Think back to when you were a kid singing "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" along with your lovable Timon and Pumbaa stuffed animals in the comfort of your living room as you watched Lion King on repeat. Now hold onto that memory with all of your might, because a freshly released poster for the new Lion King adaptation seems determined to banish your childhood innocence straight to the boneyard to fester and spoil under a boiling hot sun.
Think we're exaggerating? Just look at the live-action animation of the character you once adored. Terrifying, isn't it? Instead of a smile, he now dons a menacing smirk, revealing not two, but four, sharp tusks. Those aren't for cheerily gathering grub; they're meant for impaling other mammals and scaring the hell out of grown adults. And look, we get it. The point of a realistic animation is that it looks, well, realistic. But did they really have to use this image that would make even Freddy Krueger squeamish?
He's wiry, he's wrinkly, and if the Twitter reactions are any indication, he's also highly controversial.
"we were talking about how scary pumbaa looks in the new lion king so i uh. turned his poster into a horror movie poster," one person tweeted.
we were talking about how scary pumbaa looks in the new lion king so i uh. turned his poster into a horror movie poster pic.twitter.com/fLnDzcJKr5— Sof ? (@LobsterScoundrl) May 30, 2019
Have you ever wondered what a mashup of Lion King and Saw would look like? Now you don't have to!
Run for the hills! Save yourselves! And, please, don't talk to any strange bookies along the way.
this poster is screaming "SETH ROGEN IS PUMBAA" at me like I owe it money pic.twitter.com/Srud6mUHEp— caroline (@hairoline) May 30, 2019
Not everyone seems to agree with the backlash, though. At least one person thought the warthog's resemblance to Seth Rogen, who voices the animation, was uncanny.
"Great tribute to the original Knocked Up campaign. Same hair and everything," one comedian wrote.
great tribute to the original knocked up campaign. same hair and everything— Dave Itzkoff (@ditzkoff) May 30, 2019
Thankfully, the other character posters aren't as hair-raising. Simba and Nala are adorable as kids and adults, Mufasa is magnificent, Rafiki looks wise as ever, Zazu seems completely harmless, and Sarabi is flawless. Even Scar seems less threatening somehow.
Only 50 more days until we return to The Pride Lands in a whole new imagining of #TheLionKing. These character posters have us counting down the days!#Simba #Nala #Timon #Pumbaa #Mufasa #Scar #Sarabi #Rafiki #Zazu #LionKing #JonFavreau #Disney pic.twitter.com/DoB7Vp9Kd8— Hollywood Costumes (@HTCostumes) May 30, 2019
Lion King features an all-star cast, including Donald Glover, Beyoncé, Billy Eichner, Chiwetel Ejiofor, John Oliver, and James Earl Jones, and opens on July 19. Hopefully, you'll be able to get a few nightmare-free nights between now and then.