Super Mario-kun is a long-running manga based off of Super Mario Bros.. It is written by Yukio Sawada, published by Shogakukan, and ran in CoroCoro Comic. In Japan, the manga is also available digitally on a Nintendo 3DS app.
The manga loosely adapts Super Mario Bros. games. It's a gag manga with a focus on comedy and slapstick. Some chapters also feature puzzles to solve.
The manga currently has no English translation. In 2014 it began localization in France as Super Mario: Manga Adventures and in 2016 it received a Spanish translation as Super Mario Aventuras. For the 25th anniversary of the manga, the Super Mario-kun incarnation of Mario was available to download in Super Mario Maker. It was the first time the character appeared in most countries.
Super Mario-kun provide examples of:
- Adaptation Deviation: The series is fast and loose in regards to adapting specific games (having Mario show up in Yoshi's Story, for instance).
- Adaptational Jerkass: In early chapters Mario was much more of a jerk than his normal Nice Guy version. This is because the manga didn't have much to base him off at the time.
- Adaptational Wimp: Usually, most characters are made less competent than in the games (up to and including spin-off protagonists like Donkey Kong and Wario) at the expense of having Mario save the day. That being said, even he tends to get beat up a lot before something or someone arrives to help him.
- Decomposite Character: Pauline's two designs are treated as separate characters.
- Denser and Wackier: It's much goofier than the games.
- Divergent Character Evolution: Since the baby Yoshis look alike, they each get their own distinct personality here: green is the brave leader, red is spirited, blue is calm and aloof, sky blue is the most intelligent, pink is the overly feminine girl, and yellow is the dumbest one.
- Early Installment Weirdness: The early chapters differentiate heavily from Mario canon due to being created when the series was still relatively young and low on characterization.
- Long Runner: It's been running since 1991.
- Ragtag Bunch of Misfits / We ARE Struggling Together: Whenever Mario has friends tagging along, they barely even manage to get along well.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: The standard tactic used when being faced against a formidable foe. It never works for long.
- Surveillance as the Plot Demands: The main villains tend to watch Mario's current actions via a monitor.