In all three versions of “No Time For Sergeants” — TV, Broadway, movie — Andy Griffith played Will Stockdale, backwoods Georgian turned Air Force private. The naive Stockdale views latrine duty as an opportunity to shine and rigs the toilet seats to salute the inspecting officers.
“We had to have a big production meeting to decide whether we could show those toilet seats [in the movie],” Griffith told me in 1979. Although permission was granted, he said actually filming the famous scene was a let-down.
“On the stage, we had had had a man lying down with a handle in his hand — all the audience saw was me stomping and the seats flying up. But for the movie the latrine scene had to shot in pieces, and we never got the immediate response. I remember the disappointment I felt on the set that day, although I knew the laugh would be there…. That’s movies.”
” ‘Eyewitness to History’ (CBS), which takes up the top news story of each week and analyzes it in respectable detail, is a good example of the sort of first-rate service television can perform. … As impressive as the show itself is its young analyst-narrator, Charles Kuralt, 25, who wrote a human interest column for the Charlotte, N.C. News before CBS hired him. A deep-voiced Carolina Cronkite with more than a little Murrow in his bones, he has one of those low-ratchet, radioactive voices that sound like a roulette wheel stopping….
” ‘The Andy Griffith Show’ (CBS) sets up the fellow who had ‘No Time for Sergeants’ as a sort of one-man Southern town: he is the cop, justice of the peace, jailer, newspaper editor, coroner, sheriff, mechanic and mailman. As a drawling, broad-shouldered, curly-haired, grits-filled, engagingly handsome example of the U.S.’s vast natural resource of undeveloped intelligence, talented Comedian Griffith is often good for laughs, all of them canned.”
— From Time magazine, October 10, 1960
As the show developed, Griffith soon shed all his jobs except sheriff.