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Plugged In

The New York Times issues 25-year-old correction to Mario’s day job

Plugged In

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He's a turtle-wrangler, right? (Credit: Nintendo)

Everyone knows a thing or two about Mario and Luigi. Most folks know they’re brothers, sport epic moustaches, jump like Michael Jordan, and constantly have to save Princess Peach from the evil shenanigans of Bowser. And everyone -- everyone -- knows they’re plumbers, right?

Not everyone. On Friday, the New York Times issued a long overdue correction in a recent obit for former Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi:

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(Credit: Jim

Janitors? Well, better late than never.

Here's the original quote as it appeared in the 1988 article:

Many Nintendo best sellers, like ''Super Mario Bros. 2,'' are based on wildly preposterous premises, this particular one being two mustachioed Italian janitors who endure various trials, such as dodging hammer-swinging turtles and lava balls and man-eating plants, in order to save a Mushroom Princess. No matter. Kids can't get enough of the games.

Plenty of people were just getting to know the duo back then, as they only had a handful of games under their belts. And technically, Mario started off as a carpenter when he appeared as the hero ‘Jumpman’ in the original Donkey Kong. In 1982, you could be forgiven for having no idea what Mario’s day job was beyond “stealing my life savings, one quarter at a time.”

That all changed with 1983’s Mario Bros., a two-player game that recast Mario and introduced his brother Luigi as plumbers. The whole game was set in a sewer. It’s pretty unmistakable, though again, back in 1988, it wasn’t exactly common knowledge. After all, we were still (mercifully) a few years away from this:

Hmmm…upon further consideration of that particular piece of trash, maybe they actually were janitors. We’ll issue a correction in 25 years.

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