The Legend of Tarzan

The Legend of Tarzan

infobox television
show_name = The Legend of Tarzan


caption = Show logo
format = Animated series
runtime = 30 minutes
rating = TV-Y7
creator = Walt Disney Television
starring = Michael T. Weiss
Olivia d'Abo
Jeff Bennett
Jim Cummings
April Winchell
Susan Blakeslee
Nicollette Sheridan
country = USA
network = The Disney Channel
first_aired = September 1, 2001
last_aired = February 5, 2003
preceded_by = "Tarzan" (1999)
followed_by = "Tarzan & Jane" (2002)
related = "Tarzan II" (2005)
num_episodes = 39
tv_com_id = 4455
imdb_id = 0283754

"The Legend of Tarzan" is an animated television series created by The Walt Disney Company in 2000, based on the Tarzan character created by Edgar Rice Burroughs. Initially meant as Toon Disney's first original series (though ultimately shunted to UPN's "Disney's One Too" lineup), it also appeared on Jetix in India. "The Legend of Tarzan" picks up where the 1999 feature film left off, with the title character adjusting to his new role as leader of the apes following Kerchak's death, and Jane (whom he has since married) adjusting to life in the jungle.

Rounding out the cast are Jane's father, Professor Archimedes Q. Porter; Tantor, the germophobic elephant; and Terk, a wisecracking female ape and Tarzan's old wrestling buddy.

It currently airs on Toon Disney 9:30/8:30 and 4:30/3:30 on weekdays. It also airs back to back episodes from 2:00-3:00PM on weekends.

Characters

Main Characters

* Tarzan (Michael T. Weiss) and Jane (Olivia d'Abo) - While Tarzan helps Jane get over her more romantic ideas about jungle life, Jane acts as his guide to the duplicity in human nature -- and insists he eat his food from a plate. It is a never-ending growth process for both, with some startling insights into what "civilized" means, and some uproarious stumbling blocks along the way.

* Terk (April Winchell) - Terk loves the spotlight, and she's perfect "big sister" material for Tarzan -- protective, concerned, and absolutely convinced that Tarzan can't survive without her. Terk loves telling Tarzan what to do -- that is, until Tarzan's physical strength proves he can hold her in a headlock instead. Even though Terk is a bit bossy at times, Tarzan knows it's because Terk cares, though she will never explicitly say so. Only two other gorillas know she's a girl.

* Tantor (Jim Cummings) - "Someone's gonna get hurt, and it's always me!" is Tantor's rallying cry. Despite his size and relative stature within the jungle kingdom, Tantor the elephant is a coward - he is afraid of anything and everything, including bacteria, pond scum, and anything else that can be named. But when it comes to helping Tarzan in trouble, Tantor shows know-it-all Terk a thing or two in the bravery department and leads the way.

* Kala (Susanne Blakeslee) - If his woes become too great or his thoughts too burdensome, Tarzan seeks seclusion and the calm council of his mother, Kala. A sympathetic ear when Tarzan needs someone wise to talk to, Kala acts as the voice of the apes, always reminding Tarzan of his unique obligations to the family. She is also Jane's closest confidant. The two share a warm, strong bond, and Jane regards her mother-in-law as her only kindred spirit in the jungle. From Kala's point of view, Jane is the human daughter she never had. Kala was Kercheck's mate, and perhaps the only one besides Tarzan that ever openly defied him without repercussions. Kala' s open mind is a well of great wisdom and she is almost always right. Even though Kercheck is gone, she is still highly respected.

* Professor Archimedes Q. Porter (Jeff Bennett) - Father of Jane, Professor Porter is a noted scientist with years of expertise studying gorillas, though he's never seen one in the wild. Sometimes the kindhearted professor gets so absorbed in his thinking that he simply forgets what he's doing. Jane doesn't bat an eye at her father's eccentric antics -- she's used to them and shares his enthusiasm. When they both finally meet the gorillas, it's the fulfillment of a lifelong dream -- even if the professor does faint at the sight.

Recurring Characters

* Flynt (Erik von Detten) and Mungo (Jason Marsden) - Clueless ape brothers Flynt and Mungo have grown up along with Tarzan, but they're still as dopey as ever. Maybe it's too much self-inflicted head trauma from playing their childhood game "Stop hitting yourself", but their IQs don't seem to have improved with time. The brothers don't mean any harm, but likely as not, their dumb behavior is bound to give Tarzan some serious headaches as he flies to save them -- and protect the family -- from danger. Since they spend all their time together, being separated will cause them to freak out.

* Manu (Frank Welker) - A mischievous baby baboon, who is fascinated with humans, and, when no one is looking, he is irresistibly drawn to rummaging through their belongings and trying on their clothes. He may even run off with a shiny keepsake or two. Like an inquisitive kid, he leaves a mess behind, which means a red-faced Tarzan and the other family members are usually stuck with cleaning up after him. His mischief, however, sometimes ends up doing more good than first assumed.

* Renard Dumont (Rene Auberjonois) - Slick, opportunistic French proprietor of "Dumont's Trading Post" (est. 1912) whose lust for material gain is compromised only by his persistent attempts to, through oily charm and token gestures, lure Jane from her cozy life with Tarzan. Though somewhat of a nemesis in his first appearance, he later becomes a reluctant ally of Tarzan. A good example is when he disguises himself as a high-ranking offical in order to secure the release of Tarzan, Hugo and Hooft.

* Hugo (Dave Thomas) and Hooft (Joe Flaherty) - Loose caricatures (though not in appearance) of Bob Hope and Bing Crosby, circa the "Road to" series. Deserters of the French Foreign Legion, these Americans now work for Dumont, though they still have the occasional run-in with Lt. Colonel Staquait (their former superior), who considers their insubordination (refusal to raze a village of women and children) a capital offense. They also seem to owe money to Joey the Shark, a loan shark in Chicago, which is probably why they joined the Legion in the first place. Although they are smooth-talking conmen who try to cheat people out of money, they are good-natured and willing to do anything for their friends. A good example is when they are arrested and sent to prison. When Tarzan helps them escape, they have the chance to flee, but return to save him from being executed.

* Jabari (Taylor Dempsey) - Elephant offspring of Baruti and Jamila bearing an uncanny resemblance to the young Tantor. He and "Mr. Tantor" have bonded over their shared phobias and paranoia.

* Chief Keewazi (James Avery) - Leader of the Waziri tribe, a group of natives who live deep in the jungle.

* Basuli (Phil LaMarr) - Chief Keewazi's headstrong son and future leader of the Waziri tribe. He becomes good friends with Tarzan. Tarzan once aided Basuli in retrieving an eagle's feather, which he needed as part of a rite of passage in order to marry. Though he and Tarzan are friends, they compete in many ways.

* Dr. Robin Doyle (Sheena Easton) - A female anthropologist who began her studies in the jungle and has the Professor smitten. The first time she came to Africa to study the Waziri people with Professor Porter, he was afraid he was too old for her and sought out a fountain that he thought would make the drinker young again. Another time, she brought her nephew Ian.

* Moyo (Neil Patrick Harris) - Another gorilla in Tarzan's family. He once believed Tarzan cared more about Jane than the family. He challenged Tarzan for leadership after Hista, a python, attacked while Tarzan was with Jane and defeated Tarzan, though only because Tarzan had saved Moyo from falling to his death. Moyo led the family away and, by a error of judgment, into a tar pit. Tarzan was able to save the family with Jane's help. When Hista went after her, Moyo went after Hista while Tarzan got the family out. Tarzan lured Hista into that same pit, forever ending the python's reign of terror. Moyo finally saw that Jane was part of their family and stepped down as leader.

* Hazel (Tara Strong), Greenly (Grey DeLisle), and Eleanor (Nicolette Sheridan) - Three of Jane's friends from England, who came to the jungle to "save" Jane from Tarzan because they thought that Jane was unhappy in the jungle. When Jane tried to show them she was still the same polished girl they knew from London by throwing a picnic, she asked that Tarzan to wear his father's suit. Tarzan, thinking Jane was embarrassed by him, wasn't too thrilled on "being something he wasn't", but after a heart to heart talk with the Professor, he put on the suit. Meanwhile, Jane and her friends were being chased by the panthers, Sheeta and Noru. Using the skills she learned in the jungle, Jane was able to help her friends survive until Tarzan was able to save them. The next time Jane's friends came, they brought Greenly's boyfriend, Henry, to the jungle to "toughen him up". After a earthquake created a tidal wave, they ended up lost in the jungle with Henry. The geologist showed exceptional ingenuity and resolve in helping the group survive until Tarzan could save them, including wrestling a crocodile and winning. Hazel is mentioned in "Tarzan and the Flying Ace" as being the biggest gossiper in the British Isles, which is how Robert knew where to find Jane. Hazel also happens to be the name of Janes best friend in the books, sharing her last name with the voice actor, Strong.

Villains

* Samuel T. Philander (Craig Ferguson) - The Professor's academic rival who frequently attempts to steal his ideas or garner fame by turning Tarzan in as the "missing link". He is modeled on the British comedy actor Terry-Thomas; he is named after Professor Porter's bumbling assistant in the original "Tarzan" novel.

* Tublat (Keith David) - A former member of Tarzan's gorilla family. He challenged Kerchak for leadership but was defeated and cast out. He is considered dangerous by all the gorillas. He is based on Kala's husband (and Tarzan's foster father) in the original "Tarzan" novel, with his excessive hatred of Tarzan kept intact. His personality is also very much like the original Kerchak and/or Terkoz from the novel. He once took over another ape family that an ape Named Gobu belonged to. Gobu's family overthrew him and Gobu replaced him.

* Queen La (Diahann Carroll) - In the original novels, a high priestess of a blood cult who fell in love with Tarzan. In her adaption for the series, she is an utterly vicious sorceress who rules over the abandoned city of Opar, where she lords over the Leopard Men, leopards whom she has changed into humanoid form to serve her. She falls in love with Tarzan after he comes to rescue Jane's father from the Leopard Men, who were capturing males as potential husbands for La. Her attempts to seduce Tarzan fail every time, as his loyalty is firmly with Jane, and in almost every encounter, La is trying to kill Jane and take Tarzan for herself.

* Sheeta and Nuru - They are two panthers that frequently find and battle Tarzan from time to time. They once hunted down Jane and her friends when they were lost in the jungle. Though they often hunt with no one but each other, they have been seen with leopards.

* Mubaya - A rogue bull elephant who originally belonged to the same herd as Jabari and his parents. Mubaya, like all rogues, is almost constantly angry and tramples anything he sees for almost no apparent reason. He is easily recognized by his broken left tusk and bloodshot red eyes. Episodes featuring Mubaya usually require Tantor to overcome his fears and face down the renegade in an elephantine match of strength.

* Johannes Niels (John O'Hurley) and Merkus (Kevin Michael Richardson) - Two miners who first came to the jungle to mine diamonds. Niels is the tall, blond haired and calmer of the two, while Merkus is the shorter, muscular, and more violent. Tarzan agreed to guide them to a volcano to dig for diamonds, on the condition that he get one to give to Jane. After a mishap, they lose their diamonds and leave in chains. They later return to retrieve the diamonds, which may not of survived the lava. They are attacked by Tublat, who they capture, and are about to take him around the world until Tarzan, along with a protesting Terk, rescue him. Once again, Niels and Merkus leave the jungle empty handed.

Minor Characters

* Bob Markham (Mark Harmon) - A logger, widower, and single father to his daughter Abby. After his wife died, he sunk everything he had into logging. However, the way he was logging tore up so much soil, that a long dormant plague was released and threatened to kill his men, and daughter. With help from Tarzan and Terk, Markham gathered all but one of the ingredients for the cure. The last one was a flower that was only found in one part of the jungle, until Markham's men bulldozed over them while logging. By some luck, Abby had picked one of them before, and Jane showed her how to press it, thus preserving it. After Abby and Markham's men were cured, they ceased logging and starting to plant the seeds saved from the flower.

* Abigale "Abby" Markham (Nicolette Little) - Abby Markham is the daughter of Bob Markham, she appears to be 5-9 years old, but may be older. Markham loves his daughter, and will do anything for her. When she falls ill with the same plague that threatens his men, he asks for Tarzan's help to cure her. Together, they get all but one ingredient for the cure, flower found only in an area that Markham's men had bulldozed; luckily Abby had picked one of the flowers. She is last seen playing tag with Jane and Terk.

Episode list

# 2001-09-03 – “Race Against Time”
# 2001-09-04 – “Trading Post”
# 2001-09-05 – “Lost Cub”
# 2001-09-06 – “Lost City of Opar”
# 2001-09-07 – “The Fugitives”
# 2001-09-09 – “Rogue Elephant”
# 2001-09-10 – “Poisoned River, Part I”
# 2001-09-11 – “Poisoned River, Part II”
# 2001-09-12 – “Enemy Within”
# 2001-09-13 – “Fountain”
# 2001-09-14 – “Hidden World”
# 2001-09-16 – “Rift”
# 2001-09-17 – “Giant Beetles”
# 2001-09-18 – “Jungle Madness”
# 2001-09-19 – “Protege”
# 2001-09-20 – “Leopardmen Rebellion”
# 2001-09-21 – “Rough Rider”
# 2001-09-23 – “Seeds of Destruction”
# 2001-09-24 – “Silver Ape”
# 2001-09-25 – “Challenger”
# 2001-09-26 – “Outbreak”
# 2001-09-27 – “Silver Screen”
# 2001-09-28 – “Beast From Below”
# 2001-09-30 – “All-Seeing Elephant”
# 2001-10-01 – “New Wave”
# 2001-10-02 – “Lost Treasure”
# 2001-10-03 – “Return of La”
# 2001-10-04 – “One Punch Mullagan”
# 2001-10-05 – “Missing Link”
# 2001-10-07 – “Prison Break”
# 2001-10-08 – “The Eagle’s Feather”
# 2001-10-09 – “Face From the Past”
# 2001-10-10 – “Caged Fury”
# 2001-10-11 – “Gauntlet of Vengeance”
# 2001-10-12 – “Mysterious Visitor”
# 2001-10-14 – “Tublat’s Revenge”
# 2003-02-03 – “British Invasion”
# 2003-02-04 – “Volcanic Diamond Mine”
# 2003-02-05 – “Flying Ace”

External links

* [http://psc.disney.go.com/abcnetworks/toondisney/shows/tarzan/index.html Official Website]
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