There were three cartoons based on the Super Mario Bros.
First was The Super Mario Bros. Super Show
, a 1989 animated/live action DiC Entertainment
production was an Animated Adaptation
's flagship games, featuring the adventures of those plucky plumbers from Brooklyn. The show ran four days a week in syndication, with Fridays reserved for a cartoon based on The Legend of Zelda
Saturday morning cartoons titled The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3
and Super Mario World
were later made (without live-action segments) and would air alongside Captain N: The Game Master
. All three shows are now available on DVD. See also Super Mario Bros The Parody Series
for the Abridged Series
Ironically, the shows are (relatively speaking) more accurate to the spirit of the games than any other Mario adaptation on either side of the Pacific.
For tropes unique to one of the three shows, see their respective articles.
Tropes present on more than one show:
- Adaptation Dye-Job: Princess Toadstool's appearance is a fairly good direct rendition of her early game sprite: a more Daisy-like redhead.
- The Anime of the Game: To the extent that sound effects, backgrounds and music from the shows' games (Super Show counting for SMB 1 and 2) are used extensively.
- Badass Mustache: Mario and Luigi.
- Bad is Good and Good is Bad: What Koopa teaches his kids, as long as their bad deeds aren't against him.
- Beauty Mark: Kootie Pie (or Wendy O. Koopa) in The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World.
- Big Eater: Mario, and later Yoshi.
- Canon Immigrant: Luigi's Cowardly Sidekick personality debuted here. Toad's oddly screechy voice is eerily similar to the gibberish sound Toadfolks make in recent games.
- Card-Carrying Villain: King Koopa and his seven Koopa Kids.
- Christmas Episode: "Koopa Klaus" and "The Night Before Cave Christmas."
- Circling Birdies: Super Stars in this case, and Mario uses it to his advantage.
- Clumsy Copyright Censorship: The song covers in SMBSS and a few SMB3 episodes being replaced by instrumentals from the latter series, most notably an instrumental version of "Mega Move," an original song created by DIC that first appeared in the Super Mario Bros. 3 series.
- Composite Character: King Koopa, the cartoons' version of Bowser, appears to be a mix of both Bowser and Wart (especially in the Super Show).
- Specifically, King Koopa has Wart's crown, green skin and Mooks.
- Cowardly Sidekick: Luigi, and later Yoshi.
- Cross-Dressing Voices: Hip and Hop Koopa.
- Daddy's Little Villain: Kootie Pie Koopa.
- A Day in the Limelight: All three shows have at least one episode focusing on Luigi - "Quest for Pizza" in SMBSS, "Life's Ruff" in SMB3, and "Mama Luigi" in SMW.
- Especially notable is that Luigi is the only one of the four heroes to be in "Life's Ruff".
- Distressed Damsel: Toadstool 90% of the time in SMBSS; in SMB3 and SMW she took on a more active role.
- Inevitable Waterfall: In Mama Luigi episode.
- Loud of War: One episode had a group of cute little aliens saving the day by using their kazoo-like noses to hum a tune which drove King Koopa nuts and forced him to flee. The song they sang? The theme of The Legend of Zelda!
- Mad Scientist: Kooky von Koopa.
- Magic Skirt: Princess Toadstool , of course.
- Mondegreen: "Ohh... fuck you, Luigi!"
- Motor Mouth: Big Mouth Koopa Jr.note
- Off Model: Every. Freaking. Thing. There are countless animation errors, all around sloppy animation quality, and some blatant inconsistencies between drawings! (note, for example that in the "Night Before Cave Christmas" episode, that Mario inexplicably grows large between cuts when he's talking to Oogtar about being "good". And the Super Mario World cartoon is probably the least frequent offender.)
- This scene features Luigi in Mario's cap and Mario calling Luigi "Mario" in Luigi's voice. In the exact same shot!
- The intro meanwhile has some very good animation that one can think it wasn't for the show.
- Once per Episode: In each series, the Mario Bros. and Koopa (with the Koopa Kids in the latter two) fight to the beat of a musical montage. Each episode of Super Show, along with a few SMB3 episodes, has a pop music song covered by the cast. The rest of the SMB3 episodes and the entire SMW series have songs specifically written for the shows.
- Plot-Induced Stupidity: At no point in the series does Koopa breathe fire, even though that's been one of his powers throughout the games. Given the fact that Fire Flowers time out in this milieu, it probably would have made him too broken.
- Quicksand Sucks: A few times the good guys got stuck in it and needed someone to help them out, apparently forgetting they have the ability to hop out of the quicksand.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: Princess Toadstool. Possibly King Koopa too, though it's arguable if he's a real king since his crown appears to be taped together.
- Saving Christmas: The Christmas episodes of The Super Mario Bros. Super Show and Super Mario World do one of the different types of this.
- Spoiled Brat: Kootie Pie Koopa, to the max.
- Super Not Drowning Skills
- Tagalong Kid: Toad in first two series and Oogtar in Super Mario World.
- Villain Exit Stage Left: King Koopa frequently pulls this off in the Super Show, usually by way of a warp-generating potion (based on the doors to Sub-Con in the American Super Mario Bros. 2), and a few times on the later two as well.
- YouTube Poop: A prime source, especially the Super Mario World cartoon.