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Role in Series
In the episode "The Pretenders", they are summoned by major villain Cassius/Toto to take down Kimba while the villain claimed to be a good guy working on Kimba's side. Claw is infuriated by Kimba and his allies building an amusement park over his former hunting ground, thus doubling as a safe haven for all animals. Cassius betrays Kimba and summons the Black Four to kill Kimba due to Kitty/Lyra not giving in to his whims due to her friendship and love with Kimba. They attempt to kill Kimba while over a log bridge and near a river, only to be cast into the waters below when Kimba ties their tails together.
The Black Four later reappeared in "The Day the Sun Went Out" where they sabotage Kimba and Leona's attempt to transfer their ancestors' preserved hides to another shrine. They cast logs down the river that they must ascend, which nearly causes Kimba, Leona, and their okapi allies to go over the waterfall, losing some of the hides in the process. When Leona goes on to collect the rest of the hides towards the shrine, the Black Four capture her and entrap her in an underground tunnel. Fortunately for her, Kimba arrives although he is wounded by the Black Four's constant attacks and knocked into the tunnel. The two manage to escape via a river flow beneath and go back into the chamber just as the Black Four attempt to do away with the hides. Kimba and Leona fight the Black Four and, with the aid of oncoming friends and allies, they defeat the black leopards and force them to retreat into the tunnels below.
AspectsThere exists a deleted scene of the Black Four's villain song, where they make their first appearance after being summoned by Cassius/Toto in the original Japanese version. During this sequence, they demonstrate many of their abilities, such as their agility and unnerving ability to appear out of nowhere and seemingly manifest as one being. They also seem to have a level of abuse-dishing among them, as seen when the shortest steps upon the other three. Nevertheless, their Villain Song still illustrates how menacing they can be and how efficient their tactics are.
The Black Four also share similarities with some unusual Disney characters, such as bearing Cheshire Cat grins and their villain song being somewhat reminiscent of "Pink Elephants on Parade".