What better way to teach your son to hunt than having him pounce your right-hand man—er, right-paw bird?
- The very beginning of the movie has a rather meta one with the song "Circle of Life". If one knows their Zulu and listen to the famous African choruses that start the song, it translates that someone was pointing out to his father that a lion is coming. The father confirms that it is, indeed, a lion.
- Gets even better, when the only lion coming... is the one being born. The father is literally telling his son that Mufasa and Sarabi had sex and a baby lion is coming from it. In other words, a lion is coming because a lion came.
- Simba is Swahili for lion. Simba is a lion named lion.
- And Mufasa is Swahili for king. So the Swahili title of the movie could be "The Simba Mufasa".
- The part where Zazu has essentially been reduced to Scar's court jester, and starts off singing "Nobody Knows":
- And afterwards, when the hyenas complain about there not being any food, Scar dismissively suggests that they eat Zazu.
- Early on the film, Zazu comes to deliver his morning report, which consists of animal puns, to Mufasa. Simba gets bored and attempts to pounce a bug, but with little success. Mufasa decides to teach him how to pounce and asks Zazu to turn around. Zazu complies without giving a second thought and continues to give the report until he gets suspicious.
Zazu: (getting suspicious)
What's going on? Mufasa:
A pouncing lesson. Zazu:
Oh, very good. Pouncing... Pouncing
!? Oh no, sire! You can't be serious! (Mufasa motions for Zazu to turn back around. Zazu reluctantly complies.)
Oh, this is so
humiliating… Mufasa: (whispering to Simba)
Try not make a sound… Zazu:
What are you telling him, Mufasa? (looks around uneasily. Simba and Mufasa seem to have disappeared.)
Mufasa? Simba? (Simba leaps out of nowhere and tackles Zazu to the ground.)
- Even more amusing if watching the special edition, as the sequence is a song number originally being performed by Zazu, which Simba hijacks.
- "What do you want me to do, dress in drag and do the hula?"
- Rafiki smacking Simba upside the head with his stick, - "OW! Jeez, what was that for?!" Again it is Simba's priceless expression (and head-rub) that sells it. Even funnier after watching the DVD Commentary. That was just a Throw It In!.
"So I said, why doesn't he just hit him over the head?"
Rafiki: So, what are you going to do?
Simba: [mischievously] First...I'm gonna take your stick! [grabs and throws it]
Rafiki: No no no, not the stick! [chases after it, then sees Simba running off into the distance] Hey! Where you goin'!?
Simba: I'm going back!
Rafiki: Good! Go on, get outta here! [Starts laughing, first madly then triumphantly]
- Even better when Timon's Mother whacks Rafiki upside the head with his own staff in the second sequel.
- Speaking of Rafiki:
Come here. [pulls Simba close to whisper in his ear
] It's a secret.
[whispering and getting louder
] Asante sana, squash banana! We we nugu! Mi mi apana!
- "...Be prepared for sen-sa-tional news..."
- At the elephant graveyard:
"We could have whatever's...lion
"Make mine a cub
"It's not funny, Ed." [bursts into hyena laughter
Banzai: Hey, did we order this dinner to go?
Shenzi: [expecting another pun] No, why?
Banzai: 'Cause THERE IT GOES!
- Which is also a pun, come to think of it.
- We also can't forget about the birdie boiler right after that either.
Banzai: The little major-domo bird hippety-hop all the way to the birdie boiler!
(Banzai stuffs Zazu in the birdie boiler.)
Zazu: Oh no! Not the birdie boiler!
(Zazu gets blasted out of the sky and the hyenas laugh hysterically.)
- After Banzai and Ed's scuffle in the Graveyard, Shenzi remarks that they're the reason why hyenas are dangling at the bottom of the food chain. Banzai, with a drip of spit dangling from his lip, says "Man, I hate dangling."
- The Three Hyenas piling up one after the other at the edge of a cliff, eventually pushing Banzai into a thorny bush.
- "What, you want me to come out looking like you, cactus butt?"
- Rafiki going kung fu on the hyenas could qualify both as this and a Moment of Awesome.
- This easy-to-miss exchange:
- Another easy-to-miss one:
- Zazu getting crushed by a rhino at the end of "I Just Can't Wait to Be King".
Zazu: I beg your pardon, madam, but... GET OFF!!
- Earlier in the same song sequence, when Simba and Nala walk through an honor guard-style arrangement of zebras... who then promptly reverse face (literally) and have tails erect, to Zazu when he tries to follow them.
- Scar's use of the phrase "practically gift-wrapped" to describe how easy killing Simba and Nala was supposed to be for the hyenas.
- "No king! No king! La la la la la la~!"
- Just before that, this exchange:
Banzai: Yeah, be prepared! Heheh, we'll be prepared! Heh. ...For what?
Scar: For the death of the king!
Banzai: What, is he sick?
Scar: (candidly) No, fool, we're gonna kill him, and Simba, too.
- When Timon, Pumbaa and Simba lie in the grass looking at the stars.
- Timon's absolute confusion when Nala and Simba reunite. After they were at each other's throats. And after she tried to eat Pumbaa, who, after pleasantries, seems to have completely forgotten about it. Which only confuses Timon more!
Simba: Nala, I'd like you to meet Pumbaa. Pumbaa, Nala.
Pumbaa: Pleased to make your acquaintance.
Nala: The pleasure's all mine!
Timon: How do you do.. Whoa! Whoa. Time out.. Lemme get this straight. You know her. She knows you. But she wants to eat him. And everybody's... okay with this? DID I MISS SOMETHING?!
- This little aside from "Hakuna Matata":
When he was a young warthog... Pumbaa: When I was a young WARTHOOOG... Timon:
(while cleaning his ear out
) Very nice. Pumbaa:
- And this one:
- The Hilarious Outtakes made for the 3D version. See them here.
- Mufasa is definitely smoking something.
- "Well, Simba, now's your chance to grow up, and tell them - tell them who's...blu-blu-blu-blu- I don't know what I'm doing."
- The scene of Shenzi laughing hysterically while Ed is looking serious, as if he's quietly saying, "Hey, That's My Line!".
- Simba messing up his lines. "I don't speak this African stuff."
- Rafiki falls asleep while meditating.
- But the Crowning Moment has to be when climbing Pride Rock, Rafiki trips and drops Simba over the edge. Rafiki then crawls over to the edge in cartoon style and looks down, saying "Simba?"
- Timon practicing his hula scene in different poses. At one point, he doesn't do it because he's busy sipping his drink. But then he opens his eyes, looks at the audience, and apologizes for the delay.
- This exchange:
- And the exchange right before it, when Scar first shows up and surprises them. Even funnier, as Shenzi and Banzai don't even seem to be trying to insult him.
Banzai: Oh, Scar! It's just you!
Shenzi: We were afraid it was someone important.
Banzai: Yeah, like Mufasa.
Scar: [As dryly as possible] "I see..."
- And earlier in the film:
Banzai: Hippity-hop all the way to the birdie boiler.
Zazu: Oh, NO! NOT THE BIRDY BOILER!
- It's easy to miss, but the look on Nala's face the second time Simba "roars" in the elephant graveyard, just before Mufasa shows up to save them.
- Scar being Deadpan Snarker at his best to hide the fact he cannot stand Simba's enthusiasm for being destined to the throne.
Yes, well forgive me for not leaping for joy. Bad back, you know. Simba:
Hey Uncle Scar, when I'm King, what'll that make you? Scar: A monkey's uncle.
- After Timon and Pumbaa meet Rafiki for the first time:
Timon: Hey, what's going on here? Who's the monkey?
Nala: Simba's gone back to challenge Scar!
Pumbaa: Who's got a scar?
Nala: No, no, no. It's his uncle.
Timon: The monkey's his uncle?
Nala: No! Simba's gone back to challenge his uncle to take his place as King!
Timon and Pumbaa: Ohhhhhh...
- Timon and Pumbaa singing and bawling about how their pal is supposedly doomed because he's fallen in love.
- The start of movie after the "Circle of Life" number which introduces Scar. After Zazu reprimands him for missing Simba's ceremony, he tries to eat him.
Mufasa: [shows up] Scar!
Scar: [with his mouth full] Yes, Mufasa?
Mufasa: Drop him.
Zazu: [his beak pops out of Scar's mouth] Impeccable timing, your majesty. [Scar spits him out]
- In the very same scene above, we get this little dialogue - in which Zazu (and Rowan Atkinson) makes a self depreciation joke - after Scar walks out on Mufasa:
There's one in every family, sire. Two in mine, actually.
And they always manage to ruin special occasions. Mufasa:
What am I going to do with him? (meaning Scar) Zazu:
He'd make a very handsome throw rug. Mufasa:
And just think, Whenever he gets dirty you can take him out and beat him.
- Timon and Pumbaa's verse at the end of "Can You Feel the Love Tonight". Their genuine-looking grief, and bursting into tears afterwards, for...nothing.
- Pumbaa's cluelessness during the opening also:
Timon: I can see what's happening.
Timon: And they don't have a clue.
Timon: They'll fall in love and here's the bottom line: our trio's down to two.
- Another one during the main chorus. After Simba pulls Nala into the water unexpectedly and she swims out, she looks at Simba for a brief second, then she shoves him back in to the water, with a grin on her face. This could be simply revenge for pulling her in, or because of Simba's absolutely ridiculous appearance with his mane completely drenched and flattened over his eyes and head. Simba may not have ever been a dignified lion (or trying for it in that particular moment), but this may just provide an explanation for why lions generally don't like getting wet...
- Then after this, Simba starts chasing Nala into the jungle and the two begin to play wrestle again, until they tumble down a hill while holding on to each other the whole way. When they finally reach the bottom, Simba has finally managed to pin Nala. It's humorous that the only time Simba has ever been able to beat Nala was by complete accident and was the least like a “fight” out of all their scuffles.
- Also, while Simba is chuckling to himself over this, Nala suddenly gives him a surprise lick on the cheek as a reward for finally beating her. Simba is surprised and looks at her, but she just gives a seductive stare and he goes along with it.
- Just about all of the Virtual Safaris in this, but highlights are:
- Timon and Pumbaa discovering that THEY are on the menu in the Jeep tour.
- Pumbaa mistaking Timon's tail for his blanket in the same tour.
- Followed by Timon and Pumbaa getting attacked by bats.
- In the Boat tour, Timon jumps out of the boat after getting scared by thunder.
- One of the two endings of the above tour, which involves Timon and Pumbaa getting caught in a whirlpool.
- The other ending is also funny, but replace "whirlpool" with "waterfall".
- When Simba, Nala and Zazu are cornered by the Hyenas in the Elephant Graveyard:
- On the meta level, "Be Prepared" getting mangled beyond all recognition by Google Translate. It starts with "But thick as you are, pay attention!" somehow being reduced to "Fat! Focus!" and just goes downhill from there.
- Scar's dialogue with the hyenas is a particular standout:
Banzai: Better prepared for survival! We will remember! ... Why?
Banzai: Why? She was infected?
- One comparison between the Lion King and Hamlet gives the role of "something rotten in the kingdom of Denmark" to Pumbaa's gas.
- The Look-And-Find adaptation of the film has several funny moments, such as Timon and Pumbaa getting AbhorrentAdmirers as Simba and Nala feel the love tonight, or several examples of Misplaced Wildlife as Easter eggs. In the adaptation of the final battle, we see an angry hippo who joined the battle to help Simba about to crush several hyenas under his giant ass. We also see in the background a hyena who has become morbidly obese with tiny stubs for legs.
- Even though Mufasa's death was a massive Tear Jerker, there's something oddly hilarious about the last wildebeest running to catch up with the rest of the stampede. Like "hey, you guys, wait for me!"
- The climax of the movie is serious event after serious event: Scar hitting Sarabi, Simba forcing the truth out of Scar, and then the final battle. However, there's a Funny Background Event occurring as Sarabi makes her way to Scar: among the crowd of snarling, angry hyenas...is one hyena putting on the biggest nervous smile, almost as if he's standing to attention as the Queen approaches.
- When Scar lures Simba into the gorge, we get this gem:
Scar: No, no, no, no, no, this is just for you and your daddy. You know, a sort of father-son...thing.
- Every single one of Zazu's lines. Nobody does comic delivery quite like Rowan Atkinson.
- Pretty much the entirety of the famous "Pinned Ya!" scene. Simba and Nala get into a scuffle and Simba is shocked when Nala manages to flip him and pin him, even when he was the one who pounced on her twice. Nala just looks and sounds so smug looking down at her best friend and it's amusing how easily she manages to beat the prince of the Pridelands and tease him about it, first playfully teasing him then smugly taunting him.
: I am a genius. Nala
: Hey "genius", it was my
: Yeah. But I
pulled it off. Nala
: With me! Simba
: (gets ready to pounce) Oh yeah? Roar! (Tackles Nala who easily flips him) Nala
: Ha! (pins Simba down, who is shocked) Heh, pinned ya. Simba
: Hey, let me up
! (Pushes Nala off him and glares
at her as she turns with a smug satisfied smile. His glare turns to a smirk as he pounces again while she's distracted, but sends them both rolling down a hill) Nala
: Haha! Haha! (Nala is laughing as she and Simba roll down, while Simba is shocked and scared. They reach the bottom with Simba on top, only for Nala to once again flip him and pin him. She looks and sounds even more smug now) Pinned ya again
: (Only glares silently in defeat
as his best friend holds him down)
- A meta example is the opening of the DVD Commentary:
Don Hahn: Hi, I'm Don Hahn, I'm the producer of Lion King.
Robert Minkoff: I'm Rob Minkoff, director of The Lion King.
Roger Allers: And Roger Allers, director of The Lion King.
Hahn: And we're here to perform the Top 40 hits for you. No, we're here to comment for you on the making of The Lion King.
- Before "I Just Can't Wait To Be King," Zazu says, "This wasn't in the cartoon!"
- "Huh, it looks like an oversized shower curtain from Zellersnote ..."
- In the 2011 Montreal performance of the show, Zazu switches 'It's a small world' for 'Vive L'Allouetes!'. It makes sense if you're from Montreal.
- In the 2011 Las Vegas show, Zazu belts out another song that starts with a form of "Vive." Three guesses which.
- In the 2013 Dallas show Zazu sang the first two lines to "Deep in the Heart of Texas", what makes it even funnier the audience sang along once they knew what the song was.
- During the UK Tour, Zazu waits a beat before singing, "And I will walk five hundred miles!...".
- The Australia Tour has him singing "Let It Go" which, considering Frozen and the song were all the craze when the show first opened in December 2013, makes Scar shouting "Anything but that!" even more hilarious.
- Zazu still sang "Let It Go" during the recent stop in Chicago! ("The cold never bothered me anyway!")
- He's still singing it as of the recent performance in Providence, so it appears "Let It Go" is officially more annoying than "It's A Small World After All."
- In 2005, after the Broadway production transferred from the luxurious New Amsterdam Theatre to the smaller Minskoff Theatre so that Mary Poppins could take its place at the New Amsterdam, Zazu's song choice became "Supercalifragalisticexpialidocious." "Anything but that!" indeed.
- Like with Zazu's song, the dance Timon and Pumbaa perform in order to distract the hyenas varies from place to place. In the UK, they did the River Dance. Cue hysterical laughter from the audience.
- Rafiki says 'Tu'as Compris?' at the end of one of her rants, and the subtitles on the screens to the side SHOW IT IN ENGLISH.
- One thing which always seems to gain the biggest laugh from the audience is Rafiki swinging in on a vine, telling Nala, Timon and Pumbaa that Simba has returned. What gains the laugh is the fact that after the first swing, she suddenly swings in again, completely unexpectedly, babbling some nonsense. And to top it all off, the priceless "WTF?!" expressions on the trio's faces.
- Mufasa (seemingly) fires Zazu. The hornbill's response:
- Another response seen in the early touring days
- And when he was played by a Scottish actor...
Zazu: Don't send me back to Glasgow!
- The 2017 London tour has it as this:
- The puppet then attacks its operator ("This is all your fault!"), and Mufasa has to go over to pull him off.
Mufasa: Zazu, it's a joke! *laughs heartily while the puppet and the operator go limp in disbelief*
- At some point in "I Just Can't Wait to be King," Simba snatches Zazu (the puppet) away from its puppeteer. The puppeteer shoots an Oh, Crap! face at the audience and covers himself as if he is naked.
- Zazu gets a lot more snark in this version than he does in the film. In particular, we have this exchange:
Scar: Here I am at the pinnacle and yet the view is bleak. What is wrong with this picture?
Zazu: You're in it, sire?
- Another Zazu gem that soars right over the kids' heads:
Scar: Zazu, be serious! I'm in need of some bucking up!
Zazu: Oh, sire, you seem to be bucking up just fine without me!
Zazu: You've already bucked up, royally!
- Rafiki gives what appears to be a very long speech in Swahili. When she's done, she turns to the audience and asks "Do you understand?" After the resounding "no" she rolls her eyes and continues what she was doing.
- Even funnier is that since said rant takes place during the making of Simba's portrait and right after the presentation on Pride Rock, it seems very clear Rafiki is talking about Simba and his birth. From some of the expressions and tones she uses, it's very possible part of this rant was about how Simba was conceived (complete with praise of Mufasa's prowess).
- During one performance in London, Timon exits to the wrong side. Pumbaa just stands there staring for a few moments, before Timon hurries back on saying, "It's the other way." The entire audience cracked up laughing.
- In Manchester, after Simba leaves Timon and Pumbaa upset about his father, Timon asks Pumbaa "was it something I said?" A child in the audience shouted out "Yeah!", causing all of the audience to start laughing.
- This exchange:
Pumbaa: You gotta put your behind in your past! [displays his rear end to emphasize the point]
Timon: No, no, no! Lie down before you hurt yourself.
[Pumbaa lies down]
Timon: It's "You gotta put your past behind you."
Pumbaa: I knew that.
- Before the scene where Simba, Timon and Pumbaa are stargazing, the former calls the latter two "a couple of old farts" for not keeping up with his energy. How does Pumbaa respond?
Pumbaa: Well, he's got me pegged.
- At one point, Simba talks with Timon and Pumbaa about how he wants to get out of the oasis and head "somewhere greener", upon which all of the actors portraying the greenery turn to him with a stern look on their faces.
- In "The Madness of King Scar," Scar gripes that the hyenas don't know what real hunger is.
Scar: Day after day it gnaws at the very core of my being!
Shenzi: I had that once. It was worms.
Scar: No, no, no... It's like an itch... Deep, persistent, profound...
Banzai: That's it! Worms! When they get really bad all you gotta do is... hunker down and scoot.