two", an agent/second-in-command of The Network, a secret spy agency.
The main nemesis of The Network is the evil organization UGLI (the Underground Government Liberation Intergroup), headed by the equally evil Mr Sue (played by Kurtwood Smith).
Beans has many adventures while his mother remains completely oblivious. Beans' ultimate goal is to find his kidnapped father who is being held by enemy agents.
The New Adventures of Beans Baxter contains examples of:
- Batman in My Basement: In "Beans Meets Shawn Weatherly", Beans hides a Russian defector, who happens to look exactly like Miss Universe Shawn Weatherly.
- Belly Dancer: A group of dancers is hired by U.G.L.I. to seduce information out of Beans' father in "Bean's Home Life Gets U.G.L.I".
- California Doubling: The series was shot in California and British Columbia, but is set in Washington, D.C.
- Driving Test: In "Beans Gets His Driver's License (and It Isn't Pretty)", UGLI agents Jack and Henry attempt to stop Beans from getting his driver's license.
- Driving Test Smashers: In "Beans Gets His Driver's License (and It Isn't Pretty)", Beans has to contend with a pair of UGLI agents attempting to sabotage his driving test.
- Election Day Episode: In "Beans for President", an assignment to save the President's daughter interferes with Beans' candidacy for class president of his high school.
- Embarrassing Last Name: The Big Bad was the unfortunately named Mr. Sue.
- Extreme Sport Excuse Plot: In "Beans Goes to Camp", UGLI steals a nuclear warhead, so Beans goes undercover at a parasailing camp to find it. Of course, parasailing plays a vital role in him saving the day at the end of the episode.
- Fun with Acronyms: U.G.L.I. (Underground Government Liberation Intergroup)
- Halloween Episode: "A Nightmare on Beans' Street" where Beans and his friends are set upon by a deadly pumpkin sent by UGLI's leader, Mr. Sue, and the Pumpkin Princess.
- Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Most if not all episodes had "Beans" somewhere in the title.
- Magic Plastic Surgery: The reason why in "Beans Meets Shawn Weatherly" and "There's No Place Like Omsk," the Russian defector looks exactly like Miss Universe Shawn Weatherly.
- Mind-Control Music: The first episode had the villain using a singer's music to control the minds of teenagers.
- Mistaken for Gay: In "Beans Wicked and Awesome Adventure at College", Cake is tired of Beans ditching her (due to his spy work) while they are on dates, so she decides to follow him. She becomes convinced he is gay and Hilarity Ensues.
- Nebulous Evil Organization: Beyond spreading terror, it is not clear what goals (if any) UGLI possesses.
- Science Fair: In "Beans Under the Weather", Scooter invents weather-making machine for a science fair, and UGLI attempts to use it for their own ends.
- Shower of Awkward: The opening scene of "Beans Meets Shawn Weatherly" has Beans catching Soviet defector Svetlana (played by Miss Universe Shawn Weatherly) in the shower.
- Signed Up for the Dental: One of the henchmen says he joined UGLI for their dental plan.
- Teen Superspy: Teenaged Beans Baxter's mailman father disappears one day and Beans discovers his dad was really a courier for a secret government agency. Soon Beans is drawn into espionage, becoming a secret agent for the government.
- Trigger Phrase: Beans is given the task of babysitting a robot, which becomes an unstoppable killing machine when it hears its trigger phrase. The phrase was designed to be the least likely thing for a person to say ("M. I. N. D. Mood"), but Beans had a dental appointment earlier and his mouth was numbed-up. When his girlfriend asked him if he was in the mood to make out, his slurred answer (of course) just happened to match the robot's trigger phrase.
- Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World
- Weather-Control Machine: In "Beans Under the Weather", Beans' younger brother Scooter invents a weather-making machine for a science fair, and UGLI schemes to use it for their own ends.