On Barney Rubble

Barney Rubble is a classic second fiddle to the main character
Fred Flintstone’s best friend and neighbor
Real first name is Bernard
Husband to Betty; father to Bamm-Bamm
While working at a resort as a bellhop, he met Betty who was working as a cigarette girl
Interests include bowling, pool, poker, and being a member of the Loyal Order of Water Buffalo Lodge No. 26 (which was originally called the Loyal Order of Dinosaurs)
One episode suggests he is Mr. State’s nephew (Fred’s boss)
Occupation disputable, he has been seen as a dino-crane operator at Bedrock Quarry and Gravel and a repossessor; he’s done top-secret work; and he’s been a geological engineer” policeman

In Cockney, “Barney Rubble” means trouble (but this Barney is not a troublemaker)

Episode Notes
He served as president of the lodge in season one
His decisive vote against Fred in the Water Buffalo of the Year campaign results in a property line feud (season 4)
In the original’s first episode, he invented a human-powered helicopter
After finding the abandoned infant on their doorstep, a court battle led the way for adopting Bamm-Bamm (season 4)
Hoppy (a hopparroo) became the family pet in season 5
Later series identified Barney’s parents, brother, and grandchildren
Did you know Fred and Barney made a cigarette commercial?


… “er huh huh… OK, Fred!” or “huh huh huh… whatever you say, Fred!”
Hey Fred, Yeah Fred?, Right Fred, Yeah Fred, Why?
Make it good Fred, I gotta tell Betty the same story.

Created by Hanna Barbera
First appeared on September 30, 1960
Originally voiced by Hal Smith, then also by Daws Butler, Mel Blanc, Frank Welker, and Jeff Bergman, Stephen Stanton, Kevin Michael Richardson, Brad Abrell, Seth MacFarlane, and Scott Innes
Barney’s personality is based on Ed Norton from The Honeymooners

Enjoy the Ballad of Barney Rubble

51 thoughts on “On Barney Rubble

  1. Holy Honeymooners, Frank! I was just starting to get my aging brain back under control, it being nearly full of decades of detritus, snippets, gossip, obsolescences, and moribund styles. Now, thanks to you, there’s a new layer of Rubble. Ouch. 🙂


  2. This was a nice flashback to childhood… then I watched that cigarette commercial. My brain is knocking, asking for its childhood back… that is so weird, using a kids show to promote cigs.


  3. Thanks for all the Barney factoids Frank. As you might imagine, I loved watching The Flintstones when I was a kid. Plus, it was a show that was broadcast in prime time back in the day. It influenced my parents’ decision to invest in a color TV around 1963. We got an RCA. I was too young to remember that the Flinstones hawked Winston cigarettes. I recall a later sponsor, Welch’s. We were jam eaters, not jelly, probably because my mother hated jelly. So glad that Saturday Morning Cartoon Classics is back!


  4. The honeymooners inspired a bunch of cartoons.
    I believe there were also a pair of mice somewhere named Ralph and Ed too with their own cartoon (or maybe just a few episodes on the Saturday Revues…)


  5. Wow. thought I was the only one on the planet who’d seen the cigarette commercial. Should have known you’d have all the down and dirty scoops.
    You have fulfilled my daily mission; to learn one new fact or idea each day. Today’s Lesson: I had no idea that at one point Mel Blanc voiced Barney Rubble.
    Thanks Frank. I’m good for the day!
    p.s. “That Barney Rubble. What an actor!”
    -name that movie. Hint: Michael Keaton and Henry Winkler-


    • Rachael,
      Glad I was able to fulfill your daily need for a new factoid! Meanwhile, I’m not a movie buff, but that’s a great quote for this post …. thanks to Google, Night Shift.


  6. in the episode in which he adopts bam bamm, they were in danger of not getting him. there was a scene in which barney stood on a bridge with a rock tied to a rope and the rope tied to his ankle. i wonder if that would be included were it to have been created today.


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