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Characters / The Lion King First Film

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Characters of The Lion King franchise introduced in the original 1994 film itself.

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See his separate page.

"Remember who you are. You are my son and the one true king."

Voiced in English by: James Earl Jones (films, Return of the Roar), Keith David (House of Mouse, Simba's Mighty Adventure), Gary Anthony Williams (The Lion Guard)
Voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Carlos Magaña (TLK), Héctor Lama Yazbek (DVD/BD version onwards)
Voiced in Japanese by: Shinya Ohwada
Voiced in European French by: Jean Reno (TLK), Laurent Gamelon (Simba's Pride), Gilles Morvan (The Lion Guard)

Simba's father, mentor, and King of the Pride Lands.

  • The Ace: Wise, strong, compassionate.
  • Action Dad: He's a dangerous lion and he sometimes has to save his son.
  • Adult Fear: Simba thinks his father isn't afraid of anything until he confesses his one great fear: losing his son.
  • Anger Born of Worry: Mufasa is upset with Simba after the encounter with the hyenas for not understanding the difference between courage and foolhardiness and nearly getting killed in the process.
  • Anyone Can Die: He's one of the few non-villains in a Disney animation to be killed off.
  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Becomes one of the Great Kings of the Past.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: He's the original lion king in the movie, and the strongest in a fight.
  • Badass Baritone: James Earl Jones being his voice actor, he has a thoroughly deep voice (though a bass instead of a baritone).
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: The neatest, well-kept mane of all the lions, and the most good.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Not just with the hyenas, but Mufusa makes Simba feel genuinely guilty when he disobeys him. And he still stays levelheaded when scolding Simba. Also, he's pretty stern towards Scar for disrespecting his son at the beginning.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Twice to Simba. First he saves Simba from the hyenas, and then from the stampede. Also to Zazu, showing up just in time to stop Scar from eating Zazu, which Zazu even lampshades ("Impeccable timing, Your Majesty!").
  • Big Good: What comes with being the king of the Pridelands. Even after his death, Simba still looks towards his father for guidance, as do his grandson Kion and old friend Rafiki, making him the Big Good of the franchise.
  • Bloodless Carnage: His death is bloodless, even though he was trampled to death.
  • Cain and Abel: With Scar. Mufasa is the Abel to Scar's Cain.
  • Character Death: One of the most realistic and saddest ones in Disney history. He's one of the few main characters in a Disney movie to permanently die. To be fair, his death was subtly foreshadowed at least twice.
  • Deceased Parents Are the Best: He's one of the greatest fathers in animation who happens to die in the middle of the film.
  • Disney Villain Death: Although he isn't a villain, he falls into a vicious stampede at the hands of one.
  • Disappeared Dad: Becomes this in the first film, because he's, you know, dead.
  • The Dreaded: The hyenas scatter at the sight of him.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: He had this reaction on his face moments before he was thrown off the cliff by his brother.
  • Expy: Of King Hamlet/The Ghost, albeit more unambiguously heroic.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: Thrown off a cliff and trampled to death in a wildebeest stampede, albeit off-screen.
  • Famous Last Words: "Brother, help me!"
  • Fantastic Racism: Hyenas are not allowed in the Pride Lands during his rule. We never learn whether or not this was justified or simply the natural rivalry of lions and hyenas at play, but the fact that the hyenas are going hungry is the reason Scar is able to strike a bargain with them in the first place.
  • The Farmer and the Viper: Mufasa learns the hard way that being nice to an Obviously Evil sibling, who was scheming right behind his back, isn't going to change his heart. And not even entirely behind his back. Scar all but announces on the day of Simba's presentation that he hates the new cub, wants the throne, that Mufasa should beware of him, and that he won't attempt to seize it by challenging him directly.
  • Fatal Flaw: Naïveté. He was so convinced in the fundamental goodness of everyone that he failed to see the evil in his power-hungry brother. Said brother ends up murdering him.
  • Framed for Heroism: Scar made it look this way to Simba when Mufasa's death was because of his attempt to rescue the cub.
  • Friend to All Living Things: He respects all the animals in the Pridelands, even the ones he eats, because he acknowledges that they all have an important role in the Circle of Life.
  • Genius Bruiser: While his strength is unquestionable, Mufasa is also a very smart and competent leader barring his Fatal Flaw, as evidenced by the Pridelands during his reign and the Pridelands during Scar's reign.
  • Gentle Giant: He is one biiiig kitty, and he has an even bigger heart.
  • Good Cannot Comprehend Evil: His Fatal Flaw. Despite their disputes, he underestimates his younger brother Scar's jealousy of him and desire for the throne, believing in the importance of family and that Scar couldn't do something heinous as fratricide. Mufasa only learned in the moment before his death that this is NOT the case, as Scar pays his kindness back by tossing him off a gorge. To twist the knife even further, Scar even rubs it in his brother's face, sadistically gloating "long live the king" with a Slasher Smile and making sure that his brother fully realizes what his true nature is.
  • Good Is Not Dumb: Despite his claims, Scar actually is no smarter than his brother, yet is resentful that Mufasa gets to be King instead of him. When Scar finally does become King, it becomes clear he is not as smart as Mufasa; Scar is a lazy hedonist who isn't even remotely interested in maintaining the Pridelands. Overall, the only foolish thing Mufasa actually did was trusting Scar until it was too late.
  • The Good King: It's telling that all of the Pridelands (even the animals that are essentially his food) come to the presentation of his son. The animals do not want, are happy, and respect him and he respects them back.
  • Good Parents: One of the best fathers in cinematic history.
  • Horrible Judge of Character: Although they butt heads briefly at the beginning of the movie, he never stops trusting his Obviously Evil brother until it's too late.
  • Hot-Blooded: He and his son share this trait as they both can lose their tempers easily and are very passionate. However, Mufasa is shown to keep his temper in constant control, and only hints at his anger when Scar threatens him, whereas Simba in the sequel has a huge temper control problem.
  • King of Beasts: He's a lion. A lion king, if you will.
  • Lantern Jaw of Justice: He boasts a very strongly pronounced chin to go with his overall imposing stature.
  • Large and in Charge: Is the biggest and brawniest lion in the movie.
  • Leitmotif: His haunting theme was re-written for the Broadway show as "Shadowland."
  • Man Hug: Isn't shy about this with Rafiki.
  • Mentor Occupational Hazard: One of the most tragic examples. Mufasa dies protecting Simba, his son, after being thrown off the cliff to his death by Scar, his brother.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: According to the Hyenas, this is what Mufasa is. They're right.
  • Nice Guy: Possibly the friendliest and most easygoing character in the film, with the possible exception of Rafiki. He truly cares about maintaining the Pridelands and speaks to Simba about the importance of responsibility.
  • Not So Stoic: He is visibly frightened when Scar was about to throw him off the cliff.
  • One-Man Army: He took down three hyenas who threatened his son and Nala.
  • Pale Females, Dark Males: Mufasa's fur color is darker than Sarabi's.
  • Papa Wolf: One of the best examples of this trope, bar none. Don't you dare cause any harm to his kid, or he will find you and he will kick your ass. Just ask Shenzi, Banzai, and Ed.
  • Posthumous Character: For the last half of The Lion King onward, Mufasa is dead but his influence remains strong.
  • Prophet Eyes: He has these in his spirit form when he appears in the clouds to speak to Simba.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Unlike his brother (and his son at first), he knows that there's more to being king than just power and glory, and takes the responsibilities that come with the job very seriously.
  • Red Is Heroic: Has a red mane and was the Big Good.
  • Royal Brat: Averted. Scar claimed that when he told Mufasa about him killing the strange lion, Mufasa taunted him by calling him Scar. However, it is very obvious that Mufasa's comment was merely a playful nickname and Scar's interpretation of it as an insult was a result of his own ego. The fact that Scar's memories paint Mufasa as gloating indicates that Scar seems to genuinely see it as an insult, but that is due to obvious Self-Serving Memory.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: He's The Good King because he takes care of his responsibilities.
  • Sacrificial Lion: Literally. His death is what gets the plot started, even though he's probably the most ferocious fighter in the film.
  • Shipper with an Agenda: In the sequel, Mufasa's spirit gives a message to Rafiki that he wants to pair up Kiara and Kovu to resolve the war between the two prides and finally bring the two clans as one.
  • Spirit Advisor: To Simba, appearing in the clouds to guide him. By virtue of the apparently true belief that the Lion Kings become stars in the sky upon death, he's this to not only Simba but any of his descendants. However, it appears that he mostly only "speaks" directly to Rafiki, the shaman of the Pride Lands. However, he takes this job full time for his grandson Kion in The Lion Guard.
  • The Stoic: He doesn't generally show much emotion, and when he actually gets mad he is still pretty calm about it. He has no trouble being warm and playful with his son, though, and he shows plenty of warmth towards his grandson Kion in The Lion Guard.
  • Thicker Than Water:
    • Despite all their animosity and how much of a pain Scar could be, he truly believed in this trope in regards to his brother and only learned in the moment before his death that this was not the case.
    • In the Lion Guard episode "Can't Wait To Be Queen," he told Kion he had to stand by Kiara no matter what, showing that he still believes in the importance of family, even after Scar's betrayal.
  • Tragic Hero: His misplaced trust in Scar leads to his downfall.
  • Trampled Underfoot: His death by wildebeest stampede.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: His decision to harmlessly call his brother Scar, which is obviously a playful comment, causes Scar to completely interpret said comment as an insult, and with a such glaring attack on his ego and pride, causes him to start scheming to get Mufasa off the throne well before the cobra venom begins to induce its Sanity Slippage. This makes him indirectly responsible for his own death and the events of the franchise.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Doesn't matter if they're female or male, he'll attack them should he need to. Just ask Shenzi.

See his separate page.

"Don't you understand? You're our only hope!"

Voiced in English by: Niketa Calame (cub, TLK), Moira Kelly (adult, films), Gabrielle Union (adult, The Lion Guard)
Singing by: Laura Williams (cub, TLK), Sally Dworsky (adult, TLK)
Voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Karla Falcón (cub), María Fernanda Morales (adult)
Voiced in Japanese by: Junko Yamamoto (cub,TLK), Risa Uchida (cub, theater play), RICOnote  (adult, both acting and songs)
Voiced in European French: Sybille Tureau (adult), Morganne Flahaut (cub, first movie)

Simba's childhood playmate, best friend, and later, wife.

  • Action Girl: Simba has never won a fight against her, and she beats some hyenas in the climax.
  • Action Mom: In the sequel to Kiara and she shows she can still kick ass despite being older.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: After Simba pulls her into a lake, she immediately gets out, shivering and having an absolutely terrified expression, but once Simba gets out next to her she just smirks at him in amusement at his joke. She still takes revenge on him though by playfully shoving him back in.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: Her eyes were originally green, but Simba's Pride colors them blue.
  • Affection-Hating Kid: Used to be one; she is completely grossed out at the notion of marrying and being lovey-dovey with Simba, finding it very weird at the time.
  • Arranged Marriage: Was betrothed to Simba when they were cubs.
  • Babies Ever After: With Simba — the ending of the first movie shows that they had a cub together, who turns out to be Kiara. Then, they have another child, a son, named Kion.
  • Blowing a Raspberry: Young Nala does this to Zazu behind his back during "I Just Can't Wait to Be King."
  • Bratty Half-Pint: As a cub, she was just as cheeky and mischievous as Simba. She goes along with Simba's plan to ditch Zazu in a big musical number. Later she argues with Simba over whose idea it was, wrestles him and teases him when she beats him, even though Simba was prince of the Pridelands at the time.
  • Broken Win/Loss Streak: She successfully beat Simba three times times in a row, twice as cubs and once as adults, all by using the same move to flip him over and then slam him down to pin him. This ends up coming to an end during their Falling-in-Love Montage, when the two of them tumble down a hill together and Simba finally ends up pinning her when he lands on top of her. Nala accepts her defeat by rewarding Simba with a lick on the cheek and a seductive stare.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: Zigzagged with Simba. When they meet again as adults, Nala remains unaware of Simba's trauma and that he's still hurting from said trauma of his father's death and blaming himself for it. As such, she doesn't comfort him but gives him a What the Hell, Hero? moment on him refusing to go home.
  • Cats Hate Water: Shows this as an adult. When Simba surprises her and pulls her into a lake they were just drinking from, she immediately gets out, shivering with a horrified expression and soaking wet. Then she smirks at Simba and playfully shoves him back in as revenge.
  • Character Development: In Simba's Pride, Nala has become slightly more mild-mannered and motherly, but continues to act as the voice of reason to Simba, who is now being very protective of Kiara, and reminds him that their daughter Kiara would be fine. She also seems to be less judgmental than Simba. When Simba refused to trust Kovu simply because of his outsider status, Nala and Rafiki are able to change his decision and Simba reserves his judgment to see if Kovu could be trusted.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Her pin move is how Simba comes to recognize her as adults, since he remembers when she used it on him as cubs. Simba later uses it himself to defeat Scar.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: With Simba, they even provide the page quote for the trope. They grew up playing around and then, after they finished growing up, they became the Ruling Couple of the Pride Lands.
  • Composite Character: In terms of Hamlet parallels, although she is usually compared to and claimed to be based on Ophelia (love interest and token young female), Nala has more in common with Horatio (closest friend of the hero, acts as his conscience and voice of reason).
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: She easily beat Simba twice when they were just cubs, flipping and pinning him with no struggle even when he pounced first and surprised her. Subverted later when they fight more evenly as adults, though she still pins him the exact same way she did when they were cubs, though the fight ended because Simba realized who she was.
  • Damsel Errant: Nala is the one who goes out and gets Simba back from his banishment in order to save the pride and the Pridelands.
  • Damsel in Distress: When they were cubs Simba saved her from Shenzi when she was almost caught and eaten.
  • Dance Battler: In the stage musical during the fight with the hyenas.
  • Deadpan Snarker: While she had this trait primarily as a cub, she does show it on occasion as an adult, specifically when she mocks Simba with "I laugh in the face of danger" comment to note on his change in personality.
  • Death Glare: After pinning Simba during their fight in the jungle, she glares at him menacingly as she holds him down and growls at him, practically nose to nose with him. It is unknown if this was simply a warning for him not to interfere in her hunt again or if she would have killed him before he recognized her.
  • Demoted to Extra: Averted, as her role in the first film was pretty small itself. She is also completely absent in the video games and Timon and Pumbaa TV series.
  • Didn't See That Coming: When she attacks Timon and Pumbaa and Simba lunges at her out of nowhere she pauses for a moment with a brief look of shock on her face. She clearly did not expect to see another lion, or get attacked by one. Though she quickly regains focus by the time Simba gets her to the ground and quickly manages to break free from his grasp and fight back.
  • Disappeared Dad: Her father is never mentioned in the original movie. The Lion Guard reveals that Nala's father was once saved by the Lion Guard of his day when he fell out of a tree as a cub.
  • Easily Forgiven: From Pumbaa's point of view - he immediately cozies up to Nala in spite of the fact that she tried to hunt him down and kill him as prey. Timon even lampshades this afterwards.
  • Expy: Of both Ophelia and Horatio in the first film, and of Lady Capulet, if only by default, in the sequel.
  • Fourth Date Marriage: Zig-zagged with Simba. They were best friends in childhood, but after learning they were betrothed to be married they were both disgusted, finding the idea of being married to their best friend too weird. When they reunite as adults after years apart, they fall in love almost instantly. Simba goes on a romantic walk with Nala around the jungle, serving as their "first date" together, with the two of them playing and flirting together, and heavily implied they conceived a child together. Once when Simba becomes king, he and Nala are married as they were originally betrothed.
  • Girliness Upgrade: Loses her tomboyish traits as an adult and becomes more mature and regal.
  • Good Parents: Unlike Simba, who quickly dives from Overprotective Dad to Abusive Parent, Nala actually treats Kiara as a mature adult.
  • Graceful Loser: Once Simba finally manages to pin her as adults she just smiles and gives him a lick on the cheek as a reward and gazes seductively at him.
  • Grin of Audacity: She says Simba's line of "I laugh at the face of danger" when they return to The Pride Lands together. A lesser example when she was a cub. After Simba pounced her and accidentally sent them both down a hill, she just laughs the whole way like it was some kind of ride and has a smile the whole time while Simba is shown to be scared and struggling to stay on top of Nala. Once they reach the bottom with Simba landing on top, Nala immediately flips and pins him again, and rubs it in his face.
  • The Heart: Best shown when she tries to inform Simba of what has happened to their home.
  • Held Gaze: Simba and Nala gaze deeply into each other's eyes at the end of their Falling in Love Montage of "Can You Feel the Love Tonight?" before nuzzling each other in a manner that resembles a kiss.
  • Herald: Nala revealing to Simba what happened after Scar took over the Pridelands is the first step to get him to return home.
  • The High Queen: Since she is Simba's mate, Nala is technically the Queen of the Pridelands.
  • Irony:
    • As a cub, she thought it would be "too weird" to be engaged to Simba, something the other cub agreed with it. As adults, they fall in love and become mates.
    • Simba was never able to beat her in a fight. She beat him both times they wrestled as cubs, even when he tried to cheat, and then again as adults. She only ever "lost" to him by complete accident, getting pinned by him after they both rolled down a hill together and he just happened to finally land on top of her without even trying.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: As a cub - she was quite sassy and teasing of Simba during their sparring, but was ultimately kindhearted.
  • King of Beasts: Nala is the ruler of the beasts as well.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: She briefly has a serious battle with Simba when he attacks her to protect Pumbaa. The battle ends with them recognizing each other before any serious harm comes to either of them, though Nala came the closest to winning by pinning Simba again.
  • Literally Falling in Love: With Simba towards the end of their Falling-in-Love Montage. When the two of them start playfully wrestling together in the jungle, Nala ends up falling backwards while they are grappling, causing the two of them to accidentally tumble down a hill together. Nala ends up pinned by Simba when he lands on top of her, to their mutual amusement.
  • Meaningful Name: "Nala" means "gift" in Swahili. It can be speculated that's because she is a foreign princess given to the Pride during some diplomatic exchange, but there is no canon indications (although her father is now clearly established to not be Scar or Mufasa).
  • Nice Girl: Even though she's still a little snarky, she lost the "jerk" bit and became a wholly warm-hearted and genuinely caring adult.
  • Noble Bigot: She is part of the feud in Simba's Pride, but is open-minded to Kovu proving his worth when he saves her daughter and clearly disapproving of her husband's aggressive behaviours.
  • Oh, Crap!: She has a startled face when Simba appears in the jungle and lunges at her from out of nowhere. Though she almost instantly overcomes this by the time Simba tackles her to the ground, quickly breaking free and fighting back.
  • Only Sane Woman: Whenever it comes to bringing Simba to his senses, either as the King or as a parent. Somewhat Justified, since it's the lioness' that are the hunters in Real Life.
  • Open-Minded Parent: She's more accepting of Kovu than Simba, who still held a grudge against the Outsiders, best shown in that she is the only person aside from Kiara to disapprove of Simba's decision to banish him.
  • Out of Focus: She doesn't get a lot of screen time in the first two movies, barely any in the third and does not appear in the Timon & Pumbaa TV series.
  • Pale Females, Dark Males: Nala's fur is lighter than Simba's.
  • Parental Neglect: She hardly appears at all to comfort Kiara throughout the second half of the film, and she makes no attempt to comfort her or confront Simba when he banishes Kovu despite it being an incredibly emotional moment.
  • Perfectly Arranged Marriage: With Simba.
  • Plucky Girl: She never gives up.
  • Pregnant Badass: It is heavily implied that Kiara was conceived in the Can You Feel The Love Tonight sequence, so Nala was pregnant with her while she was beating up hyenas in the final battle.
  • Satellite Love Interest: Not a perfect example, but she is often kept out of focus.
  • Signature Move: Though she doesn't announce it or make a big deal about it, she is easily able to pin her opponents by flipping them with her legs after they tackle her, and then slam them to the ground so she ends up on top of them, pinning them. She uses this move to beat Simba twice in a row when they are just cubs, and Simba is able to recognize Nala when she uses it to beat him again as adults. It ends up being a Chekhov's Gun when Simba uses it himself partly in his battle with Scar, flipping Scar over and throwing him over the edge of Pride Rock.
  • Smooch of Victory: Downplayed. After Simba finally "beats" Nala, by pinning her after they tumble down a hill together, she licks his cheek (an animal form of kissing), which surprises him. They then begin to rub heads affectionately, officially becoming a couple by that point. It is also heavily implied that they mated at that point, which conceived Kiara.
  • Smug Smiler: Was one as a cub. After beating Simba she playfully teases him and turns away with a smug smile on her face, clearly proud of herself. After she does it again she smirks down at her friend and has a more smug tone instead of her previous playful one.
    Nala: Pinned ya again.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: As an adult lioness, Nala is shown to strongly look like her mother.
  • Tomboy with a Girly Streak: Mainly as a child. She beat Simba in their two fights, and is very adventurous and restless, but still looks distinctly feminine and feels comfortable being bathed.
  • Undying Loyalty: Even under the brief point Scar has convinced everyone Simba killed Mufasa, she calls out in horror when he nearly falls to his death.
  • Unsportsmanlike Gloating: Downplayed. As a cub after first pinning Simba she chuckles and teases him "pinned ya" with a happy smile, showing it is in good fun. After he pushes her off him though she has a proud victorious smirk on her face. Then after immediately pinning Simba once again, she smirks down at him arrogantly and brags "pinned ya again" in a more smug tone than her previously playful one. Possibly justified though as Simba had just tried to steal credit for her idea and was the one who started both of their fights, so she may have teased him to get back and him and put him in his place.
  • Women Are Wiser: A more justified case, given Simba's inner demons and circumstances, Nala often ends up playing the voice of reason, especially in regards to being a parent. Subverted as a cub where she was just as mischievous as Simba.
  • Your Size May Vary: The Lion Guard bizarrely shows her much smaller than she is in previous films.

"Well, I've never seen a king of beasts with quite so little hair!"

Voiced in English by: Rowan Atkinson (original film), Edward Hibbert (Simba's Pride, 1 1/2), Michael J. Gough (Timon and Pumbaa), Jeff Bennett (IMAX re-release ("The Morning Report"), The Lion Guard)
Voiced in German by: Eberhard Prüter (Movies, Timon and Pumbaa), Stefan Krause (The Lion Guard)
Voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Eduardo Tejedo
Voiced in Japanese by: Hideyuki Umezu
Voiced in European French by: Michel Prud'homme

An uptight but kindly red-billed hornbill serves as majordomo to Mufasa, Scar and Simba.

  • Adaptational Heroism: His Hamlet counterpart Polonius is, though not exactly a villain, a much more negative character who is killed accidentally by the title character while spying on him for Claudius. Zazu, on the other hand, is genuinely loyal, hates Scar (Claudius), and survives the film.
  • Adaptational Jerkass: The Timon and Pumbaa series turns him from a loyal Nice Guy who serves a good king into a finicky and pompous Jerk with a Heart of Gold under pressure from his supervisors.
  • Badly Battered Babysitter: He goes through hell and back to keep Simba and Nala safe. Simba actually stages an extravagant musical number so he and Nala can visit the elephant graveyard without Zazu standing in the way.
    • Early script drafts also reveal that he was Mufasa's babysitter too, and that Mufasa was just as rambunctious - if not worse - than Simba.
  • Battle Butler: In the final battle, he, Timon and Pumbaa all manage to beat up Shenzi and Banzai offscreen.
  • Birdcaged: What Scar does to him when he takes over, apparently just because he doesn't like him. He ends up like this again in the episode "The Morning Report", after getting captured by Janja's clan under the orders by Scar's spirit.
  • Blue Is Heroic: He's a blue-feathered hornbill who is also a loyal follower and advisor of the royal family. He can seem stern, no-nonsense and irritable but he's also very smart and rational and everything he stands for the good of the pride lands.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: In the stage version, he does this a couple times:
    • In "I Just Can't Wait To Be King", he's blocked by a curtain and comments that it "wasn't in the cartoon" before quipping that it looks like a cheap shower curtain from <insert local store here>. Later, Simba steals the puppet and the actor gets understandably upset with him about it.
    • After that sequence, when Mufasa pretends to fire him, the puppet attacks its operator, with some productions having him growl "this is all your fault!" at him before doing so.
  • Butt-Monkey: Starts out as Mufasa's PR guy and constantly finds himself at the butt of Simba's antics, including a pouncing lesson initiated by Mufasa in which Zazu is ordered to be Simba's practice target. Taken Up to Eleven after Scar takes over, when he is essentially reduced to Scar's court jester. He is almost eaten by the hyenas on several occasions.
  • The Comically Serious: The prim and proper hornbill clearly takes his role as the king's royal advisor but he's constantly the Butt-Monkey by the other lions (like Simba and Scar for example) and the 3 hyenas. He does have a bit of a sassy attitude when relating to such characters.
  • Cool Old Guy: His age isn't mentioned much at all throughout the films and TV shows, but going by the film's early script drafts and by the stage version, he's old enough to have babysat Mufasa. The Lion Guard has Bunga admit that Zazu is getting old, so it is implied he is in at least advanced middle age for a hornbill. Later on in the second film, he is shown trying to relax Simba about Kiara's first hunt and it is indicated that he thinks the king should not need to be overprotective.
  • A Day in the Limelight: While Timon & Pumbaa mostly centered around the titular duo, he got two episodes with starring roles. In The Lion Guard, he got his own major role in "The Morning Report".
  • Deadpan Snarker: Especially when "babysitting" Nala and Simba.
  • Demoted to Extra: During the second half of the first movie and its sequels.
  • Designated Monkey: Is treated in-universe as pathetic for no real reason.
  • Expy: Of Polonius as well as Sebastian.
  • Feather Fingers: He can grasp things as if he had hands.
  • The Finicky One: A much more positive example. Zazu is the stuffy, straight-laced and serious voice of reason who wants to keep the Pridelands in order, but is not a jerk about it.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: He once attempted to offer himself to be fed to the crocodiles in exchange for a younger Kion and Bunga, who challenged the crocodiles for no reason, to be let go, even placing himself into Makuu's jaws. This act of bravery and selflessness impressed Pua that he let all of them go.
  • Hurricane of Puns: His morning report, both the spoken and sung version.
    Zazu: Well! The buzz from the bees is that the leopards are in a bit of a spot. And the baboons are going ape over this. Of course, the giraffes are acting like they're above it all. The tick birds are pecking on the elephants. I told the elephants to forget it, but they can't. The cheetahs are hard up, but I always say...cheetahs never prosper...
  • Ink-Suit Actor: You can see something of Rowan Atkinson's nose and eyebrows in his appearance.
  • Iron Butt Monkey: This little bird can take a beating.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: In the TV series, in which he is more of a finicky perfectionist, but has a heart.
  • Lovable Coward: Zazu is cowardly, neurotic and a little paranoid but still a caring and loyal friend to the lions (except Scar).
  • Made of Iron: He survives being in Scar's mouth (with all associated teeth, even if Scar doesn't bite him), being run over twice by a stampede of animals in "I Just Can't Wait To Be King" and being shoved into a volcanic vent by the hyenas. And being struck by lightning in the TV series.
  • Medium Awareness: In the stage version, the Zazu puppet seems to be intended to show awareness that it's a puppet, mainly because of Rule of Funny. It even gets mad at its operator at one point!
  • Nice Guy: In the movie, he is generally very well mannered, dignified and friendly, only losing his temper or getting annoyed to anyone who provokes him.
  • Non-Action Guy: In the stage version, he's the only one who doesn't even attempt to fight during the final battle. Instead, we see him running/flying from a hyena in panic.
  • Noodle Incident: Mentions having two troublesome relatives who "always manage to ruin special occasions".
  • No Respect Guy: Best in "I Just Can't Wait to Be King."
  • Number Two: To Mufasa as his number one advisor.
  • Old Retainer: It's implied in the Broadway production that he's been with the royal family at least long enough to have known Mufasa when he was a cub. Supplementary (though probably non-canon, especially since there are two contradictory sources for it) works suggest that Zazu started working with Mufasa back when he was still a hatchling—one of them states that he inherited the majordomo position from his mother.
  • Older Than They Look: He hasn't aged much from Simba's birth to when Kiara is a young adult.
  • Only Sane Man: In "I Just Can't Wait to Be King."
  • Out of Focus: Especially in the third film.
  • Seldom-Seen Species: Can you think of any other cartoon hornbills besides him?
  • Servile Snarker: Even more so in the Broadway stage version, where he throws a lot of verbal jabs at Scar.
    Scar: Here I am at the pinnacle and yet the view is bleak. What is wrong with this picture?
  • Shipper on Deck: For Simba and Nala. He appears to be delighted when he sees the two talking together, unaware that they're actually plotting to ditch him in the most humiliating way possible.
  • They Call Me MISTER Tibbs!:
    "It’s Mister Banana-Beak to you, Fuzzy!"
  • Token Flyer: While he doesn't do much in the films, Zazu is the only bird character among the main cast of animals.
  • Toothy Bird: Depending on the facial gesture he makes, sometimes he appears to have a beak full of teeth. This particularly shows in Timon and Pumbaa.
  • Undying Loyalty: His loyalty to the royal family is unwavering.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Stage version only; Presumably due to the difficulty in translating the film version of events to the stage version, we never find out how Zazu escaped his cage in the final battle. The fact that he's being chased by a hyena in that sequence implies that it accidentally crashed into his cage, but it's not clear.

"It is time!"

Voiced in English by: Robert Guillaume (films, Timon & Pumbaa, Kingdom Hearts II), Khary Payton (The Lion Guard)
Voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Genaro Vásquez
Voiced in Japanese by: Ryuji Saikachi (until The Lion Guard's first season), Masao Komaya (second season onwards)
Voiced in European French by: Med Hondo

A mandrill (or baboon as he is referred to as in-universe) who is a wise, if eccentric friend to the lions.

  • Beware the Silly Ones: An old, primate Cloudcuckoolander who can whip a number of hyenas.
  • Big Good: Rafiki takes this role in The Lion Guard, providing the heroes guidance.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Although his weird antics might just be for Simba's benefit.
  • Cane Fu: Can kick serious butt with his staff.
  • Cartoony Tail: His tail can defy gravity. It's also shaped like a baboon tail rather than a short, stubby mandrill tail.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: The goofy rhyme cements it.
  • Cool Old Guy: A cool primate who has a way of teaching his methods.
  • Court Mage: Animal version. He doesn't do anything outright magical, but he's definitely some kind of Seer or Witch Doctor, able to sense that Simba's alive by reading certain signs, and seemingly communicate with Mufasa's spirit, even guiding Simba into a Vision Quest. His position is also well known and respected, seeing the animals bow as he makes his way during 'The Circle of Life'.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Rafiki delivers this one towards Simba when the latter asks if he will cut it out when he makes annoying sounds.
"Can't cut it out. It grows right back"
  • Delighting in Riddles: Takes great joy in annoying Simba with his cryptic metaphors.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: He appears a few times in the first half of the film, then he appears to Simba in adulthood and eventually inspires him to return to Pride Rock and take his rightful place as king.
  • Eccentric Mentor: Looks like a crazy old monkey, but has great wisdom (and kung-fu skills). The way he teaches a lesson to Simba is...creative.
  • Everything's Better with Monkeys: As a wise mentor and comic relief.
  • Expy: In the Romeo and Juliet-esque Simba's Pride, he becomes the equivalent of Friar Laurence.
  • Gender Flip: Becomes female in the stage production.
  • Large Ham: He is very exuberant and loud, especially when laughing.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: Kicks serious hyena butt during the battle.
  • Long-Lived: Rafiki was old and doddering when Simba was born and continues to remain the same after Kiara grows up. He's survived at least 3 generations of lions and never seems to age.
  • The Matchmaker: In Simba's Pride he does this to Kiara and Kovu.
  • Magical Negro: Rafiki, the only character with an African accent, provides a Double Subversion. As a Trickster Mentor, he looks like he's a useless doddery old senile ape but in truth gives vital guidance. And he can really open a can of whoopass on hyenas.
  • Meaningful Name: Rafiki means 'friend' in Swahili.
  • Mentor Occupational Hazard: Surprisingly averted. Rafiki doesn't die in any of the Lion King movies, though Simba's other mentor Mufasa does.
  • Minored in Ass-Kicking: Doesn't do fighting until the climax.
  • Nice Guy: He can sometimes be mischievous and confusing, but he makes no secret of being an honorable, wise and genuinely helpful figure who wishes the best for anyone.
  • Obfuscating Insanity: Just whether Rafiki is actually mad is up for debate; is he mad and gone a little crackers... or does he just do it to unnerve everyone and get the upper hand? He's certainly dangerous when he wants to be, so the last might be the truth. Whatever the case is, Mufasa certainly trusts him enough to baptise his son.
  • Offhand Backhand: Pulls off this stunt on a hyena.
  • Old Master: An old teacher to Mufasa and eventually, Simba.
  • One-Man Army: He beat several hyenas easily.
  • Shipper on Deck: Following urging from Mufasa's spirit, Rafiki helps strengthen the bond between Kiara and Kovu in the sequel.
  • Simple Staff: What he uses as his main weapon.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: May have been based on Yorick from Hamlet. Yorick was dead before the start of the play.
  • Third-Person Person: One of his many quirks.
  • Trickster Mentor: Rafiki looks like he's a useless doddery old senile primate but in truth gives vital guidance. And he can really open a can of whoopass on hyenas.
  • Undying Loyalty: Like Zazu, he displays this to the royal family.
  • Warrior Therapist: He helps Simba to fully move on from his father's death.
  • When Elders Attack: He smacks down a group of Hyenas with his stick during the final battle.


"Simba! You're can that be?"

Voiced in English by: Madge Sinclair
Voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Ángela Villanueva
Voiced in Japanese by: Haruko Kitahama
Voiced in European French by: Nicole Raucher

Simba's mother and Mufasa's mate.

  • Action Mom: Not seen as much, but she doesn't back away from a fight, as evidenced in the climax.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Unlike her Hamlet counterpart, Gertrude, she doesn't marry her brother-in-law after her husband's death and refuses to kowtow to Scar's tyrannical manners.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: She doesn't take any of Scar's crap lying down, even though she is largely powerless to stop him. And once Simba forces the truth out of him, she rallies to the defense of her home and family.
  • Contralto of Danger: Much like Mufasa, she has a low, melodious voice and can be very formidable when the situation calls for it.
  • Expy: Of Gertrude, albeit much less morally gray, just like her husband Mufasa.
  • Good Parents: Though Mufasa gets more focus, Sarabi is portrayed as a nurturing mother to Simba during her bit of screentime.
  • The High Queen: When Mufasa was alive, Sarabi was the Queen of the Pridelands.
  • Lady of War: Mufasa's queen and thus the leader of the lionesses.
  • Mama Bear: In the climax, where she dashes to Simba's aid when he's under attack by hyenas.
  • Meaningful Name: Sarabi is Swahili for "mirage".
  • Nice Girl: She is generally portrayed as tender, warm and friendly.
  • Not So Stoic: Upon finding out that it was Scar who killed Mufasa, she is absolutely livid.
  • Pale Females, Dark Males: Inverted with Sarabi as her fur color is darker than Mufasa's.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: She at least tries to stand up to Scar when it becomes apparent that he is willing to let his pride starve.
  • The Stoic: She is usually soft-spoken and collected. She stands up to Scar's verbal abuse (and the chomping maws of the hyena horde on her way to him) with dignity and calm.

    Timon and Pumbaa

"Hakuna Matata!"

Timon voiced in English by: Nathan Lane (films, Timon & Pumbaa, season 1), Kevin Schon (Timon & Pumbaa, The Lion Guard), Quinton Flynn (Timon & Pumbaa, season 1), Bruce Lanoil (Aladdin DVD, Kingdom Hearts II)
Timon voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Raúl Aldana (acting), Raúl Carballeda (songs)
Timon voiced in Japanese by: Yūji Mitsuya (acting and songs)
Timon voiced in European French by: Jean-Philippe Puymartin
Pumbaa voiced in English by: Ernie Sabella
Pumbaa voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Francisco Colmenero (acting and songs)
Pumbaa voiced in Japanese by: Atomu Kobayashi (films, Timon & Pumbaa and theater play), Hiroshi Hatanaka (Timon & Pumbaa from episode 5 onwards, The Lion Guard, Kingdom Hearts II)
Pumbaa voiced in European French by: Michel Elias

A meerkat and warthog who raised Simba after the latter ran away from the Pride Lands. When Simba returned to the Pride Lands, Timon and Pumbaa went with him.

Tropes applying to both

  • All the Other Reindeer: Both Timon and Pumbaa have trouble fitting in.
  • Anthropomorphic Shift: More frequently in their TV series and the Wild About Safety shorts, almost all links to them being wildlife are thrown out the window. Pumbaa is also shown using his front hooves as "hands" more often.
  • Anti-Role Model: They aren't negative characters, although their carefree philosophy is wildly at odds with the film's actual moral.
  • Badly Battered Babysitter: They are easily distracted into allowing Kiara to slip away from them unnoticed. A line right before the battle between the two prides indicate that the three times this happens on-screen happened repeatedly off-screen.
  • Bash Brothers: They charge fearlessly into the violent battle between the lionesses and the hyenas to help Simba claim Pride Rock.
  • Been There, Shaped History: Lion King 1/2 is all about this. In it, they are responsible for the animals bowing in "Circle of Life", and cause the animal pyramid in "I Just Can't Wait to Be King" to collapse.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Given that they have survived an encounter with hyenas (two, in Timon's case!), fell down a pit to stop said hyenas, and managed to escape from a pack of hungry, evil lions, they are not to be underestimated, even if they are oddballs.
  • Big Eater: They both have an enormous appetite for insects.
  • Big Guy, Little Guy: Pumbaa (fat warthog) and Timon (small meerkat), respectively.
  • Brains and Brawn: Played with. Timon certainly thinks so but Pumbaa has a lot of Dumbass Has a Point moments and he's by far the more down-to-earth of the two. Pumbaa has good ideas and is usually proven right, he's just more laid back and content to let Timon do the planning.
  • Breakout Character: They quickly became among the most popular characters in the movie, and eventually got their own cartoon as well as a P.O.V. Sequel focussing on them. Simba lampshades this in their episode of House of Mouse.
    Simba: Those guys get all the attention.
  • Butt-Monkey:
    • Timon suffers a lot of physical comedy in the midquel.
    • Pumbaa has his moments too, especially in the TV series.
  • Cool Uncle: To Kiara in the sequel, when they become her protectors as well. Also to Bunga in The Lion Guard.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: The two act dumb on occasions but, when the situation arises, they can unleash a can of whoop-ass on anyone if it's required.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Their introduction. Good lord, their introduction.
  • Expy: Of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern from Hamlet in that they're Those Two Guys who are Simba's true friends. In the sequel, they both fill the role of Juliet's Nurse.
  • Fat and Skinny: Pumbaa and Timon, respectively.
  • Friend to All Children: Both, especially the latter who is very excited to 'keep' Simba. They also have a very close relationship with Bunga in The Lion Guard.
  • Friend to Bugs: Averted, since they eat them, but they befriend a snail named Speedy in the series since he can talk (and sing).
  • Friend Versus Lover: They weren't happy when Nala found Simba. The Lion King 1½ takes this further, suggesting that they actually tried to sabotage the budding romance, but being Timon and Pumbaa, everything they did just backfired.
  • Fur Is Clothing: In the series, Timon's fur has pockets and zippers. In "Brazil Nuts", when both of them lose their fur, their underwear is exposed.
  • Hakuna Matata: Trope Namer. Timon and Pumbaa tell Simba, who has just run away from his responsibilities and his life, that he doesn't need to worry about the past, because a carefree existence is much less trouble.
  • Hero of Another Story: Their TV series and Lion King 1½ (Or 3: Hakuna Matata in other regions), in which the first movie is told through their eyes.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: To the point that it's been heavily implied they're an actual couple.
  • Iron Butt Monkey: Both Timon and Pumbaa have suffered dozens of injuries that would have been lethal in real life. Pumbaa in particular suffered this during his and Timon's music video for "Stand By Me:" whenever Timon sang the titular words, Pumbaa got comedically injured, such as getting trampled on by a stampede and getting shot out of a cannon and into a mountain.
  • Leitmotif: They have a Fanfare that plays when they are introduced.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: More evident in their own series than in the original film. They had a Feud Episode several times in their own series and in an episode of House Of Mouse.
  • Literal-Minded: Pumbaa, which is often the reason why he Does Not Understand Sarcasm. Timon in , at least, as noted by his mother to Rafiki.
  • Made of Iron: They survive a lot in the TV series. One of the best examples would be how much poor Pumbaa goes through in the short span of the "Stand By Me" scene. Even in the films, Timon takes a lot of abuse in the midquel.
    • This is sort of lampshaded in the Timon & Pumbaa episode "Amusement Bark", when Boss Beaver witnesses Timon and Pumbaa fall into the ground while on the Log Flume and states that he trusts that they are alright, to which they reply that they actually got injured from that.
  • Manchild: Both of them are very childish and carefree and show it in different ways: Pumbaa tends to be more innocently childish, while Timon is more irresponsible.
  • Older Than They Look: By the time Kiara is a young adult, Pumbaa and Timon remain the same as they were when Simba was still a cub without even a wrinkle.
  • Only One Name: Averted. Their respective last names, Berkowitz and Smith, were actually revealed in Timon & Pumbaa. However, Pumbaa's is most likely a joke due to how common the last name "Smith" is.
  • Out of Focus: They are downgraded to having a recurring role in The Lion Guard; they appeared in less than a third of the first seson's episodes.
  • Parental Substitute:
    • Essentially raise Simba after his exile. This is conveyed in more detail in the midquel.
    • In The Lion Guard they're the adopted uncles of Bunga the honey badger.
  • Plucky Comic Relief: Both can really kick ass when they want to.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Timon is the Red Oni due to his reckless and self-centered behavior while Pumbaa is the Blue Oni due to his easygoing and sensitive personality. Ironically, Pumbaa is colored brownish-red while Timon has tan fur with some red-orange fur on his head.
  • Replacement Goldfish: After a feud in the episode "Kenya Be My Friend", Pumbaa befriends a meerkat named Monti, and Timon a warthog named Baampu.
  • Royal Favorite: In a lighter take on this trope, Timon and Pumbaa are Simba's close friends who saved his life when he was a cub. They follow him when he returns to the Pride Lands and in the sequel it is shown that they enjoy a privileged position, getting to live on Pride Rock without any danger of being eaten by the other lions and having few duties to speak of (Simba often tells them to watch over Kiara, but their incompetence at it never results in any punishment).
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Timon is the manly man to Pumbaa's sensitive guy. Timon is very brash, impulsive, and sometimes egotistical while Pumbaa is more cautious, kind, and emotional and in their own series is willing to cross-dress while Timon hates doing it.
  • Spanner in the Works: Let's face it, if they hadn't found Simba in the desert when they did, Scar's plan would've went off without a hitch.
  • Stock Footage: Their introduction is reused during the battle.
  • Toxic Friend Influence: Unintentionally. Their ideology of forgetting one's past made Simba toss aside his heritage and spends the next few years lazing around. In fact, their ideology is a contrast to the show's main moral of learning to move on from the past.
  • Those Two Guys: The movie's version of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. Down to the P.O.V. Sequel.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: The duo feed primarily on bugs, a preference they manage to pass on to natural carnivore Simba. It is implied in the movies and outright confirmed in their TV series that their preference for eating bugs is unusual and often squicks out strangers, and episode plots of their TV series often involve efforts to eat particularly desirable bugs. The Timon & Pumbaa episode "Once Upon a Timon" implies that Timon and his colony also eat scorpions, which is what meerkats do eat in real life.
  • Undying Loyalty: To Simba, given he's practically their surrogate child.
    Timon: (after seeing the sorry state the Pridelands are in due to Scar's poor leadership) Well, Simba, if it's important to you then we're with ya till the end!
    • Timon considers abandoning him in a sulk in the midquel, though it's expectedly short-lived.

Tropes applying to Timon

  • Character Development: In The Lion Guard, time and raising two kids occasionally make themselves known — he's called Bunga "bubbe" while offering him more bugs and referred to both Bunga and Simba as his and Pumbaa's babies. In other words, he's turned into his Ma.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Timon is the more sarcastic of the duo.
  • Determinator: Timon, in the midquel, grows into to this in the climax.
  • Gratuitous Greek: Timon is one of the few names not derived from Swahili, instead being a Greek name (that coincidentally was used by Shakespeare).
  • Guile Hero: Being of small stature, Timon often resorts to outsmarting foes.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Timon can get angry easily.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Timon can be quite selfish, but will help his friends in the end.
  • Innocently Insensitive: When asking for Simba's interpretation of the stars, Simba repeats the story his father told him of the great kings looking down on them from the sky above. Because Simba has never spoken of his deceased father, Timon laughs his tale off as nothing but a joke. Simba plays along, but then goes off to be alone. Timon quickly wonders if he spoke out of turn.
  • Jewish Smartass: Timon, a walking New Yorker stereotype with a vocabulary including several Yiddish expressions in the body of a meerkat, is very prone to sarcasm and wisecracks, especially around the Sarcasm-Blind warthog Pumbaa. This turns on him when he sarcastically suggests he and Pumbaa "dress in drag and do the hula" as live bait, setting himself up for embarrassment.
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: Timon authoritatively explains that stars are really fireflies stuck on "that big bluish-black thing."
  • The Lancer: Timon to Pumbaa. He's skinny, small, and has a Jerk with a Heart of Gold personality.
  • Large Ham: Particularly during his fits of Brooklyn Rage.
  • Laughing at Your Own Jokes: When Timon and Pumbaa meet Simba, Pumbaa asks "What's eatin' ya?" Before Simba can answer, Timon chimes in with "Nothing, he's at the top of the food chain!" He laughs pretty hard at his own joke until he realizes no one's laughing with him.
  • The Load: To his meerkat colony in the midquel, as his slacking off makes him a danger and nearly gets Uncle Max killed.
  • Momma's Boy: Timon is very close to his mother.
  • Seldom-Seen Species: Meerkats were extremely rare in fiction prior to the release of the film, but since Timon's appearance in The Lion King their status as this has been slim to none.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Except for the eye color, he looks a lot like his mother.
  • Team Mom: In the midquel, Timon takes on a more maternal looking role when raising Simba, presumably due to his experiences with his own mother.

Tropes applying to Pumbaa

  • Animal Species Accent: Pumbaa has a raspy voice that resembles porcine grunting and squealing.
  • Berserk Button: Is called a pig by Banzai, prompting him to say "Are you talking to me?! They call me MISTER PIG!" before attacking. However he doesn't mind when Timon or Simba call him one; it's just strangers.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Is a nice enough guy, but he's still a boar warthog. Anyone who calls him a pig in a threatening way is in trouble. In the Timon & Pumbaa episode "Guatemala Malarkey", he gets pissed off at Timon for talking him into plundering a cursed ancient temple inhabited by a mummy beetle to find a prized, jewel-encrusted (and very worth a lot of money) Glorious Golden Fruit Fly only to find a worthless fruit fly pin. This gets Timon to admit his fear of angry warthogs.
  • The Big Guy: Pumbaa is the muscle of the duo.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Pumbaa when he faces off against the hyenas.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: The TV series and midquel imply that Pumbaa has a history of being abandoned and possibly even mistreated due to his foul smell.
  • Dumbass Has a Point: Pumbaa on at least one occasion. "I thought stars were giant balls of gas burning billions of miles away!"
  • Fartillery: Pumbaa often weaponizes his emissions (particularly in some games).
  • Fat Comic Relief: Pumbaa is the fat one in the duo and shares the comic relief.
  • Full-Boar Action: While Pumbaa is generally laid-back, easy-going and a far cry from fearsome, calling him a pig is a very good way to end up on the receiving end of his tusks.
  • Gasshole: The very reason Pumbaa is an outcast.
  • Gentle Giant: Pumbaa is the biggest and the most big-hearted.
  • Hyper-Competent Sidekick: Pumbaa is this to Timon.
  • Kindhearted Simpleton: Pumbaa. Even his name means "simpleton". Despite not being too bright, this little piggy's got a big heart of gold and is really good with lion cubs.
  • Large Ham: Pumbaa is a literal example, especially while singing in tenor register during Hakuna Matata.
  • Malaproper: Pumbaa, occasionally, for example saying "I gravel at your feet" instead of "grovel" and messing up Timon's saying "You've gotta put your past behind you" as "You gotta put your behind in your past". Timon corrects him both times.
  • Meaningful Name: Pumbaa means "simpleton" in Swahili.
  • Nice Guy: Pumbaa is cheerful, kind, genuine, devoted, and helpful.
  • Sarcasm-Blind: Pumbaa in regards to Timon's sarcastic quips.
  • Screams Like a Little Girl: After seeing Nala preparing to pounce and attack him.
  • Simple-Minded Wisdom: Pumbaa displays a bit of this from time to time, particularly in the midquel.
  • Team Dad: In the midquel, he takes on a paternal role when raising Simba, contrasting with Timon.
  • They Call Me Mr Tibbs: "THEY CALL ME MR. PIG!"
  • Toilet Humor: Pumbaa's farting.

    Shenzi, Banzai and Ed
From left to right: Banzai, Shenzi, and Ed

Shenzi: You know, if it weren't for those lions, we'd be runnin' the joint!
Banzai: Man, I hate lions!

Banzai voiced in English by: Cheech Marin (films, Kingdom Hearts II), Rob Paulsen (Timon and Pumbaa)
Banzai voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Jesús Barrero
Banzai voiced in Japanese by: Ben Hiura
Banzai voiced in European French by: Michel Mella
Shenzi voiced in English by: Whoopi Goldberg (films), Tress MacNeille (Timon and Pumbaa, Kingdom Hearts II)
Shenzi voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Rosanelda Aguirre
Shenzi voiced in Japanese by: Tomie Kataoka
Shenzi voiced in European French by: Maïk Darah
Ed voiced by: Jim Cummings (all languages)

The main three hyenas that serve under Scar.

Tropes applying to all three

  • Adaptational Comic Relief: Much like Timon and Pumbaa, the TV series amps up their cartoony habits, making them far less creepy and more Funny Animal Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonists.
  • The Alleged Boss: Shenzi is their leader, but Banzai and Ed are more friends than subordinates and have no problem arguing back or teasing her (which she retorts playfully). In the climax, it seems to be Ed that casts the final decision on Scar's fate.
  • All Animals Are Dogs: Hyenas are not canines. They are more closely related to meerkats. The franchise portrays them in a dog-like fashion; barking, yelping, lolling their tongue out, etc.
  • Amusing Injuries: They're the butt of many. Especially Banzai.
  • Anthropomorphic Shift: In the Timon and Pumbaa TV series, they are sometimes shown standing fluently on their hind legs and communicating with humans. "TV Dinner" takes this Up to Eleven, where they dress up and perform for TV auditions.
  • Ax-Crazy: All three of them given that they're hyeanas, but especially Ed.
  • Bad Guys Do the Dirty Work: They, along with the other hyenas, are the ones who kill Scar after Simba throws him off Pride Rock.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: They eagerly jumped at the opportunity to kill Mufasa and replace him with Scar, who promised that they would have an endless supply of food once he was in control. Before long however, they all face starvation as everything has been hunted or has left the kingdom, and the land is now dead and barren. They confront Scar on how bad things are only for their appeals to fall on deaf ears. Even Banzai admits that Scar is actually worse than Mufasa.
  • Better Living Through Evil: They only followed Scar because he promised they would "never go hungry again"... And when it turned out he couldn't uphold his end of their bargain and give them their meal tickets, it became increasingly clear that they were starting to get fed up with their new king.
  • Berserk Button: It is never a good idea to betray them for any reason! Scar certainly learned this the hard way.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Part of Scar's downfall lies in him completely underestimating the hyenas. He considers them undignified, idiotic and insane, but Shenzi demands respect, Banzai has a strong sense of pride, and Ed is surprisingly coherent. It all backfires on him when he betrays them. Ed in particular—he appears to be the stupidest of them all, but his trademark dumb laughter turns bone-chillingly evil as they advance on Scar.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: After chasing Simba through a bramble thicket and into the desert, they refuse to follow Simba through said brambles, figuring that he'd be as good as dead in the desert. To be fair, Simba would have died had Timon and Pumbaa not found him.
  • Breakout Character: They get 4 of their own episodes in the TV series.
  • Child Eater: They were planning to eat Simba and Nala before Mufasa intervened.
  • Comic Trio: They offer a lot of humor in the movie.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: The hyenas laugh and joke a lot, and Scar doesn't think much of them, but they're the most competent comedic lackeys ever featured in a Disney movie. Shenzi especially, as the leader of a pack of hyenas 200 strong is implied to be just as clever as Scar, and a better leader than him too.
  • A Day in the Limelight: They get 4 episodes in the TV series.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Both Shenzi and Banzai have a habit of sending out sassy remarks.
  • Didn't Think This Through: They sided with Scar to be able to eat to their heart's content. And they succeeded. And they got to eat to their hearts' content just as Scar agreed to let them to. Then they never stopped; and threw off the ecosystem of the Pride Lands. Ironically enough, Scar's promises were simultaneously held up and fell through because they ate so much and then had nothing to eat afterwards, whereas under Mufasa, yeah food was harder to comeby in comparison; but there was plenty to eat for them.
  • Dirty Coward: In theory. After all, they only pick on easy targets and run off as soon as a real threat like Mufasa shows up, but is this any different to how an animal would behave in real life?
  • The Dog Bites Back: Or rather, The Hyena Bites Back. All of them.
  • Dogs Are Dumb: They are seen this way despite not even being canines. See All Animals Are Dogs.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: For all the Nazi imagery during "Be Prepared", the hyenas only ever speak ill of lions, and this seems to be more about them feeling like the lions oppress them. Also, their boss is a lion. It goes both ways, too: Scar might look down upon the hyenas, as he does with everyone, but he's the only lion who interacts with them on amicable terms.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: They, along with the rest of their clan, genuinely care for each other which allows them to act as a unit.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: When Scar's rule turns out to be incompetent, Shenzi is brave enough to tell him about the problems and they all point out that he's in charge, urging him to take action. As Scar shows himself increasingly lazy and selfish, Banzai comments "And I thought things were bad under Mufasa". And then, there's of course, their reaction to Scar trying to use them as scapegoats to save his own ass.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: The Hyenas do not take betrayal lightly. Scar learned that out the hard way.
  • Evil Laugh: All three of them are capable.
  • Eviler Than Thou: Spend most of the film as Scar's abused lackeys, though after being pushed around one too many times, they remind him it's a massive clan of vicious hyenas versus one skinny lion.
  • Fantastic Racism: They don't like lions (except for Scar, whom they serve), and lions don't like them. This is a reference to how hyenas and lions compete for food in real life.
  • For the Evulz: For all their talk about wanting more food, they seem to prioritize bullying over eating, at least when it comes to smaller animals. Shown in the first movie when they launch Zazu out of the "birdy boiler" rather than eat him straight away (and he implies this has happened more than once!) Also in the midquel where they ambush the meerkat clan but don't eat a single one! They laugh as they walk away, not even regetting this.
  • The Heavy: Of the midquel. Their attack on the meerkat colony is the direct cause of Timon’s departure, they cause the wildebeest stampede that nearly gets Timon and Pumbaa killed (and causes them to wind up in the oasis) and Timon and Pumbaa’s part in the climax involves facing them down.
  • Heinous Hyena: They are Scar's brutish, constantly hungry enforcers and are depicted as dirty, stupid, and cowardly; however, they do end up killing Scar after he attempts to betray them. They even currently adorn that trope's image.
  • The Hyena: Aside from the obvious fact that they, well, are hyenas, they also fit the trope stereotype. Taken Up to Eleven with Ed.
  • Incorrect Animal Noise: Not only are they portrayed in an overly canine fashion, they also constantly utter wolf growls and snarls as well as dog whines and yelps. All hyenas in the franchise almost always utter these sounds. That being said, if you listen closely during the climatic battle of the first film, the trademark whoop of a spotted hyena calling to its companions can be heard as the entire clan decides to flee from the lionesess and their allies.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: The hyenas start out as this somewhat. Once Scar enlists them however they become a much bigger threat.
  • Ink-Suit Actor:
    • Shenzi is Whoopi Goldberg as a hyena.
    • Similarly, Banzai is not too distant from Cheech Marin mannerisms-wise.
  • Jerkass: All three are voracious, mean-spirited, unpleasant and self-serving.
  • Laughably Evil: They're very funny, despite being genuinely threatening.
  • Leitmotif: A set of "Psycho" Strings, most prominently heard when they chase Simba and Nala in the Elephant Graveyard and Simba later on down a cliff after the stampede.
  • Loveable Rogue: Another part of their charm to the audience.
  • Made of Iron: They survived the fire at the end, according to Word of God. And a volcano in the episode "Cooked Goose".
  • Mean Character, Nice Actor: Abiding by the outtakes and House of Mouse.
  • Meaningful Name: Shenzi is "Uncivilized/Heathen" in Swahili; Banzai means "skulk" or "lurk" in Swahili.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal:
    • At the very end of the film, when Scar sells them out.
    • And to Cheetata and Cheetato who sent them on a wild goose chase.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: While they have plenty of comedic moments, they are nonetheless ravenous, carnivorous beasts with really nasty predatory instincts who come dangerously close to making a meal of Nala and Simba when they were cubs. Plus, the massive size of their clan allows them to put quite a good fight at the climax until the combined strenght of the lionesess finally drives them away (Not to mention one random hyena of the clan manages to succesfully secure its fangs around Simba's neck and would have killed him had it not been for Rafiki's timely intervention). Plus, they're ultimately the ones who seal Scar's fate after he cowardly tries to throw them under the bus.
  • Obsessed with Food: They're always on the look-out for their next meal.
  • Psychopathic Man Child: While they are not as immature as Timon and Pumbaa, their behavior (although less so with Shenzi) can get childish at times, such as the infamous "No King! No King! La-la-la-LA-la-la!", bit. Typically, they come off as mischievous teens, particularly in the series.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Implied after Scar succeeds at taking over—while they're still genuinely malicious, Scar's failure to manage the kingdom and deliver on his promises offends even them, and they only continue working with him partly due to a lack of any better options and partly out of fear. Him attempting to pin everything on them just to save his own cowardly skin was the last straw for them and they give him exactly what he deserves.
  • Put on a Bus: They fail to appear in the second film and apparently The Lion Guard.
  • Pyrrhic Villainy: They help Scar pull off his scheme to overthrow Mufasa because they're starving and he promises them food. However, they realize that things were in fact better when Mufasa was in charge.
  • Quirky Miniboss Squad: Although they're unusually frightening, effective villains for this trope when they're interacting with Simba.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Once Scar is defeated and betrays them, the hyenas quit fighting and completely leave Pride Rock ( though not before making a meal of Scar). In the sequel it's said that they even left the Elephant Graveyard, suggesting that they decided to completely flee the area altogether.
  • Slasher Smile: Usually sport a sadistic grin, though have an especially nasty one as they prepare to tear Scar apart.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: They only appear in two scenes in the midquel, but they cause a good number of the events; they attack the meerkats causing Timon to strike out on his own (which causes everything else), the wildebeest stampede they cause knocks Timon and Pumbaa into the oasis, and face Timon and Pumbaa in the climax.
  • Team Rocket Wins: At the end of the movie they finally make a meal out of Scar. They are implied to do the same to an Asshole Victim TV presenter at the end of the Timon and Pumbaa episode "TV Dinner".
  • Terrible Trio: Shenzi is the leader of the trio and implied to be the leader of the whole pack; Banzai appears to think with his muscles; Ed is either insane, mentally handicapped, or faking it (according to Jim Cummings, it's the third).
  • Thicker Than Water: Even after Scar proves to be a lousy king who nearly led the clan to starvation, the hyenas continue to follow and fight for them. The trio even follows Scar and Simba up to the top of Pride Rock presumably with the intention of helping him fight Simba. Unfortunately they arrive just in time to hear Scar attempt to sell them out proving that this trope is one-sided on their part.
  • Two Guys and a Girl: Ed, Banzai, and Shenzi.
  • Undying Loyalty: Subverted. They continue to ally with Scar and fight for him even after he proves to be a lousy king. The main three also are shown to have followed him and Simba to the top of Pride Rock in order to help him. This all changes however once they learn that their loyalty isn't reciprocated.
  • Vile Villain, Laughable Lackey: The three bickering hyena minions have this dynamic with Scar. Downplayed, as the hyenas, despite their stupidity and funny moments, can pose a real threat to the protagonists and in the end they turn against their master and kill him.
  • Villainous Friendship: They genuinely seem to enjoy one another's company, and are always loyal to one another.
  • Villain Song: Two - "Be Prepared" and the musical gives them the song "Chow Down".
  • Villainous Valour: If one looks closely, they at least try to fight Mufasa when he arrives to save Simba.
  • Vocal Evolution: Jim Cummings' laugh for Ed is more high-pitched and creepy in the first film. In all of Ed's later appearances in Disney media, he sounds deeper and goofier.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: In the sequel, they only get a passing mention that they and the rest of the hyenas left the elephant graveyard shortly after the events of the first movie, and after the battle they don't appear in the third at all. They do, however, appear occasionally in Timon and Pumbaa.
  • Would Hurt a Child: They're all out for eating Simba and Nala in the Elephant Graveyard, and know what's going down in the gorge.
    • In the Timon & Pumbaa episode "Big Top Breakfast", they attempt to catch and eat a young circus monkey named Simon.
  • Yellow Eyes of Sneakiness: They formerly adorned that trope's image.
  • You All Look Familiar: When it comes to crowds of hyenas, Banzai seems to be something of a standard character model, with his heavy eyebrows and proximity to Shenzi and Ed marking him apart.
  • Zerg Rush: One-on-one (or even three-on-one) it's clear that the hyenas are hopelessly outclassed against a single fully grown lion (even Scar, the smallest, weakest male seen in the movie can easily manhandle them). But they prove a formidable force in numbers because their clan is hundreds strong.

Tropes applying to Shenzi

  • The Alleged Boss: Among the hyenas themselves, she acts more like a friend of Banzai and Ed than the leader and similarly shrugs off a lot of sass and arguing.
  • Beneath the Mask: Shenzi in particular seems pretty reasonable. You could talk with her, have a laugh... but when Scar betrays them, she shows how utterly merciless she really is.
  • Curb Stomp Cushion: Against Mufasa. While Banzai and Ed get effortlessly beaten by him, Shenzi attempts to bite him a few times and is able to dodge his swipes for a short time.
  • Dark Action Girl: Not only could Shenzi be one of the toughest ladies Disney has on offer, but on top of everything else it's implied that she is the leader of the whole clan; otherwise why would Scar be doing business with her?
  • The Dragon: Shenzi to Scar. She is just as ruthless and merciless as he is in fulfilling her ambitions - the main difference is that she has her clan's best interests at heart, and apparently can see the difference between fear and respect.
  • Mean Boss: Not in the film, but Shenzi shows this in the TV series (the others still snap back, but Shenzi has Hammerspace slapstick on her side).
  • One of the Boys: Whoopi's Tomboyish Voice combined with her sharing an equal level of slapstick as her male compatriots, as well as them never once hinting anything romantic going on between her and any of the males.
  • Overly Long Name: Shenzi Marie Predatora Vendetta Jackalina Hyena. At least, according to Timon.
  • Slapstick Knows No Gender: Usually suffers the same comeuppances as the male hyenas. This trope makes her join Banzai as a Funny Background Event in "Be Prepared".
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: Shenzi — her eye patches are shaped like heavily applied eyeshadow, her mane extends to having bangs and a fringe, and she lacks the Perma-Stubble that both Banzai and Ed sport. Well, you have to be able to tell her from the guys somehow...note 
  • Women Are Wiser: None of the hyenas are the brightest, but Shenzi's the most intelligent of the trio, especially in the TV series.

Tropes applying to Banzai

  • The Brute: Is hot-tempered and mostly thinks with his muscles.
  • Butt-Monkey: Banzai tends to suffer the most slapstick injuries out of the three; he literally gets claw-marks and thorns in his butt.
  • Large Ham: Is the most hammy one of the three.
  • Sarcastic Devotee: Is this to Shenzi; he spends his time trying to please her and making her laugh. He does everything she tells him to do. And she clearly likes him enough to let him get away with talking back every so often.

Tropes applying to Ed

  • Aerith and Bob: Is the odd name out, being non-Swahili. Shenzi's very long name as said by Timon in the midquel could qualify as this, although it is unsure whether that is her actual name.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: His eyes are always crossed, his only dialogue consists of obnoxious laughter (often at inappropriate times), and he's seen chewing on his own leg after fighting with Banzai, suggesting some form of mental impairment.
  • Annoying Laugh: Spends the movie cackling like an idiot. It certainly gets on Scar's nerves at the very least.


"A wise king once told me, "We are one". I didn't understand him then. Now I do."

Voiced in English by: Michelle Horn (cub, Simba's Pride), Neve Campbell (adult, Simba's Pride), Eden Riegel (cub, The Lion Guard)
Voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Alondra Hidalgo (cub, Simba's Pride), Sara Gomez (cub, The Lion Guard), Adriana Camacho (adult)
Voiced in Japanese by: Ayaka Takano (cub, Simba's Pride), Aiko Sato (adult in Simba's Pride and as a cub in The Lion Guard)
Voiced in European French by: Kelly Marot (cub), Aurélia Bruno (adult), Brenda Hervé (singing)
Singing by: Charity Savoy, (cub, Simba's Pride), Liz Callaway (adult, Simba's Pride)

Kiara is the protagonist of The Lion King II: Simba's Pride. She is Simba and Nala's daughter and Kion's older sister, and the Crown Princess of the Pride Lands.

  • Accidental Kiss: With Kovu, after they hide from the rhinos.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: Her eyes were teal like Nala's in TLK, in Simba's Pride and The Lion Guard, they're red like Simba's. Of course, given that all newborn mammals have blue eyes to begin with, this is no surprise.
  • Age Lift: During the Time Skip in the final season of the Lion Guard, Kiara has become slightly older, albeit not near the age of her first hunt.
  • All-Loving Heroine: She's shown to be very kind and forgiving, and she even attempts to save Zira despite the latter's antagonism towards her family.
  • Badass Adorable: With Kovu, during their escape from the crocodiles.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Kiara is friendly, sweet, and empathetic, however hurt someone she cares about, and she will not hesitate to show you that she is still a lioness. This is shown when she angrily calls out Simba for his irrational behavior and leaves Pride Rock to search for Kovu. And if you consider actually physically harming someone she cares about, she won't hesitate to get physical. Just ask Zira, who Kiara almost certainly would have fought had they not been separated from each other.
  • Be Yourself: She's afraid that her role as princess and eventual queen will come at the cost of her own identity. Later, she manages to be herself while remaining a princess.
  • Big Damn Heroes:
    • As a cub, she saves Kovu when he is about to be eaten by crocodiles.
    • She intercepts Zira's attack on Simba, which indirectly leads to Zira's death.
    • She saves Tiifu and Zuri when they get swept away from water in Baboons.
    • She saves Tiifu from a cave in during The Underground Adventure, and consistently provides comfort and empathy to help her get over her fear of the dark.
  • Big "NO!": She yells "No!" after Simba exiles Kovu in the second half of the film.
  • Big Sister Bully: She's somewhat this to Kion, gloating about one day becoming Queen and mocking him for not finding his place in Return of the Roar. This later dissolves in the show itself, with Kiara serving as a support system.
  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: Downplayed; when she becomes an adolescent in the sequel, she often complains about a lot of things but is shown to be very far from bratty.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: She makes several attempts to call out Simba on his irrational actions, and eventually succeeds once her father exiles Kovu.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: She and Kovu met once when they were cubs and fell in love as adults.
  • Contrasting Sequel Main Character: Simba was a rambunctious cub who wanted to become King as soon as he could, had a relatively restriction free childhood that became more troubled later on, and his childhood friend/future lover was always on his side. Kiara is a humble cub who had reservations about becoming future Queen, had a controlled childhood that was nonetheless not severely traumatic, and her childhood friend/future lover was initially against her but went under a Heel–Face Turn.
  • Cool Big Sis: In the third season finale, when Kion admits to Kiara about his romantic relationship with Rani, she does teasingly chide him for trying to hide how he really feels about her. However, the second he actually admits it, she immediately accepts it and encourages him to go back to her, and is similarly convinced that Simba and Nala would be just as understanding. She is notably the only person to actually cheer when they get married.
  • Covert Pervert: Downplayed and G rated, but when Kiara realizes she and Kovu had an Accidental Kiss, she can only mutter out an "Um" and "Sorry", with the insinuation she enjoyed it.
  • Daddy's Girl: Though Simba's overprotectiveness does grate on her, she is certainly this throughout the film. Prime examples include mentioning to Kovu how she and her father used to watch the stars together all the time, unsuccessfully begging Simba not to exile Kovu, and throwing herself in front of her dad to save him from Zira's attack.
  • Damsel in Distress: This happened to her once in the second movie where she is nearly burned alive by the wildfire and was even knocked unconscious before Kovu saves her.
    • The Lion Guard loves to land her with this trope. Thus far, she's been caught in a gazelle stampede, lured into a trap by the hyenas, and nearly caught in a sinkhole. In the rise of Scar special, Janja kidnaps her with the intent of letting the Lion Guard save her, knowing that Kion will use the Roar once he pushes his Relative Button.
  • Deadpan Snarker: In The Lion Guard, on occasion, usually when Tiifu and Zuri are involved in an episode.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: She appeared as a newborn cub at the end of the first movie, which is why she's here instead of under the second film characters sheet.
  • Establishing Character Moment: The first time we see her as a cub in the second film, she's grinning happily and batting around playfully while in Rafiki's hands.
  • Expy: Of Juliet.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: As cubs, Kovu and Kiara saving each other in the crocodile swamp and gaining respect for each other's abilities.
  • Flat "What": Kiara asks this when Dhabu attempts to turn Tiifu and Zuri into her royal guards, as unlike Fuli, who is a genuine fighter, Tiifu and Zuri are utter cowards.
  • Held Gaze: Played for Laughs after the Accidental Kiss with Kovu, later played straight during Love Will Find A Way.
  • Heroic Lineage: Her father tells her that being a ruler (or future ruler), is in her blood.
  • Horrible Judge of Character: Downplayed. In the episode "Can't Wait to be Queen", she's left in charge of the Pridelands while Simba and Nala are away on business. During the episode, she's approached by Janja's vulture minion Mzingo, who tells her that Janja wants to meet with her to discuss a peace treaty. Kiara is uncertain but decides to think about it. Kion tries to warn against it, but he fails to state it directly, and proceeds to berate and yell at her, which doesn't get Kiara in a good mood; as a result, Kiara mistakes the warning for jealousy, and decides to go to the peace offering, genuinely believing that Janja wants peace. As soon as she gets there, she finds out that Kion was right: Janja was luring her into a trap.
    • Subverted in regards to Kovu- at least by coincidence. Kiara has no idea about Zira's scheming to use her friendship with Kovu to remove Simba from the throne, but Kovu becomes uncomfortable with the plot as he falls in love with her and eventually abandons his mission for her.
  • Identical Granddaughter: Kiara bears a strong resemblance to her paternal grandmother, Sarabi.
  • Like Parent, Like Child: She shares her father's stubbornness, bravery, and curiosity.
  • Lonely Rich Kid: She didn't look like she had any friends her age, aside from Kovu. This is retconned in The Lion Guard, where she has two female friends she hangs out with regularly.
  • Martial Pacifist: She becomes this in the climax when she, with Kovu, stop a war between the Pridelanders and Outsiders, with Kiara reminding her father: "We are one.". When Zira tries to attack Simba one last time, she immediately intercepts her without a second thought.
  • Meaningful Name: 'Kiara' comes from the Italian chiaro, and the specific spelling "Kiara" developed in Ireland. The name was imported to Africa, and its definition (bright) has caused it to be given to people of importance; given that she is the heir to the throne, and her importance in the plot, this is extremely fitting.
  • Nice Girl: She's cheerful, unprejudiced, loyal, moral, kind and very forgiving.
  • Official Couple: With Kovu.
  • Only Sane Woman: In the Lion Guard, especially whenever Tiffu and Zuri are involved.
  • Pale Females, Dark Males: Kiara has golden fur while Kovu has dark-colored fur.
  • Pinball Protagonist: Until after her lover's exile, much like the original Juliet.
  • Plucky Girl: Becomes more daring and determined to get both sides to becomes one.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: She shows signs of this in the second film, and in several episodes of the Lion Guard.
  • Rebellious Princess: Like father, like daughter.
  • Rite of Passage: Went through two of these; the first was the quest to Udugu, which tests her bond with her brother Kion, and the next was her first hunt.
  • Same Character, but Different: Not in the beginning or flash-forward in the second film, but in The Lion Guard at least initially. Rather than being her playful, tomboyish and childish self who dislikes her royal obligations, she is more mature, serious and sarcastic and acts proud of being future Queen. This is later dropped considerably in her later apperances, where she takes up the role of a playful cub who shows no explicit desire to be queen, but is willing to be serious and reasonable when the situation calls for it. Given that Kiara never said that she did not want to be a Queen when she was an adult, this might be justified.
  • Save the Villain: She tries to. She really does. But Zira is too consumed by hate to take her paw and be saved.
  • Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: The Energetic Girl to Kovu' s Savvy Guy.
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Once Kiara realizes that her father has gone overboard in his personal prejudice towards the Outsiders, she decides enough is enough and flees Pride Rock to look for Kovu. When she reunites with Kovu, she convinces him to return to get the prides back together for good.
  • She's All Grown Up: Gets this reaction when she goes out on her first hunt. Simba clearly does not like it. She later gives Kovu a similar reaction when they meet again as adults.
  • Shipper on Deck: When Kion tells Kiara about his feelings for Rani, Kiara does tease him for trying to insist he only sees her as a friend. Once he admits to her how he really feels about her, she tells him that one day he could go back to her, and makes it clear she believes Simba and Nala would be more understanding.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Kiara started to develop a crush on Kovu as cubs when they escaped from crocodiles together.
  • Spin-Offspring: The daughter of Simba and Nala, the former being the first film's protagonist.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: With Kovu. She's the princess of the Pridelands and he's supposed to take out Simba, her father.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Her body type came from her mother as a cub and adult, while her coat and eye color came from her father, with the end result making her very similar to Sarabi.
  • Take My Hand: Does this to Zira when trying to save her.
  • Think Nothing of It: Her reaction whenever she saves Tiifu and Zuri in the Lion Guard.
  • Tomboy Princess: Especially in her cub years. She was adventurous and rebellious just like her parents when they were young.
  • Underestimating Badassery: With the sole exception of Kovu and possibly Nala, everyone just assumes she is a princess, and that is it. She proves everyone when she gets into a fight with Zira in the climax.
  • Ungrateful Bitch: Subverted. While Kovu planned the rescue, he is notably and understandably shocked that Kiara's first response from said "rescue" is to get angry at him for stopping her hunt. However, she later gives him an actual thank you for his "help".
  • Uptown Girl: Kiara is the princess of the Pridelands and falls for Kovu, a member of the infamous Outsiders.
  • Violently Protective Girlfriend: In the series finale of The Lion Guard, she jumps between her brother and her mate to protect Kovu from Kion's roar (her brother doesn't yet know Kovu and the Outsiders switched sides) and tells him to stand down.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Throughout the Lion Guard, Kiara routinely shows annoyance at Tiifu and Zuri's antics, especially if they get the Lion Guard involved over a non emergency. But she still sees them as her friends, and if they wind up in danger, she will save them.

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