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First appearance Tarzan of the Apes
Last appearance Jungle Tales of Tarzan
Created by Edgar Rice Burroughs
Portrayed by Keith David (voice)
Species Great Ape
Gender Male
Spouse(s) Kala
Relatives Tarzan (adopted son)

Tublat is a fictional ape character in Edgar Rice Burroughs's original Tarzan novel, Tarzan of the Apes, and in the Walt Disney-produced animated television series The Legend of Tarzan.


In the novel Tarzan of the Apes Tublat (whose name means "Broken Nose") is a member of a tribal band of Mangani, a fictional species of that is somewhere between ape and human. In the beginning of the original novel, Tublat's mate Kala saves the infant Tarzan the murderous fury of Kerchak, the mad leader of the ape band, after the latter kills Tarzan's human father. Kala goes on to rear the human baby as her own while protecting him against both Kerchak and Tublat. Tublat, while portrayed as a fairly passive figure in the novel, is resentful of his foster-son Tarzan, and would kill him given the chance. Tarzan, in response, taunts and teases Tublat from a safe distance. Ultimately, when Tarzan has reached his early teens, Tublat goes mad and attacks Kala. To protect Kala Tarzan fights and kills Tublat.[1]

Tublat also appears in Jungle Tales of Tarzan, the sixth book of the Tarzan series, which relates episodes from the ape man's youth omitted from Tarzan of the Apes. Chapter 7, "The End of Bukawai," relates episodes in which Tarzan taunts Tublat with his rope and is later almost killed when he swings so long on the rope that it frays and parts, dropping him to the ground. Tublat is glad to see Tarzan injured, though Kala runs to the boy's aid and he soon revives.[2]

Disney's version[edit]

In the 1999 Disney cartoon feature Tarzan, Tublat's role as mate of Kala and foster father to Tarzan is given to Kerchak. The film's Kerchak is essentially a combination of the Kerchak and Tublat of the novel, though with a more benign personality than either. However, in the spin-off television series The Legend of Tarzan, Tublat himself appears as a separate and distinct character, and is one of the main antagonists in the series along with La and Samuel T. Philander.

This version of Tublat is a violently aggressive, possibly even carnivorous, former member of the gorilla tribe. Having been cast out of the band many years before after losing a leadership challenge to Kerchak, he seeks revenge against Tarzan, Kerchak's successor. In the episode "Tarzan and the Enemy Within," Tublat takes over another gorilla family, that of Gobu, killing the group's original leader and banishing the latter into the jungle where he is almost killed by hyenas. Tarzan rescues Gobu, whose family then retaliates against Tublat. In the episode, Tublat is voiced by Keith David and allied with Bungi the monkey, voiced by Max Casella.


  1. ^ Tarzan of the Apes (1912 novel).
  2. ^ Jungle Tales of Tarzan (1919 novel)