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Simba
BigLovableChunkOfWarthogHere.png
"Do you see any other big, lovable chunk of warthog here?"
This article is about the character from the 1994 film.
You may be looking for the character from the 2019 film.


Simba
Physical information
Gender

Male

Species

Lion

Hair color

Brown, cream, gold, and red

Eye color

Red

Biographical information
Also known as

   The king
   King Simba
   Your Majesty
   Big ol' scaredy cat (by Bunga)
   Bro (by Bunga)
   Dad (by Kiara and Kion)
   Daddy (by Kiara)
   Father (by Kiara)
   Fuzzy (by Zazu)
   Genius (by Nala)
   Good King Simba (by the Pride Landers)
   Junior (by Timon)
   Kid (by Timon and Pumbaa)
   King Zimba (by Hafifu and Majinuni)
   Kitty (by Banzai)
   Lion Number One (by Bunga)
   Little hairball (by Scar)
   Mon capitan (by Timon)
   My liege (by Pumbaa)
   The royal son (by Zazu)
   Sire (by Ono and Zazu)
   Son (by Mufasa)
   Sonny boy (by Timon)
   Turtle dove (by Zazu)
   Young master (by Zazu)

Status

Living

Residence

   Pride Lands
   Hakuna Matata (formerly)

Affiliations

   Pride Landers
   Pride Lands monarchy
   Simba's pride
   Lion Guard (briefly)

Titles

   King of Pride Rock
   Leader of the Lion Guard (briefly)
   Prince of Pride Rock (formerly)

Relationship information
Family

Mufasa (father)
Sarabi (mother)
Nala (mate)
Kion (son)
Kiara (daughter)
Scar (uncle)
Unnamed father-in-law
Sarafina (mother-in-law)
Kovu (son-in-law)
Rani (daughter-in-law)
Askari (distant relative)
Bunga (adoptive brother)
Pumbaa (adoptive uncle)
Timon (adoptive uncle)

Allies
Enemies

Banzai, Ed, Nuka, Scar, Shenzi, Zira, Cheezi (formerly), Chungu (formerly), Dogo (formerly), Goigoi (formerly), Janja (formerly), Kiburi (formerly), Kovu (formerly), Nduli (formerly), Nne (formerly), Reirei (formerly), Tamka (formerly), Tano (formerly), Vitani (formerly)

Nala: What made you come back?
Simba: I finally got some sense knocked into me, and I've got the bump to prove it. Besides, this is my kingdom. If I don't fight for it, who will?
—Simba and Nala, shortly before the battle of Pride Rock[src]

Simba is a male lion. He is the king of Pride Rock who succeeded Scar. He is the son of Mufasa and Sarabi, and the mate of Nala, with whom he has a son, Kion, and a daughter, Kiara.

Shortly after his birth, Simba was anointed the future king of Pride Rock and presented to the animals of the Pride Lands. Growing up, he was taught by his father, Mufasa, to respect the Circle of Life and thus maintain balance between predator and prey. During this time, Simba's uncle, Scar, used a wildebeest stampede to put Simba in harm's way and thus lure Mufasa into danger. Scar managed to assassinate Mufasa, after which he sent his hyena minions to dispatch of Simba. However, when the hyenas failed to kill Simba, the cub escaped into the desert and took refuge with a meerkat named Timon and a warthog named Pumbaa, who taught him to embrace a "Hakuna Matata" lifestyle.

Many seasons later, Rafiki confronted a full-grown Simba and facilitated his communion with the spirit of Mufasa, who implored him to return to the Pride Lands and reclaim his birthright. Simba did as he had been prompted and challenged Scar for the throne of Pride Rock. The lions fought one another for the right to rule the Pride Lands alongside their respective allies, and Simba eventually emerged victorious. Meanwhile, Scar was betrayed and killed by his own hyena minions. Afterward, Simba ascended Pride Rock and became the new king of the Pride Lands.

As king, Simba exiled any lionesses who retained loyalty to Scar to the Outlands. There, the exiles plotted to avenge Scar's death, assassinate Simba, and put Scar's protégé, Kovu, on the throne of Pride Rock. Per Zira's instructions, Kovu saved the life of Simba's daughter, Kiara, and used the seemingly noble act to infiltrate Simba's pride. However, when Kovu fell in love with Kiara, he betrayed and abandoned the Outsiders. A battle soon broke out between the Outsiders and Simba's pride, but Kovu and Kiara intervened and convinced the feuding lions to reunite. In the aftermath of the battle, Simba accepted Kovu back into the pride and approved of his marriage to Kiara.

Biography

Early life

Scar: I was first in line...until the little hairball was born.
Mufasa: That "hairball" is my son...and your future king.
—Mufasa and Scar on Simba[src]

Rafiki anoints Simba.

Simba was born to Mufasa, the reigning monarch of Pride Rock, and his mate, Sarabi. As the next in line to the throne, Simba was expected to inherit the mantle of king someday.

One day, when Simba was an infant, Mufasa called the Pride Landers to Pride Rock to witness the cub's presentation ceremony. Rafiki arrived and ascended Pride Rock, where he beheld Simba for the first time. After smiling down at the cub, Rafiki shook his gourds over Simba's head, which made the cub bat at them playfully. Rafiki then took a gourd, ripped it in half, trailed his thumb through the juice, and marked Simba's forehead. Afterward, he threw sand over the marking, and Simba sneezed.

Rafiki presents Simba to the Pride Landers.

While Mufasa and Sarabi watched proudly, Rafiki took Simba into his arms and carried him to the promontory of Pride Rock. There, he lifted the cub into the air for all the animals of the Pride Lands to see. Immediately, the Pride Landers erupted into cheers and bowed before Simba.

After the ceremony, Mufasa confronted his younger brother, Scar, for his absence at Simba's presentation. Scar claimed to have forgotten all about it and lamented how he had been next in line to the throne until Simba's birth. Mufasa reminded Scar that Simba was the future king, but Scar merely quipped that he would practice his curtsy.[1]

Cubhood

Lesson with Mufasa

Simba: But I thought a king can do whatever he wants.
Mufasa: Oh, there's more to being king than getting your way all the time.
Simba: There's more?
—Simba and Mufasa, during a lesson on Pride Rock[src]

Seasons passed, and Simba grew into a young cub. One morning, he rushed into the den of Pride Rock and attempted to wake up Mufasa. Sarabi told Mufasa that his son was awake, but he retorted that Simba was her son before sunrise. Despite Mufasa's unwillingness to get up, Simba persisted and reminded Mufasa that he had "promised." This finally made Mufasa get up and follow Simba outside. Together, the two ascended Pride Rock until they were sitting side by side on the summit.

Mufasa shows Simba the Pride Lands from Pride Rock.

As the sun rose over the Pride Lands, Mufasa told Simba that "everything the light touches" was their kingdom. He then explained to Simba that kings rose and fell, and that Simba would someday succeed Mufasa as the king of Pride Rock. Incredulous, Simba asked if the whole kingdom would be his, and Mufasa replied that it would. Simba questioned if the "shadowy place" was his, but Mufasa told him that it was beyond their borders. He then forbid the cub from going there. Simba asserted that a king could do whatever he wanted, but Mufasa reminded him that there was more to being king than getting one's way all the time.

Mufasa led Simba into the grasslands, where he explained how predator and prey were connected in the Circle of Life. Though Simba pointed out that lions ate antelope, Mufasa illustrated how lions became the grass when they died and so eventually became food for the antelope.

Simba pounces on Zazu.

Just then, Zazu arrived and delivered his morning report to Mufasa. Simba quickly grew bored and began to chase a grasshopper. Noticing his son's game, Mufasa asked Simba what he was doing, and the cub replied that he was pouncing. With a mischievous grin, Mufasa told Simba that he would show the cub how to pounce properly. With help from his father, Simba managed to pounce on Zazu and pin him to the ground.

No sooner had Simba let Zazu up when the hornbill informed Mufasa that hyenas had invaded the Pride Lands. Mufasa took off in a hurry and forbid Simba from coming with him. In a huff, the cub started back toward Pride Rock and complained that he never got to go anywhere. Zazu assured him that he could chase off "those slobbering, mangy, stupid poachers" himself someday.[1]

Visit to the Elephant Graveyard

I was just trying to be brave like you.
―Simba to Mufasa, after the Elephant Graveyard incident[src]

Upon returning to Pride Rock, Simba met up with his uncle, Scar, and bragged about how he was going to be the king of Pride Rock someday. Scar merely commented that he could not leap for joy because he had a "bad back," after which he flopped onto his side. An oblivious Simba asked what Scar would be once Simba became the king, and Scar replied that he would be a "monkey's uncle." He then changed the subject and asked Simba if Mufasa had showed him the entire kingdom, including the rise at the northern border. This deflated Simba, who admitted that Mufasa had forbidden him from going there. Scar was quick to affirm Mufasa's decision and explained that only the bravest lions ventured into such a place. Simba insisted that he was brave and asked what was out there, but Scar refused to divulge any more information. However, he soon let slip that the forbidden territory was an elephant graveyard, which excited Simba. Scar made the cub promise not to go there, then told him to run along and have fun. As Simba raced off, Scar turned away with a sinister smile.

Scar lets slip that there is an elephant graveyard on the border of the Pride Lands.

Simba hastened to his friend, Nala, who was being bathed by her mother. He told her that he wanted to show her a "great place," but she reminded him that she was in the middle of a bath. Sarabi added that it was time for Simba's bath and proceeded to clean him with her tongue despite his struggles. After his bath, Simba told Nala that the place he wanted to visit was "cool," which made Sarabi ask what exactly the place was. Simba lied that the area was around the water hole, then added to Nala in a whisper that he would show her more once they got there. The cubs asked permission from their mothers to go, and Sarabi reluctantly granted it, though she insisted that they bring along Zazu as a babysitter. This devastated the cubs.

With Zazu flying overhead, Simba and Nala journeyed to the water hole. Along the way, Nala asked Simba where they were really going, and he told her that they were going to visit an elephant graveyard. Though excited, she wondered how they could get rid of Zazu. Just then, Zazu flew down and told the cubs that they were betrothed. In answer to their confusion, he explained that they would get married someday, which caused both Simba and Nala to react with disgust. A disgruntled Zazu insisted that it was a Pride Lands tradition, but Simba proclaimed that he would get rid of arranged marriages once he became the king. Zazu argued that he would never let that happen, and Simba replied cheekily that Zazu was fired. The hornbill pointed out that Simba was not the king, but Nala retorted that Simba was the future king, and Simba added that this meant that Zazu had to obey him. This only made Zazu assert that Simba was shaping up to be a "pathetic" king.

Simba and Nala taunt Zazu about Simba's role as the future king.

To prove Zazu wrong, Simba bragged about his future reign as king and proclaimed that he would not have to answer to anyone someday. Nala joined in, as did many other animals. In the commotion, Zazu got sat on by a rhinoceros, and Simba and Nala escaped. Once away from Zazu, Simba called himself a genius, but Nala reminded him that she had come up with the idea to get rid of the hornbill. The two tussled playfully, during which Nala pinned Simba on his back. Simba pounced on her, and the two rolled down a steep embankment, only for Nala to pin Simba again.

Just then, a geyser erupted, and the cubs realized that they had found the Elephant Graveyard. They started to explore the area, but Zazu appeared and urged them to return home. Despite the hornbill's warnings about imminent danger, Simba declared that he walked on the wild side and laughed in the face of danger. He started to laugh mockingly, only for sinister laughter to echo back at him from a nearby elephant skull. Terrified, Simba hid behind Zazu, while three hyenas named Shenzi, Banzai, and Ed slunk out from within the skull.

The hyenas confront Simba, Nala, and Zazu at the Elephant Graveyard.

Upon seeing Simba, Nala, and Zazu, the hyenas accused the trio of trespassing, and Shenzi recognized Zazu as Mufasa's majordomo. Simba identified himself as the future king, but the hyenas reminded him that he was not in his kingdom anymore. The predators started to joke about how they would eat the cubs, and Simba, Nala, and Zazu took advantage of their distraction to sneak away. Despite the trio's head start, the hyenas caught up to Zazu and captured him. Simba and Nala went back for Zazu, whom the hyenas had blasted out of a geyser, and Simba ordered them to pick on someone their own size. After Shenzi pointed out that Simba was their size, the hyenas gave chase.

Simba and Nala fled through the Elephant Graveyard. At one point, Nala started to slip down a hill of bones, but Simba raced to her rescue and stopped Shenzi from attacking her by clawing the hyena across the face. Eventually, the hyenas cornered Simba and Nala against a rock wall. Simba attempted to shield Nala and roared at the hyenas, but they merely made fun of his piteous attempts at ferocity.

Simba attempts to protect Nala from the hyenas.

Before the hyenas could harm Simba and Nala, Mufasa appeared with Zazu and wrestled the hyenas to the ground. Shenzi and Banzai insisted that they had not known of Simba's relationship to Mufasa, but Ed clarified that he had known. Infuriated, Mufasa roared, and the hyenas scuttled away. Mufasa then turned his ire on Simba and reminded the cub that he had deliberately disobeyed orders. Simba apologized meekly. As Mufasa led the group out of the Elephant Graveyard, Nala told Simba that she thought he had been very brave.

Upon entering the Pride Lands, Mufasa paused in an open field and ordered Zazu to take Nala home while he reprimanded Simba. Before leaving with Nala, Zazu wished Simba luck. As the two departed, Mufasa called Simba to him, and the cub reluctantly started walking toward his father. However, as he was walking, he stepped into one of Mufasa's massive pawprints and stared down at it in consternation. He then sat next to his father and looked up expectantly.

Mufasa teaches Simba about the Great Kings of the Past.

Mufasa expressed his disappointment in Simba and reminded him that he had almost gotten himself and Nala killed. Through tears, Simba explained that he had just been trying to be brave like his father, but Mufasa reminded Simba that he was only brave when he had to be and that being brave did not mean that one should go looking for trouble. Simba insisted that Mufasa was not scared of anything, which prompted Mufasa to confess that he had been scared earlier that day because he had thought he would lose Simba.

Simba was surprised at Mufasa's revelation and realized that even kings could feel scared. He added cheekily that the hyenas had been even more scared. Laughing, Mufasa replied that no one messed with him. He then began to playfully wrestle with Simba in the grass. In the midst of the game, Simba asked if he and Mufasa were friends, and Mufasa affirmed that they were. However, when Simba asked if they would always be together, Mufasa told him that the stars represented the Great Kings of the Past, who looked down on the Pride Landers from the stars. He promised that the Great Kings of the Past would always be there to guide Simba, as would Mufasa himself.[1]

Stampede and Mufasa's death

There were wildebeests, and he tried to save me. It was an accident. I-I didn't mean for it to happen.
―Simba, after Mufasa dies in a stampede[src]

The next morning, Scar led Simba to the gorge under the pretense that Mufasa had a surprise for him. Simba eagerly asked what the surprise was, but Scar refused to tell him. Scar started to leave so he could fetch Mufasa, and Simba bounded after him eagerly. However, Scar insisted that the cub should stay put, as he might get in trouble again like he had with the hyenas. Simba was surprised that Scar knew about the incident, and Scar stated that "everyone" knew about what had happened. He added that Simba had been lucky to have Mufasa there to save him and advised the cub to practice his roar. Just before Scar could leave, Simba asked his uncle if he would like the surprise, and Scar replied that it was "to die for." He then strode off into the savanna, leaving Simba alone in the gorge.

Simba flees a wildebeest stampede.

As Simba waited, he practiced his roar on a nearby chameleon. Eventually, he managed to roar loud enough that it scared off the chameleon and reverberated off the gorge walls. At first, he was pleased with himself, but when the ground began to shake, he looked up in concern to see that a herd of wildebeests was stampeding toward him. In fear, he fled the stampede. Before long, the animals caught up to him, and he climbed a dead tree to escape them.

Just then, Zazu found Simba in the stampede and told him that Mufasa was on his way to help. He then returned to Mufasa and showed him where Simba was. After yelling a reassurance to Simba, Mufasa leaped into the stampede and fought through the running wildebeests to reach his son. At one point, a wildebeest broke Simba's tree and flung him into the air, but Mufasa jumped after the cub and caught him in his jaws. He then bore Simba to safety. Before he himself could climb out of the gorge, Mufasa was pulled back into the stampede, and Simba yelled after him fearfully. After a moment, Mufasa leaped out of the stampede and began to scale the wall of the gorge. In the meantime, Simba climbed to the top of the gorge to meet his father. However, upon reaching the top, he witnessed Mufasa falling to his death and cried out after him in anguish.

Simba finds his father's lifeless body.

After the stampede cleared, Simba climbed to the floor of the gorge and began to search for Mufasa. Eventually, he found his father's lifeless body and attempted to revive him. However, when Mufasa remained motionless, Simba cried out for help. Before long, he gave up and began to sob. Through tears, he climbed underneath one of Mufasa's paws and laid there without moving.

Just then, Scar emerged and accused Simba of having killed Mufasa. Simba insisted that it had been an accident, and Scar pretended to console him, then asked what his mother would think. Simba wondered what he should do, and Scar told him to run away and never return. With a last longing look at his father, Simba took off and raced away from the scene of the stampede. Once the cub was out of earshot, Scar ordered the hyenas to kill him, and they immediately took chase. With the hyenas in hot pursuit, Simba ran out of the gorge and fell into a thorn patch. Unwilling to pursue him into the thorns, the hyenas left him for dead and reported to Scar that they had finished the job.[1]

Self-exile to the jungle

Oh, well. Hakuna Matata. Slimy yet satisfying.
―Simba, as he accepts the "Hakuna Matata" lifestyle[src]

Timon and Pumbaa teach Simba to embrace a "Hakuna Matata" lifestyle.

After escaping the hyenas, Simba wandered into the desert and collapsed from exhaustion. Just as vultures began to gather around his fallen body, Timon and Pumbaa rushed through the flock, scattering them. Pumbaa soon realized that Simba was still alive, and Timon drew closer to investigate. Upon realizing that Simba was a lion, he yelled out fearfully and ordered Pumbaa to run away. Instead of heeding Timon, Pumbaa insisted that Simba was too small to be a threat and asked if they could "keep" him. Timon argued that Simba would became a dangerous predator someday, but Pumbaa reasoned that he might grow up to be on their side. Timon quickly claimed Pumbaa's idea as his own, after which he allowed Pumbaa to pick up Simba in his tusks and bear the cub to safety.

On the edge of the jungle, Timon and Pumbaa splashed Simba with water, which revived him. After thanking the duo for their help, Simba began to wander back into the desert. A concerned Timon and Pumbaa followed him and asked him what was wrong. Simba insisted that he did not want to talk about it, and the duo surmised that he must be an outcast like them. Despite their prodding, Simba refused to divulge any more details about his past.

Simba sleeps with Timon and Pumbaa.

To comfort Simba, Timon and Pumbaa taught him about their carefree "Hakuna Matata" lifestyle. Though at first apprehensive, Simba soon embraced their philosophy. As the three strolled deeper into the jungle, Simba commented that he was starving, and Timon told him that he must eat grubs if he wanted to live with them. Reluctantly, Simba tried a grub but ended up enjoying the experience.[1]

Simba grew up in the jungle with Timon and Pumbaa. Oftentimes, he would get into mischief, only for Timon or Pumbaa to save his life. Additionally, he frequently kept Timon up at night. In one such instance, Simba admitted that he had had a nightmare, and Timon and Pumbaa invited him to sleep with them. An overjoyed Simba immediately clambered into bed with them.[2]

Adolescence

Timon: Ooh. Sonny boy, I invented Hakuna Matata.
Simba: Oh, yeah? Well, I perfected it.
—Simba and Timon[src]

Simba and Timon have a snail-slurping contest.

Seasons passed, and Simba grew into an adolescent. One morning, Simba boasted to Timon that he had perfected the "Hakuna Matata" lifestyle, and Timon tried to prove him wrong by appealing to all the grub-eating competitions that he had won. However, Pumbaa reminded him that Simba had won every contest, save a snail-slurping contest. Timon seized the opportunity to challenge Simba. The two had their contest, during which Simba slurped up all his snails, while Timon collapsed from eating too much. After his victory, Simba strolled away, and Timon and Pumbaa lamented how quickly he had grown up.[2]

Young adulthood

Reunion with Nala

Nala: I've really missed you.
Simba: I've missed you too.
—Simba and Nala reunite as adults[src]

Upon growing into adulthood, Simba continued to live in the jungle with Timon and Pumbaa. One night, the trio was stargazing. Timon and Pumbaa asked Simba what he believed the stars were, and, after some prompting, he recalled the story that Mufasa had told him about the Great Kings of the Past. To his surprise and embarrassment, Timon and Pumbaa burst into laughter and began to make fun of the "mook" who had made up such a story. Though Simba initially went along with their teasing, he soon grew sad and walked off to be by himself. Once away from his friends, he collapsed and inadvertently tossed up a cloud of milkweed floss, which blew across the savanna and reached Rafiki in his tree. This made the mandrill realize that Simba was still alive.

Simba stargazes with Timon and Pumbaa.

Later, a lioness began chasing Pumbaa through the jungle until he got stuck beneath a tree root. Just in time, Simba leaped to his friend's rescue and began to fight the lioness. During their tussle, the lioness flipped Simba onto his back, and he recognized the signature move as belonging to his childhood friend, Nala. At first, Nala did not recognize him, but when he told her that he was Simba, she cried out in delight.

As Simba and Nala excitedly asked one another why they were in the jungle, Timon approached and demanded to know what was going on. Simba happily introduced Nala to Timon and Pumbaa, but Timon remained confused and expressed his concern that Nala wanted to eat Pumbaa. Nala changed the subject by mentioning how shocked the pride, particularly Sarabi, would be to learn that Simba had been alive all this time. Perturbed, Simba declared that no one had to know, but Nala informed him that the pride believed him to be dead. She then declared that he was the king.

Simba recognizes his childhood friend, Nala.

Timon was dubious about Nala's claim, but Pumbaa accepted her narrative immediately and began to grovel at Simba's feet. This made Simba pull away in disgust and order Pumbaa to stop. He explained that he might have been poised to become king at one point in his life but that it had been a long time ago. Timon was incredulous that Simba had never told them about his royal stature and insisted that he saw Simba differently now because he had power.

At this point, Nala asked if Timon and Pumbaa could let her speak privately to Simba, and he echoed her sentiment. Though hurt, Timon and Pumbaa left. Once in private, Nala confessed to Simba that it felt like he was back from the dead and that his survival meant a lot to her. The two expressed how much they had missed one another, then began to nuzzle affectionately.[1] From the underbrush, Timon lamented the two's growing relationship and resolved to ruin their romantic evening. Along with Pumbaa, Timon hatched several schemes to ruin Simba and Nala's night, but each one ended in failure. Finally, Timon and Pumbaa gave up and sorrowfully accepted that Simba was going to leave their friendship trio.[2]

Simba and Nala spend a romantic evening in the jungle.

Later that night, Nala asked Simba why he had not returned to Pride Rock, and he claimed that he had wanted to get out on his own and live his own life. She reminded him that his pride needed him and that he was the rightful king, but he told her that Scar was the king. However, she clarified that Scar had let the hyenas take over the Pride Lands, then implored Simba to return home and save his pride from starvation. Despite her pleas, he insisted that he could not go back and posited that there were sometimes bad situations from which one could not escape. Nala insisted that it was his responsibility and that he was the pride's only hope, but he remained adamant in his refusal to help.

Shocked by Simba's attitude, Nala told him that he was not the Simba she remembered, and he angrily agreed with her assessment and asked if she was satisfied. She clarified that she was disappointed, and Simba commented that she was starting to sound like Mufasa. To this, Nala said, "Good. At least one of us does." Incited, Simba yelled at her that she had shown up and told him how to live his life without knowing what he had been through. She implored him to tell her, but he refused, and the two parted on angry terms.[1]

Communion with Mufasa's spirit

Simba: That's not my father. That's just my reflection.
Rafiki: No. Look harder. You see, he lives in you.
—Rafiki to Simba, as they look into a pool of water[src]

After storming away from Nala, Simba paced in an open field and insisted that he could not return home, for the past was unchangeable. After a moment, he paused and yelled that Mufasa had promised to always be there for him. He then bowed his head and admitted quietly that Mufasa's death had been his own fault.

Rafiki tells Simba that Mufasa lives on inside him.

Just then, Rafiki appeared in a nearby tree and began to chant, to Simba's annoyance. The young lion walked away from Rafiki until he was staring down at his reflection in a nearby pool of water. However, Rafiki disturbed the water by throwing a rock at it, and Simba irritably asked him to "cut it out." Rafiki merely replied, "Can't cut it out. It will grow right back." Simba tried to walk away again, but Rafiki began to follow him. When the mandrill would not leave, Simba demanded to know who he was. However, Rafiki simply posed the same question to Simba. Deflated, Simba admitted that he had once known who he was but that he was not sure anymore. Rafiki asserted that he knew who Simba was, but instead of giving a serious answer, he merely began to sing his chant again. At Simba's confusion, he explained that his chant meant that Simba was a baboon, while he himself was not. Though Simba insisted that Rafiki was confused, the mandrill reminded him that he did not even know who he was. He then called Simba "Mufasa's boy," which stopped Simba in his tracks.

As Rafiki raced away, Simba yelled after him and began to chase him across the grasslands. Upon catching up to the mandrill, he asked if Rafiki had known his father, and Rafiki replied that he still knew Mufasa. Saddened, Simba informed Rafiki of Mufasa's passing, but the mandrill insisted that Mufasa was still alive and that he could prove it to Simba. At Rafiki's prompting, Simba followed him through an area of dense jungle until they reached a pool of water. Once there, Rafiki told Simba to look into the water, and he did so, only to express disappointment that it was merely his reflection. However, Rafiki urged him to look harder and told him that Mufasa lived on inside him. Simba did as he was told and watched as his reflection warped and rippled until it had turned into Mufasa's face.

Simba encounters the ghost of his father, Mufasa.

From above, Mufasa's spirit appeared and spoke Simba's name. As Simba watched in wonder, the apparition declared that Simba had forgotten who he was and so forgotten Mufasa. The spirit went on that Simba had to return home to take his place in the Circle of Life because he was Mufasa's son and the one true king. Upon making this final declaration, Mufasa's spirit began to fade and tell Simba over and over again, "Remember." Desperate, Simba chased after Mufasa's spirit and begged him to stay, but the apparition soon vanished into the night.

After Mufasa's spirit had disappeared, Rafiki approached and passed off the experience as strange weather. Simba remarked that the winds were changing, and Rafiki stated that change was good. Simba agreed but added that it was not easy. He then admitted that he did not know how to face his past since he had been running from it for so long. Suddenly, Rafiki whacked Simba on the head with his bakora staff, and Simba demanded to know why he had done so. Rafiki merely laughed and claimed that the action was "in the past." Simba reminded Rafiki that his head still hurt, and the mandrill replied that the past could hurt but that one could either run from it or learn from it. He then tried to swing his bakora staff at Simba again, but the young lion ducked and avoided the strike. Elated, Rafiki asked Simba what he was going to do, and the young lion grabbed Rafiki's stick in his teeth and tossed it away into the grass. Afterward, he raced away and yelled over his shoulder that he was going back. A delighted Rafiki began to cheer and wave his bakora staff as Simba disappeared into the horizon.[1]

Battle of Pride Rock

The choice is yours, Scar. Either step down or fight.
―Simba, after he returns to Pride Rock[src]

Simba, Nala, Timon, and Pumbaa resolve to take back the Pride Lands.

After crossing the desert, Simba arrived in the Pride Lands and spectated the dry, barren landscape with shock and dismay. He soon spotted Pride Rock in the distance and narrowed his eyes in determination. Just then, Nala approached and commented on how awful the kingdom had become. Simba replied that he had not wanted to believe her. She asked why he had decided to come back, and he explained that he had finally had the sense knocked into him and that it was his duty to fight for his kingdom. She resolved to help him, after which Timon and Pumbaa appeared and made the same vow. Despite the poor conditions of the Pride Lands, Timon asserted that he would stand by Simba as long as the kingdom was important to him.

Together, Simba, Nala, Timon, and Pumbaa ventured closer to Pride Rock. While Timon and Pumbaa distracted the hyenas, Simba and Nala snuck closer to Pride Rock. Before splitting off from Nala, Simba told her to rally the lionesses and declared that he would look for Scar. Just then, Scar yelled for Sarabi from atop Pride Rock and began to admonish her for not catching enough prey. Their argument escalated to the point that Scar struck her across the face, which prompted Simba to finally reveal himself with a roar. Upon seeing him, Scar mistook him for Mufasa.

Simba rallies his pride against Scar.

Simba rushed to Sarabi's side and nuzzled her in concern. At first, she believed that he was Mufasa, but when Simba denied this, she recognized him as her son and wondered how he could still be alive. Simba answered simply that it did not matter, for he was home. The two then shared an affectionate embrace.

Meanwhile, Scar realized Simba's identity as well and glared up at the hyenas for their failure to kill him. After reviving his mother, Simba stalked toward Scar and demanded that he abdicate the throne. Scar pointed out that the hyenas recognized him as the king of Pride Rock, but Nala interrupted that the pride supported Simba's right to rule. Simba then presented an ultimatum to Scar: step down or fight.

Scar confesses his role in Mufasa's death.

Instead of answering Simba's challenge, Scar reminded Simba of his own part in Mufasa's death. In answer to the lionesses' confusion, Simba confessed that he was to blame for Mufasa's death, which prompted Scar to accuse him of murder. Simba insisted that it had been an accident, but Scar pressed the point and began to back Simba toward the edge of Pride Rock. Eventually, he backed Simba so far that the young lion slipped off the promontory and began to scrabble for purchase. Meanwhile, Scar looked down on him in contempt and commented that he looked just like Mufasa had before he had died. Scar then dug his claws into Simba's paws and whispered that he, in fact, had been the one to kill Mufasa. Enraged, Simba leaped back onto Pride Rock and forced Scar to confess the truth before the pride.

At Scar's confession, the lionesses leaped into battle against the hyenas. Simba soon joined the fray and managed to fight off several hyenas with the help of Timon, Pumbaa, and Rafiki.

Simba and Scar battle for the throne atop Pride Rock.

After defeating the hyenas, Simba chased Scar to the summit of Pride Rock. Cornered and fearful for his life, Scar pled for mercy and even blamed his crimes on the hyenas. Despite Scar's pleas, Simba did not believe his uncle and claimed that everything Scar had ever told him was a lie. Scar wondered if Simba would kill his own uncle, but Simba chose to spare Scar's life because he was not like him. Relieved, Scar promised to make it up to Simba somehow and asked what he could do to prove himself. Simba simply told Scar to run away and never return. Though Scar initially seemed to acquiesce to Simba's request, he unexpectedly threw embers into Simba's eyes and attacked him.

The two lions fought atop Pride Rock until Scar managed to strike Simba to the ground. As Scar leaped toward Simba to deliver the final blow, Simba used his back paws to kick Scar over the edge of Pride Rock, which sent him tumbling down the cliff to the ground far below. There, the hyenas confronted him for his betrayal and ate him alive amidst a fiery blaze.[1]

Coronation

It is time.
―Rafiki to Simba, shortly before the latter's coronation[src]

Before long, rain began to fall on the Pride Lands and extinguish the fires at its base. As the rain continued to fall, Simba descended Pride Rock and exchanged nuzzles with his pride, including Nala and Sarabi. In the midst of the reunions, Rafiki rattled his bakora staff to get Simba's attention and motioned for him to ascend Pride Rock.[1] As Simba obediently walked toward Rafiki, Timon and Pumbaa bowed before him, and he drew the two into a hug, asserting that he never could have achieved victory without them.[2]

Simba becomes the new king of Pride Rock.

Simba moved on to Rafiki, who bowed to him, but the young lion drew his friend into a hug instead. After a moment, Rafiki took Simba by the shoulders and told him that it was time. Simba then ascended Pride Rock until he had reached the promontory, where he looked up at a break in the clouds that revealed a patch of stars. Mufasa's voice implored him to "remember," after which he roared over his reclaimed kingdom. The rest of the pride roared their assent.

Seasons later, when the Pride Lands had been restored to its former glory, Simba, Nala, Timon, and Pumbaa stood on the promontory of Pride Rock and looked down on the animals who had assembled below. Rafiki soon approached, cradling Simba and Nala's newborn cub in his arms. The couple watched happily as Rafiki lifted the cub into the air for all the animals to see.[1]

Adulthood

Kiara's presentation

Simba and Nala at Kiara's presentation.

Together, Simba and Nala reared two cubs: a son, Kion, and a daughter, Kiara.[3] One morning, Rafiki called the Pride Landers to Pride Rock. Once they had assembled, Simba walked onto the promontory alongside Nala, who was holding Kiara by her scruff. Rafiki gently took the cub into his arms, then presented her to the gathered Pride Landers. Simba and Nala watched the ceremony proudly. Afterward, Rafiki anointed Kiara, and her parents nuzzled her affectionately.[4]

Conflict with Zira

Kiara: But what if I don't wanna be queen? It's no fun.
Simba: That's like saying you don't want to be a lion. It's in your blood...as I am. We are part of each other.
—Simba and Kiara[src]

Shortly after Simba became the king of Pride Rock, Zira asserted that Kovu was the rightful king, as he had been Scar's hand-picked heir. However, Simba told her that Scar had never been the true king, which incited her to attack him. Simba defeated her easily, after which he banished her, her family, and those lionesses who remained loyal to Scar to the Outlands.[5]

A cave painting depicts Simba's exile of the Outsiders.

Seasons passed, and Kiara grew into a young cub. One day, she attempted to leave Pride Rock, but Simba stopped her and asked her where she was going in such a hurry. Kiara told Simba to let her go, then began to absently chase a butterfly. However, Simba stepped on her tail to get her attention and reminded her that accidents could happen. He started to list ways that she could get hurt, but Kiara cut him off by repeating each example that he was listing. Just then, Nala approached and told Kiara to mind her father.

Simba warned Kiara to stay away from the Outlands, and Zazu arrived to add that there was nothing there but "backstabbing, murderous" Outsiders. Simba added that one should never turn their back on an Outsider, which confused Kiara. Instead of clarifying what he had meant, Simba told her to run along, and she reluctantly let the matter go. As Kiara left Pride Rock, Simba called after her to stay on the path that he had marked for her.

Simba confronts Zira and her son, Kovu.

Once Kiara was gone, Nala asked Simba who Kiara reminded him of. Confused, Simba asked Nala whom she meant, and she clarified that Kiara acted exactly as Simba had when he had been a cub. Simba started to point out that they had gotten themselves into many dangers, but Nala pinned him to the ground and reminded him that he had been the one who had gotten them into trouble. After assuring him that Kiara would be fine, she strode back into the den of Pride Rock. Despite Nala's reassurances, Simba called for Timon and Pumbaa, and instructed them to keep an eye on Kiara.

Later, when Kiara met Kovu for the first time, Simba emerged from the underbrush and roared at Kovu. This caused Zira to emerge and roar over her own offspring. The two lions faced off, and Zira nearly attacked Simba until she noticed that he had brought Nala, Timon, Pumbaa, and several lionesses with him. Zira argued that the Pride Lands belonged to Scar, but Simba reminded her that he had banished her to the Outlands. Instead of acquiescing to Simba's command, Zira introduced Kovu as Scar's protégé and hand-picked heir, which caused Simba to growl at him.

Simba teaches Kiara that they are "one."

Zira lamented the poor conditions of the Outlands, but Simba reminded her of the penalty for returning to the Pride Lands. Zira claimed that Kovu had not known but offered him up to Simba even so. After a beat, Simba commanded Zira to leave with Kovu and said that they were finished. Zira contended that they had barely begun and laughed menacingly at Kiara. Afterward, Zira departed for the Outlands with Kovu, while Simba, Nala, Timon, Pumbaa, and the pride left for Pride Rock with Kiara.

Once the pride had neared Pride Rock, Simba stayed behind to reprimand Kiara. He lectured her on how she had almost been killed and confessed that he would not know what to do if anything happened to her. He went on that he would not be there someday and that it would be Kiara's responsibility to take his place in the Circle of Life. Kiara merely repeated what he had said in annoyance. Simba persisted that she was the future queen, but Kiara angrily declared that she did not want to be the queen, for it was not fun. Simba told her that it was in her blood, as he was, since they were part of one another. In answer to her rebuff, he teasingly shoved her off the rock that she was standing on, then grinned at her. This softened Kiara and prompted her to nuzzle him affectionately. Afterward, Simba taught her that they were "one," during which they ran across the Pride Lands together and observed various Pride Lander families. Once the two reached Pride Rock, Simba assured Kiara that she would understand someday.[4]

Dawn of the Lion Guard

Son, listen. The Lion Guard isn't a game you play with your friends. It's real. The Circle of Life, and your life, will depend on who's on your team. Please, Kion. There are plenty of good lions for the Guard. I need you to take your new responsibility seriously. Just as seriously as Kiara takes hers.
―Simba scolds Kion[src]

One morning, Simba brought Kiara to the promontory of Pride Rock and taught her about life as a future monarch. However, the two were interrupted when Kion and his best friend, Bunga, accidentally hit Simba on the head with a baobab fruit. Simba scolded Kion and told him that he needed to speak with Kiara, as she would be tracking gazelles that day. Kiara and Kion started to bicker, so Simba separated them and sent Kion and Bunga to play elsewhere. As Kion and Bunga raced away, Simba expressed hope that Kion would grow up someday.

Simba tasks his son, Kion, with assembling a new Lion Guard.

Later, Simba, Nala, and Rafiki overheard Kion using the Roar of the Elders to save Bunga from a pair of hyenas. Upon hearing the Roar, Rafiki declared that it was time for Kion to become the leader of the Lion Guard. Simba was reluctant to bestow the title on his son, as he believed that Kion was not ready for such a responsibility, but Nala encouraged him to listen to Rafiki.

Just then, Kion and Bunga returned to Pride Rock, and Rafiki urged Simba to inform Kion of his destiny. Simba told Kion that the Roar would make him the fiercest animal in the Pride Lands as well as the leader of the Lion Guard. He then led the group to the Lair of the Lion Guard, where he explained the purpose and function of the Lion Guard and told the story of how Scar had destroyed his own Lion Guard for ambition's sake and so lost the Roar of the Elders for good. At the conclusion of his story, Simba tasked Kion with gathering a new Lion Guard to protect the Pride Lands, and Kion and Bunga left the Lair of the Lion Guard to assemble the team. Though Rafiki was optimistic about Kion's new role, Simba confessed that he did not believe that Kion was ready.

Simba, Nala, and Rafiki watch proudly as the Lion Guard saves Kiara.

Later, Kiara informed Simba that Kion had chosen Bunga to join the Lion Guard, so Simba decided to meet Kion's team for himself. Upon seeing Kion's Lion Guard for the first time, Simba insisted that the Lion Guard must be made up of lions only, then berated Kion for treating his role as leader like a game. He finished his lecture by urging his son to take his duties as seriously as Kiara took hers. Once Simba had gone, Kion expressed confusion and discontent at his father's assertions, but Mufasa's spirit told him that Simba had only scolded him out of love and worry for his safety.

Shortly afterward, Tiifu brought Simba, Nala, and Rafiki to a field, where they watched in horror as Kiara got caught in a gazelle stampede that had been started by Janja and his clan. Just in time, Kion and his Lion Guard were able to get the herd away from Kiara and deliver her to safety. Upon Kiara's rescue, Simba nuzzled her affectionately. Meanwhile, the Lion Guard drove off Janja and his clan for good, and Simba and Nala expressed pride in their son. The Lion Guard's victory ultimately caused Simba to change his mind about Kion's choice of teammates, as he realized that Kion had chosen the right animals to protect the Pride Lands after all.[3]

Makuu's leadership

I am king. And as king, I know that all animals in the Pride Lands have their own customs, and they need to be respected.
―Simba[src]

Simba thanks Pua for his years of service as the leader of the Pride Lands' crocodiles.

At Pride Rock, Kion admitted his misgivings about the mashindano between Makuu and Pua to his family. Kiara asked if Simba could overturn Makuu's challenge, but Simba explained that, as king, he must respect and recognize other animals' traditions, even if he did not agree with them. That evening, the royal family watched the mashindano between Makuu and Pua. When Makuu won, Simba congratulated him on his victory, then thanked Pua for his service. Afterward, Simba and Nala went out hunting.[6]

Aminifu's funeral

I knew Aminifu a long time, and now that he has completed his journey through the Circle of Life, I will remember him fondly.
―Simba, during Aminifu's funeral[src]

When Kiara and Kion squabbled over a tree, Kion declared that Kiara could not tell him what to do, but Simba approached and told him that she actually could, for she was going to serve as the temporary queen of Pride Rock. Kion reacted with confusion, so Simba explained that his presence was needed at a funeral in Kilio Valley for his old friend, Aminifu. Kiara asked how long Simba would be gone, and he assured her that it would only be for a few days. He then reminded her that he had been nervous to rule the Pride Lands on his own too and asserted that he had faith in her. At Kion's expectant look, Simba added that he had faith in the Lion Guard as well. Kiara promised that she would not let Simba down, and Simba replied that he knew she would not.

Nala and Zazu remind Simba of his many kingly duties.

Shortly afterward, Simba met with Nala and Zazu, and the three began their journey to Kilio Valley. Along the way, Simba mentioned a "big responsibility," and Nala asked if he was worried about Kiara acting as queen or him having to give a tribute at Aminifu's funeral. Simba asked why he would be worried about that, and Nala reminded him that he had to deliver the tribute in Elephantese. Simba admitted that she was right and lamented how the speech had to be perfect. Zazu reminded him that it was just one phrase, but Simba retorted that it was easy for him to say. Unbeknownst to the trio, they were being spied upon by Mzingo, who resolved to keep an eye on the doings of the Pride Landers. As Mzingo flew away, Simba lamented his kingly duties and how he had to say goodbye to an old friend in a language he did not understand, but Zazu reminded him of his more enjoyable duties. This allowed Simba to regain his confidence and begin his Elephantese lessons with Zazu.

During one such Elephantese lesson, Simba asked what his speech meant, and Zazu told him that it meant, "He had good on him." Zazu continued that Simba merely had to say it in Elephanteese, but Simba lost his patience and roared at Zazu, blowing him into a patch of grass. Nala dashed to her mate's side and reminded him that, though he may not be an elephant, he was a king and that it was his duty to carry out a tribute to an old friend. Soothed by Nala's advice, Simba asked Zazu to continue his lessons.

Simba delivers a tribute at Aminifu's funeral.

While Simba continued to practice his speech, Zazu revealed that they had just arrived at Kilio Valley. From atop a nearby hill, Simba, Nala, and Zazu witnessed the elephant herd placing flowers on Aminifu's body. Though saddened by the passing of his friend, Simba resolved to give him a proper tribute. After meeting up with the herd, Simba gave his tribute to the elephants. However, instead of giving the standard Elephantese tribute of "He had good on him," he accidentally said, "He had poop on him." Simba was horrified by this turn of events, but the elephants began to laugh, and Aminifu's daughter, Ma Tembo, explained that her father had always had poop on him and that it had often been the cause of laughter. Simba added that Aminifu had had good on him too, and Ma Tembo replied that he had had more poop.

When Simba and Nala returned home, Kiara asked how the tribute had gone. Simba was unsure how to answer, so Nala replied that everything had turned out fine. Simba asked how ruling the Pride Lands had gone and if there had been any trouble. Though Kiara stumbled over her words, Kion jumped in and proclaimed that Kiara was going to make a great queen someday, to which Simba replied that he had never had any doubt.[7]

Kupatana

You made a mistake, Kion, but you made it in the spirit of Kupatana. You gave strangers a chance to fit in. And tonight, we saw Kupatana in action. All the animals of the Pride Lands standing together as one.
―Simba, after the jackals disturb Kupatana[src]

Simba encourages Kion to rescue a jackal pup.

Before the annual Kupatana celebration, Simba and the Lion Guard listened to a group of Pride Landers rehearsing a choral piece for the event. Simba complimented Basi's vocal performance to Beshte, who thanked the king and told him that Basi had been practicing. The other members of the Lion Guard expressed excitement for the upcoming festivities, and Simba and Kion emphasized the importance of Kupatana.

In the midst of the conversation, the Lion Guard overheard a jackal pup being chased through the Outlands. Kion lamented that the Lion Guard could not defend the Circle of Life in the Outlands, but Simba encouraged him to save the pup anyway in the spirit of Kupatana. Kion readily agreed to the task and rushed off with the rest of the Lion Guard in tow.

Simba confronts Reirei.

That evening, the royal family presided over the Kupatana celebration. During his opening speech, Simba asserted that the celebration was not just about the blooming of the baobab blossoms, but a commemoration of the Pride Lander community. However, in the midst of his speech, Reirei and her family attacked the gathered Pride Landers. Simba asked Kion what was going on, and Kion explained that he had let Dogo's entire family into the Pride Lands. Kion then encouraged the Pride Landers to work together to thwart the jackals' attack, and Simba affirmed that no Outlander could defeat them when they were united. The Pride Landers eventually managed to defeat the jackals, and Reirei begged Kion for another chance. However, Simba roared at her and ordered her to leave the Pride Lands immediately. The jackal family subsequently fled the Pride Lands.

Once the jackals had gone, Kion apologized for having let them into the kingdom, but Simba reminded his son that it had been he who had encouraged the Lion Guard to rescue the jackal pup. He went on that Kion had given strangers a chance to fit in, which was in the spirit of Kupatana, and that they had seen Kupatana in action when the Pride Landers had worked together to defeat the jackals. The celebration continued, and Simba and Kion wished each other a happy Kupatana.[8]

Mbali Fields migration

You'll have the rest of the Guard with you. But I know you, Kion. You can do whatever you put your mind to.
―Simba, as he sends Kion to lead a migration[src]

When Muhimu's and Swala's herds got into a fight over a depleted grazing ground, Kion went to Simba for advice, and Simba admitted that he had not expected the herds to outgrow their grazing ground. Kion asked if there was a place where both herds could graze, and Simba suggested that Kion lead the herds to Mbali Fields, a grazing ground on the edge of the Pride Lands. Kion questioned if the herds could make it, and Simba assured him that they could, for he was sending the Lion Guard with them. Though Kion expressed concern that he might not be ready to lead a migration, Simba reminded him that he would have the Lion Guard with him and that he could do anything that he put his mind to. Kion subsequently accepted the assignment and asserted that he would not let his father down, to which Simba countered that he never did.[9]

Sinkhole

Of course I got mad. Do you have any idea how annoying it is to be trapped with you and your crazy ideas?
―Simba to Bunga[src]

In accordance with tradition, the royal family resolved to attend the elephants' concert at Mizimu Grove. While waiting for Kiara and Kion, Simba reminded them that the elephants considered it an insult if the royal family was not present for the first song. Together, the royal family departed Pride Rock, but Ono intercepted them and informed Kion that an antelope was stuck in mud. Kion was hesitant to miss the elephants' concert, but Simba assured him that the elephants would understand. As Kion departed to convene with the Lion Guard, Simba reminded him to stay alert, then continued on toward Mizimu Grove with Kiara and Nala.

Simba attempts to climb out of a sinkhole.

As Simba, Kiara, and Nala continued on their way, Kiara asked if the elephants would perform a song with loud trumpeting, and Nala answered that the song was a tradition. Simba added that, as king, one of his greatest duties was to uphold the Pride Lands' traditions, and Kiara commented that she would enjoy that duty herself someday. Suddenly, the ground became unstable, and Kiara nearly fell into a sinkhole that formed beneath her. Just in time, Simba saved her life, but in doing so, he fell into the sinkhole himself. After a moment, he emerged, unscathed, from beneath a pile of rocks, to Kiara and Nala's relief. Nala asked Simba if he could climb out of the sinkhole, but he explained that there was nothing for him to grab on to and that he was too far down to climb out.

Just then, the Lion Guard arrived at the scene, and Bunga dove into the sinkhole, landing on Simba's head. Irritated, Simba asked Bunga what he had been thinking, and Bunga told Simba that he had come to rescue him. Simba asked Bunga how he planned to help, and Bunga replied that he would give Simba a boost. Kion interrupted the two, asking if they were all right, and Simba confirmed him that they were, as his head had cushioned Bunga's fall. Kion asked Simba how he had fallen in, and Ono answered that sinkholes were a fairly common occurrence. Kion then sent Ono to investigate the sinkhole. As Ono looked around, Simba asked him what he saw, and Ono pointed out that he saw Simba trapped in a hole. Simba replied sarcastically that he saw the same thing. After assuring Simba that Kion would figure out a way to save him, Ono reported to Kion that there was nothing that Simba and Bunga could grab on to.

Simba tells Kiara and Nala to attend the elephants' concert without him.

Just then, more ground started to collapse. Kiara nearly fell into the sinkhole, and Simba called out her name worriedly. After the scare, Bunga offered several different escape plans, but Simba shot down each one. At last, Bunga suggested that he climb up on Simba in order to escape the sinkhole. Despite Simba's protests, Bunga persisted and tried to climb out of the sinkhole himself, which caused more ground to collapse. To the Lion Guard's relief, Simba and Bunga emerged unscathed from beneath a pile of rocks. Irritated, Simba urged Bunga to realize what had happened and to think first, but Bunga simply pointed out that he was all right. Just then, Kion had an idea, and Nala relayed the plan to Simba. In answer, Simba insisted that she and Kiara go on to the elephants' concert without him, for it was tradition that the royal family be in attendance. Kiara worried that the elephants would want the entire royal family there, but Simba countered that the elephants would be honored to have at least some of the royal family in attendance and that they would get worried if none of them showed up. Nala argued that she was more worried about Simba, but at his insistence, she reluctantly agreed to leave with Kiara. As she departed, Nala voiced her hope that Kion would be able to help Simba get out in time, and Simba replied that the sooner that happened, the better.

After Kiara and Nala left, the Lion Guard brought a large log to the edge of the sinkhole and explained that they would push it into the pit so that Simba and Bunga could climb out on it. Simba praised the idea, to which Bunga lamented that Simba liked Kion's ideas but not his own. Simba ordered Bunga to take cover, then told the Lion Guard that they were ready. However, when the Lion Guard pushed the log into the sinkhole, it broke upon impact with the ground. In answer to Kion's frustration, Simba assured his son that it had been a good try. Just then, Bunga noticed a tunnel and figured it was their way out. At first, Simba feared where the tunnel led to, but then he surmised that it likely led into Nandembo Caverns. Kion pointed out that the entrance to Nandembo Caverns was not far from the sinkhole and suggested that they meet up underground. Kion then warned his father to be careful, and Simba replied that Bunga might not be.

Simba argues with Bunga.

While underground, Bunga urged Simba to move faster, to which Simba replied that he was trying his best. The two eventually reached an intersection of tunnels, and Simba told Bunga that they needed to discuss which tunnel they should take. Bunga argued that they should walk rather than talk, but Simba retorted that he could not just choose a tunnel at random and expect to find a way out. Simba went on that they should take the largest tunnel. However, Bunga suggested that they take another tunnel, then added, "Duh." Simba reminded Bunga that he was the king and roared in rage, which caused a cave-in. Upon realizing what he had done, Simba reminded Bunga that he had caused a cave-in earlier, but Bunga countered that he had been trying to find a way out, not throwing an angry fit. Simba pointed out how annoying Bunga's "crazy ideas" were, to which Bunga suggested that they choose separate tunnels to follow. Simba agreed, and the two parted ways. Once away from Bunga, Simba expressed joy that he could finally hear himself think and prided himself on having found the correct tunnel.

As he walked, Simba realized that Bunga must have chosen the wrong tunnel. Since Bunga was both Kion's best friend and Simba's subject, Simba decided to turn back and rescue him. Before long, Simba heard Bunga singing "Hakuna Matata" and joined in. The song led the two to follow one another's voices and meet up in the midst of the tunnels. Upon reuniting with Bunga, Simba explained that Timon and Pumbaa had sung that song to him all the time when he had been young, and Bunga asserted that they were brothers. Simba clarified that he was Bunga's kingly brother, then lamented that Timon and Pumbaa were not able to see them finally getting along.

Simba and Bunga sing "Hakuna Matata".

As Simba and Bunga journeyed through the tunnels together, Simba insisted that Bunga choose which way they went. Bunga reminded Simba that, as king, he should choose, but Simba told him that, as king, he wanted Bunga to choose. All of a sudden, the two heard Timon and Pumbaa's cries and followed the sound of their voices. Eventually, Simba and Bunga found the Lion Guard, Timon, and Pumbaa on the other side of a wide ravine. Bunga suggested that they find another way across, but Simba told Bunga to hop onto his back. With Bunga holding on tight, Simba leaped across the ravine. After landing safely on the other side, Bunga suggested that they do it again, and Simba replied that he would have Zazu check his schedule. The two then reunited with Timon and Pumbaa, and told Kion that they were brothers.

After the reunion, Simba, Kion, Bunga, Timon, Pumbaa, and the rest of the Lion Guard journeyed to Mizimu Grove, where Simba apologized for his tardiness. Nala asked Simba what had happened in the cave, and he replied that it had been quite an adventure. He then thanked Ma Tembo for her patience and told the elephant herd that he knew how important music was to them. He then performed "Hakuna Matata" alongside his family, Bunga, the Lion Guard, Timon, and Pumbaa.[10]

Meeting Ajabu

Of course, Ajabu. You're welcome to stay in the Pride Lands.
―Simba[src]

Kion brought Beshte's new friend, Ajabu the okapi, to Pride Rock to meet Simba and Nala. Kion asked his parents if Ajabu could become a Pride Lander, and the two agreed to let him stay in the kingdom as long as he liked.[11]

Termite infestation

Kion, you made a mistake. We all do. But it's what you do to correct your mistakes that really counts.
―Simba, after Kion inadvertently exiles the aardwolves[src]

Simba encourages Kion to fix the termite problem.

After Kion noticed that there was an excess of termites in the Pride Lands, he came to Simba and asked what he should do. Simba suggested that the team ask the aardwolves about the problem. Fuli questioned what an aardwolf was, and Simba explained that aardwolves kept the termite population under control. Kion asked where they could find the aardwolves, and Simba suggested that they look in old aardvark dens since that was the aardwolf's favorite place to sleep.

Fuli and Kion immediately began to suspect that the problem was their fault, and Kion learned from his father that aardwolves strongly resembled hyenas. This confirmed Kion's fears, and he admitted to his father that he had used the Roar of the Elders to drive the aardwolves out of the Pride Lands. Simba gently told his son that he had made a mistake and encouraged him to do his best to fix the problem.[12]

Royal Buffalo Wallow

It's the first time I'm presiding over the Royal Buffalo Wallow. My mom and dad won't be there. It's just me.
―Kiara[src]

Simba and Nala left Kiara in charge of presiding over the Royal Buffalo Wallow.[13]

Kion's encounter with Zira

And if they find out that Kion is Simba's son, there could be trouble. Much trouble!
―Rafiki on the Outsiders[src]

When Kion went into the Outlands to help Jasiri reason with the Outsiders, he encountered Kovu and Nuka. He was confused that the Outsiders were not welcome in the Pride Lands and reasoned that his father would welcome them into the kingdom if they asked. Nuka asked who his father was, and Jasiri revealed that he was the son of Simba.

Rafiki recounts Simba's history with Zira to the Lion Guard.

When Kion met Zira, Nuka revealed that Kion was Simba's son. Zira moved off to speak privately to Kion, but Kion disagreed with her assertion that lions should rule over all animals. This prompted Zira to note the similarities between Kion and his father.

Later, the Lion Guard told Rafiki that Kion had encountered a pride of lions in the Outlands. Horrified, Rafiki proclaimed that Kion had met the Outsiders. He took the Lion Guard to a wall of paintings and explained that Simba had banished the Outsiders to the Outlands after they had retained loyalty to Scar. After telling the story, he warned the Lion Guard that there would be trouble if Zira found out that Kion was Simba's son, so the team took off to save their friend.[5]

Peace treaty with Sokwe

Oh, King Sokwe. No one delivers a peace message like him.
―Simba[src]

Simba speaks with Hafifu and Majinuni.

The Lion Guard met two gorillas named Hafifu and Majinuni, who told Kion that they were looking for a lion named "King Zimba." Bunga informed the gorillas that Kion was Simba's son, and Majinuni explained that they were there to deliver a message from their father, King Sokwe.

Together, the Lion Guard led Hafifu and Majinuni to Pride Rock, where Kion related the situation to Simba. To Kion's surprise, Simba agreed that the message was important and explained that every wet season, King Sokwe informed Simba if their two kinds were still at peace or not.

Simba chuckles at King Sokwe's peace message.

Just then, the brothers came before Simba, but when prompted to relay their message, they admitted that they had forgotten it. With this news, Simba was forced to ask Kion to deliver the gorillas back home and find out what Sokwe's message was. Kion wondered if the brothers should return home themselves and bring back the message again, but Simba pointed out that peace with the gorillas should not rely on Hafifu and Majinuni.

When the Lion Guard returned to the Pride Lands, they reported back to Simba at Pride Rock. Simba prompted the Lion Guard to relate Sokwe's message, to which Kion said, "Kuishi ni kucheka," as Bunga threw a snowball over Simba's head. Instead of being angry, Simba laughed and commented that no one delivered a peace message quite like King Sokwe.[14]

Temporary leadership of the Lion Guard

That was so exciting. Your first rescue with the king. I wonder what our next challenge will be. Well, let's go, Lion Guard.
―Simba, as he leads the Lion Guard[src]

Simba and Nala tell their cubs that they are ready for the Trail to Udugu.

When Kiara managed to track Kion faster than ever before, Simba commented on the success, and Nala declared that the cubs were ready for a special day. Together, Simba and Nala descended Pride Rock to speak with their cubs, who were still playing and squabbling. Nala told Kiara and Kion that they were ready to accompany her on the Trail to Udugu, which was a special ceremony for royal siblings. Simba assured Kion that, in the absence of their leader, the Lion Guard would be led by Simba.

In the Lair of the Lion Guard, Kion informed his team of Simba's intentions to lead them while he was away. He then bid them goodbye and left them to wait for Simba. Though Ono began to anxiously preen his feathers and fret over the state of the Lair, Bunga assured him that he had nothing to worry about and explained what Simba was like. Simba overheard Bunga's explanation and informed him that his performance had gotten one thing right: that Simba was excited to lead the Lion Guard. The king then gathered the Lion Guard for their morning patrol and led them out of the Lair.

Simba leads the Lion Guard in their first mission as a team.

On the morning patrol, the Lion Guard tried to correct Simba on his route, but he insisted that they take his chosen path. Though hesitant, the Guard agreed to the king's wishes, and the team veered off in a new direction.

Later, Ono spotted a mudslide heading toward a nest of ostrich eggs but was cut off in his report by Simba, who finished the report for him. Simba then instructed the Guard to follow him while he moved a log in the way of the falling mud. Though confused, the team followed him, and Simba ordered them to jump from rock to rock in order to avoid getting caught in the mud. Beshte commented that Kion usually had him walk through the mud, but Fuli reminded him that Simba was in charge, not Kion.

The ostriches bow to Simba after he saves their eggs.

Beshte did as Simba had commanded but accidentally slipped on the rocks and fell into the mud. As he fell, he crashed into Bunga, Fuli, and Ono. The four tumbled down the slope and dislodged Simba's log, which caused it to roll toward the ostriches' nest. Before the log could reach the bottom of the slope, Beshte leaped forward and stopped it from crushing the eggs, but Ono warned that the eggs would now get caught up in the mud. As he had predicted, the eggs were swept away by the mud, and the Lion Guard rushed to save them. They returned the eggs to the ostriches, who thanked them for their help.

After the rescue, Simba expressed elation at the Guard's first mission with the king and wondered what their next challenge would be. As he started to lead the Guard farther into the kingdom, Beshte commented that at least he had not been mad about their nearly losing an ostrich egg, to which Fuli countered that it was not Beshte's fault that he could not jump like a lion. She then asked why they were a team if they were all going to be tasked with doing the same thing, which prompted Bunga to remind her that Simba was the king and knew what he was doing.

Simba deliberates with the Lion Guard.

Just then, Ono arrived and started to report trouble but was interrupted by Simba, who declared that a herd of gazelles needed their help. The Lion Guard promptly followed him down the slope to rescue the gazelles. Ono reported that the gazelles were trying to reach a patch of grass above an unstable pile of rocks. Simba commented that the rocks would fall if the gazelles tried to ascend them. He then shouted for the Lion Guard to follow him. As Simba raced away, Beshte asked the others if they should warn Simba that gazelles were easily spooked, but Bunga assured him that Simba knew what he was doing.

The team streaked across the plains toward the gazelles, who panicked at the Guard's rapid advance. The herd began to climb the rock pile, dislodging stones, and Ono yelled for the Lion Guard to halt their approach. Simba, however, continued to run and got his tail stuck underneath a massive boulder. The rest of the Lion Guard gathered around him, and he assured them that he was uninjured.

Simba tells the Lion Guard that Kion would be proud of them.

Just then, the Lion Guard overheard ostriches crying out in fear, and Ono reported that the gazelles were stampeding toward the ostriches' nests. The Lion Guard turned to Simba for instructions, and he ordered them to leave him behind and save the ostrich eggs instead. No sooner had he said this when a large boulder tumbled from the top of the rock pile, and Fuli heroically saved Bunga from being crushed.

After the rescue, Fuli declared that they could not leave Simba, for he was in danger from the falling rocks. Simba got the Guard's attention and told them that he had been ordering them around all day when he should have figured out how their team worked. He asked what they would do if Kion were in Simba's place, and Fuli explained that she and Ono would go after the herd, while Beshte and Bunga would stay behind to assist the king. Simba submitted to these orders and started the Lion Guard's chant as the team raced away to fulfill their separate duties.

Simba explains the importance of Udugu to Kiara and Kion.

Together, Fuli and Ono caught up to the gazelles, and Fuli ordered Ono to speak with Swala, the leader of the gazelles, while she calmed the ostriches. Both members were successful, and the gazelles pulled to a halt before they could trample the ostrich eggs. At the same time, Beshte and Bunga worked together to free Simba. After the rescue, the rock pile began to collapse, and the three escaped to safety, where they reunited with Fuli and Ono. Simba complimented the Lion Guard on their success and declared that Kion would have been proud of them.

At Pride Rock, Simba reunited with his mate and cubs. He asked whether they had found Udugu, and the cubs explained that they had learned to work together as brother and sister. Kion questioned how Simba had fared with the Guard, and Simba admitted that working with Kion's team had helped him find Udugu as well. He stressed the importance of Udugu and reminded the cubs that they would one day be responsible for the Pride Lands.[15]

Royal Mud Print Ceremony

We all know Hadithi is a bird who never thinks of himself, especially when an animal needs help. When a hero like Hadithi returns to the Pride Lands, it is important for us to mark the occasion. And this is why we'd like to honor you at Pride Rock with a Royal Mud Print ceremony.
―Simba to Hadithi[src]

Simba and Nala invite Hadithi to a Royal Mud Print Ceremony.

When Hadithi, a legendary eagle, visited the Pride Lands, Simba and Nala paid him a visit. Hadithi declared that Ono may be his biggest fan, but Simba reminded the eagle that he had fans throughout the Pride Lands. The royal family proceeded to invite him to a Royal Mud Print Ceremony, during which he would preserve his talon marks in mud forever alongside those of other heroes. Hadithi accepted the honor, and Simba suggested that the eagle take on a young apprentice for the day. Kion nominated Ono for the position, and Simba took his son's suggestion. Hadithi reluctantly accepted the assignment, then asked Simba for a Traditional Ceremonial Nest. Simba admitted that he had never heard of such a tradition but that birds often did things differently. He then granted Hadithi's request, and the Lion Guard agreed to assemble the nest themselves.

When it came time for Hadithi's ceremony, Simba began to praise Hadithi for his bravery and selflessness. At the conclusion of his speech, Simba asked Hadithi if he was ready to preserve his talon marks in mud, but Hadithi admitted that he had abandoned Ono to danger. Horrified, the Lion Guard took off to rescue their friend. After Ono had been saved, he was honored with the Royal Mud Print Ceremony instead.[16]

Savannah Summit

The crocodiles are a part of the Pride Lands, Kion, and Makuu is their leader.
―Simba, when Kion doubts Makuu's intentions[src]

The Lion Guard was playing Baobab Ball when Mtoto approached and informed them that he had heard via infrasound that several important Pride Landers were heading toward Pride Rock. Kion realized that it was time for the Savannah Summit, an important yearly event in which the Pride Lander leaders discussed how they would proceed during the dry season. No sooner had he revealed this when Ono spotted Makuu en route to the Summit. Kion deduced that Makuu must be trying to spoil the event, so he and the Lion Guard took off to thwart the danger and warn Simba.

Simba and Zazu welcome the Pride Landers to the Savannah Summit.

Once at Pride Rock, Kion tackled Makuu to the ground. Simba yelled Kion's name in horror, and Makuu protested that he had been invited, to which Simba confirmed that he had invited Makuu to Pride Rock himself. Once Kion had let him up, Makuu promised to show that he took his duties to his float and the Pride Lands seriously. Despite this, the other Pride Lander leaders remained uncertain and anxious. Kion drew Simba aside and attempted to convince him that Makuu was untrustworthy, but Simba insisted that all animals must be treated equally in the Pride Lands, no matter their past transgressions. Kion admitted his misgivings about inviting Makuu to the summit alongside the peaceful animal leaders, but Simba reminded him that crocodiles had always been invited to the Savannah Summit. Kion argued that Makuu had more enemies than friends, but Simba reminded him that one did not have summits to talk with their friends, but to turn conflicts into friendships. Simba added that he believed Makuu was ready.

Just then, Zazu approached and told Simba that it was time for the procession. Simba tasked Kion with watching over the event in case the other animals were unwilling to accept Makuu's reformation, and Kion agreed to the task. The party then proceeded to Mizimu Grove, during which Simba and Zazu stressed the importance of equality and unity.

Simba compliments Kion on his work with Makuu.

Later, Mtoto informed the Lion Guard that Makuu was yelling at Bupu at Pride Rock. The team rushed to Pride Rock, where Kion tackled Makuu to the ground. Simba approached, furious, and exclaimed that Bupu and Makuu had been about to come to an agreement about sleeping situations for their respective species. Makuu accused the other Pride Landers of not trusting him, then stalked off amid Simba's cries of protest. Once Makuu had gone, Bupu declared that negotiations were against the crocodile way, but Simba protested that such an assertion was not true. He then turned his ire on Kion and exclaimed that he had included Makuu in the Summit so that he could gain the crocodile's trust and include his float in the kingdom's proceedings. Kion insisted that Makuu was dishonest, but Simba accused Kion of having ruined the Summit, not Makuu. Kion apologized meekly, and Simba asked him to fix the situation while he left to salvage what he could of the Summit at Mizimu Grove.

Later that day, Simba watched as Kion lied to the Summit that Makuu had fallen into a pit and lost his life in the struggle. A horrified Twiga and Vuruga Vuruga exclaimed that they had never intended for Makuu to get hurt, only to fall into a pit of rotten fruit. Just then, Makuu revealed himself and announced to the gathered animals that he had come to the Summit with the intention of helping his float and the Pride Lands but that he had only received distrust and hostility. Simba and the other animals feared Makuu's wrath, but the crocodile merely prompted Simba to let the Summit go on. With negotiations reinitiated, Simba complimented Kion on his work. Just then, Bupu and Vuruga Vuruga began to butt heads over where Makuu's float would sleep during the dry season, and Simba left to handle the situation.[17]

New water source

Finding the new water source is Ma Tembo's responsibility, but even if you can't find the water yourself, it might be a good experience for you to learn to work with Ma Tembo.
―Simba to Kiara[src]

Simba and Kion discuss the joys and burdens of being a leader.

One day, Kion told Simba his concerns about Ma Tembo, who had been unsuccessful in her search for a new water source. Simba reminded Kion that it was her responsibility to lead the elephants and that there was little they could do to help, as they were lions. Kion expressed his regret at being unable to help, as he knew what it was like to be a new leader, and Simba replied that he also shared the experience. The two then discussed the joys and burdens of being a leader, and upon reaching the promontory of Pride Rock, Kion mentioned that life was full of responsibilities and that one must face them head-on. Simba agreed, then expressed pride in how much Kion had grown in his role as Lion Guard leader.

Later, the royal family gathered at Pride Rock to meet Makini, the new Royal Mjuzi of the Pride Lands. Kiara asked about the progress of Ma Tembo's water search, and Kion replied that she had not had any luck so far. Kiara then asked her parents if she could help Ma Tembo, but Kion informed her that she would be nothing she could do. Kiara persisted that she wanted to try, and Simba replied that, even though finding water was Ma Tembo's responsibility, it could be a good experience for Kiara to work with Ma Tembo. Just then, Makini appeared, introduced herself, and requested to join Kiara on her mission. An exasperated Rafiki followed Makini out onto the promontory and formally introduced her as his apprentice. Simba and Nala both greeted her warmly, and Simba told Makini that it was an honor to be chosen as the next Royal Mjuzi and that she was always welcome at Pride Rock.

Simba allows Makini to accompany Kiara.

After the introductions, Kiara asked her parents if Makini could accompany her on her mission to help Ma Tembo, and Nala encouraged Simba to grant the request, commenting that Makini and Kiara would have to learn how to work together, just as Simba and Rafiki did. This prompted Rafiki to hit Simba on the head with his bakora staff. Annoyed, Simba agreed to the plan, saying that the sooner Kiara and Makini learned to work together, the better. This made Kiara and Makini rejoice.

During Kiara's attempt to help Ma Tembo, she got kidnapped by Janja and taken to the volcano. Upon finding out, the Lion Guard deduced that the hyenas must want a ransom from Simba or Kion. Kion confronted Janja over the kidnapping, and Janja threatened to hurt Simba or Nala next. Enraged, Kion used the Roar of the Elders, and the Lion Guard escaped the volcano with Kiara. After the rescue, Simba joined the crowd of animals who were following Ma Tembo as she searched for water.[18]

Failed assassination attempt by Kiburi

Kiburi, you and your followers are banished from the Pride Lands. Leave now and never come back.
―Simba, after Kiburi's failed assassination attempt[src]

Simba accuses Makuu of taking over all the kingdom's water holes.

After the Lion Guard accidentally awoke Makuu's float from hibernation, Makuu left to speak with Simba about the situation. Makuu met with Simba on Pride Rock, where they discussed what to do with Kion. Makuu suggested that Simba did not understand how much water crocodiles required, but Simba told Makuu that he would make sure that they had enough. Just then, Kion called Ono over and sugested that he spy out a new water hole for the crocodiles. Simba praised the idea, then assured Makuu that they would find a place for his float to stay. Makuu thanked Simba for his help and asserted that he wanted to settle the situation peacefully.

While overlooking the Pride Lands, Ono saw that Makuu's followers had invaded the kingdom's water holes. Simba started to blame Makuu for the pandemonium, but Makuu insisted that whoever was leading his float had defied his direct order. He tried to leave in order to settle the situation, but Simba ordered him to let the Lion Guard deal with the problem instead. Begrudgingly, Makuu agreed, and Kion led the Lion Guard to the rescue. Just before the leader of the crocodile insurrection, Kiburi, could engage Kion in a fight, Simba and Makuu arrived and condemned his actions. Makuu reprimanded Kiburi for what he had done, and Simba added that they had found a watering hole for the float. Afterward, Simba asked Kion and the Lion Guard if they would lead the crocodiles to their new dry season home.

Simba and Makuu confront Kiburi.

Later that day, Simba attended the mashindano between Makuu and Kiburi. Eventually, Ono grew tired of the violence and flew away from the mashindano to avoid watching the fight. As he hovered over the battlefield, he noticed several crocodiles leaving the event. He realized that the crocodiles were attempting to ambush Simba, and so he hastened to warn Kion about the danger. Just in time, the Lion Guard thwarted the crocodiles' efforts to assassinate Simba.

Simba overheard the fight and arrived to find Kiburi's lackeys defeated. He studied the crocodiles and recognized them as being too dim-witted to have come up with such a scheme on their own. No sooner had Simba realized this when Makuu defeated Kiburi in the mashindano, and Kiburi surrendered. However, when he stood up, Kiburi declared to the onlookers that his followers had killed Simba and that he was now the ruler of the Pride Lands.

Simba banishes Kiburi to the Outlands.

Simba interrupted Kiburi's speech, and Kiburi realized that the Lion Guard had outsmarted him. Makuu approached Simba and assured him that he had had no knowledge of Kiburi's scheme. Simba deferred Kiburi's punishment to Makuu, but Makuu declared that Kiburi was no longer a part of his float. As a result, Simba took back over and banished Kiburi and his lackeys from the Pride Lands.

Later, Ono lamented having caused Makuu's float to awaken early. Though the rest of the Lion Guard tried to comfort him, he went before Makuu and apologized for his mistake. At first, Makuu seemed to be angry, but then he forgave Ono, to the egret's relief. Simba remarked that everyone made mistakes and asked Makuu if this was the new "crocodile way," to which Makuu said that perhaps it was.[19]

Makini's portrait

As you all know, it is the duty of every Royal Mjuzi to keep the history of the Pride Lands alive. Today, Makini will take yet another step in that role.
―Simba to a crowd of Pride Landers[src]

Simba introduced Makini to a crowd of Pride Landers and announced that she would be painting for them as the next step in her training. He then looked on as she painted a portrait of the royal family.[20]

Ukumbusho

Ma Tembo, I am looking forward to this evening's celebration. I'll be interested to see if the Ukumbusho is as beautiful as I've heard.
―Simba, shortly before the Ukumbusho Tradition[src]

Simba attends the Ukumbusho Tradition.

Simba arrived at Mizimu Grove alongside Nala, Kiara, and several lionesses for the Ukumbusho Tradition. Before the ceremony, he told Ma Tembo that he was looking forward to the celebration and that he was interested to see if the tradition was as beautiful as he had heard. In the midst of the ceremony, a horde of bees attacked the elephants and chased them from the grove. Kion ordered his team to chase down the elephants before they hurt anyone, and the Lion Guard obediently took off to halt the stampede.

After the bees were driven away, Ma Tembo apologized to Simba for the panic. Makini volunteered to collect more yellow fruit for paint, but Kion suggested that they continue the ceremony without any paint. Ma Tembo protested that it was difficult for elephants to break with tradition, but Simba told her that this could simply be a new tradition for the elephants of the Pride Lands. Ma Tembo agreed to the new plan, and the Ukumbusho Tradition continued.[21]

Christmas

Kion, Bunga, what's so important about this..."Christmas?"
―Simba[src]

Simba agrees to perform in Bunga's Christmas celebration.

One day, Kion spoke to his family about partaking in a Christmas celebration for Timon and Pumbaa. Kiara and Nala enthusiastically agreed to the proceedings, but Simba showed little interest in attending. Kion and Nala reminded him that it was for Timon and Pumbaa, and Kiara added that it would be fun. Simba reluctantly agreed to join in the festivities but told his family that if he was going to do it, then so would they. Kion asked his family to bring along Tiifu and Zuri, then wished them a merry Christmas, to Simba's confusion.

That night, Simba, Nala, Kiara, Tiifu, and Zuri arrived for Bunga's rehearsal. Simba asked Kion if they were the first ones to arrive, to which Kion showed them a large group of Pride Landers who had already gathered. Simba questioned Bunga on what they needed to do in order to practice for the show, and Bunga, not realizing who he was speaking to, told Simba to wait his turn. However, upon recognizing Simba, Bunga apologized. The gathered animals then began their rehearsal.

Simba questions Bunga on the importance of his Christmas performance.

Come sunrise, Kion expressed satisfaction with the animals' performances, but Bunga declared that they still needed more practice. Ma Tembo pointed out that they would never be able to live up to Bunga's expectations, and Simba agreed. The group started to break up and leave, but Kion called them back. Simba questioned his son on why Christmas was so important, and Bunga explained that he wanted to make up for his uncles' good deeds over the years. This convinced Simba to devote himself back to the cause, and so he called the others back to continue practice.

Shortly afterward, the royal family partook in the "The Twelve Ways of Christmas" performance. After the performance, Timon lamented that Dandy Claws would never come, only for Pumbaa to appear in costume. Pumbaa apologized for his lack of gifts, but Timon pointed out that their family and friends were the gifts. The Lion Guard decided to make Christmas an annual holiday in the Pride Lands, and the gathered Pride Landers yelled, "Merry Christmas!" in unison.[22]

Zazu's kidnapping

If he's not here, then I'm afraid something could be wrong.
―Simba on Zazu[src]

Simba worries about Zazu's extended absence.

At Pride Rock, Simba informed the Lion Guard that Zazu was late for his morning report. Though Beshte reasoned that Zazu might be late, Simba argued that he had never been late before and that something might have happened to him. As a result, the Lion Guard decided to investigate the situation. Unbeknownst to Simba, Zazu had been kidnapped by Janja, Cheezi, and Chungu under orders from Scar so they could learn secrets about Simba and the Pride Lands.

That night, when Zazu returned to Pride Rock from his kidnapping, he started to give his morning report, only for Simba to point out that it was nighttime. Zazu lamented that he had never been late before, to which the Lion Guard reminded him that it was not his fault. Simba then reminded Zazu to give his morning report before it became morning again.[23]

Water treaty with Dhahabu

Kion, I want you to talk to the zebra leader, Dhahabu. Ask her if she'd be willing to share her watering hole with us.
―Simba[src]

Simba orders the Lion Guard to ask Dhahabu for permission to use her watering hole.

Due to a severe drought, the Lion Guard was forced to break up a fight between Twiga's herd and Vuruga Vuruga's herd. Simba questioned Rafiki about how past kings had dealt with a water shortage. Rafiki was doubtful that the paintings of the past would reveal anything to him, though one such painting depicted a king leading the Pride Landers to a mysterious watering hole. Simba was not familiar with the watering hole, but Makini recognized it as a watering hole in the Back Lands that belonged to a herd of zebras.

Simba deduced that the herd must be Dhahabu's and declared that her watering hole was their answer. The Lion Guard arrived, and Bunga asked if Simba wanted to forcefully take over Dhahabu's watering hole, but Simba denied this. He then instructed Kion to ask Dhahabu if she was willing to share her watering hole with the Pride Landers. Kion wondered if Dhahabu would agree, and Simba admitted that it was a big request but that Kion could offer her something in return. Kion assured his father that he would not let him down, then left with the Lion Guard to fulfill Simba's request.[24]

Failed assassination attempt by Scar

My...tail.
―Simba, after he is stung by Sumu[src]

In the Lair of the Lion Guard, Makini and the Lion Guard discussed how Simba's defeat of Scar had inspired the Kumbuka celebration. Bunga tried to argue that Timon and Pumbaa were the true heroes, since they had distracted the hyenas, but the rest of the Lion Guard and Makini credited Simba with the victory.

Simba is healed by the volanic ash.

Later, during the Kumbuka celebration, Simba got stung by Sumu the scorpion and collapsed atop Pride Rock. Horrified, Kion asked if Simba was all right, and Simba weakly motioned to his tail. In the wake of Simba's incapacitation, Rafiki instructed the Lion Guard to retrieve some volcanic ash from the Outlands, as it would draw out the venom, and they immediately set out for the Outlands volcano. However, while the team was retrieving volcanic ash from the volcano, Scar revealed himself to Kion and confessed that he had sent Sumu to sting Simba. Scar's army surrounded the Lion Guard, but Kion used the Roar of the Elders to clear a path of escape.

Once the Lion Guard had returned to Pride Rock, Rafiki used the volcanic ash to heal Simba. While Simba rested, Kion told Rafiki that his father needed to know about Scar's return, but Rafiki urged him to let Simba rest first.[25]

Meeting with Kongwe

So, Kongwe, what do we do?
―Simba on Scar's resurrection[src]

Simba and Kion consulted Mufasa about the troubling return of Scar. Though Mufasa had never experienced the return of an evil spirit, he assured his family that the strength to defeat Scar dwelled within themselves as well as within the rest of the Pride Lands. As Mufasa's spirit departed, Kion questioned his father on whether Mufasa had been referring to a specific animal, and Simba commented that he had someone in mind.

Simba asks Mufasa for advice on how to defeat Scar.

At Pride Rock, Rafiki tasked Makini with finding Kongwe, who was the oldest and wisest animal in the Pride Lands. Beshte commented that Kongwe lived near the Urembo River, which was a half-day's walk from Pride Rock. Simba worried that this was too long of a delay, but Fuli volunteered to help speed up the trip.

That evening, at Pride Rock, Simba asked Kongwe what they should do, and Kongwe explained that the patient animal ate the ripe fruit. Simba and Kion were confused, so Fuli explained that Kongwe was saying that solutions would be found eventually but that one needed to take time to look. Kongwe then asserted that good would defeat evil in time.[26]

Dhahabu's visit

On behalf of the royal family, I welcome our friend and ally, Queen Dhahabu!
―Simba[src]

At Pride Rock, Simba welcomed Queen Dhahabu to discuss a water treaty. Simba announced that the celebraton would continue at sundown and instructed Kiara to accompany Dhahabu on a tour of the Pride Lands. After touring the Pride Lands, Dhahabu agreed to renew the treaty.[27]

Scar's attack

I never want to lose a Pride Lander, but I will always respect your decision, including the decision to leave. This is something every herd must decide for yourselves.
―Simba[src]

At Mizimu Grove, Simba and Rafiki announced Makini's mpando mpaya. Afterward, Simba introduced Timon and Pumbaa, who performed "Tujiinue". In the midst of the celebration, the Army of Scar attacked, and the Pride Landers rose up to defend themselves. Per Kion's instructions, Simba cornered Cheezi and Chungu. However, the battle paused when Scar appeared in the flames and threatened to overtake the entirety of the Pride Lands. Upon recognizing Scar's identity, Simba vowed to stop him from taking over the Pride Lands again, but Scar merely taunted Simba for his naivety. Once Scar had vanished, the remaining Pride Landers fled Mizimu Grove in fright.

Simba confronts Scar's resurrected spirit.

Meanwhile, Kion used the Roar of the Elders to defeat the Outlanders. As Simba lamented Mizimu Grove's destruction, Ma Tembo approached and asked to speak with him. Simba agreed, then sent the Lion Guard to calm down the Pride Landers. Once all the animals had reconvened at Mizimu Grove, Simba approached them and admitted that he had had knowledge of Scar's return for some time but had ordered the Lion Guard to keep it a secret out of fear that the Pride Landers would flee the kingdom. The Pride Landers disapproved of his dishonesty, but Ma Tembo noted that she understood why he had kept Scar's return a secret. Simba emphasized that his duty was to protect the Pride Lands but that he could not protect the Pride Landers if they were not in his kingdom. However, he added that, while he did not want to lose a Pride Lander, he would respect their decisions to leave. The herds started deliberating whether they should leave the Pride Lands, and Simba told them to inform him of their decisions the following morning at Pride Rock.

The next day, the Pride Landers gathered at Pride Rock to inform Simba of their decisions. However, Kion interrupted Simba's somber opening statement and implored the Pride Landers to follow him. The assembled animals followed Kion to Mizimu Grove, where they saw that Makini's baobab seed had survived the fire. This inspired them to remain in the kingdom and work together to defeat Scar. Rafiki asked if the mpando mpaya should continue, and Simba replied that he could not think of a better way to celebrate. Makini proceeded to plant her baobab seed while the Pride Landers looked on.[28]

Battle for the Pride Lands

Time to defeat Scar, once and for all.
―Simba, shortly before the battle for the Pride Lands[src]

Simba decides to invade the Outlands

After several seasons in which the Pride Landers battled Scar's army, Simba approached Kion and his Lion Guard, and complimented them on their victories. However, he told them that their defensive strategies were not stopping the army. Because of this, Simba declared total war on the Outlands so as to put an end to Scar's terrorism. Though Kion questioned whether Scar could be defeated or not, Simba asserted that once Scar's army was defeated, he would be powerless and unable to threaten the Pride Lands. The Lion Guard offered to rally the Pride Landers, and Jasiri told Simba that her clan would aid him in his efforts. As Simba and the Lion Guard left Flat Ridge Rock, Shupavu and Njano resolved to report their findings to Scar.

The following day, Zazu reported that all the Pride Landers had assembled at Pride Rock. Simba asked Kion to lead the upcoming battle against the Outlanders and sent Zazu to tell the Pride Landers to rest. Once Zazu had gone, Simba commented that, with the amount of Pride Landers present, Scar would know that they were coming. Kion agreed, and Simba asked if he was all right. In answer, Kion lamented that, though they knew the plan against the Outlanders, they still did not know how to defeat Scar himself. Simba assured Kion that he could lead the Pride Lander army into battle and reminded him that he would not have nominated him for the job if he had not had total faith in him. Shortly afterward, Mzingo's parliament dropped fiery sticks on Pride Rock, which set the structure on fire and trapped Simba, Nala, and Kiara on the promontory. Sensing his family in danger, Kion sent Ono to save them, and the egret hastened to the rescue, with Anga and Hadithi at his side. Upon reaching Pride Rock, Anga picked up Kiara in her talons and carried her to safety. She and Hadithi proceeded to carry Simba and Nala to safety as well.

Anga helps rescue the royal family from a fire at Pride Rock.

Once safe, Simba thanked Anga and Hadithi for their help. Anga apologized about the fire, but Simba told her that Pride Rock had survived fires before. In that moment, the ghost of Scar emerged from the smoke, taunted Simba, and claimed that Kion had died in the fire. However, Kion emerged from the flames unscathed. Scar disappeared as the fire died down, but the Pride Landers grew concerned about their chances against him. Janja and Jasiri soon approached with some advice on how to defeat Scar. With some persuasion from Kion and Makuu, Simba listened to Janja's advice, which involved Kion using his most powerful Roar in the volcano to overwhelm Scar's spirit with the flames and destroy him forever. Heeding Janja's advice, Simba readied an invasion force for the morning and sent the Pride Landers to get some rest.

The next morning, Simba watched the sun rise with Nala, Rafiki, and Makini.[29]

Lion Guard's trip to the Tree of Life

Bring Kion home safe.
―Simba to Fuli, as the Lion Guard departs the Pride Lands[src]

Simba bids Kion farewell.

During the battle between the Pride Landers and the Army of Scar, Kion was bitten by Ushari and scarred across one eye. Simba, Nala, and Kiara hastened to his side, and Simba asked if Kion's wound was just a scar. Rafiki explained that the venom in Kion's scar could corrupt him if left untreated and that there was no cure in the Pride Lands. This horrified Simba, but Rafiki assured him that Kion could go to the Tree of Life for healing. Simba gave Kion his blessing to leave and, despite Kion's reluctance, allowed the Lion Guard to accompany him.

Later, the royal family saw the Lion Guard off, and Simba wished the group a safe trip. Ono assured the monarchs that he had memorized the route to the Tree of Life, and Simba entrusted Fuli with bringing Kion home safe. Kion voiced his hope that he would return in time for Kiara's first hunt, and Simba lamented that Kion would be missed. As the Lion Guard set off, Simba and Nala nuzzled affectionately.[29]

Reunification of the Outsiders and Pride Landers

Father, I am lost. Kovu is one of them. Scar's heir. How can I accept him?
―Simba speaks to Mufasa's spirit[src]

Simba embraces Kiara before her first hunt.

On the day of Kiara's first hunt, Simba gathered with his pride at Pride Rock. Kiara strode in-between the assembled lionesses until she reached her parents. After nuzzling Nala, she told Simba to promise that she could hunt on her own, and he reluctantly agreed. Overjoyed, Kiara embraced him, then took off into the savanna alone. Simba watched her leave, then subtly ordered Timon and Pumbaa to follow her and ensure that she did not get hurt.

During Kiara's hunt, Simba paced nervously on Pride Rock while Zazu assured him that his daughter would be fine. Suddenly, Simba noticed smoke on the horizon and yelled Kiara's name. As he and the pride raced toward the distant fire, Simba ordered Zazu to fly ahead and find Kiara.

Simba confronts Kovu.

Eventually, Simba found Kiara talking to a male lion, whom he confronted and roared at. Kiara reminded Simba that he had broken his promise to her, but Simba retorted that he had made a good decision. He then forbid her from taking any more hunting trips. Kiara protested vehemently, but when she inadvertently mentioned Kovu's name, Simba turned his ire on Kovu instead. Nala admonished Simba for his ferocity.

Just then, Rafiki appeared on a nearby ridge and asked Kovu why he had saved Kiara's life. Surprised, Simba asked Kovu why he had saved Kiara, and Kovu requested permission to join the Pride Landers. Initially, Simba refused and reminded Kovu that he had been banished alongside the other Outsiders, but Kovu claimed to be a rogue and questioned if Simba would blame him for a crime he had not committed. This caused Simba to growl and pace back and forth. As he did so, Nala reminded him that Kovu had saved Kiara's life, and Zazu added that royal protocol demanded that they repay any debts they owed. Out of respect for his father's law, Simba allowed Kovu the chance to join his pride, though he reserved judgment on the rogue's character.

Simba has a nightmare about the stampede.

That night, when Kovu attempted to follow the pride into the den at Pride Rock, Simba snarled at him and intimidated him away from the entrance. As a result, Kovu opted to sleep by a rock on the promontory of Pride Rock. Later that night, Simba had a nightmare about the stampede in which Mufasa had died. Though he tried to save his father, Scar grabbed him and prevented him from helping Mufasa up the cliff. As a result, Mufasa slipped and fell to his death. Simba turned accusingly on Scar, but the villain slowly morphed into Kovu, then threw Simba into the gorge after Mufasa.

At sunrise, Simba left Pride Rock and drank from a nearby water hole. From the shadows, Kovu readied himself to fight and kill Simba but was interrupted by an oblivious Kiara. Though frustrated by his failed mission, Kovu reluctantly left the scene. That day, he bonded with Kiara, to the point that the two began to feel romantically toward one another.

Nala encourages Simba to give Kovu a chance.

After stargazing together, Kovu and Kiara embraced while Simba watched from a nearby ridge. After a time, he spoke to his father's spirit about how Kovu was Scar's heir and thus untrustworthy. Nala soon approached, and Simba explained that he had been seeking wisdom from the Great Kings of the Past. Nala gently told Simba that, though he wanted to walk the path expected of him, Kovu might not want to do the same. She then encouraged Simba to give Kovu a chance.

The next morning, Simba pulled Kovu aside to speak with him. The two lions traveled to an area of the Pride Lands that was still burned-down and ravaged from Scar's reign. While there, Simba told Kovu the story of Scar, and Kovu admitted that Scar had truly been a killer. Simba remarked that fire was a killer but that the next generation could grow better than before if given the chance.

Simba and Kovu are ambushed by Outsiders.

No sooner had Simba said this when the Outsiders emerged out of the smoke and surrounded the pair. Zira congratulated Kovu on getting Simba alone, and Simba turned on Kovu accusingly. Zira then ordered an attack, and the Outsiders swarmed Simba until he tumbled into a nearby gorge. With the Outsiders in pursuit, Simba raced through the gorge and began to climb up a pile of logs that reached to the rim of the gorge. Nuka followed Simba up the pile and managed to seize him by the ankle, but a log dislodged under Nuka's back legs, which caused him to slip and get crushed by the pile. Meanwhile, Simba escaped to safety.

After limping away from the gorge, Simba was spotted by Kiara, Timon, and Pumbaa. Immediately, Kiara ordered Zazu to fetch help, after which she rushed to her father's side. Weakly, Simba blamed Kovu for an ambush, then collapsed onto his side. This horrified and saddened Kiara. Meanwhile, Pumbaa picked Simba up in his tusks, while Timon held on to Simba's tail. The two then carried him back to Pride Rock, with Kiara striding worriedly alongside them.

Simba exiles Kovu from the Pride Lands.

While Simba recovered on Pride Rock, Kovu reentered the Pride Lands and came before Pride Rock, where many Pride Landers had assembled. Upon noticing Kovu, Simba growled at Kiara to stay back, then demanded to know why Kovu had returned. Despite Kovu's insistence that he had not been involved in Zira's ambush, Simba asserted that he did not belong in the Pride Lands and silenced Kiara's attempts to defend him. Finally, Simba pronounced his judgment on Kovu: exile. In answer to Simba's decree, the Pride Landers drove Kovu from the kingdom, to Kiara's horror.

Once Kovu had been driven away, Kiara begged Simba to reconsider his decision, but he simply told her that she could not go anywhere without an escort from then on. He went on that Kovu had used her to get to him, but Kiara insisted that Kovu loved her for who she was. Simba surmised that Kovu was following in Scar's pawprints, then stated that he himself must follow in Mufasa's. To Simba's dismay, Kiara declared that he would never be Mufasa, then fled into the den.

Simba leads his pride into battle against the Outsiders.

Later, Simba entered the den himself, only to be told by Timon and Pumbaa that Kiara was gone. Before he could react, Zazu arrived with news that the Outsiders were on the attack. Simba ordered Zazu to find Kiara while he, Timon, and Pumbaa assembled the lionesses. Together, Simba and his pride met Zira near the gorge, where Simba told Zira to go home. However, Zira asserted that she was already home and ordered her pride to attack. The two groups charged toward one another and began to fight.

In the midst of the battle, Simba and Zira began to fight one another one-on-one. Just before they could deliver the first blows, Kovu and Kiara leaped in-between them and stopped the fight. Simba told Kiara to step aside, but she reminded him of what he had said to her so long ago: "We are one." She then implored him to see the Outsiders from a different perspective. As she spoke, the sun came out, and Simba's ferocity melted away. Through relieved smiles, he and Kiara embraced.

Simba and his family roar over their kingdom.

Moved by Kiara's words, Vitani and the other Outsiders joined Simba's pride and thus left Zira alone on her side of the divide. In a last desperate attempt to avenge Scar, Zira leaped at Simba, but Kiara intercepted the attack, and the two lionesses rolled down into the gorge. A fearful Simba dove into the gorge after Kiara. He managed to reach her just as Zira fell to her death in the floodwaters below. The two then climbed to safety, where they were met by a relieved Nala.

Kovu soon approached and embraced Kiara. Simba admitted that he had been wrong about Kovu, for he did belong with the pride, then implored the Outsiders to come home with the Pride Landers. As one, the united prides journeyed to Pride Rock, where they witnessed the marriage of Kovu and Kiara. Afterward, the royal couples strode to the edge of Pride Rock's promontory and roared over their kingdom. From the heavens, Mufasa praised Simba and declared, "We are one."[4]

Battle of the Lion Guards

Welcome home, son.
―Simba, after Kion returns to the Pride Lands[src]

After Kion returned from the Tree of Life, he had a delighted reunion with his parents at Pride Rock. Nala wondered why he still had his scar, and he explained that, though his injury remained, the venom was gone. Simba asked the Lion Guard if their journey had been worthwhile, and they agreed that it had, as they had all discovered something special at the Tree of Life. Fuli then introduced her friend, Azaad, and explained that he had helped them return home, to which Simba thanked Azaad for his service. After the introductions, Kion explained that, though they had enjoyed their time at the Tree of Life, they had returned to the Pride Lands to help defend against Zira's attack. With Rafiki in the lead, the group descended Pride Rock.

Simba and Nala welcome Kion back to the Pride Lands.

At the base of Pride Rock, the royal family and Rafiki told the Lion Guard the story of how the Outsiders had joined Simba's pride. Simba concluded by saying that Kovu and Kiara would be the king and queen of Pride Rock someday. Just then, Basi, Timon, and Pumbaa arrived at Pride Rock to reunite with Beshte and Bunga. Rafiki joked to Simba that it always felt good to return to the Pride Lands, then hit him teasingly on the head with his staff. That night, the royal family witnessed the appearance of Mufasa's spirit in the heavens above Pride Rock.

The next day, Simba witnessed the onset of the Battle of the Lion Guards at Mizimu Grove. He watched Beshte's, Fuli's, and Anga's individual challenges and witnessed Kion's mashindano with Vitani. He reacted with awe when Askari's spirit appeared in the sky and when Kion lifted Pride Rock with the Roar of the Elders.[30]

Kion's coronation

Simba and his family journeyed to the Tree of Life for Kion and Rani's wedding.[30]

Physical appearance

As an infant, Simba was small but compact. His main pelt was a rich gold, while his muzzle, paws, and underbelly were cream. His eyes were black with yellow sclerae and framed by bi-colored eye rims; while the upper shades were darker in color, the lower shades were lighter in color. He had a half-grown brown stump for a tail and the beginnings of a head tuft. His nose was bright pink, and he had thin black eyebrows.

As a cub, Simba had dark ear rims and a head tuft.

Once a cub, Simba retained his coloring but gained dark brown ear rims, light brown inner ears, elbow tufts, and whiskers. Most of his distinguishing features from his infancy grew more noticeable; his head tuft became longer and more tousled, his eyebrows grew thicker, and his tail tuft lengthened. Additionally, his eyes took on a reddish-brown hue. Due to his increase in age, Simba became taller, larger, and more compact. He was slightly bigger than his friend, Nala, who was the same age.[1]

As an adolescent, Simba became more long-bodied, deep-chested, and muscular. His coloring remained much the same. However, his ear rims receded somewhat, with golden fur growing in around the outer edges, and he gained a bushy red mop of hair on his head. Additionally, his face became more triangular in shape, and tufts of fur grew in on either cheek. The bridge of his nose darkened to a light brown.[2]

As an adult, Simba was frequently mistaken for his father, Mufasa.

As a young adult, Simba was an impressive size, as he dwarfed the lionesses of his pride and had a stronger build than the full-grown Scar. He became even more long-bodied, broad-shouldered, and muscular, and was able to hold his own in the final battle against Scar and the hyenas. Though his coloring did not change, Simba lost his ear rims completely, and his nose dulled in color. He gained a long red mane that extended from his forehead to his upper chest, and his tail tip grew longer. He was noted to look almost identical to his father, Mufasa, whom he was mistaken for by both his mother, Sarabi, and his uncle, Scar.[1]

In his later adult years, Simba grew larger in size and build, and gained more rounded features. His mane grew to the middle of his chest, where it darkened to a more auburn color.[4]

Personality and traits

Danger? Ha! I walk on the wild side. I laugh in the face of danger!
―Simba[src]

As a cub, Simba loved to boast about his title as the future king.

As a cub, Simba was mischievous and playful, with endless energy. He loved to get into scrapes with his best friend, Nala, and was often drawn to forbidden locations, such as the Elephant Graveyard. He frequently boasted about his own fearlessness and deliberately put himself in harm's way so he could prove his bravery, both to himself and his friends.[1] His curiosity often led him into trouble, something Nala commented upon well into her adult years.[4]

Additionally, Simba was quite arrogant, boastful, and prideful. He enjoyed bragging about his role as the future king of Pride Rock and used his title to push around others, most notably Zazu. He did not take into account a king's duty to his subjects but rather saw the title as a means of getting whatever he wanted. However, with some instruction from Mufasa, he came to understand that kings should only be brave when the situation demanded it.

After Mufasa's death, Simba suffered immense guilt, shame, and depression.

After Mufasa's death, Simba descended into guilt, self-pity, and depression. He frequently squashed down his feelings by adopting an upbeat "Hakuna Matata" attitude and burying all memories of his past life. Even so, he occasionally lapsed into periods of reflection and grief, such as when Timon and Pumbaa made fun of Mufasa's story about the Great Kings of the Past. Because of Scar's gaslighting and deception, Simba blamed himself for Mufasa's death and refused to return home for fear of having to confront his past. Rafiki eventually taught him that one could either run from the past or learn from it, which emboldened him to return to the Pride Lands and reclaim his birthright.

Despite his insecurities, Simba was brave, driven, and ferocious in his confrontation with Scar. His charisma and natural knack for leadership swayed the lionesses to his side and thoroughly intimidated his enemies. Unlike Scar, whose bitterness and jealousy drove him to murder Mufasa, Simba did not take out his rage on Scar for having murdered Mufasa. Rather, he showed his uncle mercy and told him that he could leave the Pride Lands with his life. Ultimately, Simba accepted his responsibility as the king of Pride Rock and used his understanding of the Circle of Life to restore the Pride Lands to its former glory.[1]

Simba was a loving and instructive father to both his cubs.

As a parent, Simba was loving, kind, and supportive. He often spent time with Kiara so he could teach her how to be the next ruler of Pride Rock and even gave her opportunities to flex her independence.[7] Additionally, he empathized with his son Kion's position as a leader and encouraged him to seize his responsibilities.[18] Despite this, Simba was not as flexible or easygoing in his parenting as Nala, as he was extremely overprotective of and strict with Kiara and did not as readily accept Kion as the new leader of the Lion Guard. He did not always trust his cubs' judgment and, as a result, often tried to influence their decisions.[4][3]

After his ascent to kingship, Simba continued to grapple with his past. He remained bitterly hateful of Scar and harbored a particular distrust of Kovu due to his position as Scar's heir. He refused to give Kovu a chance and could not reconcile the young lion's love for Kiara with his identity as an Outsider. Eventually, because of Kiara's intervention, Simba learned to see the Outsiders as members of his pride and came to accept Kovu as an individual who was not tied to Scar's legacy.[4]

Appearances

Films

Television series

Special features

Video games

Books

Short stories

Comics

Magazine stories

Trivia

General

Jason Raize as adult Simba in the stage musical version of The Lion King.

  • Simba's name means "lion" in Swahili.[47]
  • Archive footage of Simba is played during the "I Am With You" episode of At Home With Olaf.[55]

In development

  • In the 1990 drafts of The Lion King, Simba was Nala's maternal first cousin. Thus, their relationship was incestuous.[58][59]

Concept artwork of Simba losing his tail to Baasho.

  • In the May 1990 draft of The Lion King, Zazu joined Simba in exile after Mufasa's death.[59]
  • In the May 1990 draft of The Lion King, Simba defeated Scar by suffocating him.[59]
  • In a 1991 draft of The Lion King, an adolescent Simba remained too preoccupied with his love for Nala to listen to Mufasa's advice on how to be king.[60]
  • In a 1991 draft of The Lion King, Scar lured Nala's brother, Mheetu, into a stampede, and Simba tried to save him. Mufasa ended up saving both young lions.[60]
  • In a 1991 draft of The Lion King, Mufasa saved Simba from a flood rather than a stampede.[60]
  • In a 1991 draft of The Lion King, Simba refused to go on patrol with Mufasa. Alone, Mufasa got attacked and killed by Scar. With Mufasa dead, Scar became the king, and Simba was expected to assume the throne once he was old enough. However, when the time came, Scar denounced Simba as unfit to rule.[60]
  • In a 1991 draft of The Lion King, Rafiki accused Scar of murder, and Scar ordered his hyenas to chase Simba and Rafiki out of the kingdom. The two took refuge with Timon and his family, and Rafiki trained Simba to take back his kingdom.[60]

Concept artwork of Simba and his childhood friends.

  • According to Brenda Chapman, screenwriter Linda Woolverton intended for Simba to be a slovenly, lazy character who did not deserve the throne. Chapman believed that this made it hard for the audience to like Simba.[57]
  • An alternate ending of The Lion King had Scar say, "Good night, sweet prince," to Simba before lunging at him. However, Simba flipped Scar away, and Scar barely caught on to the edge of Pride Rock. From his prone position, Scar begged Simba for mercy, and Simba started to acquiesce, only for Scar to throw him off Pride Rock onto a burning tree. Scar then laughed maniacally as he was engulfed in flame. The line was meant to be a nod to Hamlet, the Shakespearean play on which The Lion King was based.[61]
  • During early production of The Lion King, Simba had several childhood friends, including Bhati, Daabi, Lemuta, and Mheetu.[58][59][60] Timon and Pumbaa were originally conceived as Simba's childhood friends as well.[49]
  • In an early draft of The Lion King II: Simba's Pride, Simba had a son named Chaka.[62]

References

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 Revealed in Disney's The Lion King (1994). Written by Irene Mecchi, Jonathan Roberts, and Linda Woolverton, and directed by Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff. Distributed by Buena Vista Pictures Distribution, Inc.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Revealed in Disney's The Lion King 1½ (2004). Written by Tom Rogers, and directed by Bradley Raymond. Distributed by Buena Vista Home Entertainment, Inc.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Revealed in Disney's The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar (2015). Written by Ford Riley, and directed by Howy Parkins. Distributed by Buena Vista Home Entertainment, Inc.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 Revealed in Disney's The Lion King II: Simba's Pride (1998). Written by Flip Kobler and Cindy Marcus, and directed by Rob LaDuca and Darrell Rooney. Distributed by Buena Vista Home Entertainment, Inc.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Revealed in "Lions of the Outlands" from Disney Junior's The Lion Guard. No. 20, Season 1. Written by Kevin Hopps, John Loy, and Ford Riley, and directed by Howy Parkins. Originally aired November 11, 2016.
  6. Revealed in "The Rise of Makuu" from Disney Junior's The Lion Guard. No. 2, Season 1. Written by Ford Riley and directed by Howy Parkins. Originally aired January 15, 2016.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Revealed in "Can't Wait to be Queen" from Disney Junior's The Lion Guard. No. 4, Season 1. Written by John Loy, Jack Monaco, and Ford Riley, and directed by Howy Parkins. Originally aired January 29, 2016.
  8. Revealed in "The Kupatana Celebration" from Disney Junior's The Lion Guard. No. 6, Season 1. Written by Elise Allen, John Loy, and Ford Riley, and directed by Howy Parkins. Originally aired February 12, 2016.
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  22. Revealed in "Timon and Pumbaa's Christmas" from Disney Junior's The Lion Guard. No. 12, Season 2. Written by John Loy and Ford Riley, and directed by Howy Parkins. Originally aired December 8, 2017.
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  53. Mtoto.png
  54. The Lion King (1994) – Connections. IMDb. Amazon. Retrieved on August 3, 2021.
  55. “I Am With You” l At Home With Olaf. Disney. Retrieved on September 17, 2021.
  56. Revealed in Disney's King of the Kalahari (1988). Written by Tom Disch.
  57. 57.0 57.1 David Chandler (September 1, 2018). Creating The Lion King: Story development, authorship and accreditation in the Disney Renaissance. Ingenta Connect. Retrieved on August 15, 2021.
  58. 58.0 58.1 Revealed in Disney's The Lion King (1990). Written by J. T. Allen.
  59. 59.0 59.1 59.2 59.3 59.4 Revealed in Disney's King of the Beasts (1990). Written by J.T. Allen and Ronald Bass.
  60. 60.0 60.1 60.2 60.3 60.4 60.5 Revealed in the Laserdisc release of The Lion King
  61. The original ending of the Lion King was too dark for the remake. Yahoo!. Verizon Media. Retrieved on September 3, 2021.
  62. Revealed in Disney's Simba's Pride (1995). Written by Mark McCorkle and Robert Schooley.
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