90s Movies

13 Messed Up Things You Never Noticed About The Lion King 

Erik Barnes
Updated August 3, 2017 9.5k votes 1.7k voters 66.3k views 13 items

List Rules Vote up the most screwed up things about The Lion King.

The Lion King is one of Disney's most celebrated films, and with good reason. It's essentially an animal-based Hamlet with catchy songs thrown in. With a colorful cast of characters, the tone is light and fun for the most part. There are still some dark Lion King scenes, like Mufasa's death, which is one of the scariest moments in Disney films. However, if you look more closely at the film, you'll realize that Mufasa's unfortunate end wasn't the only messed up thing. 

If you think about it, the world of The Lion King is actually very upsetting, especially from an adult's perspective. Confusing plot holes, disturbing bits of animation, and harsh realities are littered throughout the film. You may not have noticed when you first watched it, but a closer look will reveal some creepy revelations. Read on for some harsh truths about why The Lion King is really twisted and vote up the most unsettling reasons. 

1
"Be Prepared" Is Based Off A Nazi Rally
"Be Prepared" ... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 13 Messed Up Things You Never Noticed About The Lion King
Photo:  Disney

Many of the scenes within Scar's musical number, "Be Prepared," was ripped off from Nazi propaganda. The shot of the marching hyenas was confirmed to be lifted from footage from the movie, Triumph of the Will.  Disney didn't need to bring Nazi references into their children's film - Scar is enough of a bad guy already. 

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2
Those Hyenas Really Eat The Hell Out Of Scar
Those Hyenas Really Eat ... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 13 Messed Up Things You Never Noticed About The Lion King
Photo:  Disney

At the end of the movie, Scar is cornered by a pack of hyenas and is attacked. While the violence is only portrayed via shadows, it is still an incredibly terrifying sight. The darkened images of the hyenas literally tearing Scar apart is almost as disturbing as if they had just animated the actual mauling itself.

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3
Simba's Warped Family Life
Simba's Warped Family Li... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 13 Messed Up Things You Never Noticed About The Lion King
Photo:  Disney

Simba's uncle murdered his father. He was raised by a meerkat and warthog since his mother was apparently absent during this entire time. He's visited by his dad's ghost. He kills his uncle and ends up in a romantic relationship with his relative. Simba's life could definitely be the subject of a trashy daytime talk show. 

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4
Simba And Nala Are Related
Simba And Nala Are Relat... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 13 Messed Up Things You Never Noticed About The Lion King
Photo:  Disney

So, in the movie, the audience is led to assume that Mufasa and Scar are the only males in the royal pride. This means that among the rest of the lions, there are the only two with the ability to sire offspring with the lionesses. The result? Nala and Simba are either cousins or half-siblings to one another. Yes, it is fantasy. Yes, it is not unheard of for lions to mate within their family. But still... Ew.

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