On being introduced to Bambi just after he's born:
Thumper: Whatcha gonna call him? Bambi's Mother: Well...I think I'll call him...Bambi. Thumper: Bambi...Yep, I guess that'll do alright. Bambi's Mother: Bambi... My little Bambi...
Bambi is so willing to embrace a Flower, a skunk, as a friend. That is tantamount to overlooking institutionalized racism. "Pretty! Pretty Flower!"
Flower names his son Bambi. That's how much Bambi's friendship meant to him. Even Thumper, Bambi's best friend since birth, didn't name any of his four children after him.
Bambi and Faline's tender reunion after the fire, made even better because Faline had spent the entire 'evacuation' frantically looking for him, then last saw him as they were chased by hunting dogs, seeing all the other families finding each other and slowly losing hope of the stag she loved surviving the blaze. And then he shows up.
And, of course, the first time they met. Crosses over with CMOF.
The birth of Bambi's children (Faline gives birth to boy-girl twin fawns) at the end of the movie. One of them even nibs their sibling's ear.
Bambi apparently assuming the role of Great Prince at the end, looking down at Faline and his children in the same way his father did when he was born.
A butterfly lands on Bambi's tail. Then he calls a big flower a "butterfly."
Even without the midquel's expansion, there are subtle details in the Great Prince's behaviour that make it clear he cares for Bambi:
The Great Prince's introduction is very fitting of his name: stoic, somber, and majestic. Although he's intimidated, Bambi still attempts a smile at him. The Prince doesn't say a word or change his expression... but his ears react in a rather cute way. Like he's thinking: "Oh. I know you...".
During the first scene involving Man, Bambi is separated from his mother while the rest of the animals are fleeing for their lives. The Great Prince arrives and personally escorts him out of harm's way until his mother catches up to them, and if you look closely, he never takes his eyes off Bambi until after his mother does catch up. This is also the only time we see all three characters together on screen as a family unit.
Though it's mixed with the definitive Tear Jerker of the film, how the Great Prince reveals his relations to Bambi. Despite his bluntness and how imposing he seems to the young fawn, his voice softens as he takes the heartbroken Bambi under his wing.
The Great Prince: Come....my son.
The Great Prince pep talking his injured son into getting up out of the fire. It's mostly Tough Love at first, but then just as Bambi's almost on his feet, the Great Prince gives him a final nudge upright himself.
Leading Bambi out of the fire afterwards. Also becomes Heartwarming in Hindsight due to the midquel, serving as one last testament to how much Bambi trusts and sticks by his father.
In 2011, The View was able to get Donnie Dunagan (Young Bambi) and Peter Behn (Young Thumper) to meet each other for the first time. Prior to this, neither of them had ever seen each other since both voiced their characters separately.
In interviews, Donnie Dunagan loves talking about veterans from The Vietnam War and former soldiers who served with the United States Marine Corps discovering that their drill sergeant was actually the voice of Bambi (which he kept a secret for 50 years). Every Veterans Day, he would receive letters and mail from former veterans and children thanking him not only for his service but for voicing Bambi, who has been a childhood icon for many Americans. During the 75th anniversary of the film he and Peter Behn discussed how the film has impacted their lives.
Donnie Dunagan (holding a drawing of Bambi): To reinforce this with you. Five years ago, nine years ago, last week. Okay? We still get these kinds of things from children on their Nishimoto ver. Huh? Show me another film anywhere almost any country okay. But has that kind of presence that kind of influence, kicking around children. (puts the drawing down)