Thoughts From The Andy Griffith Show Episode Barney's Replacement (1961)

Synopsis: The State Attorney's office assigns rookie Bob Rogers (Mark Miller) to Mayberry so Andy (Andy Griffith) can train him. However, when Andy allows Rogers to both present new ideas and take over some of Barney's (Don Knotts) responsibilities, the latter thinks he is going to be replaced and turns in his badge to sell vacuum cleaners.

My Thoughts:

I know Andy questions Barney about fixing a stop sign but is that really the deputy's job? It feels more like something you would have a town maintenance guy do. In fact, it kind of felt like Andy was nitpicking him a bit when he brought it up. All Barney was trying to do was follow procedure.

I can understand why the State Attorney would want Andy to train a new guy. However, if they are going to be doing that, shouldn't they be making sure Mayberry has enough equipment? I mean, one patrol car for two law enforcement officers is bad enough without having a third person needing to share that car. And, before you say it is Mayberry's responsibility, then shouldn't they also have a say in who Andy has as a deputy?

I feel like Andy did a crap job of training the new guy. Sure, he eventually mentions something about needing to be a people person and not just follow charts and guidebooks. That, however, didn't happen until after Barney raised a stink about it first. It kind of feels like maybe Andy should have mentioned that to begin with. I think he's kind of lucky the guy didn't go gung-ho and mistreat one of Mayberry's citizens.

And, with all those procedures and guidelines, did Bob not once notice and question the state of the jail? Those home-like jail cells hardly meet any regulation and should have been a dead giveaway about Andy's lax attitude.

This episode also portrayed Andy as a crappy friend too. Did Barney overreact? Of course. But I also feel like Andy didn't even once take his deputy's feelings into consideration. The bulletin board incident alone was a fairly big slap in Barney's face, considering just how much pride he took in doing that job and the way Andy let the new guy take it over without any consideration toward what Barney might think.

Final Opinion: Overall, it's a funny episode that I enjoyed watching. However, it is also an episode that makes Andy seem either a bit clueless or a bit heartless when it comes to Barney.

My Grade: B


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