Video game discourse on the internet is a slippery slope. Passionate gamers will leave their blood, sweat and tears in the comment section fighting for their correct opinion. But there is one argument that needs to be sealed away once and for all: Dr. Mario is the Doctor, and Dr. Mario’s Monster is the protagonist of the mainline Super Mario games.
For years I have argued with misinformed gamers about this certain reality. How else could “Mario” jump that high, run that fast, and grow that big without years of genetic modifications carried out by Dr. Mario? Dozens of surgeries and experiments have been conducted to turn the once ordinary plumber into a Koopa killing machine.
It’s true that Dr. Mario’s Monster is the main character of the story, but calling him “Mario” is an insult to the brilliant man behind this marvel of scientific engineering. A trailblazer in gene splicing tanooki and elephant DNA with humans to create the modern super soldier.
This isn’t to say we agree with the actions of Dr. Mario as he pushes the limits of the human condition. Like Sisyphus, Dr. Mario’s Monster is forced to endure endless torture. Constantly having to rescue the “princess” is nothing more than an immortal punishment for the Doctor’s man-made abomination.
The Super Mario series is an exploration into the danger of scientific endeavors left unchecked. Shigeru Miyamoto has authored a modern day Frankenstein story set in a fantastical world of stars and mushrooms. Casual gamers who refuse to read between the lines will forever make a fool of themselves when referring to “Mario” in Reddit threads and Discord servers alike.
So do your part, and spread the word to every gamer you know: Dr. Mario is the Doctor, and Dr. Mario’s Monster is the guy in the red hat.