- “I guess we are on the right side”
- ―Janja feeling proud of himself.
He is a teenage spotted hyena who leads a small clan living in the Outlands which descended from Shenzi, Banzai, and Ed's Hyena Clan. He was the arch-enemy later turned ally of Kion, the Leader of the Lion Guard and the younger cub of Simba and Nala.
Originally, Janja's clan was lead by a female hyena named Shenzi, who lived in the Elephant Graveyard under the reign of King Mufasa. At some point, they made an alliance with the King's brother Scar to rule Pride Rock. However, after Mufasa's son Simba returned to Pride Rock, the hyenas betrayed and murdered Scar, before running away from the Pride Lands. Sometime either before, during, or after this, Janja was born and took Shenzi's place as the clan leader despite being a male hyena, residing in the Outlands just along the Pride Lands' borders.
One day, when Janja was still a young pup, he and his gang attempted to steal an egg from the Pride Lands. However, a young martial eagle chick, known as Anga, spotted them. Bunga, Beshte, Fuli, and Kion, the son of Simba. Kion and Janja engaged in a fierce battle, but eventually, Janja and his cronies are defeated and chased back to the Outlands. As Kion and Janja grew older ever since that fateful day, they have retained their rivalry, which would grow stronger as Kion would become the leader of the Lion Guard.
At some point in his life, he also met the friendly female hyena Jasiri, but due to Jasiri's core beliefs towards the Circle of Life, they quickly became bitter enemies, with Janja, at some point, threatening Jasiri with her life should she invade his territory.
Janja is an arrogant, aggressive and greedy hyena who eats more than his fair share, and has no regard for the Circle of Life. His unabated hunger has made him ruthless and willing to go to extreme measures to satisfy it. He is also undeniably intelligent, as he is always hatching new plots to either bring down the Lion Guard or take over the Pride Lands. He correctly fears the Roar of the Elders due to knowing how Scar used it to destroy the old Lion Guard. He also understands that there is no such thing as a free meal, and hunts for his food (like real-life hyenas do). He is also shown to have a strong dislike for jackals. However, Janja is also a bit of a coward, usually only choosing to fight when the odds are in his favor.
However, despite his viciousness, Janja has recently shown some empathy when Jasiri saved his life when he fell into a lava pit. He was shocked and confused at why she helped him, despite them being enemies and when she offered to join her, he hesitated before refusing. But a few years later, after Scar nearly kills him and his clan by setting a fire on Pride Rock and doesn’t seem to care, Janja realizes that Jasiri was right and decides to change for the better and atone for his past actions by helping Kion and the rest of the Lion Guard defeat Scar and joining Jasiri’s clan to keep the Outlanders in check.
Janja is a muscular, ashen gray hyena beefy with a lighter underbelly, black spiky mane, darker spots, large pointed ears, and a black tail with a gray underside.
- High-Level Intellect/Expert Tactician/Leader: Janja is shown to have intelligence and leadership skills that rival that of Kion's. Surrounded on all sides by other more witless hyenas (with the exceptions of Nne and Tano), Janja stands out as the most clever member of his clan, as he was able to come up with many schemes to hunt other animals or take over the Pride Lands; such as attacking at night before the Lion Guard was official, getting Kiara as a prisoner to deal with Simba, using a herd of animals to make the Lion Guard unable to see them, and trapping the Lion Guard by using boulders to block the path when Ono was not able to see. Janja usually manages to quickly make a pretty ingenious plan depending on the situation.
- Expert Combatant: As the leader of his hyena clan, Janja is a capable fighter. He was able to hold his own against enemies that are his size; such as Kion, Kiara, and Jasiri. He even wanted to fight Nala, though it should be noted that he had four fellow hyenas to back him up.
- Animal Strength: Janja possesses great physical strength, as he was able to hold down his enemies that are his size; such as Kion, Kiara, and Jasiri, and raise Cheezi and Chungu and launch long distance.
- Animal Stamina: Janja's stamina is high, as he is able to hunt with his pack to take out as many preys as he could.
- Animal Endurance: Janja is able to endure attacks from Beshte's brute strength and Kion's roar.
- Expert Hunter: Janja is an excellent hunter, able to track several flocks across Pride Lands.
Role in the series
- “Well, if it isn't Kion the lion cub! You and your friends better leave now, before you get hurt.”
- ―Janja threatening Kion
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 saying next time wont be easy.
Set after the film, Janja and his clan continue terrorizing the animals of the Pride Lands, but only to be stopped by Kion and his Lion Guard.
In "Never Judge a Hyena by its Spots", Janja, Cheezi and Chungu chase a herd of oryx until the guard arrives. Janja immediately orders his two minions to return to Outlands while Kion pursues them to the border. Later Janja meets another hyena named Jasiri to whom he had said never to come to his territory. His clan comes back and encircles the young hyena who manages to put down the clan except Janja who the bowl on the ground. It seems to be about to finish but Kion arrives and saves Jasiri. Janja and his clan end up circling them until Kion uses the Roar, Janja finds himself under his minions and at the sight of Kion in front of him he decides to leave.
When Janja learns that Kiara is temporarily Queen of the Pride Lands in "Can't Wait to be Queen", he decides to take advantage of Kiara's inexperience to send Mzingo to make believe that he wants to make peace with the Pride Lands to attract Kiara on the Outlands. When Kiara arrives on his territory, Janja shows up and tells him that he is very happy that she has come to speak. But Kiara begins to be wary when she sees the other hyenas hiding in the shadows and then decides to retrace the path but is surrounded. Janja plate Kiara on the ground until the Guard came to save her. Janja prefers to escape rather than confront them with her clan.
During Kion attempted to calm a herd of wildebeest in "Eye of the Beholder" Janja sneaks up with him. When Ono locates it Janja jumps on Kion and reaches pins on the ground. Kion takes the advantage briefly but Janja takes over, Kion uses his hind legs to project Janja into the air or hit her a wildebeest who throws it away, he announces to Cheezi and Chungu that they are retreating and the three hyenas return to the Outlands.
At his lair, he listens to the conversations of the vultures and learns that Ono has lost his sight and this gives him an idea. Janja with Cheezi and Chungu returns to Pride Lands in the goal to trap the guard. His plan succeeds; the guard is trapped by landslides. The hyenas then head towards the herd of zebras to devour them, but afterwards they begin to run, allowing Kion to use the roar without hurting them. After the Guard is freed, Janja returns to the Outlands.
In "The Kupatana Celebration", Janja and his clan hunt a small jackal through the Outlands until the jackal is trapped by a dead end. Janja expresses his deep hatred for the jackals and also that he had chased the little jackal from his territory yesterday, but that he had nevertheless returned. Janja then says that he will give him a good lesson. The jackal smiles and Janja kicks him but Kion arrives from above and pins the leader of the hyenas on the ground. Janja asks him what he is doing in the Outlands, to which Kion replies that he wants him to let the jackal go and Bunga announces that it is Kupatana. Janja then laughs and tells Kion he can take the jackal. Confused, Kion departs from him and announces to his clan that they leave and that the Guard renders them a great service. Janja and his clan are doing it and wishes a merry Kupatana to Kion and his friends.
In "Fuli's New Family", Janja is warned by Cheezi of the presence of Bunga, who wants to throw himself into a Vvlcano to show that he is immune. But before even succeeding in crunching him Fuli arrives and saves Bunga.
Janja and his clan chase the cheetah and the honey badger and end up trapping them on a trunk floating on lava. Janja, Cheezi and Chungu jump on the trunk and try to catch them but the Lion Guard arrives, allowing Fuli and Bunga to return to the shore causing the trunk to lean down burning the buttocks of the three hyenas. Cheezi and Chungu smell the grilling meat but Janja tells them that it is they who are burning, causing both hyenas to get on Janja's back. Janja then tells them angrily to go down immediately.
Janja sneaks into the Pride Lands in "Follow That Hippo!", only to be spotted by Ono, and warns his two minions to hide until the bird went away. A bit later, the trio chase young children who play the Lion Guard. Janja manages to catch a small elephant named Mtoto at the water's edge but Beshte manages to save the little elephant and carry it on his back and enters in the water. The trio continues to pursue them on the ground until Whether they are pushed into the water by Bunga and Fuli and are chased away by crocodiles.
In "Call of the Drongo", the trio pursues a herd of antelopes until they hit Beshte. Janja unsuccessfully tries to deny it, and Kion tells the three hyenas to stop what they are doing.
Cheezi and Chungu hear Janja's voice saying that he will eat them, but the true Janja informs that it was someone else who had said that and that his came from a bush. He approaches and discovers a Drongo named Tamaa who tries to scare an animal in order to steal its food. Janja then orders Cheezi to catch the bird, so that it can be used for its new plan.
Arriving behind a plain of antelopes, Janja orders Tamaa to imitate Kion's voice to attract the antelopes to his territory in the Outlands. Tamaa denies that it has the ability to imitate the voice of Kion. Janja threatens to eat it if he does not do what he says. After the antelopes enter the Outlands, Janja decides to keep Tamaa because it could be very useful later. As the hyenas are about to attack the antelopes, they hear the voices of the Lion Guard. They are afraid at first, until Janja realize that Cheezi has let Tamaa go. He then traps the Drongo in a corner. But the real Lion Guard arrives in time and Kion pins Janja on the ground. Janja tries to make him believe that he only wanted to help the antelopes but Kion is not fooled and he, Cheezi and Chungu flee.
Janja with Cheezi and Chungu once again sneak into the Pride Lands in "Paintings and Predictions", this time to take down a herd of zebras. Janja, Cheezi, and Chungu watch from a hidden location as Ono leads the zebra herd to a safe grazing spot in the Pride Lands. Cheezi and Chungu ask Janja what they are going to do, and Janja replies that after Ono leaves, they will spook the zebras and then they will be theirs for the taking. When the Lion Guard arrives, Kion tells the members to go after Cheezi and Chungu and leave Janja to him. At this moment, Janja pursues an zebra that has lost its way to the herd and is about to have it, Kion and Bunga accidentally falls on it. Janja confused their request from where they went out. At this moment the rest of the Guard has managed to stop Cheezi and Chungu who are now ready to retreat. Janja agrees, and the hyenas scamper away.
In "The Mbali Fields Migration", the moaning of a small zebra that was part of a herd of zebra and antelopes that had to cross the Outlands to join the Mbali fields attracts the attention of Janja, Cheezi and Chungu. The trio rush to the herd before confronting Kion and Bunga. Janja and Kion clash until Kion is overthrown by Chungu. Janja breaks through the line of zebras until he is kicked in the face by Muhimu's foal, after which he backs off, racing away with Cheezi and Chungu. As he flees, Janja declares that he's never liked zebra anyway.
In "Janja's New Crew", Janja and his clan are preparing to invade the Pride Lands again, but Janja slips in the mud and hits Beshte. Though Janja tries to cover up his plot, Cheezi and Chungu reveal that they had been planning to attack the wildebeests, and Kion use the Roar to send them back to Outlands. Cheezi and Chungu land on Janja who then throws them angrily, he tells them that if his plans always fail it's because of them and he then decides not only to fired them, but also banish them from the Outlands and replace them with two other hyenas named Nne and Tano.
Later, Janja discusses a new plan with his two new seconds-in-command, but to his surprise they already have one. Their plan is to make believe that they will attack a herd of antelopes so that the guard goes on a false trail so that they can attack the oryx. Janja is very surprised but agrees. The plan goes underway, and the Lion Guard takes the bait. Janja nearly gives the hyenas away until Nne and Tano pull him into hiding. Once the Guard is gone, the hyenas begin to chase a herd of oryxes, but in the midst of the chase, Nne and Tano betray Janja, forcing him off the edge of a cliff. Janja lands safely on a ledge, but he finds himself trapped against the side of the cliff.
Janja yells angrily for their treason, drawing the attention of the Guard, Cheezi and Chungu. Kion asks Janja what he is doing there and Janja tells him that Nne and Tano are betrayed and that they will attack the oryx. Then the Guard leaves to stop them and Cheezi and Chungu decide to stay with Janja to its great dissatisfaction. After Kion uses the Roar to defeat Nne and Tano, Janja says this is the first time he is happy to hear the Roar. No sooner has he spoken when the Roar causes the ledge to break, taking Janja, Cheezi and Chungu with it. The three land safely on the ground, and Janja sets off to the Outlands. Cheezi and Chungu stare after him wistfully until he demands to know if they are coming with him. Delighted, the two tear after him, and once more a united crew, the three hyenas return to the Outlands.
In "Never Roar Again", Janja, Cheezi, Chungu, Nne and Tano flee the Guard and return to the Outlands. Janja announces to Kion that they have returned and that it is finished. But once the Guard is gone, Janja returns to the Pride Lands and the rest of the clan follow him.
They later encounter Nala, who asks Janja why he is not inthe Outlands. Janja claims that the clan did not know they were in the Pride Lands. Nala then warns him to return to his territory, but Janja refuses and tries to kill Nala who retreats and is surrounded by the clan. Kion arrives and when he sees his mother encircled by the hyenas he enters a great anger and uses a powerful Roar of the Elders to send the hyenas to back to the Outlands.
In "Ono's Idol", Janja, Cheezi and Chungu attempt to attack a herd of klipsingers who are trapped at the edge of a cliff. Luckily the trio are defeated by Ono, his hero Hadithi and the rest of the Guard.
In "The Traveling Baboon Show", When a baboon group arrives in Outland, Janja discovers Mwevi and Mwizi in his den, trying to steal food from him. Janja, Cheezi and Chungu hunt them down to a small cavern so they cannot escape. Janja announces that there will be baboons for dinner, but the Lion Guard arrives and Kion tells him to get away from the baboons but he refuses and enters a fight with the guard. Cheezi and Chungu are quickly beaten and Kion jumps on Janja and throws him on his two minions defeated. Kion asks if he has had enough, Janja does not respond then Kion tells them to leave and Janja tells him to keep the baboons away from his den.
In "The Rise of Scar", Janja and his clan hunt elephants in the plains. Janja and Nne try to catch Mtoto until Kion interferes. Janja in fear presents Nne to Kion to give him time to flee, but he and his clan are then struck by Beshte. After its attack is countered by the guard, Janja does not admit to being defeated and decides to wait before attacking the elephants again but the guard takes the elephants to a dead end and Kion uses his roar to drive out the hyenas.
Back in the Outlands, Janja listens to his minions complaining that they are hungry until Cheezi spots Ushari and they plan on eating him. Ushari shares the information he received from Makini. Ushari tells Janja that the way to win against the Guard was to bring in the only lion that would help hyenas: Scar. Unconvinced, Janja then tells the snake that Scar died in Pride Rock's flames a long time ago, but Ushari explained that for Scar to appear, Kion had to use the Roar and then use the Makini's stick which convinces Janja.
Later, near the tree of Rafiki, Janja listens well to the conversation between Ushari and Makini on how to call the evil lions of the past. When Makini leaves, Janja shows up and expresses her deep doubts about the snake until he calls skinks to infiltrate the den of the guard.
Back at the Outlands Volcano, Ushari discusses the latest information with Janja's Clan, and how to get Kion to Roar. Janja eventually decides that Kion roars best when his loved ones are in danger and with their goal in sight, they decide to bring back Scar. After singing "Bring Back a Legend", Janja and his henchmen leave for the Pride Lands.
After his clan kidnap Kiara and steal the Bakora Staff of Rafiki's apprentice Makini, he returns to the volcano and while Nne gives the stick to Ushari, Janja throws Kiara in a geyser to prevent her from fleeing.
The Lion Guard are able to get to the clan's volcanic lair and rescue Kiara, but Janja threatens Kion that he and his clan will keep coming back to harm his family. This statement causes Kion to use the Roar of the Elders in anger, causing the lair's volcano to erupt. After the Lion Guard return to the Pride Lands, Ushari tries to use the Bakora Staff to summon Scar, but to no avail. Angered, Janja kicks the staff into the volcano, but in the process, Scar appears in person. Frightened, Janja asks the flaming Lion if he is the one who thinks he is and Scar confirms it in a diabolical voice.
In "Swept Away", Janja is in the volcano and reminds Cheezi and Chungu that even though Scar is their boss, they are to listen to what he says over anyone else. Whilst Cheezi understands Chungu fails to grasp it. Just then, Njano arrives and informs him that Beshte is alone in the Outlands. Janja dismisses it, then Scar appears and states that it's the perfect time to eliminate him. Suddenly, Janja's becomes interested in the situation. When Chungu asks his boss how they're going to take out Beshte, Janja warns him against being called 'boss' in front of their current boss, Scar. He then orders his hyenas to listen to Scar, who has a plan.
When the plan begins, Janja watches the skinks lure Beshte into a canyon below Rocky Plateau. Cheezi comments that his plans don't usually work out and Janja reminds him that this is Scar's plan. Cheezi cheers up, believing that the plan might work this time around. Janja agrees but soon becomes angry at what his clan member is saying about his own plans.
They reach the top and start to push rocks onto the ground, trapping Beshte in a small area. They continue pushing rocks, trying to squash the hippo. When he's almost out of room to dodge, Janja, Cheezi, and Chungu start to push a very large boulder that they had been saving for last. But the Lion Guard arrive just in time to save their team member, with Fuli stopping the rock from falling. Kion orders Janja to back away, and Janja claims not to have known the hippo was a member of the Lion Guard and that they were just having some fun, but Kion sees through his thinly veiled lie. When Janja gets close to the edge, Kion uses his Roar of the Elders to send the hyenas flying.
When they fall, the hyenas know that Scar will be mad with them. Janja suggests that they don't have to return right away, but Ushari is waiting nearby, telling them that Scar wishes to see him, to which Janja responds "Oh boy..."
In "Rescue in the Outlands", Janja is with Cheezi and Chungu, looking for the jackals to convince them to side with Scar. The trio inadvertently enters the territory of Jasiri, which comes directly to tell them to leave. Janja, unimpressed by the little female hyena, refuses and attacks, but is tackled to the ground with Jasiri kicking the other two hyenas. Janja pushes her off and pinns her to the ground, but Jasiri manages to throw him off. Furious about being easily grounded by Jasiri, but knowing they can't beat her because of its unpredictability, Janja, Cheezi and Chungu retreat.
Back at the volcano, the three hyenas are mocked by Ushari for their incompetence to find the jackals and to have been beaten by a single hyena, to which Janja retorts that Jasiri is no ordinary hyena. Hearing this, Scar appears and thinks of recruiting Jasiri, but Janja contradicts him by saying that Jasiri is the worst hyena he knows. He then sings "The Worst Hyena We Know" to explain why he hates this hyena that respects the Circle of Life and is friends with Kion. With this information, Scar changes his mind and decides that Jasiri is a threat. He orders Janja to take his entire clan to get rid of Jasiri, since she is more than a match for only him, Cheezi and Chungu. Before leaving, Scar coldly tells Janja not to disappoint him again.
In the meantime, Jasiri plays with two hyena cubs, Tunu and Wema. Janja watches from afar and orders his clan to attack the trio. The clan launches their attack, and Jasiri desperately attempts to protect the pups from harm. In the midst of the fight, Janja brutally pushes the three into an open steam vent, where lava is steadily rising to the surface. As the clan gathers around, preventing any attempt at escape, Jasiri's sister Madoa resolves to get Kion's help.
Soon, the Lion Guard arrives and engages in a fight with the hyenas, and Janja and his clan are effectively steered away from the edge of the steam vent. With the hyenas out of the way, Kion orders Beshte to push a large rock into the lava flow, which allows Jasiri and the pups to clamber to safety.
By then, all of the hyenas have fled except for Janja, who declares that he wins as long as Jasiri is out of the fight. Just then, Jasiri emerges from the steam vent and challenges Janja to take on both herself and the Lion Guard. Reluctantly, Janja gives up the fight, yelling after Jasiri that matters are not over between them.
In "The Bite of Kenge", Janja, Cheezi and Chungu steal melons from the elephants so that they can not stand during the dry season until the guard arrives and repels the hyenas.
At the volcano, they trip over Ushari, and their arguing awakens Scar. When Janja explains what they were trying to do, Scar has a plan to steal the melons. Janja reminds him of the Lion Guard, and Ushari tells them about his friend, Kenge and he also warns them not to call him little.
Back in the Pride Lands, the hyenas meet up with Kenge, and Janja announces that he's definitely not little. The word "little" grabs Kenge's attention, and Janja assures him that he's a big lizard. With hostility, Kenge tells them not to forget it. When they ask how they're going to find the Guard, Kenge announces that he'll let them find him instead.
They steal the melons again and the guard arrives again but they are all bitten by Kenge who being a monitor lizard possesses a paralyzing venom. After arriving at Embamba Canyon, the four outlanders halt movement when Bunga arrives. Confused as to why he isn't paralyzed, they abandon the melons to confront him, not noticing Makini behind them. They grow worried when Bunga starts to taunt Kenge on his size, eventually forcing him into a rage filled frenzy. After luring Kenge into biting Cheezi and Chungu, Bunga circles around Janja, worrying him. Janja picks Bunga up in his mouth, but as Kenge lures in to eat him, Makini throws a melon at his head, causing Kenge to bite Janja's leg instead. The rest of the Guard, fully recovered from the Venom, arrives and repeats the hyenas and Kenge with the Roar vest the Outlands.
Scar then orders Janja to interrogate Zazu for information about King Simba. Janja does so, but the bird sings the musical number "I Do Have a Great Deal to Say", giving information that is useless to him and his clan. The Lion Guard then fight Janja's Clan and save Zazu.
In "Divide and Conquer", when Janja and his clan begin to hunt Twiga and Juhudi, Kion and Beshte rushes to their defense. Finally, the hyenas retreat and return to the Outlands but to Ono's surpise, the hyenas flee alongside the jackals.
In the Outlands, the hyenas and jackals come before Scar, who orders them to attack Rafiki, the knowledge-keeper of the Pride Lands, who can sense the presence of the Lions of the Past. Janja and Reirei proceed to argue over which faction should take on Rafiki, but Scar ends the fight by selecting Janja to eliminate Rafiki, while Reirei creates a diversion elsewhere.
After the meeting, Janja gloats to Reirei over Scar's decision to send the hyenas instead of the jackals. Reirei rises to the bait, proclaiming that jackals are the smartest species, and the two begin to sing "We're the Smartest" where he spends his time proclaiming himself more intelligent than any of the other jackals.
The hyenas arrive at the rock where Rafiki meditates and begin to approach him but as they stalk closer, a fire catches nearby, worrying Cheezi who is feeling too nervous, but Janja informs him that it is all part of Scar's plan. They then attack Rafiki, who turns out to be a more formidable adversary than he thought. The guard then arrives to lend a hand to Rafiki against the hyenas. With defeat eminent, Janja attempts to flee into the fire, but Scar rises up from the flames, demanding that Janja face his enemies instead of run like a coward. Janja protests that they are outnumbered, but Scar points out to him that the jackals are closing in to help finish off the Lion Guard.
A fight instigates, in which the Lion Guard and Rafiki beat back against the combined force of the hyenas and the jackals. Janja thinking to definitely have the advantage asks his enemies if they prefer to deliver the mandrill or choose the hard way, the Guard chooses the hard way and the fight begins. As usual, Janja and Kion clash and Janja takees over Kion until Rafiki throws a jackal at him. he is about to return to the charge on the cub but he is distracted by Tamaa long enough for Kion to attack him by surprise and plate him on the ground, Janja quickly admits his defeat and Reirei does it too. Defeated outlanders returned to the Outlands.
In "The Scorpion's Sting", Janja listens to Scar with Ushari, Reirei, Kiburi and Mzingo. When Scar orders his next plan for Simba and the Guard Janja asks how they are gonna take down Simba and The Lion Guard on the same day. Scar says that the scorpion Sumu will help take care of Simba. As Sumu comes in Janja first jumps on top of Reirei, then Kiburi panics. Scar says that will not sting him. Janja asks Kiburi if Sumu is gone. Kiburi answers yes and throws Janja off his back. When The Lion Guard comes to the volcano Janja's clan comes and attacks. Janja jumps on top of Kion, but Ono pulls him aside. Makini sticks out her staff to make Cheezi fall into Chungu and Janja. The Guard runs as they defeat Janja and his clan. When the guard comes into the volcano the Army of Scar comes to attack. Janja and his clan start to walk up slowly to the Guard. Kion uses his roar on them and they escape.
In Undercover Kinyonga, Scar orders Janja to block up the river at Hakuna Matata Falls in order to deplete the Pride Lands of an important water source.
That night, the hyenas attempt to block up the river, but the Lion Guard camouflage themselves and launch a surprise attack. As the hyenas retreat, Cheezi wonders how the Lion Guard had managed to learn such a trick. Kinyonga suddenly appears and takes the credit. Her unexpected appearance startles the hyenas, who fall into the river and careen over the edge of Hakuna Matata Falls.
Once at the bottom, Janja decides to lie to Scar that he had been scared away by rocks and foliage instead of the Lion Guard.
In "The Hyena Resistance", Janja, his two head minions Cheezi and Chungu, and Kiburi's Float confront the Lion Guard in the Pride Lands, but end up retreating. After another failure, Janja returns to the Volcano where he informs Scar of the failure of the plan, Scar roars at him angrily. Janja tries to justify his failure by saying it was “bad luck”, but Scar insatiate, chooses to restart the plan but this time he leaves the load to Kiburi but he also fails, followed by Reirei.
When Skinks informs Scar that the other Hyena clan led by Jasiri had formed a Hyena resistance, the evil lion asks Janja why he did not tell him that he did not get rid of Jasiri, to which Janja answers that he had forgotten to tell him that the Guard had thwarted their plan to be there. Scar gets angry but gives Janja another chance to finish the job at Mizumi Grove but with crocodiles and jackals this time.
At Mizumi Grove, the Janja's clan pops up behind Jasiri's Clan followed by Kiburi's Float and Reirei's Pack. Janja is confused when Jasiri reveals to know about Scar, then Kion appears perching on a rock and orders the Outlander to leave but Janja refuses thinking to have the advantage until Kion tells him that they are also surrounded and that the other members of the guard appear on each side. Kion gives the signal to attack and throws himself on Janja, while all the others fight back against Scar's army. During the fight, Janja approaches Jasiri and says that he will show him how to fight a real hyena, only to be accidentally hit by a crocodile that was targeting Fuli, sending him into a lava pit.
Finally Kion uses the Roar of Elders to hunt hyenas, jackals and crocodiles from Mizumi Grove. Janja, still stuck in the pit, begins to fall lava, but Jasiri grips the fur of Janja and goes back out of the pit. Completely confused, Janja asks Jasiri why she helped him, Jasiri replies that she helps all the hyenas by mentioning "Sisi Ni Sawa" meaning they are the same. She even offers Janja to leave Scar and join the hyena resistance to defeat him, Janja hesitates a bit then finally refuses and runs away, saying that they are not the same, what Jasiri says in his back "we'll see".
In "Beshte and the Beast", Janja and Scar's army attack the Pride Lands but are thwarted by a new guard ally: Shujaa, a very strong but not very smart gorilla. The hyena reports to Scar who then thinks of using the gorilla's force to cause even more damage. The plan succeeds for a while.
In "Pride Landers Unite!", Scar sends the Outlanders to attack the Makku's Watering Hole. Janja, his minions and Kiburi encircle Makuu then the two crocodiles fight. Janja then attacks Makuu himself until Ma Tembo unhooks him. Seeing that the Guard is now helped by far too many Pride Animals, Janja orders the retreat before Kion uses the roar to send them back to Outlands.
In "The Fall of Mizimu Grove", Janja leads Scar's army to Mizimu Grove to destroy it. The Lion Guard intervenes and faces the Outlanders. Janja pins Kion on the ground, but the lion is released from his grip and jumps on the hyena. The vultures have fallen torches of fire that burns the grove which allows Scar to be manifested. The fire causes the Pridelanders to flee, and Janja claims victory until Kion uses the roar.
In "Battle for the Pride Lands", Janja and the Outlanders continue to face the guard and the Pridelanders for a few years without ever getting the upper hand. One day at the Kilio Valley, Janja with his two minions, discusses the power of the roar which becomes more powerful as Kion grows and their unceasing defeat since the taking of the grove. The hyena then leaves for his side and begins to doubt his life and his choices and then sings "A New Way to Go" to wonder if his life would not be better if he was friends with Jasiri and he appreciated the circle of the life that he always rejected.
Later, Scar orders Janja and his clan to invade the Lair of the Lion Guard while he forms his plan. The hyenas enter the den located under Pride Rock and while the guard and the hyenas clash with Scar's army's fire all over Pride Rock. Janja notices the fire and manages to get out before the entrance is completely blocked. Realizing that Scar wanted his death, Janja goes to Jasiri for help because he knows the Pridelanders will not trust him. He enters the territory of Jasiri, who immediately after having spotted it demands to know that he comes to do at home. Janja first admits to thinking about what she said to him after saving him from the lava pit, even reciting: "Sisi Ni Sawa". Jasiri starts to be cautious so that Janja then admits that she was right on Scar and when he mentions that his clan and keeps her trapped under Pride Rock, the two hyenas leave immediately for Pride lands.
When they arrive, the Guard and the Hyenas manage to escape, while Scar appears at the top of Pride Rock to taunt the Pridelanders. As Kion and Simba start to doubt how to stop Scar, Janja shows up and admits to knowing how to beat Scar. Simba does not trust the hyena because of his enemy status with Pride Lands but with Jasiri's support, Janja confesses to Kion that Scar told him that using the most powerful roar inside the volcano could destroy Scar for good. Janja, accompanied by his hyenas joins the Pridelanders to go out with Scar and his army.
At the border of the Outlands, Janja, his clan and all his new allies enter the inland land and after almost reaching the volcano, he and the Pridelanders immediately enter into a long fight with Scar's army while Lion Guard enter the volcano to fight with Scar. Finally, Scar is finally destroyed for good, Ushari dies falling into the lava after vainly trying to avenge his master and the army is now dissolved.
Seeing Kion and the others come out victorious from the volcano, Janja and Jasiri join them and are shocked to see that Kion has a scar in his left eye but the teenage lion assures them that it's nothing. After Kion is announced that Scar has been defeated once and for all and that the Outlanders are wondering who will lead them now, Janja offers Jasiri as the new leader of the Outlands as he merges his clan with her own and that if the Outlanders do not respect the circle of life, they will deal with them. After the Outlanders leave, Kion says goodbye and also thanks Jasiri for everything while Janja watches him leave with a certain sadness.
In "Journey to the Pride Lands", Janja and Jasiri discover the return of the Outsiders and guiding by a asiatic cheetah named Azaad, they go to the Tree of Life to warn the Lion Guard of the danger. The two hyenas accompany their friends to Pride Lands and discover at the same time the new faculties of Kion on his masters of the roar, which makes Janja lose his old fear for all the times where Kion roared him.
In "Return to the Pride Lands", the group meets Madoa, Mzingo, Cheezi, and Chungu who have patiently waited for their return to fight with Zira and her Outsiders. On the way to Pride Rock, they are ambushed by the daughter of Zira, Vitani and four other lionesses, Shabaha, Kasi, Imara, and Tazama. Janja, his two henchmen, and Bunga encircle Shabaha, but they quickly caught him off guard when the outsider bung Bunga by the neck and throws him on Janja before terrifying Cheezi and Chungu who preached flight. While Bunga seems to be impressed by the lioness's style, Janja sarcastically tells her that he is reminded of him and the honey badger. The fight ends when Kiara and Kovu arrive in the Outlands to explain that the Outsiders have joined Simba's Pride, that Zira is dead and that Vitani neither recognized Kion nor was aware of the Outlander reform. The conflict ended, as the hyenas quietly returns to their territory. Much later at The Tree of Life, Janja is one of many invited to Kion's coronation and marriage to Rani. He and Jasiri smile at each other.
- Janja is shown to be the leader of his clan. Normally hyenas are led by females, but when males leave their old clans at two years old, they often form bachelor packs until they join larger clans with females.
- It has been revealed that Janja and his clan are descendants of Shenzi, Banzai, and Ed's clan, but it is not revealed what exactly happened to them after Scar's death.
- In "The Rise of Scar"; Janja says that Scar died in the fire at Pride Rock, indicating he is unaware of the true cause of Scar's demise.
- Janja strongly resembles Banzai, especially with his thick bushy eyebrows. However his mane extends to his head like Shenzi, and he has a similar personality. Cubs of leading hyenas often get strong bonuses to their hormones and so leadership can run in families. It is speculated that Janja is the cub of Shenzi and Banzai, but it is unconfirmed if he is or isn't.
- 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 the leader of his clan despite being male.
- He is the oldest of the hyena trio.
- Judging by personality, it's assumed that Janja is the Lion Guard's equivalent of Shenzi.
- Due to their familiarity, it can be safely assumed that Jasiri and Janja have encountered each other before.
- In Journey to the Pride Lands, Janja gets nauseous whenever he sets foot on a water ride.
- With the apparent age of Janja and the short time between The Lion King and The Lion Guard, it is highly likely that Janja was born during the reign of Scar, and was still a cub when he fled with his ancestors during the battle of Pride Rock.
- Although they know each other, Simba is the only Pridelander lion with whom Janja has not yet interacted until Battle for the Pride Lands.
- Although not yet fully developed, Janja is almost as big as Nala.
- While Janja describes Jasiri as the "worst hyena he knows," he leaves traces of admiration for her.
- It is revealed in Journey to the Pride Lands that Janja is astraphobic which is the fear of thunderstorms.
- Janja means "Crafty" or "Artful" in Swahili.