Children’s TV host Barney the purple dinosaur was caught with cocaine hidden in his tail and cussed out a child.
Baseless rumors of similar denigrating nature have plagued other children’s hosts cherished for their friendliness and sincerity. Back fence gossip asserted the genial Mr. Rogers was a convicted child molester or had served in the armed forces as a sniper and thus had dispatched many to their graves. The radio host Uncle Don was believed to have uttered “There; that ought to hold the little bastards” into a live mike at the conclusion of one of his shows when he thought the station was no longer broadcasting. And “Steve” of TV’s Blue’s Clues was said to have died of a heroin overdose, a clear indication that, contrary to his squeaky-clean on-camera image, he’d been deeply into illegal drugs.
In 2001 in Charleston, West Virginia, four members of the same family pled guilty to federal charges of conspiring to sell cocaine and two prescription painkillers that police had discovered stashed in a Barney doll.
In the case of the rumors about Barney, the source for the rumor about drugs having been found in his tail can likely be laid at the feet of some of his small fans who misunderstood the meaning of various news articles they might have heard about. Like so many other successful television shows, Barney & Friends has spawned various lines of show-related merchandise, including various Barney toys such as plush dolls in the likeness of the purple dinosaur himself. While most of such playthings have doubtless lived out their guiltless existences being hugged and squeezed by sundry tots, a few stuffed Barneys have been used as drug caches:
Barney & Friends is not broadcast live: A tape of the show is processed and edited before it airs on television. Had the actor inside the Barney suit actually cut loose with a stream of expletives during a taping of the show, his outburst would never have reached his adoring viewing audience at home. In fact, Barney’s voice is provided by a different actor than the one who performs inside the purple dinosaur suit, so anything the latter said on stage wouldn’t have been captured at all.
Barney, the purple dinosaur from television’s has been on the air since 1992, hosting a show which uses song and dance to teach preschool tots in an environment of warmth and caring. Barney’s is a loveable persona, and the children he interacts with as part of the show happily sing and dance along with him, looking upon him as a much-admired friend.
Two common rumors about Barney (police uncovered a cache of illegal drugs secreted in the rotund dinosaur’s tail, or the endlessly loving and patient children’s host roundly cussed out a hapless tyke) strike at the heart of Barney’s appeal to the smaller set. It’s not the funny costume or the songs that make the show a success; it’s the friendliness and constant optimism of the show’s purple host. The rumors’ presentation of Barney as a nefarious character who deals drugs or secretly hates children runs contrary to his steadfast image of wholesomeness and trustworthiness.
Barney murdered a child and was jailed for his crime.
The man in the Barney suit is a child molester. (The same has been whispered about – in neither case is it true.) In an expansion of that rumor, the convicted pervert is playing the part of the purple dinosaur as part of his sentence.
Purple dinosaur children's host Barney had cocaine hidden in his tail and cussed out a child?