PETA Goes After Mario, Further Off The Deep End (UPDATED)
UPDATE: Following pretty much the entire internet laughing at them, and likely a few overzealous web users "contacting" the not-for-profit organization directly, PETA has backed off their crusade against the most beloved video game character of all time.
"Mario fans: Relax! PETA's game was meant to be tongue-in-cheek, a fun way to call attention to a serious issue, that raccoon dogs are skinned alive for their fur," Shakira Croce, PETA's media coordinator said. "We wish real-life tanukis could fly or swat enemies away with their tails and escape from those who profit from their skins. You can help them by never buying real fur."
"No one really believes that Mario actually kills and skins a raccoon dog for his fur in Super Mario 3D Land. Our spoof is simply making a serious point: that there is a much darker story behind tanuki skins than Mario lets on. In games like Call of Duty, where characters shoot and kill animals, or in Dog Wars, where players have fun fighting and torturing dogs, it sends a dangerous message that this kind of behavior is acceptable."
Protip: No one gives a shit. We get it, killing animals sucks, BUT IT"S A FICTIONAL CARTOON CHARACTER, and he never even killed a damn raccoon in the first place. There's nothing tongue-in-cheek about it, and releasing a sarcastic statement basically vilifying anyone who thought you were wrong really does nothing to plead your case.
Just because all of this, tomorrow I'm going to the supermarket, and I'm going to buy and eat three steaks. One for me, one that a vegetarian won't eat, and one just to spite you.
In a way, PETA's "campaign" to raise awareness against the skinning of Tanukis was a joke. But not in the way the organization probably intended. All they accomplished was making even bigger jokes of themselves, and we didn't think that was possible.
It appears that the video game industry is PETA's new forum for making ridiculous, senseless accusations. Last week, it was against EA's Battlefield 3, for a mouse-killing cutscene. This week, it's -- wait for it -- the most beloved character in the history of video gaming, Mario.
Apparently, kicking around turtles is one thing, but putting on fictional raccoon suits is over the line.
Most of you will surely remember one of the biggest additions to Super Mario Bros. 3, the "Tanooki" suit, a suit that looked to be made out of the fur of a raccoon-like animal (more specifically, the Japanese raccoon dog known as the tanuki) that allowed Mario to soar through the air for a limited time in order to get to some of the exclusive areas of the game's levels.
Well, 23 years after the game's original release (and on the week Super Mario 3D Land, which features the return of the suit, releases in North America), Peta has decided to take offense to this. The animal "rights" organization has actually gone to the trouble of developing a 2D side-scrolling game, where a skinned "Tanooki" races after a devious Mario look-alike wearing his bloody pelt.
This isn't a joke. You can actually play the game on their website.
The funniest part -- or maybe the saddest part -- is that Mario is not only never seen actually harming the Japanese rodent, but that according to Nintendo lore, the suit wasn't even pulled from any animal, rather hand-crafted by a tailor named Tanooki.
Obviously this is just PETA trolling for attention. But hey, we're giving to to them, because we honestly, we don't really understand what they're trying to prove here. The only justifiable reaction is the following: