Honky Cats

For suburbanites, The Lion King is something like the arrival of the Rapture

Simba, the rightful heir to the throne, runs away. He meets some beautiful people with a live-and-let-live philosophy, gives up red meat, and generally goofs off. Eventually — in the most visually and emotionally thrilling moment of the show — Simba meets the ghost of Mufasa, who was a member of a different generation with very different priorities. This was a great generation, maybe the greatest generation, and now Daddy's pissed. Hearing his father's recriminations, Simba is shamed away from his bohemian lifestyle. He hightails it back to Pride Rock, kicks Scar's ass, chases the darkly complected savages back to the ghetto, and peace and happiness reign once more (except in the ghetto, where, one may assume, pregnant hyenas not yet out of high school smoke crack and swill malt liquor by the 40).

Should we read anything into this? Is Scar actually Lyndon B. Johnson? Are Timon the Meerkat and Pumbaa the Warthog running a hippie commune? Do people keep attending The Lion King because they subconsciously hope that such entertainments will imprint their children with a yearning for the halcyon days of the '50's? Do you care? Do I?

"My God, Garfield, have we been  co-opted?"
Joan Marcus
"My God, Garfield, have we been co-opted?"

Probably not. Screw it. Hakuna matata.

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