->''"The story of Africa in the modern age is one of war, disease, corruption, repression and poverty. On the upside, there are [[EverythingsBetterWithMonkeys tons of monkeys]] and you never need a jacket."''
-->--''AmericaTheBook''

A great favourite of stories involving the Colonial period of the 19th and early 20th centuries, Africa has lent itself well to many stories. Its breadth of landscape includes the immense sandy wasteland, the grassy veldts and savannahs, and thick, treacherous jungle. The history includes the ancient sophistication of the Egyptians, rich ancient kingdoms like Kush and Mali, and mysterious tribal groups— as well as the more recent European colonies and military juntas. And always, there is the wildlife, some of which may be [[MisplacedWildlife misplaced]].

When Africa is not being used as a LostWorld, it's the next best thing: mysterious and dangerous, but populated with outcroppings and ties to the modern world. This balance of civilization just within reach and ''terra incognita'' a mere wrong turn away gives the "Dark Continent" a unique position. "Adventure in your own back yard" takes on a new meaning if one's back yard hosts the occasional elephant stampede.

It may be noted that in many modern stories, quite a bit of finagling or [[HandWave handwaving]] is required to get the "traditional" level of isolation, bringing it into DiscreditedTrope territory (not to say UnfortunateImplications). On the other hand, the old stories resonate strongly, and traditional ways of life still hold sway, enough that subversions are frequently effective; the hero can still be surprised when the chief of the village lets him use the (generator-powered) satellite phone.

In older stories, the MightyWhitey and HollywoodNatives abound, along with MisplacedWildlife.

You might be able to get away with replacing "Congo" with "Amazon", however.

See also AncientAfrica and [[UsefulNotes/{{Africa}} Useful Notes: Africa]] as well as JungleDrums and TheNativesAreRestless. See {{Bulungi}} for a modern take on this trope.

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!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* Pyunma/008's home country looks like this the first time we see it in ''Manga/{{Cyborg 009}}'', but in subsequent stories, Creator/ShotaroIshinomori tried to portray a slightly more realistic version of modern Africa, with cities & cars & things like that (and also changing Pyunma's backstory from [[spoiler: a former tribal prince turned into]] [[MadeASlave an ex-slave]] to a former guerrilla fighter caught an injured in a crossfire). Actually [[LampshadeHanging lampshades]] this trope, with 009 saying that Africa's nothing like what he read about in books when he visits.
* ''KimbaTheWhiteLion'' takes place in an African jungle most of the time.
--> ''(From the theme song to the original 1960s dub):''[[note]]Both dubs are the only versions that actually have theme songs. The Japanese original (Jungle Emperor) used a mostly instrumental theme[[/note]] "Who lives in the deepest, darkest Africa?..."
* Subverted in HanaNoKoLunlun. The Egypt episode ''does'' use several of the Egypt cliches (starting with pyramids and treasures from AncientEgypt, as [[spoiler: Lunlun is "partnered" with a GentlemanThief]]), but the one in Morocco has a somewhat more realistic ambientation while recreating an old Moroccan village ([[spoiler: which is the hometown of Lunlun's friend Sayid, who has been living in England with his grandfather Scharo ''and'' is the reason why she's in Africa in the first place]]) and two or three local traditions [[spoiler: like a traditional race that Sayid must participate in to be properly accepted by the villagers.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comicbooks]]
* MarvelUniverse: Wakanda, the kingdom ruled by T'Challa ("ComicBook/BlackPanther") has ''laws'' that maintain "tribal customs" despite being extraordinarily wealthy - a convienent way to maintain its LostWorld flavor.
* The home and main headquarters of ComicStrip/ThePhantom is in the fictional country of Bangalla, which has been represented as a fairly realistic African nation.
* CarlBarks' DonaldDuck yarn "In Darkest Africa".
** Voodoo Hoodoo also contains elements of this.
* The early ''{{Tintin}}'' adventure ''[[Recap/TintinTintinInTheCongo Tintin in the Congo]]'', infamous for its condescending depiction of African natives and senseless slaughter of wildlife. It's been intermittently available in English; current print runs are aimed largely at older fans and put out in an almost embarrassed fashion. Mind you, that's the ''revised'' colored version, where Herge rounded the sharpest corners and excised the parts that caused the most criticism. The original black-and-white comic was ''[[UpToEleven much]]'' worse.
* The setting for ''ComicBook/SheenaQueenOfTheJungle''.
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[[folder:Film]]
* Creator/LonChaney late-period silent flick ''Film/WestOfZanzibar'' plays this trope for all its worth--jungles, alligators, voodoo, human sacrifices, and savage native tribes.
* ''TheGodsMustBeCrazy'' has been criticized for its portrayal of the Bushmen as entirely ignorant {{Noble Savage}}s. For Xi, "Darkest Africa" makes pefect sense, but white society is bizarre and inexplicable. To the whites, dangerous wildlife and political turmoil are a source of consternation.
* ''GeorgeOfTheJungle'', as a parody of ''Franchise/{{Tarzan}}'', by necessity is set here.
* ''{{Jumanji}}'', in which the board game draws out dangerous elements of a distilled "Darkest Africa"-type jungle located within itself. The jungle is not seen in the film, or even seen by any of its characters save for the main protagonist who is trapped there for years.
** More so in [[WesternAnimation/{{Jumanji}} the animated series]] though, since they did go into the game OnceAnEpisode. There was even a native tribe [[PlanetOfHats of tribal masks]].
* ''[[Film/RoadTo Road to Zanzibar]]''
* Most of ''[[AceVentura Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls]]''
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[[folder:Literature]]
* ''Literature/{{Tarzan}}'', in most incarnations, relies on the African dichotomy for its stories.
* Creator/HRiderHaggard's ''Literature/{{She}}'' and ''Literature/KingSolomonsMines'', both with English explorers. Haggard had actually lived in Africa, and knew his stuff a lot better than most writers of colonial adventure fiction; but the European condescension is still present.
* The MichaelCrichton book and movie ''{{Congo}}'' has the (fictional) ruined city of Zinj populated by evil gorillas.
* Gregory [=McDonald=]'s ''Fletch Too'' is set in Africa, discussing some of the issues, including slavery, being modern-or not, archeology, witch doctors, and law.
* In Creator/JosephConrad's ''Literature/HeartOfDarkness'', the trip into the savage wilderness of Africa mirrors Kurtz's descent into his own darkness. However, Marlow states that England was at one time also considered a dark and savage land by the civilized Romans.
* Subversion: pretty much everything Chinua Achebe has ever written (the most famous being ''Literature/ThingsFallApart''). He is very keen on dispelling this particular trope.
* An early section of ''Literature/RobinsonCrusoe'', when Crusoe is fleeing in a boat along the African coast.
--> But it is impossible to describe the horrid noises, and hideous cries and howlings that were raised, as well upon the edge of the shore as higher within the country, . . . this convinced me that there was no going on shore for us in the night on that coast, and how to venture on shore in the day was another question too; for to have fallen into the hands of any of the savages had been as bad as to have fallen into the hands of the lions and tigers; at least we were equally apprehensive of the danger of it.
* The first ''Literature/TimeScout'' book ends with a trip to 17th century Africa. It doesn't end well. Well, it does, but it doesn't middle well.
* The sword and soul sub-genre of HeroicFantasy often is set here or in FantasyCounterpartCulture versions of Africa with black heroes instead of MightyWhitey heroes.
* This is the setting of ''Literature/FiveWeeksInABalloon'', the unexplored depths of 19th-century Africa, with no Western civilization to speak of.
* Darkest Howondaland, in the ''{{Discworld}}'', is very often a parody of this trope.
* Pretty much every book by Creator/WilburSmith ever. There is usually a MightyWhitey protagonist involved, with plenty of [[MagicalNegro native advisors]] and [[BlackBestFriend companions]] to round out the cast..
* In ''Literature/KingdomOfLittleWounds'' Midi's origins are given this treatment by people at court, though not necessarily by the author.
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[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* Spoofed in episode 29 of ''Series/MontyPythonsFlyingCircus'', in which a band of pith-helmeted explorers discover a restaurant in the middle of the jungle.
* The [[MagicalNativeAmerican Magical Bushman]] arc from Season 3 of ''Series/{{Heroes}}'' provides a slight example of this trope. The character himself is something of an aversion: despite making his home in the brush, he has a Walkman and keeps abreast of current events. However, places in the series are usually addressed as "Odessa, Texas," or "Tokyo, Japan." Whenever the action cuts to that plot? "Somewhere In Africa." Yeah...
** Only because the character that was there didn't actually know where he was, he just kind of appeared there, and mysterious painter man isn't about to tell him that "you're twenty kilometres northeast of Mombasa, you can make it there by nightfall if you hurry", the man's got lessons to learn first.
* Israeli brief comedy series ''Lost in Africa'' features an Israeli fashion modeling company flying to the fictional country Abuna Kilosa, which borders on Chad and Sudan ([[ShownTheirWork most likely where RL Central African Republic is]]), for a photo shootout with a Swedish model and an English photographer. The show averts, plays with, and [[{{Deconstruction}} deconstructs]] the trope.
** While the people there are shown as rather primitive, sporting:
*** poor infrastructure;
*** some backward attitude;
*** tribal wars (amusingly between Tutsi and Hutu tribes, [[spoiler:re-triggered on the last episode when Eddy, the company’s boss, [[OhCrap burns down a sacred tree to stop a competing company from shooting there, unaware of the tree’s sacred position]]]]);
*** poorly communicating with the Western world (they assume for some reason that the clothes for the shooting are a donation - HillarityEnsued);
** they also:
*** seem to be doing a genuine effort to fix their country by fighting corruption (as they put it, ‘This is not Burkina Faso!’), to the point that bribing a policeman can cost one half an arm (the original photographer, later replaced by the aforementioned Englishman, tried to buy back a piece of clothing from a policeman, [[OhCrap which he interpreted as bribery]]);
*** they do have some modern technology, such as televisions and vehicles;
*** quite a few of them wear Western clothing;
*** and some of them speak very decent English (most notably the driver and hotel keeper).
** They also seem to be very aware of their position:
*** when one of the Israelis asks for a doctor to see him at his hotel room and asks him to give him a treatment ‘for tourists’, the doctor does some silly ceremony to please said tourists for an absurd amount of money (hillariously threatening to put a curse on him if he isn’t paid);
*** [[spoiler:and Suliman, the group’s driver seduces Shlomtsiyon, the company’s secretary, in an attempt to make her bring him with her back to Israel, [[SubvertedTrope subverting]] WhereDaWhiteWomenAt (this fails, as she angrily dumps him the moment she realises his true plans, which leads to his death in the Tutsi-Hutu fight later on)]].
** Also, the company’s boss wants to adopt a very bright kid he meets at the local village, who shows a remarkable talent in math and even learns to say ‘good morning’ in Hebrew (albeit mispronounced), even competing over him with the Swedish model. The Israelis treat the place they're in mostly with [[DeadpanSnarker condescension]] (as one of them phrased it: ‘Everyone’s a shell-shocked darkie around here!’) and occasionally with some romanticising ([[spoiler: Shlomtsiyon’s argument with Suliman about their future revolved around this: she wanted to get away from the commercialised, competitive West, while he wanted to leave Africa; this is what lead her to realise his true intentions and dump him]]), and the two Europeans seem to regard Israel with the same condescending tone the [[HypocriticalHumor Israelis treat the Africans]] (when told that the Israeli model is ‘very popular in Israel’, the English photographer says, ‘Yes, but so is war!’), while both Israelis and Europeans display [[RousseauWasRight every possible vice of Western society]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Multi-media]]
* Many an adventure or treasure hunt involves a search for something "lost in the African jungle".
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Poetry]]
* As [[http://www.gutenberg.org/catalog/world/readfile?fk_files=37133&pageno=11 Vachel Lindsay so well put it,]]
----> ''Then I saw the Congo, creeping through the black,
----> Cutting through the jungle with a golden track''
----> Then along that riverbank, a thousand miles
----> Tattooed cannibals danced in files...
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* Legendary big man Wrestling/TheOneManGang underwent a new gimmick in the late 80's and became Akeem, the African Dream. The gimmick (which was cheesy and somewhat racist, as it had a white man dressing in African tribal garb and using a stereotypical accent and mannerisms, though it was a TakeThat to the wrestler "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes, a big fat white guy who tried to talk "black.") billed him from "Deepest, Darkest Africa".
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Radio]]
* Many episodes of ''TheGoonShow'' took place here to spoof the old stories, and there's no such thing as MightyWhitey, just "noble" British fighters and explorers who are complete, often greedy idiots (i.e., Major Bloodnok).
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* The ''TabletopGame/VampireTheMasquerade'' sourcebook ''Kindred of the Ebony Kingdom'' deals with African vampires. Whereas the KindredOfTheEast are something completely unique and different (even a little alien) from the western Kindred, the Laibon are just the regular clans with a darker epidermis.
* The pulp themed ''SpiritOfTheCentury'', set in the 1920s, actually refers to Africa as DarkestAfrica, and talks about Gorilla Khan's exploits in the unexplored wilderness there.
* The new [[EverythingsBetterWithMonkeys Empire of the Apes]] faction in ''{{Monsterpocalypse}}'' called this home. No doubt the elders are wishing Kondo had kept to their advice and ''not'' decided to take a peek outside into the humans' proper dominion.
* Spoofed in ''TabletopGame/{{Toon}}'' ([[RuleOfFunny but then, of course it is]]), which has an adventure in "Darkest Africa" reached by...getting off the boat in Africa, then following the sign reading "Dark Africa". It's somewhere on the other side of "Darker Africa". The gag is actually ''[[OlderThanTheyThink directly]]'' [[ShoutOut lifted]] from ''Porky in Wackyland,'' below.
* TabletopGame/{{Pathfinder}}'s default setting has the [[FantasyCounterpartCulture Mwangi Expanse]], which is explicitly there to give players some jungles and [[LostWorld lost cities]] to explore.
* The third-party sourcebook ''Nyambe'' essentially gave a Darkest Africa setting for ''DungeonsAndDragons''.
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[[folder:Theatre]]
* Eugene O'Neill's play ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Emperor_Jones The Emperor Jones]]'' actually takes place on an island in the West Indies, but it might as well be a transplanted piece of Africa.
* In ''Theatre/TheBookOfMormon'', Kevin Price and Arnold Cunningham are sent as missionaries to Uganda and find out the hard way that "Africa is nothing like ''Disney/TheLionKing''!" Instead, it's full of Third World problems such as AIDS, clitoridectomies, and warlords who shoot people in the face. Even so, all the traditional clichés are brought out for one number which has the white missionaries sing, "Weeeee are Africa, We are deepest darkest Africa..."
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Videogames]]
* ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil5'' wanders over here for two chapters, but spends the rest in more developed areas.
* ''FarCry 2'' takes place in a fictional African country called Leboa-Seko, which is populated almost exclusively by people who want you dead.
** Somewhat justified in that the place is in the last stages of a ruinous civil war and most moderate people / civilians have long since left. Still, things like tarred roads, villages, shops (which don't sell weapons), and noncombatants are conspicuous by their relative absence.
* Mazuri in ''SonicUnleashed'' gives a very African vibe.
* ''Congo Bongo''
* Kemco's ''Ghost Lion'', which is probably the ''only'' RPG in the world set in (non-Egypt) Africa.
* Both ''VictoriaAnEmpireUnderTheSun'' and its sequel has nods to this trope in some of its event descriptions. The main reason being that they take place ''during'' the 19th and early 20th centuries, and have has one of their major themes the European imperialism of the period... including the colonisation of Africa.
** From the same company, ''EuropaUniversalis'' (taking place from late Middle Age to Napoleonic times) has Africa as mostly uncolonizable/unconquerable/untraversable wilderness. What usable provinces are there are on or near coastlines (with some exceptions: Nile valley, horn of Africa, West African subsaharan kingdoms), usually have the Tropical modifier (increasing non-native troop attrition significantly), and occupied either by technologically backwards nations (compared to Europe or the Middle-East, anyway) or by very powerful, numerous and hostile natives, [[ChasedByAngryNatives making colonization very difficult]].
* ''VideoGame/{{Borderlands 2}}'':
** The expansion pack ''Hammerlock's Hunt'' has a fair amount of this, with an unusual emphasis on dark and dreary environments with precious little jungle or savanna to be seen. Hammerlock is of course the very ideal of the GreatWhiteHunter, and the BigBad (such as he is) is very much a MightyWhitey controlling the aggressive and shamanistic tribesmen. In a small twist (and possibly an attempt to head off UnfortunateImplications), the tribesmen are largely white and are former colonists who went mad after being abandoned on Pandora by their employers.
** The natives return again in ''Sir Hammerlock and the Son of Crawmerax'' dlc, this time worshipping the titular Son of Crawmerax. Hammerlock will again comment on how savage they are, until one of them chimes in and points out that he (the native) has a degree from a university on Eden-5, then proceed to call Hammerlock a dickwad for the insensitive comments.
* In an extremely rare variant of this trope, ''VideoGame/RyseSonOfRome'' has a mission set in ''Darkest Britain.'' The lands north of Hadrian's Wall are portrayed as a dark and foggy DeathWorld where EverythingIsTryingToKillYou. The local population are savages who wear animal skulls and furs, scream and holler in a horrific BlackSpeech, and kidnap foreigners to sacrifice them to their gods by burning them alive. Basically, it hits every characteristic of this trope... it's just set in Scotland.
* Fricana in ''QuestForGloryIII'' starts out with the Egyptian-themed Tarna, moves into the African savannah, and then eventually reaches this, culminating in the LostWorld, the final section of the map containing the [[VeryDefinitelyFinalDungeon Lost City]], as well as a hidden monkey village, a tribe of hostile apemen and lots of pissed-off demons. The section before that is a large jungle containing a secretive tribe of magic-wielding leopardmen that attack the player on-sight and are distrusted by their counterparts, the nomadic, savannah-dwelling Simbani, and it's the protagonists' job to stop the two from going to war.
* The Lost Kingdom park in ThemeParkWorld, full of jungle animals and tom tom drum-based rides.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Animation]]
* Parodied in [[http://www.weebls-stuff.com/toons/The+Cheese+Family/ The Cheese Family]], where at the zoo the Cheese family see "...the funny grapes from Darkest France".
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Wackyland, from the WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes short ''PorkyInWackyland'' (and also from its remake ''Dough for the Do-Do''), is located here. Porky Pig has to fly over Dark and Darker Africa to get there.
** ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Djxnw090EeE Inki and the Minah Bird]]'', an obscure WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes short, also takes place in there.
* Many, many episodes of ''WesternAnimation/DangerMouse'', mostly because it was parodying old adventure serials of the kind that inspired the ''Franchise/IndianaJones'' movies. (Weirdly, ''The Bad Luck Eye of the Little Yellow God'' was ostensibly set in Brazil, but is in all other respects Darkest Africa.)
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Other]]
* Lampshaded and [[TakeThat parodied mercilessly]] in this article by Kenyan blogger Binyavanga Wainaina, [[http://www.granta.com/Magazine/92/How-to-Write-about-Africa/Page-1 How to Write about Africa]].
* The physical anthropologist and white supremacist Carleton S. Coon was fond of using "congoid" instead of "negroid". On the one hand, the Congo is an actual place, and an autonym at that. On the other, Congo represents this trope in the Western mind more than anywhere else.
[[/folder]]

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