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One Tough Bug
One Tough Bug
One Tough Bug.png
Attribution information

Brad Neave


Michael Ryan

Production information

The Lion King's Timon & Pumbaa





Air date

June 4, 1999

Episode guide

"Living in De Nile"


"Pirates of Pumbzance"

Pumbaa: Gee, that bug must really have something to live for!
Timon: Oh, come on, Pumbaa. What would a bug have to live for?
Timon and Pumbaa[src]

"One Tough Bug" is the first segment of the twenty-third episode of Season 3 of The Lion King's Timon & Pumbaa. It aired on June 4, 1999, alongside "Pirates of Pumbzance".

Official synopsis

"While visiting the Amazon, Timon becomes determined to eat 'the Big Bad Bug of the Amazon'."[1]

Plot summary

Timon and Pumbaa are visiting the Amazon, eating bugs while on their trip. The two then encounter a strong bug, who beats them up, calling it "the big, bad bug of the Amazon." Timon reads a book that says that the strong bug has never been caught and eaten, making the meerkat suggest that he and Pumbaa should be the first ones to consume the big, bad bug.

Timon attempts to eat the big, bad bug, only to be beaten by him

The bug lies down on a tree, which Timon sneaks behind and is about to eat the bug. But the big, bad bug manages to escape Timon's hand and beats the meerkat up again. The big, bad bug is now swimming at the Amazon River. While Timon makes on how he and Pumbaa can catch the bug, Pumbaa suggests that they should just leave it alone, because it might have something to live for. But Timon disagrees and he puts on a swimsuit and catches the bug, who beats Timon up. After Timon gets back on the shore, Pumbaa states that the bug is living a precious life, but Timon persists on catching and eating it.

The friends argue over peace and war

Timon tries another way to catch the bug, this time by using a net and a bear trap. The plan, however, fails as the bug captures Timon with a bigger net. While Timon looks for another way to catch and eat the big, bad bug, Pumbaa, now dressed as a hippie, tells Timon to leave the bug alone and live in peace and harmony, but Timon tells his friend that the bug is evil and it will spread it until all bugs have turned against them. He shows Pumbaa a video showing that there are more bugs than mammals in the world and tells him that if one bug stands up to them, so will all the other bugs.

The bug turns its wings into butterfly wings

While Timon, dressed as a military sergeant, attempts to destroy the big, bad bug with a tank, Pumbaa demonstrates against the meerkat's war and the two argue over who believes in their causes the most. While the meerkat continues his attempt, the bug destroys the tank, making Timon's plan fail again.

Timon now uses a jet plane to shoot the bug with missiles, but they miss the insect. The bug is now about to eat the plane, making Timon quickly launch himself out. Pumbaa, who is willing to stop the war, offers the bug an olive branch of peace, which the grub accepts. While Pumbaa goes to get more olive branches, Timon uses a bomb to try to destroy the bug, only for the insect to eat it as well. As the bug climbs up the tree to create a cocoon, Timon and Pumbaa make peace, as Timon admits that he could have spent all his money on bugs instead of war material. The two then see the bug turning itself into a butterfly, causing Timon to change his heart and tell Pumbaa that he was right about the bug having something to live for. Timon and Pumbaa then decide to go eat some other bugs while the big, bad bug flies away.







  • Amazon
  • Amazon river


  1. Watch Timon & Pumbaa Full Episodes. Disney+. Accessed 12 November 2019.