I was alive during the peak of Barney & Friends-mania, but I still find it hard to believe how much people hated that purple dinosaur. The hostility towards the unassuming kids show is the inspiration for Peacock’s I Love You, You Hate Me, which chronicles “the rise and fall of Barney the Dinosaur’s furious backlash — and what it says about the human need to hate.” The documentary also features an interview with David Joyner, who was inside the Barney suit from 1991 to 2001… and now works as a “tantric sex guru.”
“David Joyner, the body of Barney, talks about this in the film… tantric sex guru and Barney,” director Tommy Avallone told Fox News. “It’s weird in the same sentence, you know? But once you put space in between and really talk about [it], it’s not as weird as you would think in that he’s never doing any of this tantric stuff in the Barney suit.”
Kink-shaming is wrong and bad, except for when it comes to people looking to have a, um, tantric experience with Barney. They deserve some light shaming.
In I Love You, You Hate Me, Joyner (who previously discussed his second career with Vice) explains that he helps “goddesses reconnect with their sexual energy on a spiritual level,” which includes massage and meditation. “Anything beyond that, there’s no extra fee,” the “tantric massage specialist” added. Does that mean what literally everyone thinks it means? “Not necessarily,” he said. “Not all the clients have a full session.”
Avallone stressed that while many people associate Joyner’s tantra principles with sex, “that was never happening with Barney.” Instead, he relied on the “energy work and meditation” from his practice to “heighten Barney’s performance” and deliver joy. “You talk to other people from the Barney crew, and they feel like it worked,” said Avallone. “You really felt David’s heart come out of his suit.”
I Love You, You Hate Me is available on Peacock now.