Paper Mario has some really messed up stuff going on underneath that cute, paper exterior.
I was killing time during lunch recently listening to a Paper Mario Let’s Play and it got to the part where Mario was accused of murdering the mayor of Shiver City. Let that just sink in for a minute — Mario was genuinely accused of murder.
Of course, we all know — as the penguins find eventually find out — that Mario didn’t do anything and the mayor fell and bumped his head. But that chapter really takes a turn right after the accusation, with none of the residents wanting to talk to Mario and gathering in little groups to talk about the killer in town.
And that’s only one instance of weirdo stuff in these games, which seems like it got ratcheted up even more in Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door.
The game starts off with Mario being warned about how dangerous Rogueport is. Then to accentuate that point, he’s greeted with the sight of a noose in square in the center of the town. Yikes.
A curse for you and a curse for you and a curse for you! Curses for every Mario and party member!
And then we’ve got Grubba literally sucking the life out of wrestlers at the Glitz Pit.
I’m not sure this is how identity theft works, but either way it’s alarming when Mario becomes a shadow and no one knows who he is.
Then there’s the whole deal with the ghost on the Excess Express. Side note: Toads may be cute in life but when they’re ghosts, they look like onions.
Anyway, this isn’t just any ghost. Oh no. This ghost is stuck in the mortal world because he’s scared that someone may read the diary he left behind. Sure, that’s not scary.
But it’s when he asks Mario to retrieve the diary and bring it to him that things take a turn. Basically, if Mario goes and gets the diary and reads it, THE GHOST WILL EXACT HIS REVENGE and it’s an automatic game over.
Now let’s get to the terror that is the monster behind the Thousand Year Door.
First there’s a demon Mario has to fight. Okay sure. But also the demon possesses Peach’s body. It was actually only within the last couple of years when I saw someone online say that their parents wouldn’t let them play the game because of the demon that I realized just how bizarre TTYD was with that.
In conclusion, as I worked on this post, I realized that TTYD was a pretty dark game.
What are some of your more memorable alarming moments from the Paper Mario series? Let me know in the comments.