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     Guesses about Simba’s offspring 

Zazu is secretly shipping Nala/Simba throughout the whole movie

Alternative Kopa/Kiara explanation
The end of The Lion King takes place after The Lion King 2. Instead of Kopa being murdered by Zira as typically assumed, he wasn't born yet. Kiara was born during the "reconstruction era" of Simba's reign, where the defecting lionesses would have been a force equal to the loyalists.

Evidence against canon:

  • Canon “truth” is that Kiara was the cub born at the end of Lion King.
    • The story books that included Kopa should either be disregarded or reimagined with Kiara.

  • Cubs are born at different times of the day.
    • Self-explanatory.

  • Cubs are given different coloration
    • Compare Simba to Mufasa or the cub at the end of Lion King to Simba at the beginning of Lion King. Even if we included Scar/Kovu/Nuka in the equation it’s fairly obvious that male and female Lions are given different colorations (Male: Gold and Brown/Red and Black) (Female: Offwhite/Pale/Peach). Kiara’s “feminine” coloration is obscured yet visible at the beginning of Lion King 2.

Evidence against the “Kiara is the younger cub” theory:

  • Official fanon states that Kiara the younger cub.

  • Kovu was born before Scar died.
    • Kovu knew who Scar was (or at least what he looked like). And unless Zira was lying, Scar chose him as his Heir.
  • Kovu and Kiara are around the same age
    • We can assume Kovu is a bit older, yet we see them grow up around the same time in the Movie’s timeline (Kovu is a cub while Kiara is a cub, rather than being in the “teenage” Lion stage we saw with Simba in Lion King (1 and 1.5)).

  • Timon and Pumbaa
    • They seem to be more concerned about Kiara’s birth more so than the cub at the end of Lion King. With Kiara’s birth they fanaticize about the old days with Simba. With “fluffy’s”(Kopa’s) birth they are more concerned with the fanfare.

  • Simba likely wouldn’t ignore the death of his first cub if he died by Zira’s hands (paws).

Simba and Nala don't have just one or two cubs, they had three.
In the DVD commentary for the Lion King, the producers called the cub presented at the end of the movie Fluffy. Fluffy probably perished of natural causes since it's still the 'circle of life' that sometimes we die young and in keeping with the popular theory that Kopa lost his life to Zira. His younger brother is Kopa and Kiara is their baby sister. He and Kopa might have been litter-mates and likely presented separately.

Kopa named Kiara.
Nala was having her new baby when Kopa was still alive. One day, he came up to her and asked her if the baby could be a girl, because he liked the name Kiara. Nala told him that there was no way of knowing if the baby was a boy or a girl, and Kopa persisted that he wanted a sister so they could name her Kiara. For added sweetness, this was just minutes before his death by Zira, so it doubled as a final request.

Timeline of the cubs' births
There's quite a bit of controversy over the birth of cubs at the end of the first Lion King and their connection to Simba's Pride, so I'll try to make sense of it all. The first thing to note; lions go through a gestation period of a little over three months, and typically reach adulthood after 3 years. A lion cub would only look like Simba (prior to his father's death) during the first year of its life, so Simba was about a year old when Mufasa died.

Scar's reign lasted anywhere between two and thirteen years, but we'll assume it was on the shorter side, as Mufasa, Scar, and Sarabi are clearly older lions in the film (we'll say around a decade old, which would be the equivalent to a human in their 40s). Simba, meanwhile, looks like a young lion even in Simba's Pride, so he was probably closer to five or even younger when he overthrew Scar.

One year before the end of Scar's reign, Scar realized he had no heir and tried to seduce/rape Nala. She rejected him and ran off, becoming a rogue lion like Ni, who she'd met and taken a liking to during her childhood, and who is suggested below as being her father; not canon, but worth mentioning. Nala spends nearly a year as a rogue before finding Simba. With Nala gone, Scar takes Zira as a mate. She loves either Scar or the power that comes with being his mate, but when they produce a child, it's the runt Nuka, who is mangy and scrawny. Scar is disappointed with him, and either keeps trying for another heir, or, more likely, gives up altogether. This is why Zira shows such disdain for Nuka during his life.

Three months before the end of Scar's reign, Nala meets Simba in the oasis. One thing leads to another, and next thing they know it, they conceive Kopa. (Word of God is that they do have sex during the "Can You Feel The Love Tonight" segment). Around the same time, Zira has an affair with a rogue lion and conceives Kovu and Vitani as one litter. Scar doesn't care about this too much (he never really liked Zira anyway, see the question of his sexuality below) and deems the strong cub Kovu as his new heir.

Simba returns to the Pridelands, and Scar is killed. Kopa is born shortly afterwards, and presented as the new prince of the Pride. Kovu and Vitani are newborns, and Nuka is getting close to a year old, meaning he would look like Simba at the start of The Lion King and Kiara, Kovu, and Vitani in Simba's Pride.

Less than a year after Simba's return, Kopa dies. This is either the result of an accident, or, more likely, he is killed by Zira to put Kovu back in line for the throne. There's also the possibility (inspired by a theory below) that Zira was indirectly connected to Kopa's death. This happens around the time of Kiara's birth; she has either been conceived, is conceived shortly after, or has already been born by this time. Judging by how she looks older than Kopa and Simba at the time of their presentations, she was likely already born, and then presented as soon as Nala and Simba finished their grieving period. Kovu and Vitani would be young cubs at this time, while Nuka is getting to be an older cub.

About a year after Simba's return, Kiara and Kovu meet in Simba's Pride. Nuka is over two years old now, an adolescent lion, and Kovu and Vitani are just over a year old, while Kiara is a bit under a year under. Three more years pass, and Kovu is deemed ready to assassinate Simba, and Kiara goes out for her first hunt. These don't correspond exactly with the two lions becoming adults, likely because Zira wanted to train Kovu a little longer and Simba wasn't ready to let Kiara hunt yet.

Hopefully this makes the timelines more plausible.

Simba and Nala's first cub died.
The cub we see at the end of the first movie is obviously not Kiara—instead it's their son who was killed sometime before she was born (an illness, accident, or Zira it did). That’s why Simba's so protective of Kiara.

Scar was physically unable to sire cubs.
This is the only way to explain why, although his wish from the musical to have a mate (or at least a psychotically loyal fangirl) was apparently granted, he had to choose an heir from among her offspring that weren't his.
  • "Shallow end of the gene pool" and all.
Kopa and Kiara actually exist in different timelines.
The reason why Kopa is never referenced at all in the sequel, the reason why Simba and Nala never make any mention of him even when they're alone and all that is because in their universe, they never had a male cub. Simba's paranoidness and nervousness is due to his first time as being a father and his reasons for exiling Zira are because under suspicion for loyalty to Scar, not because for the alleged reason that she killed his son. Simba's Pride is basically a story as to what if the cub was a girl and can be classified as the primary canon timeline.

Kopa's timeline is the same except for a few differences. While his counterpart is shown to be dismissive of her parents, Kopa exhibits a stark personality contrast of being curious and enjoying a good tale every now and then. He seems to be more close to his parents and Simba in turn shows a more casual and relaxed side to fatherhood. The reason we see nothing further on from his timeline is because it wasn't meant to be. Or someone tampered with the space time continuum and collapsed it, I don't know. This is called the secondary canon timeline (because it was planned in the start but discarded for the events proceeding Kopa's life would not fit in under the circumstances).

Kopa is Kiara's son.
That way the timeline isn't mauled.

Kiara is the cub at the end of the first film
After Scar was killed and the Pridelands were restored to their original state not all of the animals came back, so Simba held two ceramonies for the same cub: The one at the end of the first film and the one at the begining of the second film, which was held after most of the animals had returned. Also, notice how the ceramony at the end of the first film seems smaller than the one in the begining of the first film.

Zira killed Kopa and was banished for it
Had to be put here, seeing its one of the most wide spread Lion King fanon guesses in existence. Pretty much, Zira murdered Kopa to avenge Scar and Simba banished her out of pity for the children (he would've killed Zira, but he didn't want to orphan her children).

Simba's Firstborn Died
This actually makes a lot of sense, if you consider that in the second movie you all seem to insist exists, Simba is a very overprotective father of his young daughter. This troper has always been of the firm opinion that the cub at the end of the only movie was male, since it would really complete the "Circle of Life" theme that started at the beginning with Mufasa's son being born. However, there must have been a tragic accident, during which this firstborn was brutally killed. This makes the actions of Simba in the imaginary second movie make more sense, especially if you think about why the banished lions were banished, perhaps they were somehow responsible for the death of Simba's son, which would explain why he is so reluctant to forgive them.

Kopa and Kiara are twins
Kiara either hadn't been born at the end of the first movie or was hidden; the version from the sequel is a retcon or what they told Kiara. Kopa died as a very young cub, possibly due to Zira.

Zira did not kill any of Simba's relatives, at least not direct relatives or in cold blood.
It's possible Zira killed one or more cousins of Simba's in a battle, but if Zira had killed Simba's child or mother he'd act a lot more hostile to her than he already does, especially when he catches Kiara playing with Kovu. It just doesn't fit. Kopa was Kiara's brother—either her twin who was originally the heir, or born before her conception— and he died of natural causes. Sarabi likewise died of natural causes, assuming she's even dead at all. Simba's protectiveness over Kiara coincides with having lost a cub previously, but Simba's interactions with Zira are not consistant with the "Zira killed Kopa" theory.

     Other theories about the original film. 
Humans do exist, but...

Years ago, human scientists found out that the animals around an insignificant mountain were sentient. How they found out? They saw that a baboon was somehow holding a baby cub on the mountain, showing him offto a horde of herbivores that were calmly standing under the mountain's ledge. They decided to do an experiment - how that civilization would work out if there were no obstacles. Basically, all of the humans were forced out of the area, and only scientists were left, watching the lions and herbivores do their daily things through their digital cameras.

  • Humans do exist but through a wild animal's eyes they are strange monsters - they can't talk but they're still horribly dangerous. And they control starlight, and fire, and thunder. Oh, and they're edible.

Wildebeests weren't unwilling murderers, but, in fact, they allied with Scar all along

Somebody on the Headscratchers page asked why a horde of wildebeests ran off a cliff from three hyenas and didn't even stop at a full grown lion, which resulted in Mufasa's death. Now you know why...

  • Adult male lions are not good hunters because of their manes. The wildebeests also vastly outnumbered Mufasa.

Simba and Nala have an incestuous relationship.
Riddle me this: Simba and Nala are from the same pride. How many adult males are there? Just two- Scar and Mufasa, who are brothers. Nala is either Simba's cousin born from Scar or his half-sister born from Mufasa (but from another lioness, rather than Sarabi). The latter might seem like Mufasa's cheating on his mate, but male lions mate with every single lioness in their pride (very often), so it's not too far-fetched. Lion incest is perfectly normal, but it's not the sort of thing Disney wants you to think about.
  • Jossed by Word of God The Lion Guard makes mention of Nala's father, although briefly. It doesn't explain where he went, but the assumption some people are making is he was killed by Scar along with the rest of the last Lion Guard
  • This is Jossed not only by Word of God but also lion biology.
    • Subadult male lions are kicked out of their birth prides, and challenge other males for the role of pride leader. This stops incestuous relationships from happening which would cause genetic problems in future generations.
    • Male lions are even known to kill cubs that aren’t theirs. And their ability to recognize family members seems to be related to smell. Lions have a much better sense of smell than we humans.
    • Lionesses will also not allow a male sibling or child to mate with them. They won’t even allow their father to mate with them, if given a chance. But male lions are reasonably powerful so the female lion will rather flee than stay and mate.
    • Lionesses usually do not end up mating with their fathers or uncles because the average tenure of male lions with a pride is between two and three years - by the time their daughters and nieces are old enough to breed, they have been replaced by new males.
    • Lion prides and their territories are limited in size by the availability of food and competition. If a pride gets too big, some of the younger females may be forced to leave or they may starve to death because it is a free for all during feeding time, and the younger animals may not get a chance to feed. Young lionesses splitting from a pride may thus limit inbreeding.

Scar didn't fail as a king because he was an evil tyrant, but because he had no idea of the responsibilities of being a king, only the perks.
While we don't necessarily see how Scar handles his failings as King of the Pridelands in the movie, the musical shows that he has absolutely no idea how to rule a kingdom; he's completely baffled why things have turned out so poorly, starts to doubt his own ability to lead and gain the adoration of his subjects, and even asks for Zazu's advice on how to solve the problem. Clearly, he - like Simba as a kid - only knew of the major perks to being king, not the massive responsibilities that come with those perks. Don't get it wrong, Scar's ambition and jealousy are what lead him to a fall, but if he was halfway-competent enough in the affairs of state, it's likely he could've become a Villain with Good Publicity instead of someone with a 0% Approval Rating, making his continued reign - and Simba's defeat - iron-clad.
  • The musical did a good job fleshing out his madness, but the movie still had his scene with Sarabi to paint a clear picture of how bad a job he was doing. In particular, as noted above, his declaration that "I am the king! I can do whatever I want!" can be seen as a callback to Simba's juvenile "just can't wait to be king" philosophy. Then the grown-up, sane (not to mention alive and legitimate heir to the throne) Simba showed up... either way, is this even a WMG?
  • Scar specifically says "We're not going anywhere" and I don't believe he was just talking about the lionesses. He wasn't allowing any hyenas to leave either, even though usually the males will either leave or be kicked out. It wasn't like the hyenas didn't notice things were getting bad.

The Outlanders are Amazons.
During Scar's reign, a small Pride of Lioness' come to the Pridelands from the desert, they have no male, no king. Hense the name really. They came because while the worsening situation in the Pridelands were bad, things were worse in the desert. Scar let them stay supposedly to help the Pridelanders to adapt to the growing leaniency of game. Eventually Scar and their leader became smitten.

The alliance between the hyenas and the lions actually was successful and beneficial to both first.
Hence why Scar still had diehard loyalists among the lionesses, who would rather allow themselves to be exiled than have Simba replace Scar. Hyenas are powerful predators in their own right, and the mutual hatred between the hyenas and lions mostly stems from the way they're constantly in competition with each other - when the two stongest carnivores in the savannah joined forces and began to help instead of hinder each other, the number of kills made skyrocketed and allowed the pride to enjoy a brief golden age before the drought hit and everything went downhill.
  • Actually 'driver ants' are the strongest predator in Africa. So blame the ants.

Scar was not a bad leader, BUT he was hated by the lionesses- because he did what male lions still do in real life.
  • Remember when we saw all of those cubs being licked at the beginning of the movie? Where were they at the end of this movie? There were no cubs at all when Simba returned. It's very probable that Scar had killed all of those cubs fathered by Mufasa- This would not make him popular with the other lionesses.
  • That does make a lot of sense now!
  • That doesn't explain why Nala is still alive thou, and even if their canonicity is debatable, the Six Adventures books show other cubs as well.
  • When did we ever see cubs besides Simba and Nala, in the first movie? This troper spend her entire childhood searching for other cubs in that pride throughout the movie, and wondering why there were only two cubs in the entire pride. The only cubs being licked were Nala and Simba.

The fate of the cubs of the Pridelands
Related to the above, the comics based on the first film have a whole slew of cubs (Kula, Tama, Chumvi, Tojo, and Simba's two unnamed cousins), not to mention the fate of the scrapped character Mheetu and an off reference to Simba's cousin Mtoto in a puzzle. These characters can still exist in the film's universe, although not part of the film itself, as unseen members of Mufasa's sprawling pride. While Kula and Tama, who are female, would probably grow up to be part of Simba's pride, Chumvi, Tojo, Mheetu, Mtoto, and Simba's cousins, all of whom are male, would likely have been driven off or killed by Scar.note  Since this is a Disney film and adult males are present in both Simba's and Mufasa's prides, we can assume that Simba and Mufasa would not do this, even though it's normal for lions.
  • My personal opinion is that Scar had the hyenas kill them. At least one didn't get killed, returned BEFORE Simba, and became the father of Kovu - but didn't have backup, so Scar had the hyenas kill him too.

The ruling family of lions in Lion King are the descendents of the Nemean Lion.
This is where their legitimacy comes from. The lion hide in the Hercules movies wasn't actually Scar, he just bears an uncanny resemblance to his ancestor. This is also why Scar needed such an elaborate set-up to kill Mufasa as well as the lack of marks on Mufasa from Scar's claws or the wildebeest's hooves. Also why Simba wasn't particularly bothered by the thorn bushes. Scar figured the hyenas would be able to end Simba's life with a bite though thanks to the spectacular crushing force found in a hyena's jaws. It would also explain the lack of human presence in the setting. Why bother with the area surrounded by wastelands and inhabited by nearly unkillable super lions? Regular lions are bad enough.

Scar is the Nemean Lion.
He is in Hercules, although that was an In-Joke, because the same animator who drew Scar also drew Hercules.

Simba was actually being merciful by exiling Zira and her supporters.
He could have killed her children, including the one Scar chose to be his successor and would only grow up with a contested claim to the throne if allowed to live, and added all the lionesses to his harem (as male lions do in the real world when they take over a pride), but he didn't. Like Macbeth in "City of Stone," he chose to exile his now-dead rival's son to eliminate any threat he and his supporters may pose rather than kill him. (In both cases, of course, this backfired.)

Ed is Ed.
Mostly since they're both spotted hyenas (though the former is a weird, dark-gray variety) with the same name. They obviously do not possess the same intelligence, so either Digger's Ed, after he died trying to destroy the heart, was reincarnated by a vengeful She-Is-Fiercer and cursed with serious mental retardation, or the Lion King's Ed became Digger's Ed, either over time or through reincarnation.
  • Alternately...

Ed is Ed.
...and the other hyenas are the other Eds. Shenzi is most likely Double D. (most feminine of the trio), elevated to the rightful role of leader due to her being comparatively more competent, while Eddy became a bitter Butt-Monkey as Banzai.
  • Hmm.... I'd say Shenzi fits Eddy much better in personality, and Banzai as a Double D gone slightly off his rocker after having been somehow transformed into a hyena.

The Hyena's were banished due to their numbers
This occured to me watching Be Prepared. Look at how massive in numbers the Hyenas are. Now, Hyenas are good predators in real life, there being so many was a major problem of overpopulation. There's no way the Pridelands could've supported them and the lions (as seen in Scar's reign). There are far fewer lions than there are Hyenas, the Lions are actually pretty reasonible in number. Mufasa had two options, get rid of the hyenas or get rid of the lions. If the lions had left, the Hyenas were still too numerous for them to be supported and too dim-whitted to realize this (as shown, the Hyenas aren't very clever). Thus, from that view, it's possible he told them to leave for the sake of everyone. However, it's possible they weren't even banished, just told to leave and thought they were banished or possibly Scar made them think that. It fits into the movie well because Scar's reign shows the Pridelands can't support both groups, so there's good reason to get the Hyenas out as they're the bigger problem than the lions are.
  • This theory is pure brilliance, except for one thing; Mufasa is clearly shown driving off hyenas from the Pridelands, so it's most likely that they were actively banished. Other than that, this theory works perfectly.

Scar was gay
Because he's just so fabulous. This would explain why he (possibly) had no direct male heirs, and might even be why he didn't get to be king when his heterosexual male brother was around.note  There's a link elsewhere on the page that says that two ruling male lions will often "strengthen their bond" by feelin' the love. This doesn't apply to Mufasa and Scar, as Mufasa is clearly leading on his own; but maybe Scar wasn't opposed to the idea?
  • My mother agrees with you. The fact that in the Latin American dub the Surrounded by Idiots line was said in feminine form doesn't help at all.

The character of Scar/Taka is, among other things, also a Shout-Out to Tony Montana.

The hyenas weren't evil
Not really a WMG, but there you are. The hyenas were Punch Clock Villains at worst.
  • The hyenas never did anything malicious: they were ordered to kill Simba, and though they had the chance, did not kill Zazu.
  • They were confined to the Graveyard, which didn't look terribly fertile- no wonder they took orders from the only guy who bothered to feed them. Note that in "Be Prepared", they sing that "We'll have food, lots of food, we'll repeat".
  • Speaking of "Be Prepared", one of Scar's lines is "I know it sounds sordid, but you'll be rewarded"- if the hyenas were truly evil, they would not have to be persuaded.
  • When they fought against the lionesses, they were well aware that they wouldn't be very popular if there was a revolution.
    • Seconded. Also, this theory fits together very well with my "Hyenas are democrats" guess above.

After Scar took over, the whole wildebeest herd was executed under charges of Regicide
Thus why the stock of ungulates was depleted so dramatically during his reign.
  • That's something I can actually see Scar pulling off, just to further blur his own involvement in the incident.

The Outlander Lionesses (apart from Zira) are Scar's daughters.
Think about it. This explains both why they were still devoted to Scar long after his death, and why they couldn't help him at the end of the first film: they were still cubs/ very young at the time.

The cub in the first movie was Kiara's twin brother
Kopa never existed in the TLK 2 verse, the timing isn't right, as Kovu has to have been alive when Scar was around and yet still be pretty young. However, drafts for the TLK 2 script gave Kiara a twin brother, Chaka, who even had a betrothed, Timira/Kirajah. At at the end of the first movie you see a golden newborn cub being presented. This is Chaka being presented as heir, either because he is older or male. Kiara is neither, and thus just stays in the den, meaning most of the pride don't even know about her. Now, Zira is still in the Pridelands at this point because she has very young cubs, only living on the fringes and thus isn't one of the few who knows about Kiara. She manages to kill Chaka, Simba's 'only heir' before getting herself and her followers exiled. Kiara, clearly older than the cub at the end of the first movie, is then presented as the new heir. Zira, in the deleted scene, is so freakin' delighted because Simba's only SURVIVING cub is female. Timira/Kirajah and her mother were expelled from the pride due to being unwelcome reminders of Chaka. Simba is now super-protective of the one child he has left. Kiara never knew about her brother, because no one wanted her scarred for life.

Zazu is a reincarnation of C-3PO as a hornbill.
Even droids may take part in the process, and C-3PO was one of them. Unfortunately, while R2-D2 too was reincarnated, in his previous life he had been small, compact, hard-shelled, and hiding a large assortment of tools, thus he was reincarnated as a beetle. R2-Beetle was forced to leave and live elsewhere thanks this new constant danger of Zazu/C-3PO's diet. Despite the loss of his friend, C-3PO learned to enjoy his new life as a hornbill, still faithfully serving his masters, "finally getting the hang of this flying", and still keeping his position as the universe's Butt-Monkey.

Years later, R2-D2 turned up again while being hunted by a ravenous warthog, but before he could open his shell and unleash an oil slick/jetpack combo on him, a bigger fish/lion completed the job for him.

The Hyenas go on an epic Exodus
I'm rewatching the original at the moment, and I vaguely remember that by the second movie the Hyenas have all fled the Pridelands. Where did they go? Judging by some other entries on this page, the Hyenas weren't as evil as the movie suggests when you look at their motives, and what I'm basically saying is that it would be interesting to see a story of some kind of the Hyena's journey from the Pridelands to wherever they end up. Not really WMG I know, but just a thought.
  • Yeah! And throughout the journey they constantly argue about whether or not it was a good idea to do that, as well as disputes over whose idea it was to team up with Scar in the first place, and at the end of every argument and spat the Hyena tribe continues travelling. And at the end of the feature length journey they reach their own 'promised land' much like the one Simba's pride currently owns, but not ruled by lions or anyone.

Ed is the smartest of the Hyenas
After rewatching it in 3D, I came to realize that Ed may be smarter than he looks and acts, because towards the end he drops his stupid hyena act and lets out some scary laughs before attacking scar, my theory he just can't transfer his thoughts into words, so he laughs them in hyena language instead, which is why the others can understand him well.
  • In "Be Prepared", when Scar sings "It's clear from your vacant expressions / The lights are not all on upstairs", Ed winks at the camera as if to say "Yeah, that's what HE thinks!"
  • It is canon that "Ed knows the score". Still, there's obviously something wrong in his head.
Sarafina was killed by the hyenas.
In the musical, it is mentioned that Sarafina killed Banzai's father. Since he and Ed appear to be brothers, and Shenzi is either their sister or in love with Banzai, It's Personal for all three.The result: My Name Is Inigo Montoya and Make It Look Like an Accident at some point during Scar's reign.

The title card has a black background because of a deleted scene.
According to Heihachi Mishima in Tekken: The Motion Picture, lions throw their cubs off cliffs and only raise the ones that climb back up. During the presentation of Simba, right when the title card cuts the scene off, is Rafiki promptly dropping the cub off Pride Rock, followed by Mufasa calling down "Now climb back up, son; you're not prince until you do! Now, uh, that's probably going to take a while, so in the meantime, I'm going to chide your uncle for not attending." After Mufasa and Zazu confront Scar, there is another deleted scene with Mufasa joyfully finding that his son has successfully scaled Pride Rock. Simba does not remember the incident because of his extremely young age, hence why doesn't resent his father for the incident.

Scar and Mufasa were only half-brothers.
This one seems obvious when one reads "A Tale of Two Brothers", one of the children's books. Putting aside the fact Scar looks different from his relatives, there is the matter of his birthname; Taka. Which means Dirt. This troper is forced to conclude Mufasa's father is not Scar's father, and the aforementioned lion knew this and named him accordingly. Taking it further, Scar complains to Zazu in the musical that "Nobody loved me! ...Not even as a cub!", implying that his parents weren't that great at showing him affection. Perhaps for good reason.
  • I had this same thought, too, only Scar is a son of Ahadi (Mufasa's father's name), but his mom was just a random lioness that died when he was very young, and Uru (Mufasa's mom) took him in. Since there is no official picture of Uru, fanart aside, it can be assumed that Scar got most of his looks from this random lioness.

The Lion King and Tarzan take place in the same universe.
And Rafiki and the baboons in Tarzan are the same species, non-existent in our universe, with mandrill-like faces but baboon-like tails.
  • Only the alpha male baboon (the one that floats down with Jane's umbrella) has a mandrill face.
Ed is the only character aware of the concept of the fourth wall.
I don't know how he could know, but perhaps Ed knows that everything going on around him is a work of fiction in a movie. He knows everything's going to be okay since it's all not real, that's why all he seems to do is laugh - he's laughing at the absurdity of everything in his eyes. He's just having fun cause he knows it's a movie.
  • So Ed is the hyena version of The Joker?
  • Timon and Pumbaa seem aware of it as well, what with the "not in front of the kids" line and Aside Glances. They seem to handle it a lot better, though.

Scar wasn't the first lion to ever murder his brother
  • Not OP but this seems.. Obvious. Do you mean in the pride or lions in total?
    • I meant in the pride.

Mheetu was Scar's son
He has the same "Outsider" ears as Scar.

The Lion King was originally going to be a straight-up Remake of Kimba, but...
  • Disney then realized how incredibly difficult it would be to get the rights to the anime - it had been in the hands of various animation studios in japan, numerous dubbers, and everything - but it was too far along in pre-production to change most of the story, so they changed Kimba to Simba, Claw to Scar, and added elements of Hamlet. Unfortunately, this still wasn't enough to keep some from attacking it as a rip-off when it's more like how The Magnificent Seven was a re-telling of Seven Samurai, only this time, instead of it being the Seven Samurai replaced by cowboys, it was Kimba's characters with the plot of Hamlet, making it a very strange - and ultimately, very great - variation of Recycled In Space.

Timon and Pumbaa are an odd example of Heterosexual Life-Partners.
  • Although their actors have come out and said they thought of them as a gay couple, it seems to be that both of them are sexual minorities. Timon is gay, mainly due to Nathan Lane being openly gay, while Pumbaa seems far more like an Asexual.

Scar is faking that accent (or rather, the lion equivalent of a posh accent, which we hear through Translation Convention) because he is so full of himself and wants to sound clever and classy. That's why none of the other lions sound that way.

Simba wasn't the only cub Mufasa and Sarabi had.
Cats generally have multiple cubs in a litter. The fact that Simba was named heir out of all of his unknown amount of siblings means he was just the first born of the litter.

Scar is a low tier Reality Warper.
In the novels, Scar's name was said to be "Taka" which loosely means "trash" or "want" in Swahili. Not only are his actions deplorable, but anything he gets near seems to become utterly corrupted, destroyed or morally "unclean" in some fasion due to his desires. His father, brother and nephew seem to keep this in line with their presence, and he seems to have little effect on Pride Rock until he actively starts taking control of the pride. When he takes command of Pride Rock, things go downhill due to his rule. While he's briefing the Hyenas in "Be Prepared", the area begins to shift under his full, unchecked presence.In short, Scar seems to project an aura of pure unadulterated wrong that warps the area around him if he stays around long enough, and his brother's bloodline acts as a counterbalance.

The hyenas were Chaotic Neutral mercenaries with no true loyalty to Scar, and that became his undoing.
(And by extension, one of the more mature themes of the story is of the dangers of securing followers by way of fear and the promise of resources as opposed to the loyalty of true friends.) Think about it. Lions and hyenas were natural enemies - or at least competitors for food. Hyenas are scavengers - they're going to go where the food is. Scar promised them food, so they followed him. By the time the end of the movie had rolled around, Pride Rock was a wasteland - likely because Scar was forced to allow the Hyenas to eat up all the resources in order to keep his mercenary army well-fed and happy, which took priority over the lionesses and perhaps even Scar's own health (he doesn't seem much healthier during his rule, although that could be chalked up to aging as well). Thus, when Scar was defeated and attempted to throw the hyenas under the bus, he was no longer of any value to the hyenas...except for food, which they hadn't had in a while. Scar's last mistake was the assumption that he had earned the hyena's loyalty to him. Mufasa didn't have any dealings with the hyenas during his rule because he knew that tendency. As soon as resources between them became scarce, the hyenas would have turned on him in a heartbeat.

Additionally, in Lion King II, Zira's mistake was the assumption that everyone on her side was fanatically devoted to her cause as she was. Vitani's case was obviously familial loyalty...which went out the window once Zira threatened to kill her. Nuka cared less about his mother's power base and really only wanted her approval. And the lionesses that were with her were looking at their situation and realizing that it was in fact not better than what they'd had at Pride Rock.

The Pride Lands are a Fisher Kingdom, but they didn't die because Scar was a bad king...
They died because the King was absent. The literal spirit of the King of the Pride Lands came with Simba when he left, as the young king. When he returned, the spirit of the Kingdom and Its King went ahead on his path, in the form of the storm that lit the dead grass and decay on fire (providing nutritious, albeit probably a bit alkaline, ashes) and gave the land much-needed water. Shortly after The Lion King 1 1/2, with Timon's enormous, transplanted family and no avatar for a Spirit of the Land, the grub ecology is going to collapse and bring down the rest of the food chain of the oasis with it... just like when Simba left the Pride Lands and Shenzi's, Banzai's, and Ed's enormous, transplanted family moved in and ate all the zebras and antelope and whatnot more quickly than they could reproduce.

The Hyenas live in a desolated graveyard not because of Fantastic Racism, but because of their own stupidity.
This is one thing I always felt since I first watched the movie. The land the Hyenas lived in was actually fertile and fresh like the Pridelands once before and Hyenas and Lions lived in harmony, each in their respective land. However, because The Hyenas are gluttonic morons, they overhunted (much like in the movie) and turned their land into the Mordor we see in the movie. The Hyenas, still hungry for more food, invaded the Pridelands and tried to take over, Mufasa drove them back ("You already ruined your land, don't try to ruin ours") and thus the Hyena-Lion feud was born.
  • While I don't accept this as MY favoured argumant, it is kind of the best way to keep the lions from looking like complete assholes for banishing the hyenas.

The hyenas haven't actually been there that long
  • In some of the books they go ON AND ON about the hyenas constantly causing trouble like some kind of Chaotic Evil Race. They were banished for this, but it was only meant to be a stop-gap; they were supposed to be allowed to find different territory to the lions, so that there wouldn't be too many predators. But they felt really sour about being kicked out of their original home.

Zazu is the animal version of Blackadder.
And his Baldrick is a hyena so filthy the other ones can't stand him.

Scar was pampered by his parents.
While fangirls tend to give Scar a Freudian Excuse by saying that he's The Un-Favourite, that doesn't really fit with Scar's personality - if anything, he sounds like he was given the right to be king, and could be considered the Evil Counterpart to Simba. His parents pampered him, either because he was originally going to be king or because they wanted to comfort him in the fact that he wouldn't. Being pampered did nothing to make him a capable ruler, and as Mufasa was more focused on actually learning how rulership works was chosen as king instead. Scar believed that he deserved to be king because of this pampering, along with thinking that being ruler=getting what I want. He used this to justify killing Mufasa, along with the fact that he believed that Mufasa "stole" his rightful position. Unsurprisingly, he had no skill when it came to actually ruling. Mufasa was trying to temper Simba because this he didn't want something like Scar happening again, though he didn't think Scar was willing to kill him the way that he did.

Scar is the Avatar.
During 'Be Prepared', he uses earthbending to make the ground open up when he jumps down from the cliff, and to make the rock columns rise up into the air with him on it. He also uses firebending to make fire flare up behind him towards the end of the song for dramatic effect. As he is not a fully realized Avatar, he has only mastered earth and fire, and in trying to learn waterbending and airbending he somehow screwed up badly enough to make the rivers dry up and cause a drought.
  • And Scar's personality and apparent feeling that he should get the throne just because he wants it comes from his power and his status going to his head. He believes that since he's the Avatar, he is entitled to anything he wants, and any measures taken to get it are perfectly justified.
  • An Avatar is only considered fully realized once they have mastered all 4 elements PLUS the Avatar State.
Zira and her followers didn't just kill Kopa.
They killed Sarabi, too. That's why she never shows up again and is never mentioned again. Like Kopa, she just kind of... disappeared, without any explanation. Possibly Sarafina too, but Zira only wanted to hurt Simba, so it'd make sense if it was just Sarabi.

Kovu and Scar are relatives, but not father and son
Assuming Scar is only Mufasa's half-brother, he has to have other relatives. Kovu was fathered by a rogue that was related to Scar.
  • Scar and Mufasa are full siblings. Scar's appearance comes from his father Ahadi according to the text of A Tale of Two Brothers(despite what's depicted in the art). Kovu might be related to one of Scar's Half Siblings(whoever they are).

The hyenas are an invasive species that only migrated to the Pridelands two or three generations ago.
That's why they're outcasts despite the whole "Circle of Life" thing, which essentially refers to the Pridelands' ecosystem. When they first migrated to the Pridelands, they totally messed up the local ecosystem, as invasive species in real life tend to do, creating a situation very similar the one that happened when Scar allied with them. Thus, Mufasa's ancestors led the lions to drive them out, which is why nobody except Scar will even consider letting them back in. The events of the movie are what finally convinced the hyenas to give up and move somewhere else.

Tying in a bunch of theories I've seen and a few of my own for Kovu's time period...
The lionesses refuse to hunt for Scar as part of a protest. So the ones that ARE loyal to him are the ones to go out and hunt. This causes them to be away for the fight scene. During one of these extended hunts, they come across a rogue. Lionesses sometimes mate with other males when the leader isn't around. Zira mates, as she wants to make sure the genepool stays diverse enough so that none of Scar's heirs have to leave, especially if the child he has impregnated Nala's mother with is female. (Despite the whole reprise thing, it couldn't be Nala, due to her obvious non-pregnantness when she finds Simba) Scar is so delighted at both this and her loyalty, she names the child heir instead of Nuka, who was incompetent and frail, which is why he did nothing for Scar during the battle with Simba, opting to tell the Scar-Loyalists instead so they could be prepared (pun not intended) upon returning, and his frailty and stupidity are also why Simba drives him out instead of killing or at least severely injuring him, as Simba knows he will never pose a threat. When the lionesses return from their interrupted hunt, they are banished, along with Nuka and the newly-born, recessively-eyed Vitani, who would technically be Nala's half-sister. Zira's rogue pregnancy could have happened near the end of the hunt before the one they go on at the time of the battle, putting Kovu's conception right around the time of Kiara's, if you assume that she was conceived during 'Can You Feel the Love Tonight' and that the lionesses went on multiple hunts within a short time, as crossing the desert probably took at least a week, and with the food shortage, hunts would need to be more frequent to feed everybody. Unfortunately, I could not work this to also include Kopa. I wish I could've.

Scar's hyena clan are 'outlanders'
There's obviously got to be living space for hyenas; they can't all live in the graveyard. The normal clans would probably be a more natural brown color, possibly with golden individuals, not unlike the lions.

There is more than one Clan
Hyena males leave their Clans at 2 years old to find another, so guys like Banzai and Ed are from another clan. Scar made his deal with the Graveyard Clan. After it went through, they contacted the other Clans, who rolled on in because who doesn't enjoy a free buffet? Scar wasn't expecting that - but he did nothing to fix it. This also explains Janja and Jasiri being from different Clans.

Actor Allusion

Ed isn't stupid or crazy—he's deaf.
This Troper's family has a pit bull who behaves much like Ed—he'll eat most anything, is easily distracted, and exhibits manic behavior, often making weird noises. It's quite possible Ed's behavior owes to being severely hearing-impaired. Note how he seems a bit slow on the uptake and won't respond unless directly addressed. Ed follows visual cues such as watching Banzai and Shenzi's behavior (and Shenzi's none-too-gentle physical prompting), following scents, or reading Scar's lips during speeches, and can usu. gauge pretty well how he should act, even if he's a beat behind the other two at times.
  • This theory makes the ending a little bit of Fridge Horror, considering Ed just stares at Scar until he starts laughing. That would mean he wasn't prompted by Shenzi and Banzai after all (Ed never breaks eye contact with Scar); he just cracked from lack of food and decided that Scar looked delicious.
  • I wish I'd thought of something like this before I'd start writing my latest story.

Ed is the true leader of the Hyenas.

A bizarre case of The Dog Was the Mastermind and Obfuscating Stupidity. Ed is actually the one calling the shots and makes up all of the final decisions for the pack. He IS weird, but only when he lets Shenzi and Banzai do most of the work. This is more of a case of Pragmatic Villainy, since it would probably be more tactically advantageous to let most people think that your subordinates are the ones who are at the front and in charge, and assume you to be a brainless oaf.

Some time after the end of the story, the pride is exterminated
By who? Humans looking for rugs, of course.

Mufasa and Simba's manes are red due to gourd juice.
  • When Simba is born, Rafiki wipes a small dab of gourd juice across his forehead. This is essentially the animal's version of a christening, only performed when the next Lion King is born. This could explain why Mufasa's mane is red, yet Scar has a more natural black mane.
    • Rafiki also does this to Kiara, even though adult lionesses don't have manes.
There will be a film about Scar
As Disney continues its trend of making live-action/CGI adaptations out of its classic films, they could eventually give another villain the top billing like Maleficent. What better choice than Scar — it starts off with his childhood, showing how he and Mufasa were once close brothers. Then we see how Scar gets his namesake scar and eventually grows to envy Mufasa. Followed soon by a closer look of his reign over the Pridelands. It would introduce characters such as Ahadi and Uru (Scar and Mufasa's parents) as well as providing depth on the Hyenas, Zira and other followers of Scar.

Scar was sterile.
He's scarred in more than one way; either by accident or due to some predator, Scar suffered a major injury that essentially sterilized him. Though he recovered, being emasculated felt humiliating, so he acts prideful/power-hungry to compensate. He's jealous of Mufasa not only because he's leading the herd, but because he can produce cubs. Despite having his own mate, he never had children because of this Crippling Castration.
  • Except lions lose their manes when castrated. Still, let's say for a moment that this is true. Honey badgers which live in the same habitats as lions are said to bite the testicles off other, larger animals. Maybe Scar had an unlucky encounter with a honey badger...

Simba secretly ate meat behind Timon and Pumbaa's backs
Think about it - if he ate nothing but bugs his whole life, Simba would be very malnourished and wouldn't stand a chance against Scar (or Nala, depending on her health during the Pridelands' drought). So the only logical explanation is that, while Timon and Pumbaa were occupied, Simba would sneak off and hunt larger prey.
  • While this theory would make sense, someone actually did a study on Africa, it's bugs and how hard it would be to catch them and the conclusion was that it was entirely possible for Simba to eat nothing but bugs and still be healthier than Scar.

Shenzi helped Nala escape
When Nala was subjected to Scar's Captain Rape-esque behaviour, Nala wanted to escape but she couldn't because hyenas patrol everywhere. Shenzi took pity on her and, because she knew Scar was going crazy, helped her get out to try and find help. She never actually expected Nala to come back with Simba. And because she helped Nala, Nala stood up for the hyenas at the end to Simba and they were simply banished to the Outlands.

Zazu made a noble but naive attempt to leave Africa after he was disgusted by Scar's rule.
As he proclaimed in 'I just can't wait to be king.' if the monarchy became a joke he would have none of it.Too bad he got captured early leading to the situation we see him in.

Shenzi is Eva Braun to Scar's Hitler
  • As a strong, powerful woman, Shenzi is the primary female relationship in Scar's life - or at least he sees her that way; her opinion of him doesn't seem to be so high. It wasn't until the Broadway musical that the idea of Scar pursuing Nala entered the canon in any official way.

Scar actually has a birthmark, not a scar
It just happens to look like a scar on his eye.

The prey animals respect the lions because of a religion based on the Circle of Life
  • The film portrays the lions as being a royal family respected by all the other animals, and said animals even cheer and bow when they see Simba being presented at the beginning. This is clearly referencing the idea of lions as kings, but none of this makes sense in-universe as it's clearly established the lions hunt these animals, so if anything they should all gang up and kill the lions. The only explanation is it has to do with some sort of religious belief (probably tied to the Circle of Life) necessitating the lions be allowed to eat some of them. Humans have believed much weirder things.


Example of: