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This Mario Theory About 1-Up Mushrooms Is Truly Disturbing

"Super Mario" is as nostalgic as it gets when it comes to video games. While Mario was a part of many a childhood, he's relevant today with "Mario Kart" still a fantastic way to pass the time with friends and a new movie on the horizon (full of things we hope to see). With all the different mediums, including a campy 90s cartoon we wish had more than one season, it's no surprise to learn that "Super Mario" also had a few mangas to his name. One comic in particular, published in 1996 by Shounen Oh Comics, stands out as a macabre possibility of just where those helpful 1-up mushrooms come from. After all, in a world full of mushroom people, why would giant mushrooms randomly appear and magically transform Mario?


Twitter user Supper Mario Broth is the one who helped this comic resurface after over twenty years of dormancy. The theory that it puts forth is truly disturbing and, as some on Twitter noted, stands more in line with "The Last of Us" than "Super Mario."

The theory tells of Mario's grim fate

The idea that there are multiple Marios isn't a novel one. After all, what happens to Mario when he falls down those chasms or gets bumped off — literally — by his enemies? This Shounen Oh comic postulated something entirely grimdark, much like the cordyceps from "The Last of Us" — only, instead of the mushroom taking over the host in a zombie-like fashion, here, 1-ups simply grow from the buried corpses of old Marios who have fallen in battle — or down a chasm, depending on the point of the game. It's a terrifying cycle, especially if one considers that the 1-ups themselves may die after a solid punch from Mario (or is that simply how Mario gets the spores?), and it isn't the only theory that this particular manga puts forth.



It's long been a mystery how Mario breathes underwater — and just how those coins replenish his air. As one clever Tweeter put it: "How much deeper can the lore possibly go?" While grisly, there's no denying the depth of these theories.