Nintendo and fans worldwide are celebrating the twenty-fifth anniversary of the original Super Mario Bros. for the Nintendo Entertainment System this month, but leave it to The Onion to crack the secret true history of the character and his creator, Shigeru Miyamoto. The satirical publication has put together a timeline of important milestones in Mario's career and explained the relevance of each. Here's a sample:
- 1974—In a bizarre incident that will come to shape his development of Mario years later, Miyamoto accidentally smacks his head against a brick outcropping and some gold coins fall out
- 1981—Kept up all night by a leaky flush toilet mechanism, Miyamoto fantasizes about having a giant ape pelt his shiftless plumber with barrels
- 1986-1993—In the so-called 'Mario mania' years, Sega fails time and time again to score a hit with its goateed Croatian electrician character, Milorad
- 1991—Super Mario World introduces Yoshi, a complicated allegory for the state of Japanese politics
- 1994—Following the box-office failure of the Super Mario Bros. movie the previous year, the script for a Mario Kart–based sequel is hastily rewritten into the film Speed, with Dennis Hopper reprising his role as the villain
And now you know the rest of the story. I have to feel sorry for Sega though. Their series of Fantastic Milorad titles just never really took off. I must also add that a reinterpretation of Speed as a Mario Kart movie is genius. Assuming Keanu Reeves takes the Mario role, does that make Jeff Daniels into Luigi? Sandra Bullock is the princess, obviously. It's frightening how well that all works. And, of course, Alan Ruck is Yoshi.