The Legend of Tarzan

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The Legend of Tarzan is a Disney TV show starring the main cast from the movie Tarzan. It takes place after the events of the film; Jane and Tarzan live in the jungle as husband and wife, along with his gorilla pack and her scientist father. Hijinks ensue.

It adapted several characters and locations from other original Tarzan books and Edgar Rice Burroughs material such as Queen La and the hidden dinosaur world of Pellucidar. An episode even brought Burroughs himself into the action.


Tropes used in The Legend of Tarzan include:

(listening on his self-built radio, trying to get a cricket match, as Jane had taken over the comms system from a war airplane) "Jane? What are you doing at the cricket finals?"

  • Adaptational Villainy: Professor Philander wasn't a villain in the original books, but was Porter's friend.
  • An Aesop: Usually spelled out by Jane at the beginning with a metaphor and a book.
  • Affectionate Parody/No Celebrities Were Harmed: Hugo and Hooft are parodies of Bob Hope and Bing Crosby, respectively. The first episode in which they appear is an homage to the Road To movies.
    • Averted in one episode, which features a cameo appearance by Theodore Roosevelt of all people.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Being a man of science, Professor Porter tends to be more concerned with finding scientific explanations to more mystical occurrences. Nevermind that he regularly converses with apes and an elephant, and has encountered thought-to-be-extinct dinosaurs. The trope is subverted in "The All-Seeing Elephant." After doubting the concept of such a being, he is reminded of how he doubted the all-too real Mangani.
  • Arch Enemy: Professor Philander with Professor Porter. Ironic, since in the original books the two were colleagues and friends.
  • Bad Boss: Queen La. Especially in her debut episode, where she has a habit of disintegrating minions for no reason whatsoever other than they happen to be there when she's in a bad mood. One of the episodes deals with her Leopardmen getting fed up and revolting.
  • Better Than It Sounds: At first glance seems like a low budget movie adaptation, but has shown a deep mythology and doesn't shy away from mature subject matter such as death.
  • Big Bad: The most recurring foes are Tublat, Professor Philander and Queen La.
  • Big Damn Heroes: When doesn't Tarzan do this?
  • Blond Guys Are Evil: Jane's old flame Robert.
  • Catfolk: Leopardmen.
  • Compilation Movie: Tarzan & Jane. Three then-unaired episodes ("British Invasion," "The Volcanic Diamond Mine" and "The Flying Ace") were used with a framing story about Tarzan and Jane's wedding anniversary.
  • Cowardly Lion: Tantor.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Terk.
  • Does Not Wear Shoes/Foot Focus: Since the show is set in the jungle, it's hardly surprising that many of the human characters go barefoot. Also, there are quite a few closeups.
  • Evil Brit: Queen La seems to have a British accent.
  • Expy/Composite Character: Tublat. While qualities of Book!Tublat were used to soften up Kerchak, qualities of Book!Kerchak were used to create the villainous Tublat.
    • Also, Nikolas Rokoff in the show is less of the Rokoff from the original Tarzan books and much more like General Zaroff from the famous short story "The Most Dangerous Game".
  • Fat and Skinny: Hugo and Hooft.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Tarzan and Basuli.
    • Also Jane and Terk.
  • Five-Man Band:
  • Foreshadowing: Throughout the series' run several characters from America and Europe wind up coming across their patch of jungle and begin making a sort of shanty town and port. When there wound up being practically an entire town now, an episode ended with Kala silently worrying that their jungle may be lost to the new humans forever.
  • Find the Cure: Tarzan was poisoned by a spider in one episode, and Jane and Terk had to work together to get a flower which was needed to make the antidote.
  • Fluffy the Terrible: One episode had Terk and Tantor trying to name a leopard cub. Terk likes "Fluffy" and "Doodles" while Tantor likes "Bobo". The end up deciding on "Commandor Fluffy Paws".
  • French Jerk: Renard Dumont, and while he wasn't a villain, he was pretty much a Selfish Neutral character always looking to make a quick buck. He does things right from time to time though, particularly in episodes like "Tarzan and the Prison Break".
  • Frenemy: The Baboons.
  • Geeky Turn On: See below.
  • Genre Savvy: Jane, when it looks like Queen La's gone for good. "You know what they say about appearances..."
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: The Professor's love interest visited during one episode, and they spent a lot of time discussing germination. In very sexy terms.
  • God Is Good: "The All-Seeing Elephant."
  • Grand Theft Me: In "Tarzan and the Return of La," Queen La possesses Jane. Crosses with Gender Bender when she possesses Tarzan due to a Batman Gambit he pulls.
  • Hey, It's That Voice!: Jared, Lord of the Jungle, and his wife Nicole Wallace!
    • Max Liebling in the "One Punch Mullargan" episode was played by Bruce Campbell!
  • I See London: In "The British Invasion", Jane and her friends Eleanor, Greenley and Hazel remove their dresses to walk or run more easily in the jungle, and they're all in their white pantalets.
  • Jerkass: Professor Philander, so much so that he really aggravates Professor Porter.
  • Jerk Jock: One Punch Mullargan.
  • Killer Gorilla: While most ape characters avert this trope, Tublat plays it straight.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Somewhat justified, in that over half of the main characters don't really wear clothing, and it's rather difficult for the other two to get their hands on new clothes in the middle of the jungle. Lampshaded when Dumont opens his store. Jane complains about having only one change of clothing, then comes back from Dumont's with an elephant load of Paris fashions. Though her main outfit remains the same, occasionally she changes into others afterwards.
  • Literary Agent Hypothesis: Similar to The Little Mermaid TV series, an episode focuses around Edgar Rice Burroughs as a struggling author traveling to Africa searching for inspiration for a book after reading a news story about Tarzan
  • Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Well, not quite "boy" and "girl", but Tantor and Terk fit.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • "Mangani" is the name of the species that raised Tarzan in the books.
    • Also, to show that La is actually Atlantean, the animators decided to give her dark skin and white hair, like the characters in Atlantis the Lost Empire.
  • Never My Fault: Professor Philander always blames Professor Porter for his own misfortunes.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: In "Leopard Men Rebellion" Tarzan helps Queen La get her staff back off the leopard men when they kidnap Jane. Turns out they kidnapped her to make her their queen so she could free them.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: La has a British accent but some American pronunciations seep through, particularly with the way she says Tarzan's name.
  • Only Shop in Town: Renard Dumont's trading post.
  • The Rival: Basuli to Tarzan. In Basuli's first appearance, it was more volatile, but a team-up saw them iron out their differences to a far more friendly rivalry.
    • Not to mention Professor Philander to Professor Porter.
    • Kerchak and Tublat in the flashback.
  • Shout-Out: In "The All Seeing Elephant" Tantor falls off a cliff and thanks to trees gets launched into the air. At one point Tarzan and Jane see him fly by and Jane comments:
  • Single-Target Sexuality: The first episode with La shows that Tarzan is pretty much Jane-sexual.
  • Skyward Scream: Tublat, everytime Tarzan beats him in the end.
  • Stiff Upper Lip/British Stuffiness: Pretty much every English person in the show is this.
  • Stripperific: Queen La, of course.
    • Nubile Savage?
      • Jane in her loincloth/swimsuit in "Tarzan and the Lost Cub".
    • And Tarzan.
  • Those Two Guys: Flynt and Mungo for the gorillas, Hugo and Hooft for the humans.
  • Terrible Ticking: In one episode, Tarzan's animal friends go crazy, complete with the Madness Mantra "Stop the ringing!" Turns out the local trading post had installed a long-range radio tower, and something in the equipment was generating an ultrasonic noise that was doing this to Tantor, Terk, and the rest. The humans couldn't hear it, but it was driving the animals nuts for miles.
  • Throwing Down the Gauntlet: Apparently throwing mud at your opponent's face is the Rhino equivalent.
  • Translation Convention: Tantor and Terk are shown as speaking English with each other and with Tarzan, Jane, and Professor Porter, but several episodes make it very clear that Tarzan et. al. speak their languages. In one episode, Jane has difficulties because her Baboon is a bit rusty.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Tublat, after Tarzan saved him from poachers. Of course, Tarzan never even expected a "thanks" from him.
  • Villainesses Want Heroes: Queen La to Tarzan, so very much.
  • Why Isn't It Attacking?
  • Yandere: Queen La.