Ma Tembo
Ma Tembo
Ma Tembo.png
Physical information
Gender

Female

Species

Elephant

Skin color

Gray, pink, and purple

Eye color

Blue

Distinguishing features

   Broken tusk
   Dark spots on forehead

Biographical information
Status

Living

Residence

Pride Lands

Affiliations

   Ma Tembo's herd
   Pride Landers

Titles

Herd leader

Relationship information
Family

Aminifu (father)

Friends

   Kion
   Simba

Enemies

   Scar

It's nice to remember the good times.
―Ma Tembo[src]

Ma Tembo is a female elephant. She is the daughter of Aminifu. After the passing of her father, she presumably attains leadership of his herd.

When the spirit of Scar gathers an army against the Pride Lands, Ma Tembo joins her fellow Pride Landers in fighting them off and eventually defeating them altogether with an invasion of the Outlands.

Biography

The Lion Guard

"Can't Wait to be Queen"

Simba: Well, he...he had good on him, too.
Ma Tembo: He did. He truly had good on him. But more poop!
—Ma Tembo and Simba on Aminifu[src]

When Simba arrives at Kilio Valley with Nala and Zazu, he sees members of Aminifu's herd leaving flowers on the old elephant's body while Ma Tembo stands watch. Saddened by the sight, Simba leads Nala and Zazu down into the valley.

Despite the error in Simba's speech, Ma Tembo thanks him for his tribute to her father, Aminifu

After the flower ceremony, Simba gathers the herd to give his tribute. Ma Tembo announces the king, and Simba starts by recounting his friendship with Aminifu and how he will always remember the old elephant fondly. He attempts to give the standard elephantese tribute of "He had good on him," but accidentally says, "He had poop on him."

Though horrified at this turn of events, Simba begins to smile as the herd breaks into laughter. Ma Tembo explains that her father had always had poop on him and that it had made them laugh. She fondly adds that he had always made them laugh. When Simba still looks unsure, Ma Tembo thanks him for the tribute, and Simba comments that Aminifu had certainly had good on him. Ma Tembo agrees and playfully adds that he had had more poop on him.

"The Kupatana Celebration"

Happy Kupatana, Beshte!
―Ma Tembo to Beshte[src]

Ma Tembo is seen bathing in a water hole during Beshte and Bunga's patrol through the Pride Lands. They wish her a happy Kupatana, and she returns the greeting.

"Bunga and the King"

We would be honored to hear your song, Your Majesty.
―Ma Tembo to Simba[src]

Ma Tembo bows to the royal family

When the elephants hold their first concert of the season, Simba and his family resolve to be in attendance. Along the way, Simba gets trapped in a sinkhole, and Kiara and Nala are forced to go on without him. They witness the concert and praise the elephants after their song, but just then, Simba arrives with the Lion Guard, Pumbaa, and Timon. He apologizes to Ma Tembo for being late, and together, the group performs "Hakuna Matata".

"The Savannah Summit"

Ma Tembo attends Simba's Savannah Summit at Mizimu Grove.

"The Traveling Baboon Show"

Ma Tembo watches the Traveling Baboon Show perform

While patrolling the Pride Lands, the Lion Guard notices several animals taking off in the same direction, including Ma Tembo. They follow the commotion to where Ma Tembo and a large group of Pride Landers have gathered beneath a tree. Mbeya the rhinoceros explains that the animals have gathered to see a troop of performing baboons.

Presently, Uroho, Mwevi and Mwizi appear and sing "The Traveling Baboon Show", during which they perform for Ma Tembo and the rest of the audience. After the show, Ma Tembo leaves.

Ma Tembo declares that there is a food thief in the Pride Lands

Later, the Lion Guard hears Ma Tembo crying for help, and they follow her voice to where a tree has been completely stripped of its flowers and leaves. Ma Tembo declares that there is a food thief in the Pride Lands. The Lion Guard resolves to find the thief and restore order to the Pride Lands, and Ma Tembo leaves to let the Lion Guard inspect the tree further.

After Uroho, Mwevi and Mwizi are discovered to be the food thieves, Ma Tembo and several other Pride Landers line up to receive their food back. Uroho hands Ma Tembo a fruit, which she gratefully accepts. After all the food has been returned, the baboons put on another show for Ma Tembo and the other animals.

The Lion Guard: The Rise of Scar

In the Pride Lands, the dry season has started, and the Lion Guard is busier than ever. During their patrol, Ono informs his friends that Janja's clan is attacking Ma Tembo and her herd. The Lion Guard arrives at the scene, and, sure enough, Janja and his crew are attacking the elephants.

The team drives the hyenas away, and Ma Tembo explains that the hyenas had been desperate because of the dry season. She also tells them that she is trying to find a new water source for her herd. Kion sympathizes with Ma Tembo and assures her that he knows how difficult it can be to be a new leader. Ma Tembo and her herd then depart to continue the search for water.

Later, Ono tells Kion that Janja and his crew are at it again. This time, they're attacking the baboons who have started following Ma Tembo's herd. The Lion Guard arrives and have the elephants go into a rocky gorge. Kion then blasts the hyenas away with the Roar of the Elders.

With the hyenas gone, the baboons reveal that they are following Ma Tembo to a new water source. Ma Tembo resumes her search for a new water source while a concerned Kion decides to talk to his father.

Later, Rafiki's new apprentice, Makini, orders the crowd of Pride Landers to be silent so Ma Tembo can hear, and Ma Tembo at last hears and locates a new water source, much to everyone's relief.

"Rafiki's New Neighbors"

When Chama proves to be too much of a handful for her herd, Ma Tembo kicks him out.

Later, Kion and Bunga accompany Chama back to his herd, where Ma Tembo explains that Chama is a disruption to the other elephants. Kion encourages Ma Tembo to give Chama another chance, and she begrudgingly agrees.

"The Ukumbusho Tradition"

In Mizimu Grove, Ma Tembo directs her herd in preparing for the Ukumbusho Tradition, a celebration that honors the peace established between the elephants and lions of the Pride Lands. In the midst of the preparation, Makini arrives to help paint the elephants for the ceremony.

Ma Tembo directs her herd in preparing for the Ukumbusho Tradition

Under Ma Tembo's direction, the Lion Guard begins practicing their lines. Just then, Timon and Pumbaa arrive to help the Lion Guard with their lines. However, before they can start, Ma Tembo points out that the Lion Guard is traditionally composed of lions only, which prompts Makini to suggest that she paint each Lion Guard member to resemble a lion.

Later, Makini is painting sunbursts on the elephants' foreheads when she suddenly runs out of yellow paint. In a panic, she relates to Ma Tembo how she had used all her paint on the Lion Guard, and Ma Tembo suggests that she collect more yellow fruit from the nearby forest. Makini does as she is told, clearing a hive of bees from a clump of yellow flowers in order to bring the plants before the elephants.

Ma Tembo participates in the Ukumbusho Tradition with Kion

Presently, Simba arrives with his mate, Nala, and daughter, Kiara, as well as the lionesses of his pride. The Lion Guard begins to sing "May There Be Peace", in which they commemorate the peace established between the elephants and lions of the Pride Lands. After the song, Kion and Ma Tembo describe how Askari, the first leader of the Lion Guard, had made peace with the elephants in order to keep the Circle of Life in balance.

However, in the midst of the ceremony, a horde of bees attacks the elephants, chasing them from the grove. Kion orders his team to chase down the elephants before they can hurt anyone, and the Lion Guard takes off to halt the stampede.

Ma Tembo panics when a horde of bees attacks the herd

Just then, the Lion Guard runs into a group of elephants that have stopped being chased by the bees, and Kion, Fuli, and Ono piece together that the bees are attracted to Makini's yellow paint. The team continues chasing down the stampede, and Fuli catches up to Mtoto, suggesting that he try to spray at the paint. Mtoto does as he is told, and the paint disappears, prompting the bees to fly away. Seeing Mtoto's success, the Lion Guard resolves to use the same trick on the other elephants.

From above, Ono reports that the elephants are racing into Sehemu Pass, where they could get stuck between the rocks, but Kion declares that this is a good development. The Lion Guard then gathers at the entrance of the pass, and when each elephant gets stuck, Mtoto sprays their foreheads with dust, clearing away the paint and effectively warding off the bees.

Ma Tembo apologizes to Simba for panicking, and the Ukumbusho Tradition continues

Back at Mizimu Grove, Ma Tembo apologizes to Simba for panicking and explains that bee strings in the trunk can be very painful. Makini rushes over and apologizes for causing the chaos, to which Ma Tembo assures her that she had not known. When Makini volunteers to collect more yellow fruit for the paint, Kion suggests continuing the ceremony without any paint. Ma Tembo protests that it is difficult for elephants to break with tradition, but Simba tells her that this could simply be a new tradition for the elephants of the Pride Lands. Ma Tembo then agrees to the new plan, and the Ukumbusho Tradition continues in a new vein.

"Timon and Pumbaa's Christmas"

Ma Tembo agrees to let her herd perform in Bunga's Christmas celebration

Bunga asks Ma Tembo to involve her herd in his Christmas celebration. Though she is hesitant, Mtoto expresses interest in the performance, which ultimately persuades Ma Tembo to acquiesce to the Lion Guard's wishes.

That night, Ma Tembo and her herd attend Bunga's rehearsal. Things go well until the next morning, when everyone is leaning towards abandoning the project. Before the animals can depart, however, Bunga desperately explains the importance of the performance to himself and Timon, which prompts Ma Tembo to change her mind.

The next day, Ma Tembo and her herd perform during the musical sequence "The Twelve Ways of Christmas".

"The Scorpion's Sting"

Ma Tembo attends Simba's Kumbuka celebration at Pride Rock.

"The Kilio Valley Fire"

Ma Tembo defends her herd from an Outlander attack

In Kilio Valley, the Lion Guard struggles to put out a widespread brush fire. At first, the team believes the fire to be put out, but then embers begin falling from the sky, reigniting the valley. The Lion Guard spreads out, accepting help from several of Ma Tembo's herd members, while Ma Tembo leads the rest of the herd out of the valley. However, she is cornered among the flames by Janja, Reirei, Kiburi, and their respective followers.

Ono overhears Janja's cackling and reports what he's heard to Kion, who suspects Scar of causing the trouble. He then orders his team to protect the elephants, leaving Kilio Valley to the mercy of the fire.

Ma Tembo mourns the loss of Kilio Valley

Just in time, the Lion Guard arrives to protect the elephants. The Lion Guard then leads Ma Tembo and her herd out of the blazing valley. Once to safety, Ma Tembo mourns her destroyed home. Ma Tembo turns to Kion for help in finding a temporary home, and he resolves to help the elephants.

Kion leads the elephants to Ndefu Grove, the home of the galagos. At first, Laini is receptive to the elephants staying in her home, but once their heavy plods start making the ground shake and causing galagos to fall out of trees, she appeals to Kion to take them elsewhere. Kion makes two more attempts to find the elephants a home - once with the Twiga and her giraffes and again with Bupu and his sable antelope - but both end in the herd leaders refusing to put up with the elephants' behavior.

After multiple group leaders turn the elephants away, Ma Tembo resolves to lead her herd out of the Pride Lands

Frustrated, Kion orders Bupu to be patient with the elephants until the Lion Guard can come up with another solution. He then asks Ono for a report on Kilio Valley. The Lion Guard discovers that Ma Tembo has been forcibly outed by Bupu. Kion approaches the herd and assures Ma Tembo that he will find them a new home, but Ma Tembo insists that they must leave the Pride Lands, as no one else wants them.

Just then, Ono alerts Kion to a new fire that has broken out at Ndefu Grove. The Lion Guard rushes to the grove, where Laini begs them to save her galagos. Kion resolves to find help, while the rest of the Lion Guard stays behind to combat the fire.

Ma Tembo and her herd help to extinguish a fire in Ndefu Grove

Kion races across the Pride Lands to where Ma Tembo and her herd are still en route to another kingdom. He explains the situation to her, and she agrees to help the galagos, as she considers the other Pride Landers her family. With Kion and Ma Tembo in the lead, the elephants arrive in Ndefu Grove, where they promptly put out the fire.

After the fire is put out, Laini thanks the elephants for their help and offers them a place in Ndefu Grove. Ma Tembo gratefully accepts, but laments the loss of Kilio Valley. Kion promises her that they will retake her home, to which Ma Tembo states that while Kilio Valley is just land, the Pride Lands is home.

"Pride Landers Unite!"

The Lion Guard concludes that the Pride Landers must unite against the threat of the Outlanders. They gather together Bupu's herd, Laini's group, Ma Tembo's herd, and Mbeya's crash ("Pride Landers Unite!").

Ma Tembo defends her herd from the Army of Scar

At first, the Pride Landers are tense, but Kion works to defuse the tension. He instructs the animals to race toward Bunga. However, the event soon gets out of hand, for the animals trip over the galagos and end up in a heap. Kion then gets the idea to call Makuu the crocodile for help. Makuu begrudgingly agrees to help, but his training is too rigorous and ruthless for the other Pride Landers to master.

The Army of Scar besieges Makuu's float, with Kiburi targeting Makuu. Ono witnesses the battle and reports his findings to Kion. Together, the Lion Guard and their Pride Lander allies storm the watering hole and fight off the Army of Scar.

After the fight, Makuu thanks Ma Tembo and her herd for help and vows to do the same for them should the need ever arise.

"The Queen's Visit"

Ma Tembo is present when Dhahabu arrives at Pride Rock.

"The Fall of Mizimu Grove"

At Mizimu Grove, Rafiki and Simba announce Makini's mpando mpaya, and Timon and Pumbaa perform their song ("Tujiinue"). In the midst of the celebration, the Army of Scar attacks, and the Pride Landers rise up to defend themselves. The battle pauses when Scar appears in the flames and threatens to overtake the entirety of the Pride Lands. Frightened by Scar's unexpected appearance, the remaining Pride Landers, including Ma Tembo and her herd, flee Mizimu Grove.

Ma Tembo and her herd deliberate over whether to leave the Pride Lands

Kion uses the Roar of the Elders to defeat the Outlanders, while Simba deliberates what to do with Ma Tembo. Simba then approaches the Pride Landers once the Lion Guard has calmed them and admits that he has had knowledge of Scar's return for some time. Ma Tembo notes that she understands why he'd kept it a secret. The herds deliberate whether they should leave the Pride Lands, and Simba tells them to inform him of their decision the following morning at Pride Rock.

At Pride Rock, Kion implores Ma Tembo and her herd to follow him to Mizimu Grove before they decide to leave the kingdom. The herds follow Kion to Pride Rock, where Makini's baobab tree seed has survived the fire. This inspires the Pride Landers to remain in the kingdom and work together to defeat Scar.

"Battle for the Pride Lands"

Ma Tembo charges into battle alongside her fellow Pride Landers

Ma Tembo helps drive out the Army of Scar when they try to invade the Pride Lands. Later, she gathers with her fellow Pride Landers at Pride Rock to train for coming battles with the army. She witnesses Scar's spirit appearing in the flames. Afterward, she expresses concern that Scar knows what the Pride Landers are planning, but Kion convinces the Pride Landers to keep heart.

The next morning, Ma Tembo assembles with the Pride Landers to invade the Outlands. She participates in the battle, which the Pride Landers ultimately win. Afterward, she watches as Jasiri is made the queen of the Outlands.

Later, Ma Tembo gathers with other Pride Landers at Pride Rock to bid farewell to the Lion Guard, who are departing for the Tree of Life.

"Return to the Pride Lands"

When Beshte returns to Big Springs from his journey to the Tree of Life, Ma Tembo and her herd arrive to welcome him back.

Ma Tembo serves as a weight during the competition between the strongest members of the Lion Guards

Later, Ma Tembo and Zito serve as props for the Battle of the Lion Guards, in which Kion's and Vitani's Lion Guards face off; each stands on a boulder while the contestants for the strongest member of the Lion Guard, Beshte and Imara, push their rock toward the finishing line. The competition begins, and Beshte begins pushing Ma Tembo's rock across the plains. However, Ma Tembo notices that he is sunburning, so Beshte abandons the contest to roll in some mud, costing him the victory.

Later, Ma Tembo watches both Fuli's and Anga's competitions. She witnesses the final mashindano between Kion and Vitani, and reacts with awe when Askari's spirit appears in the sky and when Kion uses the Roar of the Elders to lift Pride Rock.

Ma Tembo attends Kion's wedding to Rani at the Tree of Life.

Physical appearance

Ma Tembo has the characteristic large and rounded frame of the elephant, with flappy ears, long legs, and a winding trunk. Unlike the other members of her herd, who are blue and gray in color, she is pale gray tinged with pink, with a lighter gray chest, toenails, and trunk tip. Her inner ears are a deeper shade of pink than her main body, and her eyelids are rimmed with dark gray. Like her father, Aminifu, she bears spots on her back, as well as three markings on her forehead. A patch of stunt brown hairs sticks up from her head, and one of her tusks is broken at the tip. Her eyes are a dark shade of blue.

Personality and traits

Yes. It's my responsibility. My role in the Circle of Life. And as soon as I hear the new water source, everything will be fine.
―Ma Tembo on her duty to find a new water source[src]

Ma Tembo is always game for a laugh. Even when Simba makes a mistake at her father Aminifu's funeral, she is gracious and kind, and makes light of the situation by dwelling on the good. She is similarly gracious to Nala and Kiara when they are the only members of their family to attend the elephant concert.

As a leader, Ma Tembo is strong-willed and dutiful. She takes her responsibilities seriously and strives to protect her herd at all costs. Despite her position, she is humble and takes instruction well from those in authority, such as Simba.

Trivia

  • Ma Tembo is voiced by Lynette Dupree.[1]
  • The first part of Ma Tembo's name ("ma") means "mother," while the latter part ("tembo") means "elephant" in Swahili.[2]

References

  1. Lynette Dupree. IMDb. IMDb.com, Inc. Retrieved on September 15, 2020.
  2. Online Swahili - English Dictionary. African Languages. Retrieved on September 15, 2020.


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