Sunday, February 10, 2008
WHO'S THE ONE THAT BROUGHT THE JUNGLE FAME? KIMBA!
“So why did you choose Kimba as a screen name?”
“Kimba The White Lion – wasn’t that a cartoon?”
“Is there a meaning for your name - kimbathewhitelioness?”
“Kimba – one of my favorite cartoons as a kid!”
These are only a few of the comments / questions I’ve received about my online name. I suppose that if you’re old enough to know who KIMBA was, then I doubt I’d need to explain WHO he was, because you’ve likely seen the cartoon as a kid. But if you’re NOT old enough, I’d be happy to bring you up to date on him; as well as my screen name.
In reality, ‘Kimba’ isn’t just my screen name. It is in fact my true nickname. Having been born in 1966 (the first year the original Japanese anime series entitled “Kimba” was translated into English and broadcast on NBC in the USA) it was just an automatic that I would be deemed “Kimba – the white lioness” by my family and friends. I was after all named “Kim” and was blonde-haired, blue-eyed, and white. That, coupled with the fact that as I grew I apparently exhibited character traits synonymous with the Osamu Tezuka character of Kimba the Lion, the name basically stuck with me from early on.
As a child, the nickname didn’t bother me at all. In fact, I was rather proud of it. Kimba was a hit series when I was little and I enjoyed watching it on Sunday mornings before church. (www.kimbawlion.com/synopsis.htm or www.50yearsofkimba.com ) The little lion himself was the “Jungle Emperor”. One of the things I grasped about the character, even as a five-year-old, was that despite his ‘position’ in the jungle, he always showed love, compassion, and strength of character. He was honest and just. He had overcome great odds to take his rightful place in the animal kingdom. It would be fair to say that he was my first (and only) TV idol.
Until I went through college and took psychology classes, I had occasionally wondered if my true nature and character had developed into its fruition partially based upon that nickname given to me at birth. Although I suppose it’s possible that the words spoken over a person’s life can be attributed to manifesting in one way or another in reality, mostly it became clear to me that scientific evidence confirms that our personalities are already fully formed by the time we are five years of age. . . which would be right around the first time I ever remember watching the lion series (and therefore blowing a hole in my own theory). . . So then, I concluded that “who” I was (my nature) had been dictated most certainly by genetics as well as the environment in which I was raised throughout my early years.
Either way, the name of the “Power Cat” has always stuck with me into adulthood, too. I suppose I could have put a stop to it had I truly wanted to; but in junior high school I remember doing a report on white lions and afterwards deciding how much I loved the association with the “King of Beasts”, and kept it!
In reality, white lions are very rare and elusive. They come from only the Timbavati region of South Africa, and for many years they were considered to be mere legend. (www.lairweb.org.nz/tiger/lion.html) In fact, to the African Elders they were believed to have been angelic messengers sent down from God. The mysterious white color of the lion’s coat was explained in spiritual terms by the Elders as signifying enlightenment and purity that stretched beyond all racial connotations; white is sunlight - all the colors of the spectrum in one – it is beyond color, creed, race, or gender. The white lions were viewed as a unifying symbol across world culture. They were (and still are) prized for their rarity and held sacred. In society today they are protected, of course. (www.whitelions.org/)
(Not bad for a nickname, huh?!)
Anyway, I can still remember the little jingle that accompanied “Kimba the White Lion” on TV:
KIMBA THE WHITE LION
Kimba ( it was repeated 8 times)!
Who lives in the deepest, darkest Africa? (Echo- Africa)
Who’s the one who brought the jungle fame?
Who’s the king of animals in Africa? (Echo- Africa)
Kimba the white lion is his name!
When we get in trouble and we’re in a fight, (echo- in a fight)
Who’s the one who just won’t turn and run?
Who believes in doing good and doing right? (Echo- doing right)
Kimba the white lion is the one!
Kimba (repeat 8 times)!
I’d be interested in hearing who of you has heard of the lion before, and any memories you have of the show??? Do you remember Claw??? I understand there was a re-make of the series at some point, but I’ve never seen it before.