News National Farmer decapitates rare Simba ‘Ooshie’ on live television after online abuse
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Farmer decapitates rare Simba ‘Ooshie’ on live television after online abuse

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The Simba Ooshie's life as a desired collectable came to a swift, cold-blooded end. Credit: 'Today'
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‘It’s the circle of life, and it moves us all,’ proclaims the iconic opening scene of The Lion King.

Well, for Australian fanatics still reeling from the death of Mufasa, the circle of life has delivered renewed trauma as the life of one their favourites came to an abrupt end.

And the kicker? The ice-cold killing was broadcast on live breakfast television.

Struggling Victorian farmers Stephen Black and Melissa Portingale thought they had been dealt plasticky gold after they unwrapped an ultra-rare furry Simba Ooshie following a trip to Woolworths.

The special plastic figurine is only one of 100 in circulation as part of the supermarket’s The Lion King promotional series.

Others in the collection have already been offered on eBay for absurd sums upwards of $10,000, with some fetching unsubstantiated bids of $100,000.

The Shepparton hay-growers decided to offer their sacred possession – the ‘number 001’ furry Simba Ooshie, the first ever produced – for $5000, with the money intended to prop up their parched farm.

Mufasa Simba The Lion King
Mufasa and Simba survey their kingdom in The Lion King. Photo: Disney

Their farm is one of many affected by the ongoing allegations of mismanagement of water resources in the Murray-Darling Basin.

However, things took a sinister turn once the sale was posted to Facebook, as they copped online abuse from infuriated parents.

“We said we were asking about $5000 for it. People were just disgusted. The abuse started,” Ms Portingale told the Nine Network on Friday.

“It was just hate, and suicidal threats and just some really awful things were said.”

Seeing no other way to stem the social media bullies, Mr Black nipped them in the bud by chopping up the Simba Ooshie with scissors.

simba-ooshie-today-show-hacked
The Simba Ooshie’s life as a desired collectable came to a swift, cold-blooded end. Credit: ‘Today’

“You can’t buy it. I’m going to destroy it,” he said, hacking away at the toy.

“If we were on the edge like some of the farmers are that have taken their lives because it got too much, this stuff may have pushed one of us over the edge.

“You ask yourself what is a life worth … what money? Is it worth this? It’s not.”

The dramatic move garnered a mixed response on social media. Some applauded the farmers’ defiant stand, while others were stunned – and had to explain the on-air calamity to their children.

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