|Cub - Adult|
The Lion King 1½
The Lion King Stage Musical
The Lion King's Timon & Pumbaa
The Lion King: Six New Adventures
Similar to his cohorts in size and shape, Banzai has the ordinary hyena anatomy, tall and long-legged, but compact and strong. He is the closest of the trio to matching the rest of the pack in appearance, having the same general body shape, hairless head, and receding black mane.
Like all hyenas in his pack, Banzai has smoky gray fur with a pale chest and black ears and paws. His back and sides are dotted with darker spots while his muzzle is tinged dark and lightly dusted with speckles. Unlike his packmates, Banzai has bushy eyebrows that are especially thick and set him apart from his fellow hyenas. His eyes, like those of his packmates, are black with yellow irises.
- Zazu: "Ix-nay on the oopid-stay..."
Banzai: "Who're you callin' 'oopid-stay?'"
- —Banzai and Zazu
Banzai is a good example of the average hyena's disposition. Comical and high-energy, he gives little account to thought, showing more interest in food than in plotting, even when the situation is dire. Banzai's mind is on a dim one-track setting, and he rarely shows respect for authority. He does, however, submit to his matriarch, Shenzi, as he puts limits on how far he will argue with her. It is more out of fear than respect that he obeys Scar.
Also like his fellow hyenas, Banzai enjoys a good laugh, and his humor never fails him. What humor he does exhibit in the film tends to be somewhat sick, as he laughs hysterically at the thought of eating the cubs and later at killing Mufasa. He can be very malicious, even as he jokes, and has a habit of taunting his prey before he eats it, as seen in the Elephant Graveyard scene.
Of the three hyenas in the trio, Banzai is the most aggressive, willing to jump into a fight over the mildest of arguments. This could be due to his constant encountering of physical injuries, which almost always leave him defensive and suspicious. These injuries are what tend to bring out the worst in him, causing him to complain and rage against the inflicters of the injury. His complaining gets him in trouble more often than not, as he is yelled at on several occasions by both Scar and Shenzi for complaining.
- "Well, things are going to change. Then nothing will stand in our way."
- —Banzai to his friends
It is unknown if Banzai is merely a friend of Ed and Shenzi or their sibling, as the three appear to have been together since they were cubs. The trio first met Scar when they were young and later "begged" him to join their gang. They have been in cohorts ever since. The three have also had an encounter with Mufasa, who chased them off from harassing Zazu in the Elephant Graveyard when the latter was a fledgling.
- Banzai: "Hey, did we order this dinner to-go?"
Shenzi: "No, why?"
Banzai: "'Cause there it goes!"
- —Banzai and Shenzi as the cubs escape
Banzai is first seen when Simba and Nala take a disobedient trip to the Elephant Graveyard, where they are confronted by the hyena trio. In echoing Simba's laughter, the hyenas scare the cubs into hiding behind their babysitter, Zazu, who tries to explain to Shenzi that their traipse into the graveyard had been a mere accident. Shenzi soon identifies the bird as Mufasa's majordomo, and the hyenas set their minds on eating the cubs.
Although the cubs and their babysitter attempt escape, the hyenas manage to catch Zazu and stick him in the birdie boiler; but before they can harm the cubs, Mufasa rears out of the shadows and tackles them to the ground, warning them to never come near his son again. Another deafening roar sends the hyenas scurrying away.
Banzai is later seen gathered with his friends, complaining about a wound on his rear. Ed's constant taunts spin him into a fury, and he tackles his friend until ordered away by Shenzi. The hyenas proceed to complain about lions and the subordinate stature of their own species. No sooner have they slammed lions with insults such as "pushy," "hairy," and "stinky" when Scar appears, bearing gifts of food for his friends, despite their prior failure in killing the cubs. When Banzai asks his leader what they were supposed to do to kill Mufasa, Scar sings "Be Prepared," bracing his minions for the king's death.
The next day, Banzai and his friends gather at the top of the gorge, waiting for Scar's signal to startle the herd. While they wait, Banzai attempts to pick off a sick wildebeest in order to settle his hunger, but Shenzi won't allow it. Scar soon appears at the top of the ridge, and the hyenas chase the wildebeest into the valley.
After joining up with Scar again, the hyenas are sent after Simba, who has run away from his father's dead body. The three almost manage to catch the cub until he escapes into a thorn thicket. Banzai himself is accidentally pushed into the thicket, and when he emerges, he refuses to keep chasing the cub. Leaving Simba for dead, the hyenas yell taunts after him and then return to Scar, who is deceived about Simba's status.
With Mufasa and Simba dead, Scar takes the title of king, and many years pass, during which the hyenas pillage the Pride Lands and over-hunt the lionesses. When prey becomes scarce, Banzai and his friends approach Scar, demanding he provide them with more food. Annoyed by their pestering, Scar sends them out, yelling in particular at Banzai when he mentions Mufasa's name.
Not long after this, Simba returns to the Pride Lands, now fully grown, and confronts Scar, who pointedly glares up at the hyenas, frightening them into the shadows. During the final battle, the hyenas flank their leader, and the trio targets Timon and Zazu in the bone cage. Pumbaa soon comes to the rescue, and Banzai and his friends are chased away by the warthog's brawn.
As the battle draws to a close, Banzai and his friends gather on the summit of Pride Rock, where they witness Scar's betrayal. When their king falls from Pride Rock and lands in the midst of the hyena pack, Banzai and his pack gather around Scar, who welcomes them as friends. The hyenas in turn taunt Scar for blaming the problems of the Pride Lands on them and then proceed to attack him, eating him alive amidst the fires of Pride Rock. By the time it begins to rain, they have run off.
- "Yeesh, this place is even creepier since the hyenas ran off."
- —Nuka about the Elephant Graveyard
The hyenas don't make an appearance in this film, but Nuka mentions them while gathering fire at the Elephant Graveyard with Vitani. This implies that some, if not all, hyenas survived the attack on Pride Rock.
- Shenzi: "Ooh, encore, encore!"
Banzai: "No, no, no. You mean, 'entree, entree.'"
- —Banzai and Shenzi after watching Timon and Pumbaa breakdance
As in the first film, Banzai's first appearance is one of mischief. While Timon is on sentry duty, engrossed in "That's All I Need," Banzai and his companions sneak up behind him and clap sarcastically at the song's end. They then push Timon to the ground and dash in among his colony, attacking the scattered meerkats. Though they fail to devour any of the colony, Banzai nearly catches Uncle Max, who escapes down a hole just in time. After the meerkats are safely hidden in their nests, the hyenas walk away, guffawing.
Banzai is later seen during the battle for Pride Rock when he and the trio corner Timon and Pumbaa at the edge of Pride Rock, angered by an offensive joke the two made about hyenas. In an attempt to distract the pack while Ma and Uncle Max dig a tunnel beneath the hyenas, Timon and Pumbaa try different tactics to keep the hyenas' attention. When the trap tunnel initially fails, Timon jumps down between Shenzi's legs and finishes the contraption himself, causing Banzai and his pack to fall through the ground and plummet to the bottom of Pride Rock, where they meet Scar after his battle with Simba.
- "If Mufasa looks like a loser, you'll look good."
- —Banzai to Taka
Upon entering the Pride Lands, Rafiki is attacked by the hyena trio at Five Stones. In the midst of the attack, Ahadi arrives with his two sons, Mufasa and Taka, and orders the hyenas away. The trio is later mentioned in an exchange between Ahadi and his subjects, who are worried about the troublesome nature of the three hyenas. Ahadi promises to take care of the problem and, in doing so, breaks a promise to Taka.
After the meeting draws to a close, Taka joins up with the hyenas in order to warn them that his father is looking for them. Banzai suggests moving to the snowy mountains, but his idea is quickly dismissed. The conversation soon takes a turn for the worst, when Taka reveals his father's broken promise. The hyenas suggest he make Mufasa look bad, so Ahadi will think Taka is more fit to be king than his brother. Taka easily agrees, and the plan is put into action.
Banzai makes an appearance in several Timon & Pumbaa episodes, including...
Banzai makes an appearance in several comics, including...
- A Great Team
- Good Advice is Hard to Find
- Greedy is as Greedy Does
- Monkey Magic
- Simba's New Brother
- Simba and the Snake
- The Disguised Zebra
- The Talking Tree
- This Chore's a Bore
The hyena trio can first be seen at Pride Rock, attempting to attack Sora, Donald, and Goofy. Before they can harm the three heroes, Scar roars, distracting them, and Nala attacks the king, yelling at Sora, Donald, and Goofy to run. The three heroes heed her advice and race away with the hyenas in hot pursuit.
The trio is later seen again at Pride Rock, trying to prevent Simba from getting to Scar. In order to help the young prince, Sora distracts the hyenas with the help of Timon and Pumbaa, who lead the hyenas inside Pride Rock, where they are battled and defeated by Sora, Donald, and Goofy.
The trio is seen later on in the game when they are fought for information about the source of Scar's ghost. With no knowledge of the source, they taunt Simba about the ghost and make it clear that they still hold a grudge against Sora, Donald, and Goofy, as it was thanks to their part in overthrowing Scar that the hyenas were sent back to the Elephant Graveyard to eat scraps.
- It is unlikely that Banzai is a sibling of Shenzi, as she refers to his father as "yours," as opposed to "ours."
- Banzai: "Yeah! Be prepared! Yeah-heh! We'll be prepared! Heh! For what?"
Scar: "For the death of the king!"
Banzai: "Why? Is he sick?"
Scar: "No, fool. We're gonna kill him. And Simba, too."
- —Banzai and Scar
- Shenzi: "Hey, there he goes! There he goes!"
Banzai: "So go get 'im."
Shenzi: "There ain't no way I'm goin' in there. What, you want me to come out looking like you, cactus butt?"
- —Shenzi teases Banzai
- Banzai: "I thought things were bad under Mufasa."
Scar: "What did you say?"
Banzai: "I said, 'Muf-'"
Shenzi: "*nudges Banzai*"
Banzai: "I said, uh, 'Qué pasa?'"
- —Banzai, Scar, and Shenzi
- Shenzi: "Oh, look, it's dinner and a show!"
Banzai: "And I thought beans were the only musical food."
- —Banzai and Shenzi about Timon
For more pictures of Banzai, see here.