He's the newest Friend Of Barney, that is. He's "hip," listens to raggae and jazz, and dines on celery with cheddar cheese and raisins.
My oldest daughter is six-and-a-half years old now. I thought she'd be beyond Barney by now, but now and then she asks to rent one of his videos from Blockbuster or the library.
We'll see if this energizes those kids that Barney hangs out with. They've been pretty lethargic lately.
Related: If you go to Barney's page on the PBS Kids website, you'll see the following slogan: Let's have fun with manners today.
Now, I've gotta tell you: I've never thought that good manners were fun. Good manners are important, good manners are an example of what sets us apart from animals (have you ever heard a cheetah say to a zebra, "Excuse me for what I'm doing, but I'm only eating you because I haven't had a thing to eat for a week and I'm utterly famished. Plus, the missus would totally put me in the doghouse if I didn't bring her something. So, please give me your leg so I can chow down - I have a fork and steakknife and everything."), and good manners are what every child should have.
But are they fun? No. Fun would be wrestling with my daughter, or kissing my wife, or going bowling. Fun would be riding the Beast at Kings' Island at dusk. Fun would not be making sure that you use the proper fork to eat your salad.
Silly Barney. You should know what fun is - and isn't.