Top 10 Reasons Why The Lion King Does Not Deserve the Praise It Gets

It bothers me whenever someone or someone talks about what is the "best" Disney movie, the "best" animated movie, the "best" this, the "best" that, etc... The Lion King is always No. 1, and whenever someone disagrees or even hates the movie and calls it the worst in his or her opinion, everyone throws a fit about it and they even swear at or flame the hater for having a different view on the movie. Have you ever heard about people having different opinions? Not everyone is going to like The Lion King, get over it, fans! I find The Lion King's praise and acclaim to be unacceptable because all of it's hype and impact on popular culture has done much more harm than good. There are (valid) reasons why.
The Top Ten
1 The film contains stereotypical views that may be offensive to others, and went out of its way to completely demonize a species of real animal (spotted hyenas)

A hyena researcher actually sued Disney because of how the hyenas were portrayed in the movie. Hyenas as "wicked" beings in folklore, myths, and other fictional works is bad enough, but The Lion King enforced that and made it worse by treating spotted hyenas like a villain-exclusive species when they are not. In fact, this negative portrayal is one of the biggest obstacles to the conservation of hyenas. One other hyena researcher even went as far as suggesting a boycott of the movie during a hyena fact sheet he wrote. Because of this, people just stereotype hyenas horribly because of The Lion King. It's not a documentary. It's just a Disney animated movie and nothing else.

In real life, spotted hyenas are nothing like the henchmen in the movie and are very intelligent and beneficial to our ecosystem. They're also unique because they're one of the very few mammal species where females are larger and dominate the males. There is no good reason for demonizing the species. They may be one of the deadliest animals with one of the deadliest bites, but so are tons of other animals and things. That's not a reason to dislike them either. More people die from falling coconuts, dog bites, and deer attacks than hyena bites/attacks. Hyenas hunt 88% of their own prey, and lions usually scavenge their prey more often than the other way around (no offense to lion fans).

I also believe that The Lion King promoted and reflected the bad side of our society. The "villains" represent the mentally ill, while the "heroes" represent the high class and are ableists. As someone who is suffering from a mental illness, this is really offensive to me.

Also, if you think about it, spotted hyenas are supposed to be the Amazon brigades of the animal kingdom and not the evil stooges of the animal kingdom like The Lion King and its fans want you to believe. TLK ruined the species' reputation, in my opinion.

2 It is a ripoff

Yup! It is 100% clearly ripped off from Kimba in many ways. But what angers me the most is that Disney tried to call it their own original idea when that is clearly not true! They even waited for the creator of Kimba to die to start making the movie. How immoral is that!

They refuse to give Kimba any recognition for inspiring the movie and flat out lied, calling it *their* original idea. I have no respect for a movie that clearly ripped off something else, and what it was inspired by got no recognition. Lion Kong = Worst Disney movie ever.

3 The characters are bland, generic and all-around cliche. Possibly too derivative of other animated movies

I think "The Lion King" is a 36/100 in my book. But don't get me started on Mufasa, who is probably the most overrated Disney character. In my opinion, Mufasa is the worst Disney character ever. He's strict, mean, demanding, etc.

When Scar was too sad to go to the presentation of Simba, Mufasa just yelled at him. While attending presentations is important, a sad mood would likely affect everyone negatively. Instead of asking, "Hey, what's wrong, brother?" Mufasa just shouts at him. Worst of all, Zazu made a mean joke about Scar, and Mufasa just laughs. This doesn't justify Scar killing Mufasa, but Mufasa certainly deserves criticism.

Mufasa even uses Zazu, his friend, as a prop for Simba. So, he's not only a bad brother but also a bad friend. When Zazu reports that there are hyenas in the Pride Lands, Mufasa decides to kick them out. The hyena territory has no food or water, and they will definitely die from starvation and thirst.

Mufasa even lies to the other animals and his son about the circle of life, saying, "When we die, our bodies turn into the grass, and the gazelles and wildebeest eat the grass." While it's true that lions mainly eat gazelles and wildebeest, and those animals eat grass, there's no need to lie about becoming their food later. Moreover, Mufasa died in a place with no grass at all, just a lone acacia tree. The two strongest animals in Africa, the Masai giraffe and the African bush elephant, eat acacia leaves, but Mufasa's prey don't. So, Mufasa is also a bad king.

After Mufasa saves Simba and Nala from the hyenas, he doesn't even ask Simba why he went there in the first place. He just says, "You deliberately disobeyed me," even though Scar tricked Simba into going. If Mufasa had asked, Simba could have explained that it was an accident and he never meant to cause any trouble. Mufasa would then most likely apologize to his son for being tricked and warn him that Scar is not to be trusted. This scenario would have... more

4 Mufasa's death is nothing to cry over

I'll admit that it was sad to see Simba lose his dad and that my favorite Disney character died, but we knew Mufasa for like half an hour. We knew Kokichi for five whole chapters in Danganronpa V3 (there are six chapters in total), which is the equivalent of 10+ hours!

While Mufasa did save Simba from a stampede, Kokichi literally (tried to) save EVERYONE by lying about the Killing Game! As he stated, "That was a lie, obviously... How can something you're being forced to play... be fun?" He "told the truth" about enjoying the game, and then before he died, he straight-up lied to save everyone by saying that the game was torture.

I understand if you feel upset about Mufasa's death, but that was nothing compared to what Kokichi did before he died. And yes, even Bambi's mom's death was sadder. Mufasa's death was sad, but compare that to Kokichi's death and see how you think. Please respect my opinion. If you have any thoughts about this, let me know! I'd love to hear your thoughts!

5 It is a boring movie

I could've fallen asleep if my eyes weren't itching up a storm. I don't understand why people say it's the best. It's boring and unoriginal. I wouldn't watch it if it were the only thing on TV.

Yep, totally! Horrible and non-realistic.

6 The songs are annoying and overrated

Many claim they're the best songs in any Disney film, but they aren't. Examples:

"Circle of Life" just encourages everyone to follow the same old "when you're older, you have to get laid, get married and have children. When you grow old, you die. That's just the way it is" rule, in which not everyone wants to get laid or have children, for crying out loud.

"I Just Can't Wait To Be King" is about abusing your power. It is annoying and a pain to listen to, if you ask me.

"Be Prepared" is praised by fans to the point that it's much more overrated than "Let It Go." It even has a Nazi reference because of how the hyenas goose-step while marching. How horrible is that?

"Hakuna Matata" has no moral value whatsoever. It's like, "No worries! Forget the death of your family member and move on. Eat like us and enjoy our farts!" You get the point.

"Can You Feel The Love Tonight" is just a sappy ripoff of either "Bella Notte" or *barf* "Some Day My Prince Will Come." Nothing more.

7 It spawned an awful new spin-off series, The Lion Guard

The Lion Guard is nothing like the movie series. While The Lion King had Simba as flawed but heroic, the show turns him and everyone else into mean-spirited jerks!

Not only were hyenas still villains in this, but Disney also made the black-backed jackals villains, too! Those puppies were so cute! They strongly resembled Chihuahuas, and Disney must have forgotten they made the Beverly Hills Chihuahua franchise!

How mean of Disney, first they honor these cute dog breeds with their own movie franchise, but then they antagonize their wild counterparts in the TLK franchise!

8 There are way better movies than The Lion King

There have to be movies that people like better than The Lion King. Heck, perhaps I could go as far as to say that ALL other movies are better than The Lion King, even the cruddy ones. There are plenty of alternatives out there.

I know. Much better movies than The Lion King are The Shawshank Redemption, The Avengers, Megamind, Surf's Up, Ice Age, Big Hero 6, Saving Private Ryan, Aladdin, Beavis and Butt-Head Do America, Jonah: A VeggieTales Movie, Punch-Drunk Love, An American Tail, Aardman movies, and Citizen Kane. Tell me why you think so.

9 It is anti-feminist

Nala may have been "strong" as a cub when she wrestled Simba to the Elephant Graveyard, but then she becomes a wuss as an adult, as she and the other lionesses were unable to fight Scar until Simba comes and joins them in the fight.

10 Simba was a brat

Let me say that 90% of this list is absolutely ridiculous, but this is the one thing I absolutely can't disagree with.

I sure love listening to songs about a kid talking about how snotty and arrogant he is and how he can do whatever he wants when he grows up. No character arc can make up for the number of times he causes trouble for everyone he loves.

The Contenders
11 The Circle of Life is the protagonists' way of justifying killing and other bad acts.

Believe it or not, this is one of the reasons why the movie is bad. In order to be a "hero," you have to follow this piece of crud known as "the Circle of Life," which just... What the--? It seems that Mufasa's words are nothing more than a way to justify being a murderer.

The exchange isn't really "balanced," for one thing. How many antelope and other herbivores have died compared to a lion or other predator passing from old age? And why would animals accept a killer as their king? Are we to just believe that all the non-predators who watch their kind be slain and mauled by Simba and his lions just say, "Well, that's the Circle of Life?" Even if it's a mother antelope or some other herbivore watching their child die? Hey, if some world leader wanted to shoot your children, you would one hundred percent not just give them up without a fight. I find that to be very cruel, and no bodies become grass, so why bother? I just think that the "Circle of Life" is filled with lies that nobody knows.

12 It's for kids

Alright, so adults scold kids because they say they hate adults' movies, but adults can talk trash about kids' movies all they like. Such a good attitude.

13 Its success is completely unfair to other movies, and people treat other movies like trash, especially if they're less successful as The Lion King (or "not as good" as the fans say)

The non-Disney animated movie that I worry about more than the rest is Balto because people constantly compare it to The Lion King too much and even think of it as a ripoff of TLK when it isn't.

Balto's characters are not the same as those of The Lion King. And just don't get me started on the sequels, as they were only made to cash in on the success of the first movie.

Balto is also mistaken for a Disney film when it's not that, either. Balto was made by Universal and Amblimation, by the way.

Did you know that The Shawshank Redemption, the classic that is seen as one of the best films ever made, tanked at the box office? Instead, this feature was literally everywhere that year. Really?

14 The Lion King inherited the flaws of all other animated movies and made them worse

Well, if you think of it, TLK is a lot darker and edgier than the other Disney animated films during that time period. It features a lot more drama than most of the other films, is a lot more violent, and introduces the first character ever to fart in the Disney animated canon (Pumbaa).

The list keeps going on and on. Many people on the Internet have written essays on The Lion King and other films many times, in case you'd like to know more.

In the past, the Disney company and the films they made were supposed to be all family-friendly and conservative, setting new standards for most non-Disney studios to be inspired by, but not anymore thanks to The Lion King.

It made everything worse, much worse, to the point that it is no longer acceptable.

15 Pumbaa's fart jokes don't fit the "epic" tone of the film
16 Scar is the most overrated villain ever

I always thought Zira was a more menacing villain, like AniMat, according to his list of "Top 10 Best Animated Sequels." I've seen way worse Disney movies than The Lion King (not that this trilogy is a masterpiece, but I give it a 4/5 for trying).

Some examples are Mr. Magoo, some Disney Channel Original Movies (such as Zapped!, Girl vs. Monster, Teen Beach Movie, and Return to Halloweentown), Strange Magic, Home on the Range, Doug's 1st Movie, Disney Junior movies, Chicken Little, Frozen, straight-to-video Disney sequels (especially Beauty and the Beast: Belle's Magical World, The Hunchback of Notre Dame II, and Mulan II), and Miley Cyrus movies.

17 There are better Disney movies

True, true. (And this is coming from someone who is not even a Disney fan.)

18 The story wasn't very good

I like the moral, but it doesn't do anything with it until the middle, and the execution is poorly constructed. Check out NC's review for more information on this if you don't understand.

Enough with the clich├ęs already.

19 The characters are not true to their real species

I know this is a Disney animated movie and the characters are all fictional, but it is still true that Disney animators tried to make the animals look realistic, even bringing real animals to the studio and going to various zoos and wildlife parks as a reference. People think the characters act true to their real species because of this, but they're just fictional characters.

It is a problem when people think every lion in the world is like Simba or Mufasa, or that every hyena is like Shenzi, Banzai, and Ed, for example, when that is not true at all. In fact, the villainous hyenas are such a bad representation of their species that a hyena biologist tried to sue Disney because of this, and another encouraged audiences to boycott the movie.

20 It completely overshadows all other animated movies

I find it completely unfair to say that this movie is better than Spiderverse. On what level? That movie is more adult, has a similar moral, looks ten times better, and is more iconic. What made The Lion King earn the praise it got?

Not everyone is going to love the movie, so people have every right to hate it as much as its fans love it.

21 Simba was snooty
22 It is fascist propaganda
23 The story is everything but unique

Dunno if it was when it came out, but today there isn't anything unique to the story.

A child's parents are killed, he is traumatized by it, and later gets his revenge. I've seen plenty of stuff that uses it (and that way better).

24 Stereotypical depiction of animals
25 Timon is annoying
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