Janja is the main antagonist of the 2015 TV film, The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar and a recurring antagonist in the first season and later became one of the secondary antagonists (behind Scar) of the second season of Disney Junior animated series The Lion Guard. He, along with Cheezi and Chungu reform in the third and final season.
He is a teenage hyena who leads the Hyena Clan that used to work for Scar and is the arch-nemesis of Kion (the second-born child of Simba and Nala) and The Lion Guard.
He is voiced by Andrew Kishino.
Janja is an ashen gray hyena with a lighter underbelly, black spiky mane, darker spots, and a black tail with a gray underbelly.
Like Scar, Janja is an ungenerous and stingy leader who eats more than his fair share and who has no regard for the Circle of Life. His unabated hunger has made him heartless and ready to go to extreme measures to satisfy it. He is also shown to be undeniably brainy. He correctly fears the Roar of the Elders due to knowing how his former boss used it to destroy the old Lion Guard.
Alpha: Janja is revealed to have leadership prowess that rivals Kion.
Strength and Combat: His strength shown to be strong as Kion as he was able to hold down his enemies that his size such as Kion, Kiara, and Jasari.
Intelligent: Compare to his closest friends he is the smartest of the clan as he knew the story of the Lion Gaurd as he was able to come up with many plans how to take over the Pride Land such as attacking at night before the Lion Guard was official, getting Kiara as prisoner to make deal with Simba, using herd of animals to make Lion Gaurd unable to see and trapping the Lion Gaurd by using boulders to block the path when Ono was not able to see. Also knowing that vultures have come information when having meetings that he can use against the lion Gaurd proven by Ono unable to see.
Endurance and Stamina: His stamina is high as he able to hunt down with his pack to take out many prey as he could, able to endure the attack of the Beshte brute strength and Kion roar as still run off.
Role in the Series
The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar
Janja orders his clan members Cheezi and Chungu to capture a honey badger called Bunga (who had entered the Outlands to get his Baobab fruit back) so he can have him for lunch. However, Kion is able to save his friend by unknowingly using The Roar of the Elders which causes Chungu to drop Bunga who then gets to safety.
Later, Janja is informed by his vulture major-domo Mzingo that Kion is forming a Lion Guard to protect The Circle of Life. Seeing that this Lion Guard could be a threat to him and his clan, Janja declares that the clan will strike the Pride Lands that night and sings "Tonight We Strike".
Janja and his clan attack the Pride Lands and cause a gazelle stampede, which Kion's older sister Kiara gets caught in. Luckily, Kion and his Lion Guard (Bunga, Beshte, Fuli and Ono) come to Kiara's rescue by chasing the hyenas away and getting the gazelles to go in another direction before Kion confronts Janja and uses the Roar of the Elders to send him and his clan back to the Outlands, but Janja swears vengeance on Kion and the Lion Guard.
Never Judge a Hyena by its Spots
Janja and his clan are attacking a gemsbok herd, just before The Lion Guard arrive. Kion orders the others to calm down the herd while he pursues the hyenas. But during this, a log snaps under Kion's feet and he falls into a river which sweeps him to the Outlands.
Janja and his clan later appear when they try to attack a female hyena named Jasiri, who had just helped Kion find Flat Ridge Rock in order to escape the Outlands. Luckily, Kion returns and saves Jasiri by scaring Janja and his clan off with The Roar of the Elders.
- Janja is shown to be the leader of his clan, but in real life, hyenas are led by females (like Shenzi was in The Lion King).
- It has been revealed that Janja and his clan are descendants of Shenzi, Banzai and Ed's clan.
- It could be possible that Janja is based on Banagi, a hyena who was set to be an antagonist in the early drafts of The Lion King. Like Janja, Banagi was a hyena who was leader of his clan despite being male.