It's been a minute since Barney was on the air. The children's television series, which promoted messages of love, sharing, and friendship, aired from 1992 to 2010.
But thanks to Peacock's latest documentary I Love You, You Hate Me, Barney has come back into the spotlight. The title introduces us to the Texas mom behind Barney's inception, Sheryl Leach, and takes us through the rise and fall of the Barney franchise.
If you watch the documentary in its entirety, it explains why Barney actually ended. But if you go on TikTok, users are claiming that Barney was actually murdered. Is that true? Absolutely not. But here's why users are claiming he was.
A new TikTok trend prompts users to google "What killed Barney?"
TikTokers who wanted to get the scoop on Barney without watching the two-part documentary turned to their trusty friend Google. Given that "Barney Bashing," a hate movement launched against the friendly purple dinosaur, was a thing in the '90s and early 2000s, it wasn't so out-of-line to think that Barney might have been taken off the air because he was killed. That said, folks started asking Google: "What killed Barney the Dinosaur?"
What Killed Barney the Dinosaur?
In 1997, a dramatic incident unfolded during the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade when strong winds sent the beloved Barney the Dinosaur balloon spiraling into a lamp post, causing it to tear open. Quick-thinking NYPD officers stepped in to ensure the safety of the crowd by skillfully deflating the balloon using precision knives, averting any potential harm from the deflating spectacle.
So did that actually happen? No!
But the first sentence of this article from The Independent reads: "In November 1997, Barney the Dinosaur was stabbed to death by the New York City Police Department."
If you keep reading the article, you'll see that the author was referring to a Barney balloon float at Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade that year.
Furthermore, the police didn't intentionally stab Barney. A gust of wind had ripped the balloon open and the police were trying to deflate it in order to remove it from the lineup.
But of course, many folks took that first sentence from the Independent article as the truth and started reacting to it on TikTok. In turn, the "What Killed Barney?" trend simply consists of TikTok users googling the question and then recording their reactions.
So if you see one of these videos, just know that Barney the purple dinosaur wasn't murdered. Albeit, there definitely are some people who wanted him gone.