In a new docuseries coming out on Peacock in early October, the actor who played Barney discusses the death threats and other negative feedback he got during his time as the famous T. rex after blatantly false rumors were circulated.
The series is appropriately titled I Love You, You Hate Me.
The person behind the docuseries, Tommy Avalone, talked to People about how the journey of making the documentary was helpful to him healing old, unfounded hatred.
"Barney came out on television when I was just 10 years old, and I admittedly didn’t understand him. As a teenager, for one of my birthdays I asked my aunt to make me a Barney costume, so my friends and I could beat him up on camera."
"Several years later, creating this docuseries, it feels good to be on the other side and no longer a Barney hater. Now having children of my own, I understand all the love that went into making the purple dinosaur."
You can see the trailer for the docuseries here:
I Love You, You Hate Me | Official Trailer | Peacock Originalyoutu.be
In the docuseries, people repeated rumors that went around during the peak of Barney hatred.
"Some of the rumors I heard: Barney hides drugs in his tail."
One of the performers in the Barney costume recalled the seriousness of the threats leveled against him.
"They were violent and explicit, death and dismemberment of my family. They were going to come and find me, and they were going to kill me.”
Reactions to the trailer appearing online have been a mix of folks being horrified people would be this viscerally violent towards a beloved children's character and others who are slightly more jaded.
Many people were surprised by the docuseries.
They either were not aware of the hate at the time or are currently too young to even be alive for the peak of Barney hatred.
Many people recalled their own memories of the Barney hate.
Others were just saddened to hear the facts presented in the docuseries.
Many were asking why would people have these impulses to hate Barney.
What a weird and sad look back in time, but ultimately useful to know.
Now we're waiting on the Teletubbies exposé.