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Fiery Lion

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His burn is worse than his bite.

Across various human cultures, lions have been depicted as the king of all animals, due to their large manes and beautiful appearances. Whenever there's a lion in a fictional work, it usually may be a figure of authority or royalty. Likewise, if the lion is part of a group of heroes, it can play the role either of The Hero or The Leader.

Similarly, fire has been seen as an important symbol in human cultures since ancient times, being a symbol of warmth, light, protection, and even creation. It has long been considered part of the Classical Elements, the most basic of elements from which, it was theorized, all of matter derives from.

So naturally, many artists, writers, and other media creators would put the two together to create a fiery lion, possibly due to the reasons stated above. It may also be due to the fascinating manes of lions, which can look like cartoonish depictions of fire. And since fire is given masculine properties, and male lions have manes that resemble fire, there's going to be a connection with this.

This trope is Older Than Steam with the alchemical image of a lion eating the sun, and with the Western Zodiac sign Leo being a fire sign and The Sun as its domicile.

Can be part of Burning with Anger. See also Hot Wings, Fiery Salamander, Flaming Hair, and Panthera Awesome.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Black Clover has the Crimson Lion Kings. They are a Magic Knight Squad with the sigil of a lion, and most of their members use a form of Flame Magic.
  • The Brave Express Might Gaine: Lio Bomber is based on a lion, and his special attack, Lio Fire, have him breathe fire.
  • Cardcaptor Sakura: Kerebos is a lionish being, which is connected to the Sun, and so, to the element of fire.
  • Magic Knight Rayearth: Rune God Rayearth governs fire magic while taking form of a lion-wolf hybrid. One of its most distinguishing features is that his mane is made out of fire.
  • One Piece: Holdem, a Mook Lieutenant of the Beasts Pirates, has a living lion head on his stomach that is capable of breathing fire.
  • Reborn! (2004): Box Animals are animal surrounded by and able to generate flames. This includes Tsuna's Natsu — a lion cub — and Xanxus's liger (a lion/tiger mix).
  • In Saint Seiya Omega, Soma is the wielder of the Lionet Cloth and his fire-element Cosmo, producing flames with his attacks.

    Asian Animation 
  • Nana Moon: The fire-breathing winged creature that hatches in episode 40, when it transforms into its stronger form, looks like a lion with a red mane and tail tip that are made of flames.

  • The Beginning After the End: Curtis Glayder, the Prince of Sapin, is a Fiery Redhead who is an augmenter specializing in Fire Magic and has a World Lion named Grawder as his Bond which he sometimes rides into battle. This connection allows both to use the same Signature Spell, World Howl, in which the user fires off a concentrated beam of fire from the mouth. In Curtis's case, using Grawder's Beast Will causes his face to become more leonine.
  • Harry Potter: As per Word of God, the four houses of Hogwarts each have an Elemental Motif, with corresponding colors and animal mascots. Gryffindor, with its red color and lion mascot, corresponds with fire.
  • Warrior Cats: Firestar, an orange cat who was prophesied to be the "fire" that would save Thunder Clan, receives a sign from the his warrior ancestors in which his reflection is replaced with that of a lion with a mane that is described as "blazing".
  • The Neverending Story: Grograman the Fire Lion is a giant lion who is also an Elemental Embodiment of fire, burning so fiercely that he disintegrates everything within about a mile. He is the "lord" of Groab, the Desert of Everchanging Colors, which is created when he awakens from his stony sleep each morning and burns Perilin the Night Forest to ashes by doing so. He can never hope to leave Groab, because anything he approaches is just burned to more ashes, thus spreading the desert wherever he wanders. Being a friendly and wise being, he's honestly quite tragic; Bastian Balthazar Bux, rendered Nigh-Invulnerable by ownership of the Auryn, is the only being he's ever been able to talk to in thousands of years.

    Live-Action TV 

    Mythology and Religion 

    Tabletop Games 
  • Forgotten Realms: Nobanion, the demigod of lions and other good felines, has as one of his divine titles "Lord Firemane" and is both described and depicted as having a bright reddish mane that can turn into actual holy fire (such as when he goes into battle or is angry). During the time of the Spellplague when he was corrupted and under the control of Malar, his fire turned bright blue instead as he grew to giant size.
  • Pathfinder: The Grogrisant, a legendary six-eyed lion taller than trees, has a mane that blazes like the sun — so brightly, in fact, that it blinds those who look at it — and can wreathe itself in flame at will.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!: The signature card / boss monster of the Salamangreat archetype is Salamangreat Heatleo.

    Video Games 
  • Bot Land: The fire-themed bot has a lion head.
  • Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow: The demon Baer is a lion head on a flaming wheel. Returns in the sequel Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow.
  • Crusader of Centy: The lion has a fireball attack.
  • Digimon:
    • Leomon has an attack called "Fist of the Beast King", which is basically punching (instead of throwing) a fireball shaped like a lion's head. See fanart of this here.
    • Digimon World Dawn/Dusk: Coronamon is a fiery lion cub that doubles as the mascot for Dawn and its evolution line remains fiery and leonine throughout. In particular, Firamon is a winged lion with fire constantly pouring from the mechanical implants on its head, legs and tail. All of its signature attacks, both in the game and in the broader franchise, involve fire in some way — Flame Dive has it charge from the sky while Wreathed in Flames, Fira Claw is exactly what it sounds like and Fira Bomb lobs a burning projectile at its target. Flaremon is a wingless, anthropomorphic version of the same design and Apollomon is a huge armored lion-man with fiery powers drawn from the miniature sun on its back.
  • In Dragon Project, Fiery Zangaleo is a winged lion that deals fire attacks. It serves as the Fire Burst Sword and Shield Behemoth. In contrast with Zangaleo is the Water Burst Dual Blades Behemoth, Raging Valenfor, a massive wolf that starts off as a literal Lightning Bruiser before switching to its true element, water, which gives it ice powers.
  • In Kingdom Hearts III, the King's Flare Link Summon allows Sora to summon into battle a fiery-looking Simba, who can pounce on enemies with Firaga Leap, as well as let out a burning shockwave with Firaga Roar.
  • The Kirby franchise has a recurring miniboss simply called Fire Lion, a brown lion with a mane of fire. It uses a combination of Natural Weapons and fire attacks.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Lynels are recurring lion-centaur enemies who are capable of breathing fireballs.
  • Mega Man ZX: Fistleo, one of the bosses, is a lion-man robot with fire powers that he gets from the Biometal Model F inside his body. He's a Blood Knight who loves to test his powers against strong opponents.
  • Mega Man Star Force:The Satellite Admin Leo Kingdom is a lion-like EM Being whose Signature Move is firing off a beam made of fire and BURNING HIS ENEMIES ALIVE!
  • Monster Hunter 2 (dos): The Elder Dragons Teostra and Lunastra are large, winged lions with fiery manes and fire as their primary element.
  • Monster Sanctuary: The Spectral Lion is bright red and learns Fire attacks.
  • Panel de Pon: The story mode in the Nintendo Puzzle Collection version of the original game features a lion with a flaming mane and tail as one of the opponents you face.
  • Persona 2: In Innocent Sin, this trope is used liberally through association of the zodiac sign Leo with fire.
    • The Hero Tatsuya Suou has the zodiac sign of Leo, a lion design on his belt buckle and his Personae are specialized on the fire element. In addition, his Ultimate Persona is Apollo, which is also associated with lions.
    • His Foil Tatsuya Sudou is called "King Leo" In-Universe and also has fire abilities. He's also an Ax-Crazy arsonist.
    • The "Leo Mask" type enemies can only use fire magic.
    • The Leo Temple is a Lethal Lava Land which hosts the Crystal Skull of Fire.
  • Pokémon has a number of fire-associated lion Pokémon:
    • Arcanine, a Fire-type Pokémon is partly based on the Shisa, a variation of the Chinese guardian lion.
    • Flareon, the Fire-type evolution of Eevee has a mane resembling that of a lion.
    • Entei, a Fire-type legendary and part of the legendary beast trio, is partly based off of a Chinese guardian lion.
    • Pyroar is a Fire/Normal type Pokémon resembling a lion with a flame-colored mane. A Pyroar serves as one of the main Pokémon of Lysandre, the Big Bad of Pokémon X and Y, who is associated with fire and heat.
    • Solgaleo is a Steel and Psychic-type legendary Pokémon resembling an enormous white lion, but is heavily associated with the radiance and heat of the sun. It's based off the alchemical image of a lion eating the sun. Ironically, being part-Steel type makes it weak against Fire-type attacks.
  • Rivals of Aether has Zetterburn, the lion prince of the Fire Nation who wields fire and has a burning mane.
  • Skylanders has the Fire Trap Master Wildfire, a golden bipedal lion with fire powers. He is one of the most tanky of the playable roster, and has the ability to create chains of fire to bring opponents close to him so he can strike them with his shield, set his shield on fire to damage nearby enemies while holding it in front of him, and even breathe fire.
  • Temtem has the Raiber line, which are Fire-type, based on lions, and live in a volcano.
  • Viewtiful Joe: Fire Leo is a high ranking lion-man member of JADOW and a late-game boss. He's usually Wreathed in Flames and Joe cannot hit him directly, unless Joe uses the technique that gives him an even hotter fire (the Mach Speed) in order to bypass it. Inverted with Frost Tiger from the second game, apparently being Fire Leo's brother.
  • Virtue's Last Reward has an anagram alluding to the lion eating the sun.
  • Yo-kai Watch: Blazion is a fire-attribute lion yokai with a flaming mane. When inspiriting someone, he makes them "fired up" and determined.

    Western Animation 
  • Legends of Chima: In the final arc (which revolves around a Fire and Ice conflict), the heroes end up using Fire Chi to empower themselves against the Ice-themed antagonists. In the case of main protagonist Laval, using Fire Chi makes him and his machines literal fire lions.
  • In The Lion Guard, the evil lion Scar is brought back from the dead, manifesting himself as a giant, flaming head in a volcano.
  • Ninjago: In the first seven seasons, all of the ninjas' uniforms had an animal emblem on the chest or back. Fire ninja Kai's emblem was a lion with a mane made of flames.


Video Example(s):



In Kingdom Hearts III, Sora can summon Simba in a fiery form, complete with fire-based attacks.

How well does it match the trope?

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Example of:

Main / PlayingWithFire

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