Stuff You Like: The Lion King

The Lion King: it’s a family film.

And that’s a good thing.

About Sursum Ursa

Ursa presents Stuff You Like, where fangirls + analysis + awesome examples of media = good times for all.


  1. It’s odd but ever since I grew up I think that the Lion King is meh. I think this is the first Stuff You Like episode that actually had something that I don’t like. There’s a first for everything, I guess.

  2. What helps with Lion King’s depth is the source material its “inspired” by…Macbeth. Which is also the reason Disney didn’t expect much from it…its inspired by Shakespeare and the kids are not down with that.

    • I think you mean “Hamlet”. The Scottish play is not the only one with a murderous usurper, but it is the one in which the rightful prince returns to overthrow his evil uncle king. And then “The Lion King 1 1/2” was a parody of “Rosencranz & Guildenstern are Dead”.

  3. Can you believe I have never seen this movie? Thanks for the succinct description.

  4. And now I finally know why you call yourself Sursum Ursa, since I saw the link to your YouTube Channel. (Has it always been your real name? I’ve never noticed.)

    It would not have dawned on me because I would have never known that was a real name.

  5. So that’s the secret guilt theme of The Lion King tell that to the Nostalgia Critic.

  6. Doug thinks this movie is overrated and that the message of facing your past and false guilt clause is twisted because Scar puts Simba on trial and even at first Simba though belileved he did cause the death of his father, when Scar auccuses him of regicide murder just to cover up his actual doings, Simba gets scared and denys that he supposedly killed Mufasa and everyone briefly turns aganist him even his mother Sarabi and his girlfriend Nala until Scar himself replaying the cliff scene makes a freaking tactical error by hoping throw Simba off the cliff yo his death just llike his brother by whispering into Simba’s ear that it was Scar who’s the real murderer, but he didn’t realize that Simba could still pounce on him threatening to choke him to death on the spot and forcing the reveal the truth, stupid idiot Scar ruined his own plans to get rid of his nephew rival by taunting Simba giving him some time to react, and why was Scar such a shitty ruler? Did God or Mother Nature hate Scar and his hyenas so much that he had to make all other African animals suffer by collapse of their food supply and causing a drought or are hyenas just freaking gluttons who ate all the wildebeast in the years leading up to Simba’s return to the Pride Lands?

    • Scar didn’t respect the circle of life, so he most likely did have the lions and hyenas go out and hunt for food even when it wasn’t needed. As a result the other herds decided things were getting too dangerous and moved on to other areas away from Scar and his pride (as in his group of lions/hyenas). The drought on the other hand could have just been a drought, but I have read theories that Mufasa had actually caused the drought with his crazy cloud powers as a kind of curse until the rightful king returned. Either way, the drought caused any remaining herds of animals to move on and no food for those that stayed behind.

      Hyenas also are gluttons in reality, eating a lot of food in one sitting and would over-hunt if not for the other predators in the area. The Lion King actually gets this right, with the lions forcing the hyenas out of the Pride Lands because they would disturb the food web. While this does seem like a dick move for the lions, in a way it is required for balance to be upheld. The hyenas in the movie are shown to do almost anything for some food so it shouldn’t be too hard to believe that with Scar allowing them to do whatever, they would eat anything within a hundred mile radius.

      • There’s also the mythological idea of the Fischer King at play. It comes from Arthurian legend that there was a king of a land that prospered when he was healthy and withered when he was injured. The implication is the right of kings to rule by being tethered to their land and the prosperity of the people. Seems to fit with the idea of the Circle of Life, & the lions’ role in maintaining it. The Lion King has a variant of the Fischer King where it is the Moral health of the king that determines his land’s prosperity, and not the physical health. It’s more symbolic than logical, but is certainly effective.

  7. TooMuchFreeTime

    I was touring the studio when they were making this movie. We were up on an enclosed walkway, looking down at the work area. I don’t think the animators were working at the time, but I got a good view of a finished background. It was Pride Rock, and I think it was from the scene where adult Simba confronts Scar.

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