Mr. T was so intimidating, The A-Team had to make his character afraid of flying

B.A. Baracus had fans convinced that Mr. T was really afraid to fly. Naturally, Mr. T played along.

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B.A. Baracus is The A-Team's mechanic, muscle and enforcer. It's his job to intimidate anybody standing in the team's way. Generally speaking, just one look from B.A. Baracus would send opponents running the other direction. He was a character that wasn't scared of anything. 

Except flying. 

How could such a daunting character be afraid of something millions of people do? The thing is, flying isn't for everyone, and the fact that B.A. Baracus, a dominant human being, could be afraid of flying, made him a little more relatable. Of course the character of B.A. could be made into whatever writers wanted him to be, but it was the persona of Mr. T that made the character work. 

Still, one thing was missing from Mr. T's character: vulnerability. That's where the fear of flying idea came into play. Of course there were plenty of laughs along this storyline, which was also part of The A-Team's plan.

"We needed a comic release of it, you know?" Mr. T said in a 2009 interview with Absolute Radio. "Here's B.A., a big tough guy [who] can clear a bar room of four or five guys, then [he's] afraid to fly. That made me more human."

Timing also played a role in selecting a comedic relief aspect surrounding Mr. T's character. He was fresh off the role of Clubber Lang, the fearless boxing champion.

"You remember, I'm coming off of Rocky III," Mr. T said. "You know people saw me as this mean, tough guy. So when I get on The A-Team I was vulnerable. I was afraid to fly." 

It's any actors job to be convincing when he or she is in front of a camera. According to fans, B.A. was so scared of flying they thought it was an actual fear for the actor himself. 

"I would get letters from people [saying] 'Mr. T, I'm afraid too! Don't let them get you on no plane, watch out for them!'" 

When fans confessed they thought he was actually afraid to fly, Mr. T poked fun at the show and the recurring theme in which he had to be drugged to take to the skies. 

"I would joke with them and say 'they put something in my milk!'" 

Of course in the show, that was just one of the ways to get B.A. Baracus on a plane. Others weren't as subtle. 

While the image of Mr. T totally personified the role of B.A. Baracus, Mr. T himself is known for being a role model for children, volunteering at churches and relating to as many people as possible.

B.A.'s fear of flying allowed Mr. T to reach that many more fans, giving him another reason to interact and make them smile. All that said, it doesn't mean he won't call you a fool. 

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MClark 21 months ago
As tough as B.A. was he was also seen helping and teaching kids. B.A. had a soft heart for kids. On several occasions he "convinced" the A Team to take a job because a child was in trouble.
AgingDisgracefully 21 months ago
Say what you will about T.
But know he was a true gentleman, well-known for leaving the toilet seat down should milady be the next contributor.
DocForbin 21 months ago
I pity the fool who thinks Mr. T's actually afraid of flying in real life!
vinman63 21 months ago
Mr T was a big milk drinker. I guess they wanted him to appeal to small children.
sputnik_57 21 months ago
No wonder he was afraid to fly...that crazy Murdock was the pilot! I'm not much of an AT fan but I watch it sometimes.
MichaelPowers 21 months ago
B.A. willingly got on a plane to fly to Chicago to help his mom out of a jam.
Michael 21 months ago
Isn't this a retread? I know I've read about his airplane problem before, and it had to be gere.
LoveMETV22 Michael 21 months ago
They have mentioned Mr. T's fear of flying in other ( Stories and or Quizzes), but this particular one is not a retread.
LoveMETV22 Michael 21 months ago
You might be referencing the story MeTV did in July 2022.

15inchBlackandWhite 21 months ago
Then in the movie Spy Hard he played a helicopter pilot in a brilliant piece of counter-casting.


LOCATION: If your playing Trivia (STOP first)

MrsPhilHarris 21 months ago
Have not watched this show but did see a compilation of clips on how they got him on the plane. Pretty funny.
Andybandit 21 months ago
It is hilarious how B.A. doesn't like planes. Like he says "I am not getting on no plane".
CaptainDunsel Andybandit 21 months ago
Well, he was right!
WayneKeith Andybandit 21 months ago
"I ain't gettin' on no plane Hannibal!"
LoveMETV22 21 months ago
Excellent story. The link with the Absolute Radio interview was a nice added touch. It showed a softer side of Mr. T discussing the series. Really enjoy the show, hopefully it remains part of MeTV's schedule for a while.
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