Is Mario (character) more remembered for being reputable or being disreputable?

winstein

Justice is not limited, it is a universal quality
It's no doubt that when it comes to the Mario series and the Mario games, Mario is considered reputable for the quality of the games, not to mention how trustworthy the series generally is. However, this topic is more talking about Mario as a character. In general, Mario doesn't display too much about his character in the games that are present, where he's normally silent, or if something had to be said, another character will do the talking. In fact, Mario talking is rare, where there are games like Mario vs. Donkey Kong (GBA) or Fortune Street where he actually said more frequently than the average speech time. Because of how Mario doesn't really display his character a lot, his personality might seem like it's more open-ended, even though Mario's character in the Nintendo guidelines portray him as heroic and virtuous.

That doesn't really stop fans from portraying Mario as character in their own ways. In fact, quite a lot are more inclined to portray him as disreputable, in which Mario is portray to partake in many vices, do things that paint a bad light to the character, or interpret the character under a negative light. As an example, we have the SuperMarioGlitchy4 series that portray Mario with a callous attitude and a general affinity for spaghetti in a gross manner, because apparently portraying Mario as he is made is "boring". There's also how he's portrayed as partaking in substance abuse, merely because mushrooms are a source of power-up in the games. And that's not to mention how one of Game Theory's more infamous and well-known theories concern Mario being in the morally wrong that essentially painted him as a villain. Mario is very commonly depicted as a wrongdoer that sometimes it's easy to forget how Mario is intended to behave, similar to how Mickey Mouse is assumed to be a villain even though the character himself is one of heroism and adventure-seeking (the comics portrayed him as such). Also, unlike every Mario movie voice actor, he is strongly associated with the person who voiced him that makes one wonders if every voice actor is invalidated (including Charles Martinet), unlike every other character (so for example, nobody called Peach "Anya Taylor-Joy" as a joke, at least not in the long term).

And thus we have a sort of dichotomy here: the original creators intend for Mario to be typically heroic, but the idea that Mario is anything but heroic is more tempting to portray by fans. Because of how wildly different the portrayals are, there might be some fans who would be affected by irony poisoning that they might believe that Mario is not at all a good guy. This is not to say that portraying Mario's heroism is completely absent from fan works, but it's more that Mario is a very easy character to mock. In fact, it even seems like Luigi and Wario have a better reputation than Mario because the former is portrayed by fans as someone who could never do wrong, while the latter is basically immune to disrespect.

And so, we get right down to the topic on hand: is it more common for Mario to be portrayed as someone who is straight-up good, or someone who has sinister intentions? In a Mario forum, I can totally understand if the former is perceived to be the more common interpretation because well, we are more invested in the series than others so we understand Mario better, but perhaps it could also encompass the external environment as well. So, what say you?

Thank you for reading.
 

Reagan Ridley

splashmouse
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Mario's personality is a strong selling point for me all the way back to his NES SMB3 Boxart.
An adult man with childlike wonder and vibrantly expressive personality, was and is a role model I've needed to not hate our world entirely. (I grew up surrounded by toxic masculinity both at home and school)

As for the question of Mario's moral compass, I hate the question in itself. I've always hated the fans edgy take that he's bad or selfish. Fuck the Youtubers who keep that stupid NewGrounds shit take alive.

Oop, sorry lost my cool for moment..

Realisticly, just like you said, I believe the fans who put him in negative lights know full well they're twisting his character, similarlly done with Elmo and Chipmunks ie. They're either making their ver. of him out of personal experiences, or second hand knowledge from edgy media.

RE: What's more common?
I think if we were to put circles of how far in as a fan someone is to the Mario franchise, the more someone spends time on the franchise aka the more in the circles they are, the less likely they are to make Mock Mario fics. With that said, the majority of playerbase are casuals and multi-franchise-focused competitive gamers who are more likely to make and enjoy Mock Mario content, therefore Mock Mario is more common on platforms that cater to the general populous, Twitter and Youtube IE. Whereas places like Tumblr that are more fanatic catering will show the characters in better or accurate light more often.
So in the end it really comes to which environment you're in as to if Mario will be portrayed as intended or a parody.
 
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Jaz

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And so, we get right down to the topic on hand: is it more common for Mario to be portrayed as someone who is straight-up good, or someone who has sinister intentions?

Thank you for reading.
since im a avid mario/jjba fanfic reader i know my way around when you can tell an author doesn't like mario, even if they are trying to have mario seem like a good guy in the story. like those mario and luigi brotherly "hurt and comfort" fanfics where the conflict (hurt part) is mario literally verbally abusing luigi and luigi storms out. hell i read one of these where the conflict was mario getting so mad at luigi HE BURNED THE SIDE OF LUIGI'S FACE WITH HIS FIREBRAND ABILITY. very tramatic fic and im glad it is deleted. i should mention that yes, the authors of these are avid mario fans, so it's very weird and gross to see stuff like this. thankfully it's getting rarer to find these and the mario and luigi "hurt/comfort" genre has gotten a lot better.

another time where mario is portrayed more badly is with luaisy fanfics. i have no freaking clue what is up with luaisy shippers and believing that daisy is the only person who truely cares abt luigi. mario in these fanfics is often portrayed as egotistical from his high status in the kingdom and will almost 100% forget his brother for anything related to peach. there were even fanfics i read where mario disregards luigi's feelings or talks down to him with using the most pitiful insults like "oh you're just player two" or some shit like that. but then daisy comes into the story and sweeps luigi off his feet and actually treats him like a real person. there's also quiet often a part where daisy goes up to mario and gives him a piece of her mind and at the end people in the mushroom kingdom care abt luigi or something idk. this is one of the biggest reasons why i hate luaisy, the fact they seem to have a need to make luigi this loser until daisy comes into his life is just ugh.

i also wanna mention that most authors who write a more dickish mario are guys. this isn't always the case, but even so i have never seen a male author write a brotherly fluff fic (best mario fanfic genre). also with your example of SMG4, i don't think he's the best example to give as he is more of a parody account, and parodys are often more """mature""" than their source material.
 

zelen !!

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As an example, we have the SuperMarioGlitchy4 series that portray Mario with a callous attitude and a general affinity for spaghetti in a gross manner, because apparently portraying Mario as he is made is "boring".
smg4 (derogatory)
( sorry )

i think its more common to portray him as a poopy head outside of the fandom because apparently poopyheads lend themselves better to the same adult jokes video game parodies wont stop going for therefore we get a plethora (too much) of Mushroom Drug?? Mario Punch Luigi And Yoshi And Cheat On Peach With Toad??? jokes over and over and over
inside the fandom huh i guess it varies but ive personally seen more nice mario than not
nice mario is better! stop butchering him for your Funny Adult Humor Which Amounts To The Same Few Unfunny Jokes Every Time
 

Koops

Agony
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I disagree on the notion that mario doesn't display character for most of the series just because he never speaks. I believe there are many ways in which a character in any form of media can have a prominent personality, and while dialogue is indeed the most common means of showcasing such a thing, one's own personality traits can shine through one's actions, specific reactions to given situations, as well as their relationships, hell, even down to the very way they look. Designs tend to do a better job of conveying what a character's all about more than anything else given that that is the thing you will be using your eyes, the agents of the most prominent of all five senses, to interpret. And in that sense, Mario's character is illuminating due to how unique his design is.

Unfortunately, to answer the question would mean no less than to admit that yes, Mario is constantly regarded in the public eye, although rather jokingly, as the more negative adjective. As zelen pointed out, boring adult humor is much too easy to attribute to a middle aged-looking man such as mario, making his design something of a double-edged sword. I've personally seen more cringe mario than cool mario in my time but I don't see much mario online period so what I've seen is but a sample. Doesn't mean it isn't present, if not prevalent.
 

Redshift

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People overstate Luigi's personality compared to Mario. It's just that Luigi has negative character traits and clear flaws, but it's not like Mario doesn't have a personality and charm on his own about him either.

Anyway, I can't really say much about that character as I don't have much investment in him. Personally, I see people view him in a more positive light than not, and the questions asked are a typical thing where negative qualities are shone in a brighter light because...well they're negative. I've seen my share of SFM videos where Mario is portrayed as he should, and most fanart has him drawn like he should be. Only a few people make him out to be like a womanizing sociopathic asshole (such as Dorkly), and they're typically the "hahaha we're adult and edgy" type of people anyway. And internet content in general doesn't speak for the people offline where we have no data of, but I can tell you that a lot of Mario's playerbase are children who likely don't view Mario in this manner either.
 

Poochy

Shroom Mascot
I think Mario needs more positive interpretations. The fan projects we create here are a good start.

SMG4 is not a good interpretation of anything Mario. It has good ocs, and the episodes can be funny, but Mario, Peach, and especially Bowser, suck in this series. At first, the Bowser model looked completely fine, but in later videos, He Looks Like A Completely Different Character! Why did they do this to him?!

And SML isn't any better. Bowser's interpretation is ok, but the rest are flat, one-note, and either very mean, very smart, or very stupid. And the ocs, especially Jeffy, are very bad. I'm glad they got sued, but they haven't improved at all.

Mario isn't stupid. Mario isn't mean. Mario doesn't date with Rosalina. Mario is not a father to a stupid kid. And finally, Mario is not a boring character. Period.
 
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Penguin Mario

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*sniffs deeply* I always love a good topic about my favorite plumber.

First, I just want to clear the notion that Mario's uniquely "characterless": keep in mind that ALL characters are defined by only a few personality traits and people often overstate Luigi, Waluigi, Wario, and Bowser's personalities. Additionally, I'd argue that Yoshi and Toad have quite similar traits to Mario yet doesn't get anywhere near apparent flak for a lack of personality than Mario, but Yoshi is way more boring to me as Mario has benefit of main character and having a twin brother (whereas Toad... yeah he does get singled out when people oppose him for Smash Bros. but I don't see people going about how bland he is in the games, though he serves as a commentator for Mario... not my favorite trope of the Mario series).

As far as I know, fans/third parties do sometimes like to depict Mario as... more antiheroish such as one of my least favorite depictions of Mario coming from Super Mario Glitchy 4 (where he's a raving idiot who does assholish things out of stupidity and cares only about pasta; would blow up his friends for pasta) and Dorkly (ohhhh boy Mario's unbearable to watch in a lot of these episodes). However, I've seen more positive depictions of Mario in some fan ways. When I see fansthird parties portray Mario, such as DeviantArt comics, often times, Mario's cheerful, positive, confident, but comparing to Luigi, I almost always see him as more mature and sometimes being no-nonsense and having more common sense. Kind of like Mario in Super Mario Adventures,

I disagree with SMG4's reasoning that Nintendo's Mario would be "too boring". You can write a character that's similar to Nintendo's Mario but add more traits to him to help him stand out better. For instance, I can write Mario as an open-minded figure. He's mentally competent (probably contradicts with the games somewhat, but Mario isn't exactly a brain-dead moron in the game... he's just a silly cartoon character), but he can come off as "stupid" and stubborn, being accustomed to being a leader. He's mature, practical-minded, doesn't easily fall for traps, can make snap decisions, all because he has so much experience being in similar situations (though the lack of gullibility contradicts with how gullible Mario is sometimes in the games). I mean you can write all of this in, add some more relatable flaws than "hahah he's a big fat stupid obnoxious jerk" (I personally love the notion that he's actually as insecure as Luigi but hides it better behind acting confident, and not sacrifice the essence of Mario's character, which I think is confidence, positivity, leadership, open-mindedness, etc.

since im a avid mario/jjba fanfic reader i know my way around when you can tell an author doesn't like mario, even if they are trying to have mario seem like a good guy in the story. like those mario and luigi brotherly "hurt and comfort" fanfics where the conflict (hurt part) is mario literally verbally abusing luigi and luigi storms out. hell i read one of these where the conflict was mario getting so mad at luigi HE BURNED THE SIDE OF LUIGI'S FACE WITH HIS FIREBRAND ABILITY. very tramatic fic and im glad it is deleted. i should mention that yes, the authors of these are avid mario fans, so it's very weird and gross to see stuff like this. thankfully it's getting rarer to find these and the mario and luigi "hurt/comfort" genre has gotten a lot better.

another time where mario is portrayed more badly is with luaisy fanfics. i have no freaking clue what is up with luaisy shippers and believing that daisy is the only person who truely cares abt luigi. mario in these fanfics is often portrayed as egotistical from his high status in the kingdom and will almost 100% forget his brother for anything related to peach. there were even fanfics i read where mario disregards luigi's feelings or talks down to him with using the most pitiful insults like "oh you're just player two" or some shit like that. but then daisy comes into the story and sweeps luigi off his feet and actually treats him like a real person. there's also quiet often a part where daisy goes up to mario and gives him a piece of her mind and at the end people in the mushroom kingdom care abt luigi or something idk. this is one of the biggest reasons why i hate luaisy, the fact they seem to have a need to make luigi this loser until daisy comes into his life is just ugh.

i also wanna mention that most authors who write a more dickish mario are guys. this isn't always the case, but even so i have never seen a male author write a brotherly fluff fic (best mario fanfic genre). also with your example of SMG4, i don't think he's the best example to give as he is more of a parody account, and parodys are often more """mature""" than their source material.
Yeah, I can totally seeing fan depictions of Mario being abusive to Luigi. Again it kind of reminds me of the abusive shit that Dorkly made Mario out to be. I can't believe you'd sit through those stories, since those seem downright unbearable to read. You mention about Luigi "storming out" but all I can imagine is Luigi bursting into tears. If I were to write Mario and if he were to yell at Luigi like this, readers would know from body language (if the story is not told from Mario's perspective) that Mario would instantly feel regret, though still angry and feeling like Luigi's in the wrong and he's in the right. Wouldn't be periodical abuse like what I'm getting from you, but y'know, angry arguments sibling to sibling are a fact of life.

YIKES on Mario striking Luigi with a firebrand though (context matters though, cartoonish shenanigans could make it acceptable (e.g. Mario lighting a fire under Luigi for Luigi snoring too loud; but if it's like going way too close to real abuse, then yeah). As for hitting someone, I can only imagine Mario being at his complete limits but I feel that's a once in a lifetime thing if Mario were to ever hit his own brother, since that memory and deep regret is going to make sure it doesn't happen again.

I'm also going to assume these people don't really have experience of a close sibling, much less a twin sibling. These people who want Mario neglect Luigi for Peach are seriously underestimating the dynamic of a TWIN relationship, and they're assuming Mario and Luigi are regular old siblings. I don't know if you know any fanfic writer that has asked for twin perspective, has twin siblings, or is a twin themselves, but I think twins would make for the best writers for Mario and Luigi. I don't wanna come off as bragging or something, but anyhow, why not actually write that twin dynamic? It's the one biggest stand-out feature Mario has. There simply isn't many twin depictions in media, why not write Mario's (and Luigi's) story as a story about twins? It's so unique, practically untapped, and some of these fanfic writers are abandoning THAT golden opportunity for the billions of man-woman romance stories? Maybe it's just hard to write twins compared to the cisheteronormative stuff, which I just assume that's the metric for most of these fanfic writers.

The Mario in SMG4 is not a GOOD parody imo. It's hard to get it correct if you're trying to "satirize" but if that Mario is supposed to be satire then that message is totally lost on me since there are oh-so-serious fanfic writers who have also unlikeable Mario.

I'm not entirely sure if Mario's viewed on the negative side by general public, but I think people just generally see him as more of a mascot who represents video games and his video games. Maybe like a seal on a wrapper. A logo. I mean how do you guys normally view the likes of Mickey Mouse or other recognizable children's cartoon characters? I don't give much thought on drug jokes and the like, I just see them as children's entertainment that is pleasant to look at. I'm sure the very general public sees them as such.
 
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Jaz

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Yeah, I can totally seeing fan depictions of Mario being abusive to Luigi. Again it kind of reminds me of the abusive shit that Dorkly made Mario out to be. I can't believe you'd sit through those stories, since those seem downright unbearable to read. You mention about Luigi "storming out" but all I can imagine is Luigi bursting into tears. If I were to write Mario and if he were to yell at Luigi like this, readers would know from body language (if the story is not told from Mario's perspective) that Mario would instantly feel regret, though still angry and feeling like Luigi's in the wrong and he's in the right. Wouldn't be periodical abuse like what I'm getting from you, but y'know, angry arguments sibling to sibling are a fact of life.
I totally get that sibling squable a lot lmao, but in the context I mean I lot of verbal abuse from mario and luigi just taking it till he couldn't. and yeah many fanfics writers do have him storm out to cry alone, probably shoulda made that more clear. and many of these fanfics are told from luigi's perspective and neglect body language a lottt

YIKES on Mario striking Luigi with a firebrand though (context matters though, cartoonish shenanigans could make it acceptable (e.g. Mario lighting a fire under Luigi for Luigi snoring too loud; but if it's like going way too close to real abuse, then yeah). As for hitting someone, I can only imagine Mario being at his complete limits but I feel that's a once in a lifetime thing if Mario were to ever hit his own brother, since that memory and deep regret is going to make sure it doesn't happen again.
was definitely not cartoony, the REALLY UNESSICARILY DETAILED scene of luigi staring at his half burned face was uh yeah something. (if it was cartoony I would've found it funny/cute and wouldn't have it mentioned.)

I can't believe you'd sit through those stories, since those seem downright unbearable to read.
I enjoy reading all fanfics even if they are bad as it teaches me how and how not to characterize and such. i just find it terribly sad that it's a repeating pattern. i should also that MANY MANY mario and luigi hurt/comfort are like 10000000 times better than the ones mentioned. the bad ones are hard to find but really stick with you because like wow.

(but yes those really bad ones are like very unbearable, most I've had to stop reading so I have no clue how many ended, could only imagine...
 

crepuscular

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I do think for those more deeply into the Mario franchise, the sentiment that Mario needs to be turned into a megalomaniac or otherwise made out to be antiheroic to be interesting is uncommon. I think it occurs most often within casual circles. As someone else pointed out, it's especially prevalent among cis adult men who often enjoy that kind of humor the most. There's also the laymen who follow along with the Game Theorists, not really thinking into it for themselves. These are people who get outraged at the potential harsh treatment that Luigi receives at Mario's hand, and they're the most vocal about it, bringing it up whenever Luigi is spoken about (like, for instance, in the context of Luigi being blasé about Mario in a dress to the point of being much more fixated on him potentially not telling him that he's getting married; I've seen a tweet talking about how sweet Luigi is and oh, it's such a shame Mario is so cruel to him in turn!). Lastly, there's those who pervert his character on purpose as a character study attempt or for angst, as was previously mentioned - generally just amateur writers who want to make their ship happen or generate drama but have trouble thinking of a way of doing so in a genuine fashion.

Basically, to put it more simply, I think the people who see or write Mario in this way fall into one of three camps: 1) generally trying to appeal to their own sense of humor, 2) those who need conflict in their story and can't find an authentic way of doing so, or 3) those who genuinely misunderstand the dynamic because they listen to the Game Theorists or others speaking on the Mario franchise by means of telephone. I don't think any of these groups are indicative of the fandom as a whole. There are plenty, both fic writers and not, who recognize and like Mario as he is.

Personally, as a Luigi fan, I'm most bothered by those who believe that talking Luigi up to be better and talking about how Mario is just so bad to him somehow elevates him. A large part of Luigi's motivation is Mario, and it always has been. Cutting out that piece of him when it was Luigi's motivation to rescue Mario in the first place that brought about the individualism of his character is... quite frankly, not just bad to Mario but reductive to Luigi. A lot of his struggles as the younger sibling outshined by Mario don't come from Mario being awful. It takes the attention off of characters that fail to recognize him (and he does receive canon put-downs! If you must include that drama there's no need to retroactively fit Mario into that role when there are plenty other examples) as well as makes their dynamic more simple and makes Luigi as Can Do No Wrong Ever (rather than acknowledge the potential that Luigi is not communicating these feelings directly to Mario). In other words, I'd argue it's more boring to vilify Mario for Luigi's story; it's more interesting if the issue is more complex than that.

Of course, there's also the fact that they're basically cartoon characters and you don't need to sprinkle in so much cynicism to make it good. There are other franchises to go to if you want to satiate your appetite for the relationships these people are clearly looking for.
 

Penguin Mario

🐧Penguins. Lots of them.🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧
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Bazooka Mario
I totally get that sibling squable a lot lmao, but in the context I mean I lot of verbal abuse from mario and luigi just taking it till he couldn't. and yeah many fanfics writers do have him storm out to cry alone, probably shoulda made that more clear. and many of these fanfics are told from luigi's perspective and neglect body language a lottt

was definitely not cartoony, the REALLY UNESSICARILY DETAILED scene of luigi staring at his half burned face was uh yeah something. (if it was cartoony I would've found it funny/cute and wouldn't have it mentioned.)

(but yes those really bad ones are like very unbearable, most I've had to stop reading so I have no clue how many ended, could only imagine...
From what I can garner, twin conflicts CAN get really really intense. I've had the experience myself a few highly unpleasant times, and it seems corroborated. If I were to write that, you'd quickly see each other's reactions are understandable.

Like, idk here's a scenario I made up (but my sister and I loved to reenact this conversation from time to time).

Mario comes in from adventuring, finds the house in a mess (clothes on the ground, dishes not cleaned), sees Luigi snoring. Mario, frustrated, shakes Luigi awake. Luigi yells awake. Mario angrily yells at Luigi, and Luigi's still a bit dazed. Mario exasperatingly demands Luigi why did he fail at housekeeping. Luigi (truthfully) tells Mario that he found a spider under the rug at 10pm and he freaked out all night and passed out in the morning, which makes Mario even more angry, who doesn't believe Luigi, and snaps that Luigi is just making up excuses. Where Luigi then tells Mario, to look under the rug, and then Mario lifts the rug, and of course, the spider crawled away a while ago. Luigi looks shocked and swears to Mario that a spider is there. And then Mario rants on how lazy Luigi is, maybe the L stands for "lazy". Besides, it's JUST a spider, you're a thousand times stronger than it. I can't be taking care of EVERYTHING in this house! And then Luigi, hurt by being called "lazy", accuses Mario of just selfish and a cocky jerk being on vacation with Peach rather than actually working, why are you still so fat from all that apparent platforming you're saying you're doing, while I'm stuck with endless chores cleaning your smelly underwear and no appreciation for ANYTHING. Heck, look at all the fan mail going to you and not me. That M stands for "monkey business". Besides, the house isn't THAT much of a mess. Also, that spider's really scary, what if it's poisonous? What if it crawls under my gloves?

And well, you know, an argument something like that. I'm betting some of the fanfics you read are far more one-sided, while in my case, I make sure both of them have grains of truth and have understandable reactions, but people can see they're not being exactly level-headed (but you're not, not if you're tired from adventuring, and not if you're shaken awake by an angry brother) and you can't really side with either here, but you don't dislike them either for reacting the way they did.

I do think for those more deeply into the Mario franchise, the sentiment that Mario needs to be turned into a megalomaniac or otherwise made out to be antiheroic to be interesting is uncommon. I think it occurs most often within casual circles. As someone else pointed out, it's especially prevalent among cis adult men who often enjoy that kind of humor the most. There's also the laymen who follow along with the Game Theorists, not really thinking into it for themselves. These are people who get outraged at the potential harsh treatment that Luigi receives at Mario's hand, and they're the most vocal about it, bringing it up whenever Luigi is spoken about (like, for instance, in the context of Luigi being blasé about Mario in a dress to the point of being much more fixated on him potentially not telling him that he's getting married; I've seen a tweet talking about how sweet Luigi is and oh, it's such a shame Mario is so cruel to him in turn!). Lastly, there's those who pervert his character on purpose as a character study attempt or for angst, as was previously mentioned - generally just amateur writers who want to make their ship happen or generate drama but have trouble thinking of a way of doing so in a genuine fashion.

Basically, to put it more simply, I think the people who see or write Mario in this way fall into one of three camps: 1) generally trying to appeal to their own sense of humor, 2) those who need conflict in their story and can't find an authentic way of doing so, or 3) those who genuinely misunderstand the dynamic because they listen to the Game Theorists or others speaking on the Mario franchise by means of telephone. I don't think any of these groups are indicative of the fandom as a whole. There are plenty, both fic writers and not, who recognize and like Mario as he is.

Personally, as a Luigi fan, I'm most bothered by those who believe that talking Luigi up to be better and talking about how Mario is just so bad to him somehow elevates him. A large part of Luigi's motivation is Mario, and it always has been. Cutting out that piece of him when it was Luigi's motivation to rescue Mario in the first place that brought about the individualism of his character is... quite frankly, not just bad to Mario but reductive to Luigi. A lot of his struggles as the younger sibling outshined by Mario don't come from Mario being awful. It takes the attention off of characters that fail to recognize him (and he does receive canon put-downs! If you must include that drama there's no need to retroactively fit Mario into that role when there are plenty other examples) as well as makes their dynamic more simple and makes Luigi as Can Do No Wrong Ever (rather than acknowledge the potential that Luigi is not communicating these feelings directly to Mario). In other words, I'd argue it's more boring to vilify Mario for Luigi's story; it's more interesting if the issue is more complex than that.

Of course, there's also the fact that they're basically cartoon characters and you don't need to sprinkle in so much cynicism to make it good. There are other franchises to go to if you want to satiate your appetite for the relationships these people are clearly looking for.
Hey, welcome to the forums, nice first post. Nice pfp. Nice username. Nice everything actually! :happy: I'm the resident Mario fanatic on this forum! If it isn't obvious already from the theme, signature, username, and the long-term status I have here... I also love Luigi too, just not as much as Mario but I mean he's 2nd favorite! Silver's always a great honor to have, Luigi should be proud of his silver status.

How the hell is Luigi remarking on the "not getting married" cruel on Mario's part? The cruelty isn't actually there, it's just their own dislike for Mario coloring this perception. I myself always saw it as an expression of shock and mild disappointment, but it's light-hearted and wholesome in the end? Luigi could've went for a way meaner remark like "that dress looks so wrong!!!" like he's stuck in the mid 2000s when Jerry was being a dick to Luigi in Thousand-Year Door.

Also yeah I agree here. They're not even treating abuse with the severity and complexity it deserves. Even if you want to write someone as abusive, you still have to show them as a human being and not like a complete monster.

And yeah, you don't even have to make Mario a monster if you want to highlight Luigi's struggles as an overshadowed brother. As I mentioned super briefly, you could have scenes like this: Mario announces a ton of mail coming in, fan mail. Luigi lights up, Maybe there's some for me??? And Mario goes, Sure, I'll have a look through it. Hmm. This is... to Mario. Nope! This one? Mario. Eh. Oh, this? Mario. Mario. To Mario. For Mario. OH is it for you? No, just a smudge, it's for Mario.

And then Luigi looks super disappointed and Mario has a super sympathetic look, going like, Hey Luigi, one day, there is going to be a to Luigi, it'll be an occasion! And Luigi goes, Easy for you to say, and sulks. Mario then makes that sad, concerned, but hopeful face.

Maybe Mario then finds a "To Luigi" mail, HEY! 'To Luigi!' Luigi panics and yells in joy, but Mario opens it, with shocked eyes, and burns it. Luigi screams in outrage, but Mario struggles to explain since he doesn't think Luigi can mentally handle a death threat. He finally tells Luigi, It's just a credit card offer. And Luigi's like But that's handwritten. It's fan mail for me. It HAS to be fan mail for Luigi. And then Mario feels complete guilt, not being helped that he's terrible at lying, and Luigi, devastated and in complete pain, feels Mario is being so uncharacteristically selfish that he can't handle one letter not to him and that he'd lie to him.

There, out of my freaking brain fart. Something that doesn't make Mario out as a villain and still has drama. How the hell should Mario explain? Maybe this scenario IS cliche, generic, etc, I don't know.

I'm sorry if I went into a tangent of 🌈 imagination 🌈 but I love conjuring up scenarios like this involving my two favorite guys, and it's been a favorite past time with my twin sister too.
 

crepuscular

glamrock freddy + gregory are goals
Pronouns
kit/he nby
Hey, welcome to the forums, nice first post. Nice pfp. Nice username. Nice everything actually! :happy: I'm the resident Mario fanatic on this forum! If it isn't obvious already from the theme, signature, username, and the long-term status I have here... I also love Luigi too, just not as much as Mario but I mean he's 2nd favorite! Silver's always a great honor to have, Luigi should be proud of his silver status.
I've been here before, actually! A while back. I just completely forgot my username. (Plus it's been like, actual, literal years.) I appreciate the welcomes, though! I really like the artist who drew this pfp.

It's about switched for me. Luigi is my favorite while Mario is my second favorite. Either way, I think Mario is very important to Luigi's character; in my mind, if you're a fan of one brother, it only makes sense to be a fan of the other.

How the hell is Luigi remarking on the "not getting married" cruel on Mario's part? The cruelty isn't actually there, it's just their own dislike for Mario coloring this perception. I myself always saw it as an expression of shock and mild disappointment, but it's light-hearted and wholesome in the end? Luigi could've went for a way meaner remark like "that dress looks so wrong!!!" like he's stuck in the mid 2000s when Jerry was being a dick to Luigi in Thousand-Year Door.
I think they're generally saying that Mario is cruel as a whole and Luigi's behavior is an example of how supportive he is. I saw the comment in a twitter thread, and it made me rather sad. Why can't we just be happy that Luigi is non-judgmental? (Also, Luigi being a little put off that he wasn't informed of his brother getting married would make sense... But obviously this was just a mix-up of communication, and Mario's just wearing the outfit for fun.)

Also, that Thousand-Year Door comment is... Yikes. Ha ha. I don't even know what Jerry was talking about, Luigi looks great in drag.

Also yeah I agree here. They're not even treating abuse with the severity and complexity it deserves. Even if you want to write someone as abusive, you still have to show them as a human being and not like a complete monster.
I agree with this entirely. I think exploring complex relationships in media isn't a bad thing, but the way that it's done in these fanfics just isn't it for me. I'm not saying that Mario and Luigi's relationship has to be spick and span, but there are ways to portray it in an interesting fashion without going to such an extreme.

Luckily, I do think this has gotten better with time. I've been looking through fanfics recently, and the demonization of Mario's behavior seems to have grown less frequent. Even the Luiaisy thing that was brought up before, I know there have been fics like those that make Mario a jerk just to push Luigi toward Daisy (as if Luigi couldn't have romantic interest in her without having a bad relationship with his brother...), I have seen some Luiaisy fics that aren't like that at all, and in fact Mario is generally pretty supportive toward them.

That's why I was saying in my original comment, the sentiment appears to me to be uncommon. It's just the examples of that sentiment stick out like a sore thumb. And the Game Theorists followers are everywhere, even if they aren't every comment.

And yeah, you don't even have to make Mario a monster if you want to highlight Luigi's struggles as an overshadowed brother. As I mentioned super briefly, you could have scenes like this: Mario announces a ton of mail coming in, fan mail. Luigi lights up, Maybe there's some for me??? And Mario goes, Sure, I'll have a look through it. Hmm. This is... to Mario. Nope! This one? Mario. Eh. Oh, this? Mario. Mario. To Mario. For Mario. OH is it for you? No, just a smudge, it's for Mario.

And then Luigi looks super disappointed and Mario has a super sympathetic look, going like, Hey Luigi, one day, there is going to be a to Luigi, it'll be an occasion! And Luigi goes, Easy for you to say, and sulks. Mario then makes that sad, concerned, but hopeful face.

Maybe Mario then finds a "To Luigi" mail, HEY! 'To Luigi!' Luigi panics and yells in joy, but Mario opens it, with shocked eyes, and burns it. Luigi screams in outrage, but Mario struggles to explain since he doesn't think Luigi can mentally handle a death threat. He finally tells Luigi, It's just a credit card offer. And Luigi's like But that's handwritten. It's fan mail for me. It HAS to be fan mail for Luigi. And then Mario feels complete guilt, not being helped that he's terrible at lying, and Luigi, devastated and in complete pain, feels Mario is being so uncharacteristically selfish that he can't handle one letter not to him and that he'd lie to him.

There, out of my freaking brain fart. Something that doesn't make Mario out as a villain and still has drama. How the hell should Mario explain? Maybe this scenario IS cliche, generic, etc, I don't know.

I'm sorry if I went into a tangent of 🌈 imagination 🌈 but I love conjuring up scenarios like this involving my two favorite guys, and it's been a favorite past time with my twin sister too.
That's a really interesting scenario that you came up with!

Veering a bit into headcanon territory with this one, another thought I've toggled with is the idea that Mario is aware somewhat of what people say about his little brother, just not quite the magnitude, and he can't exactly handle every single thing that's said about him. When he is aware, he sticks up for him (much like Bowser's Inside Story, or Partners in Time). But Mario struggles a bit because while he does want to protect Luigi, he also sees value in Luigi fighting his own battles and for his own image. Potentially coming about from Mario's more violent overprotective streak when he was younger, demonstrable through Baby Mario who in Partners in Time strikes the Star Gate with his hammer when angered? That gives Mario himself some depth in that he weighs the options of stepping in for Luigi and holding his hand too hard to the point that it leads Luigi being unable to stick up for himself.

None of this can legitimately be explored if you're coming in the angle from the onset of assuming that Mario doesn't care about Luigi, and that's why I disagree so heavily with those cis dudes who think Mario is boring as he is. There's a lot to explore even when considering that canon personality of his and I'd argue there's no real need to bend it.
 

Penguin Mario

🐧Penguins. Lots of them.🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧
MarioWiki
Bazooka Mario
@Cat Luigi from the sig and from the way you post I'm going to garner you're this ruiji person a while back that stanned for Luigi posted extremely similar sentiments about the bro relationships (also wasting a lot of words on funny green pizza dude and wasting a lot of words with me about the two lasagna-loving losers like here) and also had a sig that involved the bros being wholesome to each other (though theme later changed to anime) and the person also really likes bro hugs. Also dislikes Starlow. Also, has a tendency to disappear and reappear. Only difference is the pronouns here, though. Apologies if I'm wrong, but you just remind me strongly of that one.

Oh yeah I also think Luigi's important to Mario's character too. I get pretty disappointed Luigi simply isn't afforded the attention and official promotional art Mario regularly enjoys, like Luigi feels a little more supplemental rather than integral. I'm guilty of drawing just Mario and having Mario be alone, though I always feel it's a little emptier and such; this is only because I enjoy drawing Mario sooo much.

I think they're generally saying that Mario is cruel as a whole and Luigi's behavior is an example of how supportive he is. I saw the comment in a twitter thread, and it made me rather sad. Why can't we just be happy that Luigi is non-judgmental? (Also, Luigi being a little put off that he wasn't informed of his brother getting married would make sense... But obviously this was just a mix-up of communication, and Mario's just wearing the outfit for fun.)
Yeah I mean what these people are saying are that Mario's "cruel" because they think he purposely withheld information from Luigi, like important vital information, martial status, for whatever reason. It doesn't make much sense to me, especially from a gameplay perspective, Luigi was added post-release so from a game design standpoint, there's not much developers can do to have Luigi be aware of the wedding otherwise. I was pretty swell that Luigi wasn't being non judgemental (just like literally every NPC maybe barring Bowser in the game; just gotta love how nonchalant everyone is to Mario in a dress compared to ugly stares in real life otherwise and reminds me of how general npcs in the Sims just treat a cross dressing man like any other person on the lot) but I thought he would praise Mario for looking good in a dress and that maybe they should have cross dressing sessions together, a nod to Luigi's crossdressing in Superstar Saga (which Nintendo did tease Luigi cross dressing when it came to them dispelling how the Super Crown worked).

I agree with this entirely. I think exploring complex relationships in media isn't a bad thing, but the way that it's done in these fanfics just isn't it for me. I'm not saying that Mario and Luigi's relationship has to be spick and span, but there are ways to portray it in an interesting fashion without going to such an extreme.

Luckily, I do think this has gotten better with time. I've been looking through fanfics recently, and the demonization of Mario's behavior seems to have grown less frequent. Even the Luiaisy thing that was brought up before, I know there have been fics like those that make Mario a jerk just to push Luigi toward Daisy (as if Luigi couldn't have romantic interest in her without having a bad relationship with his brother...), I have seen some Luiaisy fics that aren't like that at all, and in fact Mario is generally pretty supportive toward them.

That's why I was saying in my original comment, the sentiment appears to me to be uncommon. It's just the examples of that sentiment stick out like a sore thumb. And the Game Theorists followers are everywhere, even if they aren't every comment.
Honestly some people might think these relationships are inappropriate for Mario, and I'd agree, hence why it should be stuck to fanfic and such rather than mainline games where there's just too much baggage with character development to be considered.

God why aren't those fics like "hey we can do a double date". Nevertheless I can't really control how people choose to depict Mario and co. If they want to write Mario as an asshole, I'm not stopping them, but usually writing assholes for the sake of it doesn't work too well. Why single out Mario? Why not write Peach as a jerk, Yoshi as a sock-eating jerk, Rosalina as a jerk, etc. You see the same issues with completely changing what they used to be? There has to be a game plan you know; and you have to rewrite a lot of aspects of Mario where he's unrecognizable and IDK, why even use Mario at that point, why not just write another pair of siblings instead.

Veering a bit into headcanon territory with this one, another thought I've toggled with is the idea that Mario is aware somewhat of what people say about his little brother, just not quite the magnitude, and he can't exactly handle every single thing that's said about him. When he is aware, he sticks up for him (much like Bowser's Inside Story, or Partners in Time). But Mario struggles a bit because while he does want to protect Luigi, he also sees value in Luigi fighting his own battles and for his own image. Potentially coming about from Mario's more violent overprotective streak when he was younger, demonstrable through Baby Mario who in Partners in Time strikes the Star Gate with his hammer when angered? That gives Mario himself some depth in that he weighs the options of stepping in for Luigi and holding his hand too hard to the point that it leads Luigi being unable to stick up for himself.

None of this can legitimately be explored if you're coming in the angle from the onset of assuming that Mario doesn't care about Luigi, and that's why I disagree so heavily with those cis dudes who think Mario is boring as he is. There's a lot to explore even when considering that canon personality of his and I'd argue there's no real need to bend it.
Going into fanony territory, you can add that he's not overprotective, but since he's concerned about Luigi's dependency on Mario, Mario sometimes makes well-intentioned, but hurtful quips to Luigi that infantilizes Luigi and hurts feelings, like "I'm taking care of THREE babies" (think about the crying scene in Partners in Time). How I'd handle Mario is probably not him being overprotective but the other way around: Luigi is clingy, can't make any decisions, and lacks any sort of confidence and assertiveness to the point it can rub on Mario. I like the idea of overprotective Mario, but it's just not my portrayal hah.

Ehh I also disagree Mario is boring, but I also don't think within Nintendo's realm, there's much to him either. I love what Nintendo set him up, but I like to see how fans can add to Mario's character. I haven't read any fanfics at all actually, most of my ideas here have deep roots in just how my sister and I play out scenarios with Mario and friends. I mean, I'd like to sit down and read a nice fanfic 👉👈 if I can find any I dunno where to look any recommendations? but I'd be itching for Mario's "screentime" unless it's written in first person by Mario's point of view lol.
 

crepuscular

glamrock freddy + gregory are goals
Pronouns
kit/he nby
@Cat Luigi from the sig and from the way you post I'm going to garner you're this ruiji person a while back that stanned for Luigi posted extremely similar sentiments about the bro relationships (also wasting a lot of words on funny green pizza dude and wasting a lot of words with me about the two lasagna-loving losers like here) and also had a sig that involved the bros being wholesome to each other (though theme later changed to anime) and the person also really likes bro hugs. Also dislikes Starlow. Also, has a tendency to disappear and reappear. Only difference is the pronouns here, though. Apologies if I'm wrong, but you just remind me strongly of that one.
Yep! That's me! I've since come out as nonbinary, haha. This is my new main, though!

Oh yeah I also think Luigi's important to Mario's character too. I get pretty disappointed Luigi simply isn't afforded the attention and official promotional art Mario regularly enjoys, like Luigi feels a little more supplemental rather than integral. I'm guilty of drawing just Mario and having Mario be alone, though I always feel it's a little emptier and such; this is only because I enjoy drawing Mario sooo much.
I understand and I feel it. It's why I heavily enjoyed the Mario & Luigi RPGs back in the day, as you would know!

Yeah I mean what these people are saying are that Mario's "cruel" because they think he purposely withheld information from Luigi, like important vital information, martial status, for whatever reason. It doesn't make much sense to me, especially from a gameplay perspective, Luigi was added post-release so from a game design standpoint, there's not much developers can do to have Luigi be aware of the wedding otherwise. I was pretty swell that Luigi wasn't being non judgemental (just like literally every NPC maybe barring Bowser in the game; just gotta love how nonchalant everyone is to Mario in a dress compared to ugly stares in real life otherwise and reminds me of how general npcs in the Sims just treat a cross dressing man like any other person on the lot) but I thought he would praise Mario for looking good in a dress and that maybe they should have cross dressing sessions together, a nod to Luigi's crossdressing in Superstar Saga (which Nintendo did tease Luigi cross dressing when it came to them dispelling how the Super Crown worked).
Oh, I think it was just meant to be a lighthearted statement on Luigi's part! So if anyone sincerely thought that, it'd be missing the intentions of Luigi's response, which seemed mostly to just be surprise to see Mario in wedding attire.

Honestly some people might think these relationships are inappropriate for Mario, and I'd agree, hence why it should be stuck to fanfic and such rather than mainline games where there's just too much baggage with character development to be considered.
Oh, I certainly agree, but that also means that fanfic writers can mishandle it pretty badly which can create some pretty... Unpleasant content. And I think most of the time when they write it that's exactly what happens. And of course, it adds to people thinking that these people legitimately see Mario that way (hence, this thread). Personally, I don't believe they legitimately think Mario is like that but are trying to use Mario characters for that subject matter and they don't gel well with that to me.

God why aren't those fics like "hey we can do a double date". Nevertheless I can't really control how people choose to depict Mario and co. If they want to write Mario as an asshole, I'm not stopping them, but usually writing assholes for the sake of it doesn't work too well. Why single out Mario? Why not write Peach as a jerk, Yoshi as a sock-eating jerk, Rosalina as a jerk, etc. You see the same issues with completely changing what they used to be? There has to be a game plan you know; and you have to rewrite a lot of aspects of Mario where he's unrecognizable and IDK, why even use Mario at that point, why not just write another pair of siblings instead.
Honestly, I don't have much to add to this excerpt, but I agree with you 100% on all of it. The double date idea in particular sounds really cute, and it's weird how I haven't seen a fanfic explore that before. (I'm not saying definitively it doesn't exist, but if it does I haven't seen it.)

It wouldn't be that hard also to just make your own original sibling characters, either. I mean, some of the fanfics themselves (the better written ones, truthfully) do it.

Going into fanony territory, you can add that he's not overprotective, but since he's concerned about Luigi's dependency on Mario, Mario sometimes makes well-intentioned, but hurtful quips to Luigi that infantilizes Luigi and hurts feelings, like "I'm taking care of THREE babies" (think about the crying scene in Partners in Time). How I'd handle Mario is probably not him being overprotective but the other way around: Luigi is clingy, can't make any decisions, and lacks any sort of confidence and assertiveness to the point it can rub on Mario. I like the idea of overprotective Mario, but it's just not my portrayal hah.
That's understandable! I like the idea (overprotective Mario, that is), partly out of some catharsis since I am in fact the younger sibling, so maybe it's a little bit of wish fulfillment haha. But that idea that you described isn't bad either, and I think even the different canon material (arguably "canon", if you count the comics and shows and such) even explore both of those different angles to some degree.

I also admit that I think Baby Mario's overeagerness with the hammer to be hilarious and that translating into a younger Mario punching out Luigi's bullies is fun for me to imagine, personally.

Ehh I also disagree Mario is boring, but I also don't think within Nintendo's realm, there's much to him either. I love what Nintendo set him up, but I like to see how fans can add to Mario's character. I haven't read any fanfics at all actually, most of my ideas here have deep roots in just how my sister and I play out scenarios with Mario and friends. I mean, I'd like to sit down and read a nice fanfic 👉👈 if I can find any I dunno where to look any recommendations? but I'd be itching for Mario's "screentime" unless it's written in first person by Mario's point of view lol.
Oh, of course, I'm not suggesting there's nothing to explore in the fanfic realm, it's just that I don't think he needs to be "edgified" in order for that to be accomplished. Following through on his actual actions in game and exploring those in depth can already net you quite a bit (like as I did earlier with the Baby Mario hammer-happy idea) without having to insert dreariness into his characterization to make him interesting.

I know of a few fics! Of course, the ones I've been reading have a bit more of a Luigi-slanted limited omniscient (and there's a really good Mr. L one that doesn't fall victim to the Mr. L fanon tropes that I've grown ever so tired of), but they're still good reads. I fear I'd be detracting a bit from the subject of the thread by linking them here, but if you'd like, you can DM me and I can send a few links your way!


To loop back around to the main subject of the thread, from my experience I do think Mario is overall portrayed more often his good self rather than this more negative portrayal; the negative portrayals just stick out more since that's what people talk about.
 

Penguin Mario

🐧Penguins. Lots of them.🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧🐧
MarioWiki
Bazooka Mario
Dunno why people don't like SMG4 tho, he makes pretty entertaining content imo
I've given it a few shots, but the comedy has never really made me laugh so much, and its humor is puerile if not unsettling to me. Just watching SMG4 always has me feel really uncomfortable, and I can't pinpoint why but yeah I don't like it. Just not my cup of tea. It's fine if you like it but I think I'd rather have a bit more coherence and competent-minded characters.
 

King Chicken

The Fabulous Hudson Hornet
Pronouns
He/him
MarioWiki
MightyMario
Dunno why people don't like SMG4 tho, he makes pretty entertaining content imo
Eh, you have to have a certain sense of humor to like it.

It was good until they introduced the Splatoon girl, imo. The old ones are still hilarious (my favorite being who let the chomps out and the sonic ones)
 

zelen !!

actual spore creature
Pronouns
she/her
Dunno why people don't like SMG4 tho, he makes pretty entertaining content imo
ive watched dam near every new episode that was coming out for several years and its a big reason im into mario now but honestly i got absolutely and utterly tired of meggy and saiko and what ever other anime girls they started pushing and i got absolutely and utterly tired of the arcs and then just realised its nothing noteworthy anymore
and in retrospect theres some stuff that is definitely like. Not Good. like the frequent usage of the r slur in the earlier days ( afaik they did stop doing that ) and the fact that female characters all have to be anime girls with no variety beyond that (and otherwise what do we even have? like? peach? which the last vid i saw with her in it i was realy iffy on how she was so agressive for no reason). and also in retrospect the humor wasnt even that good anyways
and looking at it now is like

:\

i thought i unsubbed from it like a year ago (and it still feels like its been longer) but no apparently i only unsubbed in may this year what
 

winstein

Justice is not limited, it is a universal quality
He's a good guy, isn't he?
He is, indeed, but the topic is made to see if the internet's inclination to twisting the reputation of Mario made an impact to how he is perceived. In fact, everything that Mario did that can be misinterpreted can easily be amplified to make Mario look bad, like how he stop on Luigi's shoe in Mario's Power Tennis when Luigi wins, as if to accuse Mario of hating Luigi on that basis.

Thank you for reading.
 
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