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Zuka Zama
~ Bunga's Catchphrase
I might not be the biggest honey badger, but I know what's in my heart. And I'm not scared of anything, or anyone!
~ Bunga to Kion

Bunga is the adoptive nephew of Timon and Pumbaa, adopted brother of Simba, the best friend of Kion and the deuteragonist in the 2015 TV film The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar and it's 2016 follow-up series The Lion Guard, both based on the 1994 film The Lion King. He is a honey badger who along with Kion and their friends Fuli, Ono and Beshte, form The Lion Guard to protect The Pride Lands from threats such as hyenas.

He is voiced by Joshua Rush who also portrayed Cyrus Goodman and voices Toby, Waldo.

Personality

He is shown to be very adventurous and he rarely acts serious or even sits still, as he is always on the move, working off boundless energy and enthusiasm, and makes even the most dire of situations into a fantastic time. Though this makes him a great friend and playmate, it lands him into trouble more often than not. According to Kiara, Bunga is "brave, bordering on stupid," but a valued member of the Lion Guard nonetheless.

History

Pre-Lion Guard

Bunga was born to two unknown honey badgers sometime during Simba's reign. Some short time after his birth, Bunga's parents either died, abandoned him or got separated from him as he has no memory of them. Bunga lived on his own for some time before being found and taken in by Timon and Pumbaa.

Sometime after being taken in by Timon and Pumbaa, Bunga befriended Simba's son Kion.

The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar

Bunga first appears in the film when he and Kion play Baobab Ball on Pride Rock and end up disrupting Kion's father Simba who is teaching Kion's older sister Kiara about being future Queen and so go out into The Pride Lands to continue their game, but the Baobab fruit ends up falling into The Outlands. Kion is unwilling to go into The Oulands (due to being forbidden to go there), but Bunga goes in and ends up being captured by two hyenas named Cheezi and Chungu, who plan to give him to their leader Janja. However, Kion saves his friend by letting out a mighty roar (which is in fact The Roar of the Elders) that causes Chungu to drop Bunga in shock, giving Bunga the chance to climb to safety.

Bunga and Kion return to Pride Rock where they see Simba talking with Rafiki and Kion asks what the two are talking about to which Simba replies that he and Kion need to talk. Bunga goes with Kion when Simba and Rafiki take him to a part of Pride Rock called The Lair of The Lion Guard where Simba tells Kion that he is the leader of the new Lion Guard and sends him to find members. Kion chooses Bunga to be the bravest member as he is the bravest animal he knows. Bunga later tells Timon and Pumbaa along with Kiara and her friends Tiifu and Zuri about Kion being made leader of The Lion Guard and how he had been picked for the team and sings "Zuka Zama".

Later after Kion chooses Beshte, Fuli and Ono for the team, Bunga convinces Kion to demonstrate The Roar of the Elders to them, but when Kion attempts to do so, the roar only comes out as a squeak, to the confusion of Bunga, Beshte and Ono and the amusement of Fuli. Bunga and the others then witness Simba scolding Kion for not putting other lions in The Lion Guard and treating his role as leader as a game for him and his friends to play.

Afterwards, Bunga alerts Kion of Janja and his clan attacking a herd of gazelles in which Kiara gets trapped in. Bunga, Kion and the rest of The Lion Guard come to the rescue and drive the hyenas away and Bunga lets out a fart that makes the gazelles move away from Kiara. After Kiara is delivered to safety, Simba congratulates Kion and accepts Bunga and the others in The Lion Guard.

The Lion Guard

Set after the film, Bunga continues serving in The Lion Guard.

In Season 1-2, The Lion Guard continue battling Janja and his clan, through they also battle other villainous animals such as the new crocodile leader Makuu (until he reformed) and a pack of jackals led by Reirei, a leopard named Makucha and most recently, the spirit of Kion's great-uncle Scar (who was the leader of the previous Lion Guard).

In the episode "Bunga the Wise", Bunga believes his is the smartest animal in The Pride Lands after quickly solving many problems. He is dubbed Bunga the Wise and starts giving out advice to the other Pride Land animals, much to the dismay of Kion and the rest of the Lion Guard as the advice he gives out is not good. However, when flood waters strike The Pride Lands, Bunga doesn't know what to do and tells the animals to listen to Kion as he knows what to do.

In the episode "Bunga and the King", Bunga and Simba get stuck in a sinkhole and bond after learning about their shared connection of being raised by Timon and Pumbaa and consider each other to be "brothers".

In Season 3, Bunga and the Lion Guard defeat Scar after Kion summons the Great Lions of the Past. Bunga also saves Kion from being attacked by Scar's vengeful snake ally Ushari (who had earlier, bite Kion in the face, leaving a scar over his lefy eye), which results in both of them falling towards lava. Fortunately, Bunga is saved by Ono (whose sight is damaged in the process). Afterwards, Bunga and the rest of the Lion Guard (along with new member Anga, who replaces Ono as the Lion Guard's Keenest of Sight) and Makini leave the Pride Lands to look for the Tree of Life in order to heal Kion and Ono. In this series, Bunga and the Lion Guard come up against their old enemy Makucha and his All in One.

Quotes

Life's exciting, life is fun! A big adventure for everyone! Life's a party and it's filled with thrills! Don't worry about the scrapes and spills.
~ Bunga
Now you know my little motto for life. Enjoy the chaos, ignore the strife. When life throws a crazy cure. Go Zuka Zama! Don't lose your nerve!
~ Bunga
I can be really annoying when I put my mind to it.
~ Bunga after he annoys an Aardvark into helping him and his friends
Think about it since when do I do that.
~ Bunga

Trivia

  • In the Season 2 episode "The Morning Report", it is revealed that Bunga has known Kion and Fuli since he was a kit.

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