Accidental Innuendo: The show is full of them. Seriously, if you watch the series on YouTube and read the comments, half of them are about something involving sex.
"Now I'm on top!!!"
Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: For the voice actors anyway. Knowing absolutely nothing of how the original story was supposed to evolve, a woolly mammoth coming out of nowhere sort of threw them for a loop.
Broken Base: So, is the 1989 series unnecessary and destroys everything the original series stood for, or is more realistic and better than the original series?
Counterpart Comparison: The parallels between Kimba and The Lion King are many, even if the latter does officially base its plot on "Hamlet". Helped by, among other things, both properties making similar design goofs (black tips on the main character's ears, which in reality is uncommon; Dan'l and Rafiki sharing nearly identical story purposes and both incorrectly labelled as baboons – they are mandrills), both properties' villains' tendency to pal around with hyenas, Lion King originally being set in the jungle and titled "King of the Jungle" (Kimba's Japanese title literally means the Emperor of the Jungle), early production sketches that showed Simba colored white (to which a producer is said to have remarked, "Not even our lawyers are that good."), rumors that Disney had been trying to get the Kimba rights from Japan during the court battles over Mushi Pro's IP, and Matthew Broderick admitting in an early interview that he thought he was signing up for a "remake of that cartoon [he] watched as a kid".
Upon seeing The Lion King in theatres, Kimba's voice actress Billie Lou Watt was quite vocal about the similarities to the show she'd recorded years earlier. She didn't use the words "ripoff" or "plagiarism" to describe the Disney film, but did imply those terms. Tezuka fans have since used them openly.
In 1995, after The Lion King premiered in Japanese theatres, Tezuka's widow was reportedly asked if she would consider levelling infringement charges against Disney. She said no, reminding the questioner that her late husband was profoundly influenced by Walt Disney and had tremendous respect for him; she concluded that he would never think of suing Disney's company, so neither would she.
The main similarities are the character designs and setting - the story of The Lion King is more about accepting responsibility - Kimba is more about using authority wisely, and Kimba also deals with greedy or unaware humans messing things up for the animals.
Viewer Gender Confusion: Happened to those who're not familiar with the series watching a filler episode from the 90s dub for the first time.
The Woobie: Leo in the 2009 special embodies this trope. He hasn't yet learned to hunt properly, and even the *prey* laughs at his pathetic attempts. Considering the original Kimba/Leo swam the seas to get back home and learned early on to get tough, this cute-but-less-confident Leo comes as a bit of a surprise to fans.
Poor, poor Snowene/Eliza. First she watches her mate die right in front of her, after being captured and used as bait to lure him in. Then she's forced to send her son away, knowing the ship they're on is about to sink in a storm. Then she drowns.
Rune in the sequel dub. He's neither as physically adept nor as brave as his sister Ruki, and Leo is absolutely awful to him.
Woolseyism: The dub actors weren't given the episodes in order and were forced to write their own scripts. While this brought up some issues later on involving Kimba's past, they really tried to make the best possible show they could.
Unfortunately, the 90's redub wasn't so lucky. It's worth noting that the original 60's dub sells for about $110 in boxset form, while the 90's redub is a staple in most dollar stores.
While fans will admit the 90's redub sticks closer to the Japanese Script generally, they disliked that the dub removed the original background music and non-dubbed voices. There's also a feeling that the original dub cast overall gave a better performance of the characters and that despite some confusion and censorship still retains much of the intended spirit of the show.