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Vulpecula's Review of The Lion King II: Simba's Pride

rated it: posted: Feb 15, 2013
Reviews: 32 | Animated Enthusiast
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The mid to late 1990's started this whole fad of direct-to-video sequels, which none of them are interested and the only ones who'd want them are either the kiddies or the die-hard fans who want to see a new adventure starring their favorite characters.

The most overrated flick, The Lion King, was successful enough to warrant a sequel, a boring direct-to-video one at that, in tradition to Disney's way of making sequels to their animated features during those years. The Lion King 2: Simba's Pride takes place some time after The Lion King, where Simba claimed the throne and Nala gave birth to his cub. Apparently, the characters haven't changed much since we last seen them in the first film.

As much as I dislike the characters, at least the film shows that Kiara is Simba's cub and not that little hairbutt known as Kopa from the Lion King: Six New Adventures books. God, I hate Kopa. He looks like the boring, cliche, same-o, male protagonist stereotype (a.k.a. Sora from Kingdom Hearts) in contrast to Kiara's rebellious girl self, and he would grow up to be much stronger and fatter than Simba himself, knowing how Kopa has some of Mufasa's similarities and physical traits. Not only that, but Simba is such an overprotective dad when it comes to Kiara. He did not let her befriend Kovu or even learn on her own. I'm guessing that Simba inherited his authoritarian style of parenting and overprotective-ness from his father (Mufasa was also authoritarian).

The other characters aren't really interesting much, either. Kovu is your typical 'heel face turn' character (or the bad boy you certainly don't want your daughter dating nor hanging out with) which gets boring for a while when the trope is used from story to story over and over again. Vitani was the typical bad girl, Nuka was annoying and Zira was downright cruel (even though Scar was worse).

The only good thing about The Lion King 2: Simba's Pride? It lacks Shenzi, Banzai and Ed. They were a bad representation of their real species (enough that even a researcher who studies real spotted hyenas actually sued Disney for that) and were horrible characters overall. The trio were originally going to be Zira's minions, but the idea was scrapped and Zira's minions end up being an outlander pride of lions (including Kovu, Vitani and Nuka), instead. Probably because the hyenas devoured and eaten Scar because of his treachery against them. While the hyenas did not appear, they were mentioned by Nuka, one of Zira's lions, who says that the Elephant Graveyard has become creepy since the hyenas ran off. It is possible that the hyenas he mentioned were not Shenzi, Banzai and Ed, but several unnamed hyenas since hundreds were shown during "Be Prepared", and only some of them (Shenzi, Banzai and Ed among them) were sent to the lower area where they eat Scar, their former boss, and could possibly have been consumed by the flames, and those who didn't fall below presumably returned to the Elephant Graveyard and later "ran off". Which I can hope that Shenzi, Banzai and Ed have died for good.

Even though, it's still a bad film because, well, it's still Lion King.

animated cartoon The Lion King II: Simba's Pride © Disney / Disney Australia
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The Lion King II: Simba's Pride
2.82 stars / 17 ratings
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