In Resident Evil: Damnation, when Leon Kennedy encounters a Licker in the first few minutes, he calls it a Cowardly Lion.

Why does he call it a Cowardly Lion?

It's a bit of an odd thing to say.

I'm assuming the movie was translated from Japanese, does that insult carry more weight in the original language?

Is the Wizard of Oz some sort of cult classic in Japan?

1 Answer 1


A few minutes earlier, Leo learned that his CIA contact was codenamed "Scarecrow" and that his codename, presumably for the duration of the mission, is "Tin Man", both references to L. Frank Baum's "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz".

CIA Guy: Scarecrow

Leon: I'm the Tin Man.

CIA Guy: Can you talk?

Leon is making an allusion to the order in which Dorothy Gale meets her traveling companions, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man and finally, the Cowardly Lion.

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As to whether a Japanese audience would have understood this reference, the answer is a powerful "yes". The original (translated) L. Frank Baum books have been in the 'kids general' bestseller list for decades and have inspired a hit anime film and a well-received japanese-language TV series. The 1939 MGM film receives regular dubbed airings on commercial television and the Illustrated Wizard of Oz was the #1 bestselling book in Amazon Japan's "Western Books" category in 2015.

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