The show stars Timon, a meerkat, and Pumbaa, a warthog, both characters from the Disney animated film The Lion King. Taking place after the events of the original film, the characters live their Hakuna Matata lifestyle, as they are seen having misadventures in the jungle and sometimes finding themselves across the globe in various settings, such as Canada, the United States, France, and Spain.
The following are original characters returning in the series:
Smolder is a grizzly bear. He is not exactly one of Timon and Pumbaa's enemies, but he does get grumpy very easily, whether it's getting a wrong order for food or waking him up from a nap, he will always threaten to do something very horrible, especially when Timon dupes him.
Three-fingered Jackelope is a jackelope. He is an outlaw who tries to take over the Old West.
The following is a list of episodes of the series.
In the Fall of 1995, 13 episodes aired on Friday afternoons on the syndicated Disney Afternoon block while 12 more episodes aired on Saturday mornings on CBS. In the Fall of 1996, 13 new episodes aired on The Disney Afternoon with 8 more airing on CBS. The syndicated and CBS episodes of both the first and second season are listed separately here and are therefore not listed according to their broadcast chronology.
After Season 2, the show was originally cancelled due to Disney purchasing ABC. However, in 1998, Disney ordered a 39-episode third season due to overseas demand. For this season, the show had a new set of writers and directors and was produced by the Canadian animation studio Studio B Productions for Walt Disney Television Animation. The episodes now open with the same title card artwork that is used in "Catch Me if You Kenya" and the Timon & Pumbaa logo that usually appeared at the frame is gone. These episodes premiered in the United States on the now-defunct Toon Disney in 1999.
On January 24, 1995, it was announced that a Lion King television series starring Timon and Pumbaa was set to premiere during the fall, as part of The Disney Afternoon. Gary Krisel, who was then president of Walt Disney Television Animation, found Timon and Pumbaa to be the best new comedy team to come on the scene for a long time and that they had the potential to be just as classic as Abbott and Costello, Hope and Crosby, Martin and Lewis, and Nichols and May.
For the first two seasons, Bobs Gannaway and Tony Craig served as the show's executive producers. As of Season 3, the series was produced by Chris Bartleman and Blair Peters, with Tedd Anasti and Patsy Cameron serving as the executive producers. Gannaway stated that he and Craig wanted to expand on Timon and Pumbaa's personalities as a comedy team to keep the series fresh and to keep the show interesting, they decided to not have Timon and Pumbaa be "locked into" the Serengeti, but allow them to explore the world and meet different kinds of animals.
According to one of the show's writers Kevin Campbell, at the beginning of the series, he and Gannaway made a giant list of puns using country names to open the doors on how many places they could go. After figuring out which funny animal or obstacle situation Timon and Pumbaa would face, they used a "Which Animals Live Where" atlas reference book to find where in the world an episode could take place and check a list of country puns they could pick.
As was common for Disney animated shows at the time, the animation production was done by a consortium of overseas animation studios, including Walt Disney Television Animation (Australia) Pty. Limited, Toon City, Wang Film Productions, Rough Draft Korea Co., Ltd., Sunmin Image Pictures Co., Sunwoo Animation, Koko Enterprises, Toonz Animation, Jaime Diaz Productions, Shanghai Morning Sun Animation and Studio B Productions.
Upon its premiere, Timon & Pumbaa was accompanied with a marketing campaign, which included tie-ins with Burger King, KFC, and SpaghettiOs.
The first two seasons of the show aired simultaneously on The Disney Afternoon and CBS, whereas the third and final season aired on Toon Disney. Reruns of the series aired on Disney Channel from 1997 to 2000 and later from 2006 to 2008. Reruns were shown on Toon Disney up until the channel's demise on February 8, 2009. As a result, the show went off the air for three years.
On March 23, 2012, the show returned to television when Disney Junior was launched as its own channel. However, only selected episodes were shown and some episodes were abruptly edited (presumably due to scenes being deemed inappropriate for preschoolers). As of 2014, the show was removed from the channel.
On January 21, 2017, Timon & Pumbaa was one of the shows presented to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Disney Channel France.
Middle East - Jeem TV and Ajyal TV
Japan - Cartoon Network Japan and Disney Channel
Australia and New Zealand - Boomerang and Disney XD
Korea - Disney Channel Korea and KBS1
India - Disney Channel
Indonesia - MNCTV and SpaceToon
Finland - MTV3, Disney Channel and Cartoon Network
United Kingdom & Ireland - Disney XD, Disney Junior, CITV and Disney Channel
1997 - Outstanding Music Direction and Composition - Stephen James Taylor. (Nominated)
1997 - Best Individual Achievement: Directing in a TV Production - Roberts Gannaway and Tony Craig (for "Beethoven's Whiff / Bumble in the Jungle / Mind Over Matterhorn"). (Nominated)
1997 - Best Individual Achievement: Storyboarding in a TV Production - Bob Logan (for "Bumble in the Jungle"). (Nominated)
1997 - Best Individual Achievement: Production Design in a TV Production - Mike Moon (for "Bumble in the Jungle"). (Nominated)
1997 - Best Individual Achievement: Production Design in a TV Production - Kexx Singleton (for "Beethoven's Whiff"). (Nominated)
1997 - Best Individual Achievement: Production Design in a TV Production - Sy Thomas (for "Bumble in the Jungle"). (Nominated)
1997 - Best Individual Achievement: Character Animation - Bob Baxter (for "Beethoven's Whiff"). (Nominated)
1997 - Children's Animation Category - Roberts Gannaway (for "Once Upon a Timon"). (Nominated)
Golden Reel Awards
2000 - Best Sound Editing - Television Animated Series - Sound - Jennifer Martens, Charles Rychwalski, Eric Hertsguaard, Rick Hammel, Kenneth Young, and David Lynch (for "War Hogs / The Big No Sleep"). (Nominated)
2000 - Best Sound Editing - Television Animation - Music - Fil Brown and Liz Lachman (for "Hot Air Buffoons"). (Nominated)
2000 - Best Sound Editing - Television Animation - Music - Brian F. Mars and Liz Lachman (for "Steel Hog / Dealer's Choice Cut"). (Nominated)
The show consists of 85 episodes. This makes Timon & Pumbaa one of the few Disney animated series at the time to last for more than 65 episodes.