New Mario game doesn’t suit animal rights campaigners

The world of gaming is no stranger to complaints about excessive violence, and there are certainly critics of sexism and misogyny, but it turns out that even Mario isn’t immune to criticism.

No, it’s not a string of complaints about Italian stereotyping, but rather a protest from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). They are objecting to Mario’s appearance in Super Mario 3D Land on the 3DS in which he brings back an outfit from Super Mario Bros 3.

The outfit is a Tanooki suit, based on the Japanese tanuki, which Westerners would know as a raccoon dog. According to PETA, while the outfit may appear cute, it wrongfully sends a message that wearing fur is OK. The group notes that in the real world, tanuki are treated cruelly: they aren’t simply killed for their fur, but skinned alive.

To promote their cause, the group has produced a spoof “Super Tanooki Skin 2D” game in which a skinned tanuki has to chase down Mario, and reclaim its blood-soaked fur.

Nintendo Life has a different take on things, giving a lengthy history of how the tanuki is part of Japanese culture: “a mischievous animal that is full of joy, but it’s also thought to be capable of being a master of disguise with legendary shape-shifting abilities. It notes that statues of tanuki are popular across Japan and are common in children’s toys and cartoons.

The Nintendo “Tanooki” appears in at least four other games, though admittedly in those cases the creatures are somewhat more intact than with the latest release.

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27 Responses to New Mario game doesn’t suit animal rights campaigners

  1. I grew up playing Mario. My favorite outfit has always been the tanooki and I never, ever thought about wearing fur. I think it's wrong to wear animals.

  2. Wow PETA needs to get a life, like if they have such a problem with Nintendo bringing back the "Tanuki Suit" from SMB3 than why is it PETA never said or complained about anything when the game was released. I think PETA just looks for something to actually do that will get them time on the news or anything to get the attention of others when really they are a bunch of idiots with nothing better to do

  3. I now want to walk into a branch of PETA wearing a leather outfit with fur trim while eating a batter-fried baby seal and swinging a wooden club.

  4. PETA is a rather silly organization that apparently tries to justify its existence with ridiculous claims (Obama and the fly anyone?).

    If I may be bold and do an outrageous comparison: PETA feels like the Jack Thompson of animal rights.

  5. I grew up with Maria but never did I associate Mario with wearing fur. It never even crossed my mind until I read this article. Why have their never been any objections from the PETA or any organisation of it's kind that Mario has been stomping on Turtles for decades already? :'D

  6. Guys, PETA is not blaming Mario for the Animal Massacre…

    PETA it's USING Mario in order to spread the word across the Internet.
    And it's working very well, because everyone it's talking about that!

    Let's Troll a little here… A bit more there… and… BOOM!
    Everyone heard about you.

    • As Cradwel said, this is not about the game. PETA tries to get attention for the barbarous methods of the fur industry.
      Do you mean, it should be not allowed to do something against cruelty against animals, as long as a human being is suffering? There are hundreds of organisations, which campaign for the suffering people of the world. Pain is pain.

  7. Is this the same PETA that kills 85% of all animals that they take into their shelters?

    At least making use out of the fur is less wasteful then leaving the dead animals in a dumpster….

  8. PETA is like the ultimate real life troll association. They either infuriate people with their stupid wasteful lawsuits or make such ridiculous claims that no regular person can take them seriously.

  9. So many comments and no one bothers to pick up on 'they aren’t simply killed for their fur, but skinned alive' – This is true for many mammals in this part of the world.

    This isnt going to cause Nintendo any halm, It may not have been the correct way to go about things, and a bit OTT, but if it's articles educates more people about the disgusting way *some* countries allow animals to be kept/skinned, then it can only be a good thing.

    Let's just step away from our bashing for a moment, sure its pretty reducilous to assume Mario will spawn many fur loving monsters, but the underlying message still applies.

    • Thank you for making this point.

      It's symptomatical for the world we live in, that people are more angry that someone uses there beloved virtual charakter to send a message, than the cruel truth behind.

      Ok, it's a fairly unorthodox way. It's a pity, but i think nowadays you have to do it this way to reach the people with your message. And in this case the message is, that these animals are skinned ALIVE.

      Think about this and not Mario, he has no feelings as opposed to the animals.

  10. I’ve been a F***ING VEGETARIAN for more than 15 Years, and I’ve seen the most ridiculous displays for attention from animal activists… BUT THIS!!!! This is the most obtuse, unsustained, superficial and senseless thing of it all.
    Thanks to the people from PETA, everybody thinks that we vegetarian people are ignorant hippies growing their own food while we have sex with sheltered Llamas in our backyards.