Mario’s Dead: Who Should Be the New Nintendo Overlord?

Mario on fire

We are gathered here today to honor the memory of Mario. He was a true hero in life — sort of. I mean, Princess Peach always ended up back in the clutches of Bowser, so maybe Mario kind of sucked. The dude can play every single sport to perfection but somehow never gets the job done when he faces Bowser. In any case, rest in peace and all that. Okay, let’s move on!

Rumors of Mario’s impending death began to surface when Nintendo released a couple Mario titles for a limited time. One title was Super Mario 3D All-Stars, a collection on Switch including Super Mario 64, Super Mario Sunshine, and Super Mario Galaxy. The other was Super Mario Bros. 35, an online battle royale take on the original Super Mario Bros. on NES — a delightful little gem.

Well, it turns out those rumors were true. The famed hero of the Mushroom Kingdom is no more. He spontaneously combusted just this morning. Apparently, such a fate is a common when you expose yourself to too many fire flowers over the span of multiple decades. What a way to go, eh?

Mario is dead. Those are the cold, stiff facts. As cold and stiff as a dead Mario, actually. So what now? Does Nintendo go without a mascot? I don’t think so. You saw what happened to WWE when John Cena left. Sure, he was annoying a lot of the time, and it wouldn’t have hurt the dude to put over a few other wrestlers more often than he did, but once he was gone, the company felt devoid of direction.

That can’t happen with Nintendo. No, literally, it can’t happen with Nintendo because John Cena doesn’t work there. As far as the late Mario is concerned, though, I propose we elect a new poster child for the company. But who would be the perfect fit?

Personally, my heart says Wario. After all, the guy has some truly wonderful depth to him. He’s been a villain, he’s been a hero, and he’s even an indie game designer in his free time. What better character to represent Nintendo than someone who’s done it all, even craft lovely little micro-games? Wario is flawed, but he’s motivated, and he has heart. He’s also not charred to a crisp like Mario.

Wario is king

Maybe Wario’s a little off-putting, though. He is kind of a jerk, after all, and he smells bad. Alright, what about Kirby then? Kirby’s been around for a very long time. He’s got a family-friendly appeal to him, and quite frankly, he’d be the best choice to go up against Bowser. Actually, a Kirby game set in the Mushroom Kingdom sounds like a great crossover idea! Write it down, Nintendo!

What’s that? Kirby’s too kid-friendly? I guess that’s true. Nintendo likes to appeal to as many folks as possible, and having Kirby as the new company mascot may put off some players who think they’re too cool for him. (Yeah, right. Ain’t no one cooler than Kirby!)

In case you’re wondering, I’m trying to avoid choices that are too obvious or that make little to no sense. Link would probably be at the top of most Nintendo fans’ lists, but that’s the safe answer. And as much as I love EarthBound, Ness is hardly ever around to properly represent a giant video game company like Nintendo. Donkey Kong’s cool, too, but I always associate him more so with Retro Studios and the old Rareware.

On the flip-side of things, maybe the new Nintendo mascot could be one of the company’s female stars. Peach wouldn’t be able to go anywhere without Bowser following close behind, so she’s out. And Daisy, well, I love Daisy’s attitude, but she can be kind of annoying. That narrows it down to Toadette and Birdo.

Birdo

Actually, we might be on to something with Birdo. The character’s been a part of Nintendo’s roster since the ’80s. Like Wario, Birdo started out as a villain before changing her ways and— You know what? I can’t do it. Birdo would absolutely suck as a mascot for Nintendo. I mean, Nintendo stocks would probably plummet. I like ya, Birdo, but the world’s just not ready for you to fill Mario’s oversized boots.

We could always elect Yoshi to be face of Nintendo. Okay, no we couldn’t. He’s cool, sure, but he doesn’t command authority. He’s more of a best friend to the main Nintendo mascot versus being the head honcho himself.

This is more difficult than I thought. I really can’t think of the perfect candidate to be the replacement for Mario.

You know what? Screw it — let’s just give it to one of the Hammer Bros.

Hammer Bros

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