Barney Gumble is one of the more frequent of the secondary characters on the hit TV program The Simpsons.

Barney first appeared in the very first episode of The Simpsons, it was he who advised Homer to become a Christmas Santa, and also advised him to put money on a dog at the races to boost the $13 he had been paid.

Back then Barney had blonde hair, and his face was more rubbery, but, as time went on Barney gained brown hair and a slightly less rubbery face (unless he’s pressed against a window, leering at Rex Banner). He must have died his hair briefly or something since in flashbacks he has brown hair. Barney has always been a little overweight, and is now much more so; he is, in fact, fatter than Homer.

Although Barney has had many jobs, including a Barbershop singer, an experimental test subject, a snow plower and a reserve navy officer, his full time job is as a bar-fly, sucking coins out of the love tester, which although it is “a real good way to get sick” is apparently a good source of income, well, it seems to pay for his flat, which includes a prison-view window, and (somewhere) a dog. He can also afford to make the occasional omelette, with two kinds of cheese. Luckily due to never actually leaving, (unless through the window), he never has to actually pay for the huge amounts of beer on his bar-tab.

Barney is a bar-fly, he spends most of his days in Moe’s Tavern, drinking his favourite Duff Beer. During the few short hours when beer was illegal and unavailable, he kept a solitary vigil outside the closed down Duff bottling plant. However, he is, on occasion found to be sober, at these times he is surprisingly sophisticated, carrying a pocket-watch and wearing a smart grey suit. When he tried out for the astronaut he stayed sober for quite a while and proved to be quite athletic, singing “I am the very model of a modern Major General” whilst back flipping.

Barney has a truly amazing singing voice, operatic and powerful, it is a shame that he is only occasionally given the chance to use it. It was first discovered when the Be Sharps were recruiting, and has since been heard in “A Booze Hound Named Barney.” In addition to this he is an excellent film maker, winning the Springfield Film Festival with most of the vote. (Only Homer, Krusty and the Mayor voted against it and the last two had been bribed by Mr. Burns)

Barney was once an A-grade student who was attempting to get into Harvard. He made one mistake however when he studied with Homer in the room. Homer introduced him to the wonder that is alcohol and Barney had found love. Now he will do anything to get the stuff, even drinking beer from ashtrays, that said, he has a heart of gold, and has once, even, rescued Maggie from a tiger “Mrs Simpson little baby Bart almost got eaten by that pony!” He also fronted the bail when Homer got arrested for speeding. He would do anything for his friends, provided it doesn’t mean he has to be sober to do it.

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