Super Mario on Ice takes silver at world championships

You're all doubtless familiar with the recent Modern Warfare 3 trailer debut during the NBA Western Conference Finals. However, that wasn't the only crossover this week between videogame culture and a prestigious sporting event. As we're all championship figure-skating aficionados here, let's not pretend you didn't all see the silver medal-winning Russian performance: a gender-bending Super Mario pastiche. You've probably watched this thing to death already, but can’t we take just one more look? Together?

The story of the piece – for figure-skating is a strongly narrative art, just like ballet or the JRPG – seems to go like this: Revenge of the Nerds has a bootleg videogame console of some sort on which he enjoys a knock-off version of Super Mario Bros (possibly The Great Giana Sisters). An unexplained technological contrivance (similar to the movie eXistenZ, or the cartoon Captain N: The Game Master) sees him transported into the game, at which point he discovers that Mario is really a beautiful woman, so he becomes a palette-switched version of Luigi to help her on her quest. The seductress posing as Mario now takes his place in the real world, and he dies in-game, a poignant and tragicomic metaphor for technological addiction.

Or, TL:DR: in Soviet Russia, videogame plays you!

May 25, 2011


  • EroticInvisibleMan - May 25, 2011 11:03 p.m.

    I don't claim to know anything about ice skating, but that was (for the majority) painful to watch. Never turn to ice skating or porn for exposition.
  • Tomgoulter - May 25, 2011 9:50 p.m.

    @8bitBaby: I am really glad that this made you feel good. That is my role in life. To make 8-bit babies feel good. Hang on, back up. It's worth noting that the fella playing the game still looks exactly like the stereotyped greasy social outcast people (not entirely unreasonably) imagined gaming enthusiasts looked like in the 1980s; and the entire story involves his obsession destroying him, all because he couldn't just go out and meet a girl IRL. I'm better at Mario than him and I have a girlfriend and sometimes she lets me hold her hand in public and EVERYTHING. I don't mean to temper your enthusiasm -- and Heaven forfend I sound like some sort of social-justice campaigner, because First World Problems, anyone? -- but if we accept that videogaming culture is no longer an utterly niche pursuit, we have to also accept that the hilariously cack-handed stereotypes of that culture are also embedded within the mainstream. I don't know if that bothers you or not; I am certainly okay with it, because as mentioned, I often enjoy hand-holding in public.
  • 8bitBaby - May 25, 2011 7:54 p.m.

    i like what this represents. a shift. a changing of the guard. kids of the 80s and 90s are adults now and the things that defined our life, our culture are relevant and can't be ignored. it resonates with millions of people to reference video games now. that makes me feel pretty good.
  • Japanaman - May 25, 2011 6:21 p.m.

    I can't wait for Mario on Ice to come to an arena near me!
  • Sleepingdragon - May 25, 2011 5:42 p.m.

    that is sooooOOOOoo cool if only all sports could be Mario! Or or the other team did Sonic and tails
  • TheGhostBox - May 25, 2011 5:29 p.m.

    Oh, my... That's, something different...

Showing 1-6 of 6 comments

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