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What An Idiot / Super Mario Bros.

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Luigi: You lost your noodle?

Given how at least some of the Mario games are stated to be stage plays by Shigeru Miyamoto himself, one has to wonder if regular lack of intellect is part of the script. And then there are times where the characters just don't have an excuse.

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  • In the original Super Mario Bros., The Evil Bowser, King of the Koopas has booby-trapped all eight of the Mushroom Kingdom's strongholds with flame arms, and numerous pits of lava & nothingness to prevent any intruders from breaking in and rescuing the Toad/Princess who is imprisoned there. At the end of each stronghold, Bowser(?) awaits any intruder who dares get through all the traps to challenge him directly, on top of a bridge over lava that can be opened by a lever behind Bowser. Handy for sending any living thing down to their doom should they be on that bridge.
    You'd Expect: That Bowser just flip or kick the lever Right Behind Him in order to guarantee a quick and easy death the moment Mario shows up.
    Instead: He just bounces up and down blowing fire at Mario while still on the bridge the whole time, allowing for Mario to dash right below or jump right above Bowser and hit the switch himself, sending Bowser down his own push-button trap.
    Oddly Enough: In Super Mario Maker, it is possible to put Bowser(s) next to the lever off the bridge. Hitting the switch will still kill Bowser, and all other enemies on the screen, even if they weren't on the bridge. You could theoretically place Bowser in an inescapable box nowhere near the bridge, and he could still fall to his death via switch-push.
  • In Super Mario Bros. 2, Wart has his fortress in 7-2 armed to the teeth, a labyrinth full of obstacles such as Phantos, electric fields, and conveyor belts, and even the Mask Gate is hostile. At the end, the gang manage to reach Wart's throne room for the final showdown. The throne room happens to have the dream machine present, spewing vegetables everywhere, Wart's one weakness.
    You'd Expect: Whether the dream machine was sentient and rebelled against Wart, or somehow malfunctioned, he would have nonetheless realized that having it in his throne room was a mistake, and relocated himself or the machine.
    Instead: He doesn't do either. He fights the gang as the machine keeps tossing out veggies. Wart would eventually be defeated from the gang throwing veggies down his digestive system.
  • Super Mario Bros. 3 has Bowser sending the Koopalings far and wide to turn the Mushroom World kings into animals and make off with their wands. While the Mario Bros. go out and set things straight, Bowser kidnaps Princess Peach.
    You'd Expect: Bowser to revel in his dirty deed while keeping quiet about what he had just done.
    Instead: He sends Mario a taunting letter admitting he took the princess to his castle and challenges him to save her.
    Furthermore, You'd Expect: That if he was going to send a letter to dare the hero to come to his castle and save the princess, that he'd might have known by then that was exactly what the hero was going to do and that he'd have been a little more ready when Mario arrives. As in, setting a trap for the hero or a sort of ambush already foreseeing that Mario indeed would come for Princess Toadstool (her then Western name). Particularly when arriving at Bowser's Castle.
    Instead: With the exception of the levels of hell, it doesn't seem that the villain has made many preparations at all when Mario arrives, with the "King of the Koopas" ending up giving the player one of the most lame final boss fights in Mario history, where you can win by doing absolutely nothing.
    You'd THEN Expect: For Bowser to remember his Boss Arena Idiocy from Super Mario Bros. and learn from his mistakes.
    Instead: He axes the axe...and nothing else. Not only can he still fall to his defeat if he ground pounds the bricks enough, but he also nixes his hammer throw attack, probably his most potent move from the first game, in favor of it.
    Compounding It Even Further: Bowser hardly ever learns from his Boss Arena Idiocy and constantly puts bombs, glass panels, Stretch Plants, comets, and POW Blocks in his battles, not to mention the various switches that serve as substitutes for axes in the New Super Mario Bros. series and Super Mario 3D Land.
  • In Super Mario 64, Bowser successfully invades Peach's castle, seals her and her entire staff into the walls, and disperses the Power Stars among his lieutenants.
    You'd Expect: Bowser would secure the castle against intruders, or at the least make sure every door in the castle hiding power stars was sealed.
    Instead: He leaves the front door open, gives Mario a token warning to scram when he arrives, and has left one of the doors completely unsealed, allowing Mario to enter the Bomb-omb Battlefield and start collecting Power Stars, undoing the seals one by one.
    Furthermore, You'd Expect: Bowser to hide keys to the basement and upper floors where Mario can't get them.
    Instead: Bowser gives them up upon being defeated by Mario, allowing Mario to explore more of the castle. It's like he's deliberately challenging Mario to come fight him (...which he may in fact be doing).
  • Paper Mario
    • On one of the occasions that the princess escapes from being kidnapped, Bowser spots her while he is talking with Kammy Koopa about what Mario may be afraid of.
      You'd Expect: Bowser to escort the princess back to her cell or have one of his guards do so.
      Instead: He doesn't and asks Peach herself on what Mario is afraid of, not thinking that the princess can just lie.
      However: The player can give whatever answer they wish, so they can lie (pretend Mario is afraid of helpful items) or be honest (say Mario is afraid of an Elite Mook which incidentally drops a lot of Star Points when defeated).
    • If the player chooses healing items as Mario's greatest fear...
      You'd Expect: Bowser or at least Kammy to realize that these things would help Mario if anything and refuse to listen to the princess.
      Instead: Both Bowser and Kammy are fooled and actually put healing items along Mario's path. At least Kammy is suspicious of the whole thing, but Bowser has no idea what he just did.
    • Bowser has managed to kidnap the Star Spirits, who refused to grant him his wishes, and steal the Star Rod to become invulnerable. And with his flying fortress, kidnapped Peach and finally defeated Mario.
      You'd Expect: Bowser will send the now comatose Star Spirits to safekeeping somewhere on his flying fortress that only he or a few of his trusted generals can have access to (like his private quarters, for example). Especially since Mario has no way of ever reaching his floating castle. And if by the off chance Mario does reach Bowser, he has no way of ever defeating Bowser due to him being invincible and Mario has no way to disable it.
      Instead: He makes his ground troops guard the Star Spirits. Who Mario can easily defeat. And then the freed Star Spirits eventually give Mario more power, which eventually leads to Bowser's defeat.
    • Princess Peach repeatedly escapes from her apparently secure prison with the help of a secret passage. She is always caught by Bowser or Kammy.
      You'd Expect: They would start to suspect that the princess's repeated escapes may be due to something other than the guards' incompetence and investigate.
      Instead: They don't think of this and continue to blame the guards.
      To wit: Not only has Peach's continued sneaking around the castle allowed her to support Mario's efforts on the ground, it even gave her the opportunity to play everyone for a fool. Bowser literally only has the princess ensnared and hauled off to somewhere more secure when Mario's only remaining objective is to take him out.
  • Super Mario Sunshine
    • Mario is arrested and put on trial on the sole premise that his face is the same as the one on a wanted poster. Peach shouts "Objection!"
      You'd Expect: The judge to let Peach, who is of royalty, make her objection, which could put this misunderstanding to rest with ease.
      Instead: The judge ignores her, saying, "Overruled! I judge the defendant guilty as charged!" As Chuggaaconroy himself said of this scene, "This is more rigged than Saddam Hussein's trial!".
    • The Shine Sprites of Isle Delfino have gone missing, posing a threat to the inhabitants' way of life. Some of them have been found by the residents.
      You'd Expect: They would all hand them to Mario or the proper authorities without any fuss.
      Instead: They keep them and give them away only after Mario helps them or use them as prizes in contests.
      Even Worse: Most of the people who have Shine Sprites have the excuse that we do not know how long they have had the Shine Sprite and they only have one. The Tanooki that runs the boathouse has 24 Shine Sprites (that's a fifth of them), has them for most of the game, and will only give them away for ten coins each.
    • Everyone thinks Mario is the person responsible for all of Isle Delfino's problems because the real culprit, Shadow Mario, looks like him. Shadow Mario and Mario are often seen together in the same place.
      You'd Expect: That seeing the real Mario and Shadow Mario in the same place would be proof that Mario is not the culprit.
      Instead: They still think Mario is responsible.
      Even Worse: It seems that only a few residents of Isle Delfino (the Noki Bay elder, his grandson, the Hotel Delfino manager, and the Pinna Park director) are actually able to tell the difference between Mario and Shadow Mario, even though Shadow Mario has a watery blue appearance.
    • Shadow Mario finally makes his appearance known to the cast and dashes right over to attempt to capture Peach.
      You'd Expect: Peach would either run or try to defend herself in some fashion.
      Instead: She just stands there and gets picked up by the doppelganger, with Mario having to save her.
    • Shortly after that, Peach is kidnapped again and taken to Pinna Island, where Shadow Mario unleashes a giant Bowser mech and soon after, reveals himself to be Bowser Jr., who is under the assumption that Peach is his mama and he's saving her from the "evil" Mario.
      You'd Expect: Peach would immediately try and tell Jr. the truth, or at the very least deny ever being romantically involved with Bowser. In other Mario materials before or since, it's shown very clearly that Peach never once liked Bowser in that way, and the one time they actually got married was forced upon her. Even then, it's unlikely for Bowser, a giant draconic turtle, to have any offspring with Peach.
      Instead: She never once thinks of this and outright ponders whether Bowser Jr. could be her child, thus kick-starting the fandom punchline that is Peach's nonexistent relationship with Bowser.
  • Super Paper Mario:
    • A railroaded example with Mimi, one of the villains who is a shapeshifter. Each time she is met, she uses a different form and asks the heroes to do something. Since she uses this technique after we've seen her transform, it's pretty easy for the player to guess that it's her.
      You'd Expect: The characters to see through the illusion (most of the time, Mimi uses this technique to lure the heroes into a trap) and guess correctly that the character in front of them is Mimi in disguise.
      Instead: You're forced to do what Mimi asks you to and the gang falls into Mimi's trap.
      What Makes It Worse: Mimi sometimes takes on the appearance of a character that has absolutely no reason to be there (such as Merlon, the Sage of the Hub Level, who never leaves it, in Castle Bleck).
    • Mimi also does the same thing Kammy did before her final battle and asks you what you are afraid of.
      You'd Expect: That Mimi would know something was up.
      Instead: She gives you the items you've asked for, which can range from cute to creepy (even providing an optional rematch with Francis from chapter 3). At least she wises up before she challenges Peach to battle.
  • In the introduction to New Super Mario Bros. Wii, several Toads bring in a giant cake.
    You'd Expect: The Toads would maybe reject and dispose of a cake from seemingly nowhere with several suspicious decorations including two mohawks, a huge tuft of blue hair, and sunglasses.
    Instead: They bring it right to Peach, and sure enough, Bowser Jr. and the Koopalings were hiding in it and pull off the most laughably effortless onscreen kidnapping yet.
    • Also, every time Mario finishes off the boss in the castle stage, you see him with Bowser Jr. and there's the airship with Peach right behind him.
      You'd Expect: Mario to attack Bowser Jr., then jump on the airship to get Peach.
      Instead: He just stands there watching them and they take off. It's especially jarring when Mario has the propeller hat.
      However: Though there are two occasions where the airship takes off without him, allowing you to chase him to the airship. However, he throws you off after you beat him.
  • In Yoshi's New Island, it turns out the stork actually brought Baby Mario and Baby Luigi to the wrong house.
    You'd Expect: For the stork to remember that Kamek is after the babies and to keep a close eye on them while carefully finding the right parents. This after having been attacked before.
    Instead: He takes flight up in the sky where he can easily be spotted. Sure enough, the stork freezes when Kamek finds him, Baby Luigi is kidnapped, and Mario falls on Egg Island.
  • Throughout the series, Princess Peach is kidnapped and the Mushroom Kingdom attacked and effortlessly conquered over and over again.
    You'd Expect: Peach and the Mushroom Kingdom ruling class to come up with measures to enforce their army and hire elite guards to at least try to stop this from happening, even if it ultimately proves ineffective.
    Instead: They don't do anything whatsoever to prevent future kidnappings and conquering and rely solely on one plumber and maybe his brother to save them after the fact.
    Additionally: The few guards the Mushroom Kingdom do have just cower in fear whenever they're required to actually do their jobs, even when their own lives are on the line and just stand around waiting for Mario to save them.
  • In Wario Land 3, Wario has found all 5 music boxes and has inadvertently freed Rudy the Clown, who had promised him treasure at the beginning of the game.
    You'd Expect: Rudy to honor his deal and give Wario the treasure he promised, as Wario had done what he asked and had no reason to stick around further.
    Instead: Rudy firmly grabs the Villain Ball with both hands by declaring his plan to conquer the music box world and Wario's World and attempts to pull a You Have Outlived Your Usefulness on Wario.
    Result: Wario soundly beats him and ends up with the treasure anyway, and Rudy's plan of conquest is foiled before it could even begin.
  • Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker begins with Captain Toad and Toadette finding a star, but then the game's Big Bad, Wingo, steals it from them. When Toadette tries to get it back, he starts to take off, with Toadette still hanging on.
    You'd Expect: Toadette to let go. Not only are Wingo's talons much too big for her, but he could have easily taken Toadette too.
    Instead: That's exactly what happens. Wingo flies off with both the star and Toadette in his possession, kicking off the plot of the game.
    Worse: This happens again at the beginning of Episode 2, but replace Toadette with Captain Toad himself. After seeing Toadette try and fail to get the star back from Wingo, you'd think he'd know better.
  • In Luigi's Mansion, Luigi supposedly wins a huge mansion in a contest he did not enter.
    You'd Expect: Luigi would be suspicious that he, out of nowhere, won a mansion in a contest he doesn't remember entering, and suspects that it's a trap or at the very least a scam.
    Instead: Not only does he fall for it, but he invites Mario to check out the mansion with him. Of course, the mansion turns out to be haunted, and now Mario is trapped inside, leaving it up to Luigi to save him. Even if Luigi did recognize it as suspicious, which was the entire reason Mario was sent first to check it out, he only belatedly discovers how bad the situation is after Mario fails to return.
    • About a quarter-way through the game, Luigi accidentally frees all of the Boos from an in-ground cage where they were waiting for him so they could turn him into a painting.
      You'd Expect: Luigi would quickly suck up as many Boos as he can before they notice the Poltergust on his back and flee.
      Instead: He cowers in fear the entire time and lets every single one of them get away. Professor E. Gadd even lampshades this.
  • In Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, after Mario and Luigi put the Beanstar back together, they get a message from Bowletta (Bowser possesed by Cackletta), where they want Mario and Luigi to hand the Beanstar over to them at Joke's End in exchange for Princess Peach's freedom. After the message is done, Prince Peasly proposes to use a fake replica of the Beanstar to give to the baddies to trick them without giving up the real deal.
    You'd Expect: Mario and Luigi to leave the real Beanstar at Beanbean Castle, where it belongs, and take only the fake one. After all, what if the villains see through the trick? If they leave the real one behind, then the bad guys get nothing, and at least Mario and Luigi would have to at least save Peach the hard way, without the risk of the real Beanstar getting stolen again.
    Instead: They bring both the fake Beanstar and the real Beanstar to Joke's End. Unfortunately, Fawful sees through the trick and knocks out Luigi when he shows the fake Beanstar, and steals the real one from him. Mario then ends up having to resort to dressing Luigi in drag as Peach to trick Bowletta into believing Princess Peach herself was an impostor while Luigi himself is kidnapped in her place.
  • In Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time, upon visiting Yoshi's island, the team finds the place deserted with most of the houses closed off. In one of the two houses that aren't closed off, there is a bounce pad that only the babies can use. Upon using it and bouncing up into the attic of the house, the babies find four Yoshis in hiding, who tell the babies to be quiet. Suddenly, the area starts rumbling with loud stomps outside that are coming from a creature called the Yoob.
    You'd Expect: The Yoshis would stay calm and remain in their hiding spot.
    Instead: The green one screams that they have to flee, and all four of them run out the house and into the open where the Yoob can see them.
    To Make It Worse: Three of the four Yoshis don't even try to find a new hiding spot. They just cower in various spots that the Yoob can easily see them. The Green one was the only one who wasn't seen simply cowering anywhere.
    What Follows: The Yoob proceeds to eat the three Yoshis that were out in the open.
    You'd expect: The green Yoshi would stay hidden so that he wouldn't be eaten by the Yoob as well.
    Instead: He runs toward the Yoob and demands it to release his friends. It's only after the Yoob turns toward him that he realizes his mistake and gets eaten by the Yoob as well.
    Even Worse: The Yoob attempts to get the bros from outside the house but gives up and leaves. This means that the Yoshis would have likely been safe if they had stayed in the house.
  • In Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. Luigi accidentally releases the Paper Mushroom Kingdom into the Mushroom Kingdom after causing the shelf holding the book containing the Paper Mario universe in it to shake.
    You'd Expect: Luigi to hand the book over to Princess Peach so she can keep it somewhere safe and secure, ready for when they rescue all the Paper Toads.
    Instead: Luigi keeps the book in his pocket, and it ends up flying out of it after Luigi, along with Mario and Paper Mario, gets knocked out by a stampede of Chargin' Chucks, causing the book to fall into the hands of Bowser Jr. and Paper Bowser Jr.
    • Later on, after Mario, Luigi, and Paper Mario defeat the two Bowser Jrs., causing them to drop the book, and save the two princesses.
      You'd Expect: The two Marios and Luigi to immediately pick up the book so that they can take it back to Peach's Castle without hassle.
      Instead: The Bros. just stand around so they can get their kiss by their respective Princess Peach, which ends up giving Bowser and Paper Bowser time to show up and find their defeated sons next to the book, allowing them to steal the book back and plot to destroy it and the world contained within.
  • In Paper Mario: Color Splash, Bowser arrives at Port Prisma and gets an eyeful of the rainbow-hued Prisma Fountain, filled to the brim with life-giving paint provided by the Big Paint Stars, and gets the idea in his head to have a rainbow-colored shell.
    You'd Expect Bowser to descend to the fountain calmly, call in a few of his minions, and ask them to paint his shell as he wants it.
    Instead Bowser dives on in and spins around in the paint, mixing it wildly and uncontrollably. As even a kindergartener can tell you, mixing colored paints together makes it a darker mix of colors, and since Bowser mixed all the colors, he is left with black paint all over himself. Since the individual colors are magical in nature, the mixture becomes chaotic, effectively corrupting Bowser. What follows are the events of the game. This is even mentioned by Huey, who breaks the fourth wall, saying that they could have avoided this entire game if they just had a "Don't mix the paint" sign.
  • In Super Mario Odyssey, Bowser displays surprising cunning for a platformer by neutralizing Mario, leaving his hat to the winds (which his airship shreds), and obliterating any airship he can find in the Cap Kingdom to ensure that Mario cannot pursue in the event he survives. To be fair, he didn't expect the Odyssey to be fully functional after years, if not centuries, of disuse, but then Mario catches up to him in it. After the boss fight, Bowser shoots the Odyssey out of the sky.
    You'd expect: Bowser to descend after the Odyssey and finish reducing it to the consistency of broken slag. Even if he doesn't kill Mario, this permanently grounds him in the toxic seas surrounding the Lost Kingdom, eliminating any chance of further pursuit.
    Instead: He just leaves with his airship, Peach, and all the wedding paraphernalia he and the Broodals had looted to this point.
    As a result: Mario finds enough Power Moons to reboot the Odyssey's auto-repair systems and continues pursuit.
    Even worse: Bowser commands the Ruined Dragon, a giant realistic lightning dragon, to down the Odyssey again, but just leaves it to finish Mario off instead of finish the Odyssey off completely, and thus Mario is back in the air before long again. You'd think he subscribes to Eggman's logic:
  • The Story Mode in Super Mario Maker 2 opens with Mario and the Toads just finishing reconstruction on Princess Peach's castle. They find a reset button lying on the ground, left there by Undodog—who absentmindedly jumps on top of it.
    You'd Expect: Mario and Co. to get Undodog off of that button ASAP. Any experienced creator in Super Mario Maker will tell you that the reset button only takes effect if it stays pressed for three seconds. This particular button takes five seconds, and the countdown is much slower, meaning they have more time.
    Instead: They panic and do nothing.
    As a Result: The castle is completely erased—after just being rebuilt, no less.
    You'd Then Expect: Mario and the other builders to convince Undodog to, well, undo the reset. Other characters in Story Mode are shown to use the abilities they have in the Course Maker interface, so this is presumably well within Undodog's capability.
    Instead: Though Undodog (briefly) expresses remorse for destroying the castle, he never undoes it and no one thinks to make him. The entire mode is spent rebuilding the castle and scraping together the funds to do so, spoiling the chance to undo.
    Furthermore: Undodog says he still wants to jump on the button.
    You'd THEN Expect: Undodog to be kept away from the construction site at all costs, as he clearly can't restrain himself.
    Instead: The crew allows Undodog to stay nearby, and Mario even crafts him a doghouse placed right next to the castle. When everything is finally rebuilt, the button has reappeared and Undodog is preparing to press it again. Luckily, the castle remains intact after the credits.


Super Mario Bros. Super Show

  • In many episodes, a defeated King Koopa escapes from Mario and company, sometimes by a Warp Potion that stays open for a while.
    You'd Expect: That they'd follow him down the pipe back to his castle and teach him a lesson.
    Instead: They let him get away. In one episode, they are even shown standing on one (granted, that was an animation goof, but still).
  • "The Great Gladiator Gig": During the battle against Tryclydius, Mario cuts Luigi from a net by using a sword.
    You'd Expect: That Mario would continue to fight Tryclydius by using his sword.
    Instead: He tosses the sword to the side and tells Luigi to dance. While it works, even Luigi calls him out for the suggestion, providing the page quote.
  • "Love 'Em and Leave 'Em": Mario, Luigi, Princess Toadstool and Toad are captured by Queen Rotunda's Beezo guards and arrested for stealing peppers. Princess speaks out to claim their innocence.
    You'd Think: She would tell the guards that she is a princess of the Mushroom Kingdom and that neither she nor her friends knew the peppers belonged to Rotunda Land.
    Instead: She tries to argue that the peppers were growing in the wild when they were clearly shown enclosed in a fence.
    Later: The gang meets Queen Rotunda who plans to give Prince Pompadour a Passion Potion to make him confess his love to her. She demands the Marios to make her a dessert for the wedding, pistachio ice cream laced with hot peppers. After trying some, she shouts for water.
    You'd Expect: Mario or one of his friends to rush off and get the queen some water.
    Instead: Mario snatches the Passion Potion off Queen Rotunda's throne for her to drink. She then falls madly in love with the first person she sees... Mario.
  • "Koopa Klaus": Mario and his friends catch Koopa about to drop Santa Claus from the edge of a snowy cliff. Princess asks Koopa why he hates Christmas.
    You'd Think: Koopa would calmly explain his hatred for the holiday.
    Instead: He screams at the top of his lungs that Christmas is a Bah-Humkoop, causing an avalanche. The Marios take shelter in a nearby cave but luckily, they manage to save Santa using Mario's plumber snake.
  • "Quest for Pizza": In Caveman Land, Mario has been knocked out cold by a snakebite and the only thing that can revive him is the smell of pizza. His friends start making one in the shelter of a city concealed by a waterfall. While picking tomatoes out in the open, they are ambushed by Alley Koop but leave him distracted long enough to get away safely.
    You'd Expect: For the gang carefully consider how much tomatoes they can carry while keeping their hideout a secret.
    Instead: They leave a trail of tomatoes into the waterfall. Alley Koop discovers this and has Mousersaurus reroute the waterfall to flood the city, ruining their pizza.
  • "The Unzappables": In Crime City, Mario and company attempt to sneak into the Koopa Klub and when they approach the entrance, Mouser blocks the way and asks for the password before they can go in. But Mario and company do not know what it is.
    You'd Expect: Mouser to either see through their disguises and attack them or tell them to leave.
    Instead: He gets frustrated at them because they're taking too long and yells the password at them, allowing the heroes to go inside.
    • Mouser does this again in "The Mark of Zero". He suggests to Koopa that they should retreat to the secret fortress then says the location of it allowing Mario standing nearby to write this information down. In fairness though, Mouser didn't see Mario but Koopa did resulting in a hat bashing.

Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3

  • "Sneaky Lying Cheating Giant Ninja Koopas": King Koopa has Luigi, Toad and Princess Toadstool trapped in a cage in his throne room, and his sons-turned-giants are present. Mario arrives and sneaks up, getting to the wands that King Koopa used to turn the Koopa Kids into giants and Prince Hugo into a poodle.
    You'd Expect: Mario to snag the wands and use them to turn himself into a giant (or anything that could beat the Koopas) and/or revert the Koopa Kids back to normal. After that, he would use them to change Prince Hugo back to normal.
    Instead: He switches the wands' jewels (the source of their powers) and tries to trick King Koopa into using them on him, so that he would use the wrong wand and transform him into a giant that could then fight his sons. Granted, his plan worked, but it was unnecessary, and he got lucky that King Koopa didn't notice that the jewels were swapped (especially since they had different colors). Also, he wouldn't have needed to fight the giant Koopa Kids if he had used the wands on them. Not to mention that without the wands, Mario had no way of changing Prince Hugo back to normal.
    You'd Also Think: That after accidentally turning Mario into a giant, King Koopa would simply use one of the wands that he still had to revert him back to normal or turn him into a poodle.
    Instead: It doesn't pass through his mind and his sons are forced to fight Mario. In the midst of this, Princess Toadstool grabs a wand, using it to revert his sons to normal size and the Koopas get the heck out of there.
  • "Reptiles in the Rose Garden": Mario and friends see Koopa's Doomship hovering overhead.
    You'd Expect: That they'd just make a run for it or something like that.
    Instead: They stand motionless, somehow avoiding getting shot by the ship's Bullet Bills. Princess Toadstool even volunteers to stall them while telling the others to run. After that, Chain Chomps start deploying from the Doomship.
    You'd Expect: Again, Mario and the gang to run for their lives.
    Instead: Depite seeing the Chain Chomps being deployed, they just stand there like complete idiots and get captured by the Chain Chomps. Even after Kootie Pie proudly boasts to the princess that she's about to become America's new empress, which isn't any smarter, our heroes can't even warn the USA that the Koopas are coming.
    So: With the entire gang still chained up and guarded by Boomerang and Fire Bros, the princess hatches a plan to help them escape (and loudly declares her intention to put it into action). She decides to turn the Boomerang and Fire Bros. against each other by claiming that each badmouthed the other to her.
    You'd Think: That the Boomerang and Fire Bros.—who have been in the room with the group the whole time—would realize that Princess Toadstool is lying, as they would have heard the phony insults, considering that the princess was never out of earshot of any of them.
    Instead: The Bros. fall for the trick hook, line, and sinker, and start attacking each other.
    It Gets Worse: Princess (again, quite loudly) then tells Mario, Luigi, and Toad to use the crossfire to break the Chain Chomps holding them.
    You'd Then Think: The Boomerang and Fire Bros. would stop fighting at once.
    Instead: They don't let up for a second, freeing everyone from their clutches.
  • "The Beauty of Kootie": Mario and Luigi find Lady Fettuccini Alfredo (Kootie Pie in a human disguise) in the basement of the Sultan's castle. Mario falls for her but Luigi notices she has a tail and wastes no time revealing this.
    You'd Expect: Mario to catch on, too, and realize something is fishy with this dream girl.
    Instead: He ignores her tail the whole time and doesn't discover she's really Kootie Pie until Cheatsy changes her back.
    Compounding It: To get back at Kootie Pie, Mario turns Luigi into Casanova Koopa with one of the Koopa Kids' unattended wands.
    You'd Think: Kootie Pie would act suspicious, knowing she had easily tricked Mario with the same exact scheme.
    Instead: She instantly falls for Casanova head over heels.
    It Gets Worse: With Princess Toadstool, Toad, the sultan and a guard locked up, Luigi requests some privacy when Cheatsy asks who this mysterious Koopa is.
    You'd Then Think: Kootie Pie would have Cheatsy guard the prisoners while she and "Casanova" have their alone time.
    Instead: She kicks the prisoners out of the dungeon. It's only when Kootie's wand accidentally changes Casanova back into Luigi, which blows his cover, does Kootie realize, "I'VE BEEN KISSED BY A PLUMBER!".
  • "Never Koop a Koopa": Koopa announces that he and the Koopa Kids are admitting defeat and moving out of the Mushroom Kingdom. He hands Princess Toadstool the key to his castle as a token of forgiveness. After he disappears, Luigi tells her that she's being set up and to dispose of the key.
    You'd Expect: Princess to trust Luigi and determine that all this is indeed too good to be true.
    Instead: She talks the Mario Bros. and Toad into visiting the castle with the key in her possession, thinking she can turn Castle Koopa into a retirement home.
    Later: After Princess Toadstool and Mario have been captured, Koopa claims he'll blow them up with Bob-ombs unless the Princess signs the kingdom over to him using a scroll; Cheatsy, his son, is inspired by his father's advice to double-cross people and decides to have the Princess sign the kingdom over to him. She sighs and agrees, writing something on the scroll and handing it back closed.
    You'd Expect: Cheatsy to realize that it's possible that the Princess is tricking him, too, and look at the signature—or, at least, to open the scroll for a second before running off to declare himself king.
    Instead: He marches into the throne room and declares that he is now in charge to Koopa, only for his father to open the scroll and discover that, rather than sign her name, the Princess has drawn an cartoony scowling face on the document. It takes up the entire center of the paper, so opening it even slightly would have given the trick away, but apparently Cheatsy didn't think of that.
  • "Toddler Terrors of Time Travel": King Koopa and Kooky plan to trap the Mario Bros. in Brooklyn by blocking the only way they can escape, a woman's drainpipe that leads to the Mushroom Kingdom. They don plumber outfits and introduce themselves to the lady.
    You'd Expect: That she'd catch onto them being costumed plumbers and call someone else to fix her plumbing or, better yet, alert the police.
    Instead: She invites Koopa and Kooky into her home where she reveals a problem with the same bathtub drain that brought them there. The two Koopas proceed to clog it with anything they can find.
  • "Dadzilla" features Kootie Pie and Big Mouth travelling to Hollywood to find their "real" father, who they decide is a gigantic reptilian robot named Madzilla. After bringing him to life with their magic wands, they boss him around and one point, demand that he help them perform a concert at the Hollywood Bowl. Kootie and Big Mouth can't sing, so a crowd of patrons pelts them with several items; this upsets the Koopa Kids, so they ask Madzilla to help them.
    You'd Expect: The crowd to run like the dickens from the ten-story monster that's looming over them.
    Instead: They pelt Madzilla with garbage. Naturally, this angers him, and he comes extremely close to hurling the citizens into the Pacific Ocean.
  • "Tag Team Trouble" has a couple of cringe-worthy moments in the beginning. While delivering a sack containing one million coins to the orphanage, Toad overhears Koopa and Cheatsy scheming for money. He arrives at the orphanage and rings the doorbell.
    You'd Expect: Toad to keep a close eye on the money until the nanny opens the door and thanks him for a job well done.
    Instead: He falls asleep, leaving the sack open for easy capture.
    Then: The nanny and two kids answer the door.
    You'd Then Expect: Either one of them to wake up Toad and express their gratitude for bringing over the money.
    Instead: The nanny simply carries the bag inside the orphanage. When Toad wakes up to find the coins missing, he immediately assumes that Koopa stole it and panics.
  • "Oh, Brother!": Mario and Luigi have a heated argument, with the latter threatening to walk out of Toad's House where a thunderstorm (created by Kooky) is brewing.
    You'd Expect: Luigi to realize that going outside in the middle of a thunderstorm isn't a safe thing to do and maybe try to patch things up with Mario.
    Or: For Luigi take a Frog Suit at Princess Toadstool's request since it had been raining nonstop for two weeks by this time.
    Instead: He storms out of the house without a Frog Suit, claiming he doesn't need one.
    To Make Matters Worse: Mario goes after Luigi, completely ignoring the princess yelling "Take your Frog Suit!" and winds up getting captured by the Koopas.
  • "Mush-Rumors": The beginning where Norman inadvertently drives his family from Kansas through a Warp Zone en route to the theme park they're visiting.
    You'd Expect: After taking a quick peek at the unfamiliar scenery, to turn the car around (or at the very least, have his wife and kids tell him to do so) and find a different way to the park.
    Instead: He keeps driving and, with the wife suggesting they pull over and ask for directions, assumes the family is in Iowa (a state that does not border Kansas).
    You'd Also Expect: Norman to pay attention to the road.
    Instead: He gets distracted by the scenery and hits some blocks, crashing the car.
  • "Crimes R Us": All the Koopa Kids get one when Crimewave Clyde shows them how to break into the Mushroom Kingdom Treasury. He hands Kooky a Bob-omb with which they will use to bust open the doors.
    You'd Expect: For Kooky to go on with Clyde's instructions. Once they've finished with the heist, the Koopa Kids can catch Clyde off guard by revealing Koopa's double cross.
    Instead: Kooky shackles the Bob-omb to Clyde and when the prisoner asks what's going on, Cheatsy and Kootie Pie tell him they're following Koopa's orders. At that point, Cheatsy reveals the double cross and all seven laugh at Clyde, making no attempt to stop him from dousing the flame when he jumps in a pond. They proceed to rob the treasury without Clyde who begs the Mario Bros. for their help in stopping the Koopas.
  • "7 Continents for 7 Koopas" has a few acts of Moral Dissonance as the heroes reclaim the continents. First, as Asia's new ruler, Bully sprays graffiti all over the Great Wall of China. Mario goes there with a magic wand to set things right.
    You'd Expect: Mario to erase the graffiti.
    Instead: He turns the Great Wall into a dragon, lets it chase Bully away, and leaves without changing it back. Now there's a huge dragon running amok in China, and it can turn out to be a bigger problem than graffiti on the Wall.
    Compounding It: Luigi does something similar to end Big Mouth's rule in Antarctica. Big Mouth has created an "Abominable Snowkoopa" which he uses to scare the continent's penguins. Luigi arrives, steals the wand and defeats the Snowkoopa.
    You'd Expect: Luigi to simply chase Big Mouth out of Antarctica with his wand.
    Instead: He makes the penguins gigantic and leaves as they angrily chase Big Mouth away. Great, now Antarctica's got a giant penguin problem, making it in worse shape than what Big Mouth did to it.
    Plus: Mario has another one when he disposes of Kootie Pie in Europe. Kootie has changed all the art in the Louvre to reflect herself, one of them being "The Birth of Kootie".
    You'd Expect: Mario to change the art back.
    Instead: He makes a wall of water flow out of "The Birth of Kootie", sweeping Kootie Pie away but also flooding the Louvre. He's lucky he didn't get washed away as well but Mario may have ruined an entire museum of art just to erase Kootie's alterations.
  • "Kootie Pie Rocks!": Kootie Pie has kidnapped Milli Vanilli to sing for her, but they don't want to. She threatens them with her magic wand.
    You'd Expect: For Rob and Fab to remember they were taken to Dark Land by a mystical space ship, and take Kootie Pie seriously.
    Instead: They refuse outright, and are turned into accountants.
    Immediately After This: Mario, Luigi, Toad, and Princess Toadstool disguise themselves as Milli Vanilli's backup band to try to save them.
    You'd Expect: Kootie Pie to be just a bit suspicious of the band that somehow knew where Milli Vanilli ended up and not trust them, or at the very least to do a background check.
    Instead: She believes it and even changes Rob and Fab back to normal just so they can sing better.
    As A Result: Milli Vanilli gets away, and Toadstool gets a performance in her honor. Using the very song that skipped in concert two weeks later.
  • "Reign Storm": Toadstool goes on vacation in Hawaii for 2 weeks to relax, but Koopa is onto this.
    You'd Expect: Koopa to kidnap her.
    Instead: Koopa orders Kooky to build a robot copy of her, while merely sealing off the warp pipe so that Mario's letter telling her that things are running poorly is only eaten by a piranha plant.
    Immediately After This: The robotic duplicate "returns" from vacation and is suddenly best friends with King Koopa.
    You'd Expect: Mario & Luigi to immediately expect something was wrong from this shift in behavior... or at the very least, to notice all the bolts and rivets covering the robot, if not the mechanical voice.
    Instead: They seem to question her being friends with Koopa, but they do nothing whatsoever to stop it.
    As A Result: The Mushroom Kingdom falls apart under new policies such as replacing roads with quicksand and extinguishing fire flowers. Then the robot announces that it is handing the kingdom over to Koopa willingly.
    You'd Expect: Mario & Luigi to put their feet down and investigate.
    Instead: The duo don't like it but they go along and don't make much of a peep. They DO become suspicious because Toadstool is lacking a tan one would expect a person who had spent time in Hawaii to have, a fact they catch onto during the ceremony to transfer power.
    You'd Expect: Mario & Luigi to spring into action and stop this.
    Instead: They stand there and make no attempt to stop this.
    Immediately After This: Toadstool had noticed Kooky in Hawaii spying on her, and returned home immediately. Still clad in a swimsuit with a surfboard, she opens a nearby water pipe, rides a wave into the castle, and grabs her crown back with a harpoon gun. Koopa is chased off and the robot destroyed.
    As A Result: The Mushroom Kingdom is saved at the absolute last second by someone who hadn't even been around, whereas the two supposed protectors had twiddled their thumbs and failed to notice obvious clues, almost allowing Koopa to take over the kingdom without actually fighting him.
Super Mario World
  • "Fire Sale": Mario, Luigi, Princess Toadstool and Yoshi have found Kootie Pie inside Ice Palace which is beginning to melt due to Mama Fireplant's tirades. Mario, Luigi and Princess have all been frozen by Porcupine Fish, leaving Kootie Pie to deal with Yoshi.
    You'd Think: Seeing that Yoshi could not pose much threat since he is afraid of water that Kootie Pie would simply stay put. Perhaps she could taunt him in hopes that he will panic and touch a Porcupine Fish.
    Instead: She lashes out at Yoshi for trying to steal back Mama Fireplant, goes after him and steps on a Porcupine Fish. Yoshi rescues Mama Fireplant and his friends before the Ice Palace collapses.
    The Result: Kootie Pie becomes frozen from the shoulders down in a block of ice. Her screams are unanswered because her Koopa Troopa minion refuses to help her.
  • "Send in the Clown": Luigi, after seeing a poster for Koopaling Bros. Circus, tells Mario, Yoshi and Princess that King Koopa may be luring the cave people into a trap. They take a Star Path to Neon Castle and find the circus tent.
    You'd Expect: For them to round up the cave people and leave immediately.
    Instead: Mario persuades the gang to watch the show together with the cave people. Despite Luigi's suspicions, the heroes don't discover they're in trouble until a nose falls off one of the Rex's clown disguises.
  • "Ghosts 'R' Us": The Mario Bros. and Princess have been caught by Wizardheimer in the Enchanted Forest. He threatens to blow them up with a Bob-omb if they don't go in a warp pipe leading to his haunted house.
    You'd Expect: For them to just run like the dickens since they're in a huge forest.
    Instead: They enter the pipe.
  • "The Night Before Cave Christmas": Koopa is holding a present that Oogtar has spoiled, a Bob-omb that has lit its fuse.
    You'd Think: Koopa would throw the Bob-omb away.
    Instead: "Stop! You're not supposed to go off 'til Christmas—" BOOM! "...morning."
  • "Gopher Bash": Mario, Luigi and Yoshi have just taken back the food previously stolen by Cheatsy and the Monty Moles.
    You'd Expect: That they'd keep a close eye on the crops during the return trip, particularly considering they're for the cave people.
    Instead: Along the way, Yoshi climbs into the sack, devouring its entire contents. Luigi discovers it only when they return and tells Yoshi to start planting the veggies all over again.
  • "A Little Learning": Princess Toadstool has caught Hip, Hop, Yoshi and Oogtar fighting during recess.
    You'd Expect: That she'd let everyone tell their side of the story and dole out punishments when necessary.
    Instead: She immediately blames Oogtar for starting the fight while Hip and Hop make faces behind her {though to be fair, this is Oogtar we're talking about, but still).
    Even Worse: Hip and Hop actually want to go to school, and had Toadstool actually listened to both sides of the story and lectured Hip and Hop about what's right and wrong, it'd probably lead to them questioning their own morals and considering a Heel–Face Turn. All in all, her actions led to problems.
    Then: For their science fair project, Hip and Hop build a "VOL-CAAAY-NO!"
    You'd Expect: Well, anything other than how they demonstrate it below.
    Which Is: Rigging the volcano to have real lava squirt out of it.
    Even Worse: King Koopa intervenes and accidentally causes Hop to release huge amounts of lava which destroys the school and causes Princess to expel Hip and Hop.
  • "Born to Ride": Mario and Luigi want to add indoor plumbing to their home in Dome City. It seems to go well at first... until they find out that their sink isn't working. They immediately find out the culprit—it's Yoshi, having absentmindedly eaten all of the bamboo that they use for the water pipes.
    You'd Expect: The Mario Bros. to take a deep breath and calmly explain to Yoshi why the bamboo is so important. Ignoring the fact that Yoshi is a baby, he had no way of knowing what they were working on at all. And while Yoshi frustrating them by eating things they need is nothing new, he's a Cheerful Child and can be reasoned with.
    Instead: They lose their tempers and yell at Yoshi, telling him that being hungry isn't an excuse, to stay out of their way, and other not-very-nice things.
    Result: Yoshi's feelings are hurt, and he runs away from home, eventually coming across the Dino-Riders, who manipulate him onto causing mischief.
    Even Worse: Mario and Luigi don't seem to feel too guilty about this. Princess Toadstool had to spell it out for them that they just screamed at a baby that didn't know any better, and even then, they insist he'll get over it immediately after. It's hard to really blame her for getting mad at them.

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