Tubby Bashing

Striking yet another blow against the forces of tolerance, the Reverend Jerry Falwell has outed a puppet. One of the Teletubbies, PBS pre-school faves, proved to be way too swishy for the founder of the now-defunct Moral Majority. And solidifying once and for all the good Reverend's position as God's bouncer. Sorry, you ain't on da list.In an article that appears in Falwell's monthly magazine, National Liberty Journal, Tinky Winky is totally busted. "He is purple -- the gay-pride color; and his antenna is shaped like a triangle -- the gay pride symbol," the story says. "The character, whose voice is obviously that of a boy, has been found carrying a red purse in many episodes and has become a favorite character among gay groups worldwide."The fact that Tinky showed up at the Golden Globes with Boy George sealed the deal.Of course, Rev. Falwell is not the first to wade in after the Tubbies. They are loathed, for one reason or another by many. I caught a whiff of this animosity recently when I spent an afternoon sprawled on the couch soaking up daytime television. What follows is a transcript of a Barney the Dinosaur episode I witnessed.At least, it's how I remember it. I should mention that at the time I was loopy on a quart of Robitussin, Phlegm Gouger Formula.(Opening theme: "Smoke on the Water." Or something like that) Barney: Hi, boys and girls.Kids: Hi, Barney.Barney: Gosh, it's good to see all my friends here today. We've got a super-de-duper show. Does anybody know why?Boy: Because it's silly hat day?Barney: Even better. Today we have a special guest.Kids: Hooray!Girl: Is it Baby Bop?Barney: No, Baby Bop is in a halfway house for repeat offenders. All his comings and goings are carefully monitored. Our special guest is here to help me solve a little problem. Everybody give a big happy, smiley, jumpy welcome to my old friend, Tony "Two Bullets" Fallaci.Kids: Hello! Hi!Tony: How youse rugrats doin'?Boy: Mr. Fallaci, why do they call you "Two Bullets?"Tony: 'Cause that's what I always leave in the stiffs. One in the brain pan and one in the...Barney: (interrupting) See, kids, Tony has kind of an interesting job. He makes things disappear.Boy: Wow! Are you a magician? Could you pull a rabbit out of your hat?Tony: Keep yapping at me in that little squeaky voice and I'll pull something out of your ass. Like your liver.Barney: Now, Tony.Tony: Well, what do I look like, freakin' David Copperfield?Barney: See, kids, Tony is what's known as an enforcer, or button man.Tony: I made my bones when I was about your age, short pants. Strangled a guy with my slinky.Barney: He works with the Chicago mob, but sometimes hires out for freelance work.Boy: Why do you need a button man, Barney? Barney: Have you kids ever seen the Teletubbies?Girl: Yeah, they're cute!Barney: They're not cute. They look like the Pillsbury Doughboy humped a space alien and had a litter of mutants. But I'll remember you said that,Judy. Make a note, Tony.Girl: I... I only watch them sometimes.Barney: Every time you do, it's like you're ripping the heart out of my chest and stomping on it. Is that what you want, Judy?Girl: (crying) No, Barney. I'm so sorry. I'll never watch Teletubbies again.Barney: The problem is, lots of little crumb catchers will, and I can't afford that. I won't go into all the details of market dynamics, niche demographics, Q-ratings, merchandising and endorsement tie-ins, but all you need to know is that this network isn't big enough for me and the Teletubbies. That's why those skanky little bug-eyed trolls are about to go tits up.Tony: Pop, Pop! One in the brain pan, one in the...Boy: (interrupting) You're gonna kill Tinky Winky and Dipsy?Tony: Head-on collisions kill, I whack. But yeah, they're going down hard.Barney: And Laa-Laa and Po along with them. But it's got to be fast, Tony. And I want it messy, too. Let's send a message to any other kid show punks out there thinking about muscling in on my turf.Tony: I'm on it. But what about these sawed-offs? They ain't gonna drop a dime are they?Barney: Gosh, no. Remember what we learned about snitches, kids?Kids: Nobody likes a squealer.Barney: That's right. Remember Suzie? She sang like a canary for the Feds and nobody's seen her for weeks. Well, we're out of time. Hasn't this been fun?Kids: (unenthusiastic) Yeah. Guess so.Barney: I love spending time with my friends. Or as the law says, my co-conspirators. (Sings) I love you, you love me, yada yada yada. Bye bye, boys and girls.Next week, 60 Minutes investigates whether Teletubbies were behind the Olympic bribery scandal and Jerry Falwell outs Sesame Street's Bert and Ernie.

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.