Hamlet & The Lion King
Similar Plots; Different Endings by Tiffany Parkerson
"'Tis an unweeded garden / That grows to seed. Things rank and gross in nature / Possess it merely." (II.ii.139-141)
In Disney's The Lion King, the animation changes once Scar is in power. The darker colors and dismal landscape are used to illustrate a corruption similar to the one Hamlet sees in Denmark. The African savannah is no longer lush and welcoming under Scar's rule, just as Denmark becomes overrun by corruption.
Opelia in Art
Ophelia's death by drowning is famously depicted in this painting by John Everrett Millais.
Hamlet's foolish friends, Rosencrantz & Guidenstern are mirrored in Pumba & Timone. The main difference is Simba actually likes Pumba & Timone.
The Famous Skull
Poor Yorick's skull is one of the most famous depictions of Hamlet. In the Disney version, the evil character speaks to the skull rather than Simba, the hero.
Opelia in Art
The Women: Nala vs. Ophelia
Nala's character in The Lion King remains innocent throughout the tale. She and Simba live happily ever after; whereas Hamlet and Ophelia are both dead at the end of the play.
The Villains: Scar vs. Claudius
The Comedy Ladder in The Lion King
- Low comedy: Pumba and Timone's slapstick and Pumba's noxious bodily humor exemplify this.
- Farce: Simba's true identity as a prince is unknown during his time in the jungle.
- Comedy of Manners: Rafiki's word play and wit is the best example of this type.
- Comedy of Ideas: Simba represents the idea of the Prodigal Son Returned. He is lost for a while, but he eventually takes his true place on the thrown as his father's son.