The Lion King II: Simba’s Pride – Disneycember

The Lions are back and they have more than they can take a bite out of. Doug takes a look at Lion King 2.

About Doug Walker

Creator of 5 Second Movies, Nostalgia Critic, Bum Reviews and more.


  1. Actually, Rowan Atkinson didn’t return to play Zazu. It was Edward Hibbert.

  2. Oddworld Inhabitant

    Despite the songs and animation being worse, the numerous head-spinning retcons, the Shakespeare allusion being far more needlessly crowbared in, the pointlessness of the original cast… Let me try that again.
    Despite a LOT of qualifiers, I actually enjoyed this movie more than Lion King 1. I really preferred Kovu, and even Kiara, to Simba in the first movie. Plus it gave Scar some decent retroactive characterization, and I actually liked Zira as a villain more than Scar. At least she actively did stuff through all the acts. Then again Lion King was never exactly my favorite.

  3. You know, of all the direct-to-video sequels, I had a feeling you were gonna like this. Everyone who talks about the direct-to-video sequels likes this one. It’s not perfect, not by a long shot, but the flaws are still acknowledged. Personally, I do think it the “best” Disney DTV sequel

    • Wait a minute, does this mean Doug is gonna do the “The Lion Guard” prequel (my niece makes me watch that show with her)? Or does that count as made-for-TV?

      • Yeah, that’s what I was wondering too. It’s mid-quel like enough (sandwiched in between TLK and TLK 2, though much closer to the latter’s timeframe). And just like the first Aladdin sequel was the pilot to the TV series, The Lion Guard Returns was the pilot for the television series.

        It originally aired on TV, but has had a physical DVD release. So…yeah, not sure if he will do The Lion Guard Returns (I hope he does, it’s become a guilty pleasure of mine to watch, thanks to my little nephew) and that 4th entry to Lilo and Stitch (something about an experiment called Leroy?)

      • I hope he at least reviews The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar movie.

      • Maybe he’ll save Lion Guard for a future instalment of Disneycember which could focus on Disney’s television animation?

    • Generally I think it’s Cinderella 3 that’s considered the best one. This one is a viable alternative though I suppose.

  4. Lion King sequels seem to split people in the middle. Even 1 1/2 (or 3 depending which part of the world you are in) Has those that enjoy it and those that hate it. Neither have anything on the original. But you aren’t at least dying out of boredom with some of the other Disney Sequels out there.

    And what’s next? Mickey’s Once Open a Christmas? Yeah, that I find to be super solid, espicially the Mickey segment based on Gift of the Magi. We should be good until… ugh… The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea at least.

  5. thatchickwithlonghair

    I also liked this movie. Who the heck did the animation for it; it’s TOTALLY different than the crap we got with the sequels that came before it!? Look how nice the highlights and shadows are?

    Yes, “He Lives in You” IS in the Broadway version (cause I saw it). And I was a little confused like “Wait….this isn’t from the first movie….right?”

    Adult Kovu > adult Simba. I dunno why. He’s just more interesting I guess. I like when the hero has a shadowy past and you’re not quite sure he’s 100% good….especially when he’s a romantic interest. heh

  6. Creamcheesealchemist

    Kovu was originally Scar’s son but it was changed during production (redubbed in some places) because it would have made his relationship with Kiara incest. I like that they’re revisiting Kovu’s story in the Lion Guard show- it’s definitely a story worth telling and frankly I do find the Lion Guard fixes what I didn’t like in the previous versions. I love the multi animal lion guard, there being good hyenas and Timon and Pumbaa having their own kid.

    • Snorgatch Pandalume

      Since Mufasa and Scar were brothers, that would make Kovu Kiara’s first cousin once removed (if Kovu were in fact Scar’s son), which wouldn’t necessarily qualify as incest, depending on your definition of the term.

      • Plus are we ignoring the fact that Mufasa is most likely Nala’s father as well as Simba’s?

        • Snorgatch Pandalume

          Well, that’s assuming the lions in the Lion King follow typical lion pride behavior, which they clearly don’t, otherwise Scar wouldn’t be there. Normally the pride leader wouldn’t tolerate the presence of another adult male.

          • Actually it’s not unusual for lion brothers in real life to rule a pride together. Usually one would be more dominate over the other(s) though.

    • I’m pretty sure incest is normal for pack animals. “Hey, we need to reproduce to stave off extinction. Oh look, we already travel alongside suitable mates as a consequence of our normal survival tactics. Plus, we’re animals, so we only care about convenient solutions.”

      • In the case of lions, only the females stick with the pride, while the males each go off and start their own prides hence why you only see one male lion in a pride. I would imagine that most animals instinctively tend to avoid inbreeding since it’d lead to genetic deficiencies.

  7. It’s far from perfect, but considering the limitations of being a direct to video sequel, I quite like this film. It felt like a fair amount of effort went into it, especially when one compares it to Hunchback 2 or Belle’s Magical World.

  8. yeah, this was a okay to good sequel.

    though the comment about it not needing to exist made me think. the Disney films that actually ended with the main characters having kids and not just implying it like Robin Hood would probably have a very vocal amount of people wanting the kids’ story.

    at least Kiara, Scamp and Patch existed in the the first film’s their focus sequels are too.

    • I remember when I first heard that Bambi was getting a sequel when I was a little kid, and I thought it was going to be about Bambi’s fawns. I remember being so excited that I had a dream where Bambi had to save his fawns from a fire…. But nope! We got a midquel instead with Bambi and his father….. I was so upset at the time XD

  9. This is Romeo and Juliette, but like Kyle Kallgren pointed out, the first one wasn’t Hamlet, it was Henry IV.

    • But then again, it *did* have a “Rosencranz & Guildenstern are Dead” spinoff in 1 1/2…

      Also, this movie’s retcons made no damn sense and the resolution was forced. Just my two cents.

  10. Wait, “Romeo & Juliet” is Shakespeare’s “second biggest play?”

    I know this is a judgment call and that it’s not even close to the point of this video, but bigger than “King Lear,” “The Tempest,” the Scottish Play, “Henry IV,” “Julius Caesar?” “Othello,” even?

    • ’round the philistine nation that is America, pretty much. I argue among the general public as a whole, not even casual moviegoers, that Romeo & Juliet is the only one that will come to most of their minds with initial effort. Othello or King Lear? Hah.

  11. lilith_ascennding

    He Lives In You is in the Broadway production of The Lion King and it’s fucking gorgeous. That song and “My Lullaby” sung by Zira are the two most memorable songs in the movie. I remember enjoying this film as a kid and though I haven’t watched it in a while, it still seems to be as good as I remember it. It’s not the best sequel ever, but it’s definitely not Belle’s Magical World or the Tarzan sequel either. At the very least, listen to the soundtrack to this film. It’s pretty good.

  12. The thing that bugged me most about this movie is that if a girl cub can inherit her father’s kingdom, then Scar should have never been able to succeed Simba. It was sort of implied in the first movie that the girl cubs of the pride were *cough* also Mufasa’s offspring. See any other male lions around? Therefore, one of Simba’s “sisters” should have succeeded him.

  13. Well, they couldn’t make Kovu Scar’s actual Son because then it’d become incest when he and Kiara became a couple.

    • Snorgatch Pandalume

      Not necessarily. First cousin marriages have been legal in many times and places. Plus since Scar was Kiara’s great-uncle, that would make Kiara and Kovu first cousins once removed. And it would explain why Kovu bears such a strong physical resemblance to Scar.

  14. Disney did a good job with this one in that they made you WANT to know more about the new characters (Kovu, Zira, Vitani, and Nuka) and how they fit into the context of the original film…though that may be mostly because their relationship to Scar is so unclear.

  15. Upon his mentioning Kimba, a thought occurs: perhaps a Disneycember run could talk about Disney’s sources of rip-off, erm I mean, inspiration? Or of other studios tackling the same subject matter post-Disney take?

    • Yeah, that would be a great, since Disney never admitted that they ripped off Kimba, it would be great to see somebody talk about this and the many other things Disney used from various sources. Like Atlantis was a copy of Nadia, secret of blue water. Then again reusing stuff is something Disney did most of the time, fairy tales, shakespeare etc. Most of the time the reinvented this stuff, gave it a something new, but with lion king and atlantis, they pretty much just stole it.

      • thatchickwithlonghair

        What people don’t realize is that Kimba’s creator, Osamu Tezuka and Walt were like best friends and the project was talked about for a very long time.

      • Snorgatch Pandalume

        And not one of Shakespeare’s plays was based on an original idea. They were all adapted from previously published material. As Voltaire said: “Hacks borrow, artists steal.”
        That said, at least Lion King was good. Atlantis, not so much.

  16. All I remember from this movie is that “He is not one of us” song.

  17. Neo-stalgia Fan 1

    This one was a little more fair in tone, I like that. Hope the next few ones are just as reasonable.

  18. I liked this film a lot. I watched it all the time when I was a kid and I still do. I haven’t seen a lot of the Disney sequels but this one to me is the best one. Not as good as the first one, but still pretty enjoyable.

  19. Well, so much for any hopes of him finding a Disney sequel he considers to be genuinely good. This sequel is considered to be the most popular Disney sequel (Not including Pixar) EVER and I know VERY FEW people who hate it. Most people I know LOVE it! I do think that a rewrite to explain why Scar’s followers weren’t in the first movie would’ve helped this movie. Like maybe they decided to search further across the Pride Lands to find food because they were so devoted to him. As for Kovu no being his son, they didn’t make him his son because that would make him Kiara’s cousin. I know that means nothing to actual lions, but you know viewers would find that weird. Scar has no wife or children and probably saw a lot of himself in Kovu (He looks just like him) so he made him his heir.

    The original characters aren’t as fleshed out as they were in the original but they’re not supposed to be the focus. Besides, Nala was always pretty bland and only there to be Simba’s love interest. The new characters are great, Zira is actually a better villain than Scar (She’s ruthless and never loses her awesomeness or become a primadonna like Scar did after he became king), the songs are fantastic (I’m surprised he liked them considering how he felt about the original soundtrack), the animation is beautiful, the romance is incredible, it’s clever to use another Shakespear play as the plot for a sequel to a movie that also did that, and is an interesting continuation.

    When I heard him say that he only considered the movie to be okay, I just instantly thought in my head “Oh boy! Doug is gonna get A LOT of hate for that! And is gonna get people quoting lyrics of the song He Is Not One of Us to describe their disappointment in him.” It looks like I was right lol (Well, more so on Youtube). I hope he ends up liking some other favorite of mine, Lady and The Tramp 2: Scamp’s Adventure and Cinderella 3: A Twist In Time. At least he’s not as negative as the Nostalgia Chick is, but I feel like he’s a bit too critical, especially when I’ve seen him give positive reviews to products of less quality. Also, for those of you wondering, OF COURSE HE’S NOT GONNA LIKE THE LION KING 1 1/2! He never cared for Timon and Pumbaa or their song! What would make you think he’d like a movie all about them?

  20. I’ve seen the movie and I think the same thing. It’s just mediocre. I mean, it could have been a lot worse. The animation is alright. Everything is just alright. Yeah, Timon and Pumbaa are pretty useless.

  21. Apart from the song “Deception, Disgrace” . . .I really wish this movie didn’t exist. It’s just. . .no. Retcons, an annoying as hell romance song, Hamlet is WAAAY better than Romeo and Juliet, and the original was the first movie I ever saw in Theaters.

    The Lion King is one of my favourite movies of all time, so this barely passable thing fails hard for me.

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