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Super Mario Galaxy 2 doesn't make any sense.
While it's a direct sequel to Super Mario Galaxy, the stories just don't add up. In the first, you are invited to Peach's castle for the Star Festival, which is celebrated every 100 years. Bowser kidnaps the princess, and Rosalina helps you retrieve her.
In the second game, you are invited to Peach's castle for the Star Festival, which is celebrated every 100 years. Bowser kidnaps the princess, and a big purple thing that looks kind of like Grimace helps you retrieve her….
Wait a minute, this doesn't add up at all! Is Mario immortal? Is this an alternate dimension?
Trying to make narrative sense of Mario is a ridiculous endeavor. Story is not the purpose of the game, and it rarely factors into a review.
I was going to use this as an argument to why Mario endures, as part of our callout for Mario articles. The lack of any sort of story creates a very low barrier to entry. You don't need to know anything to play, and this lack of narrative preserves the timelessness of the the character. The idea of an alternate-dimension Mario, however, made me think of another very popular franchise.
Lost's final episode aired the exact same day Super Mario Galaxy 2 was released. I don't think this was a coincidence. While the finale of the six-season series was heavy on emotion, many questions were left unanswered.
If Lost still has a story to tell and Mario needs a story, I think we might have a match. In fact, the characters of the Mario series and Lost share many connections.
Here are the likelest roles that Mario characters can step into on Lost. (I will be spoiling everything).
Mario as Jack Shepard
Mario and Jack have more in common than being the protagonists of their respective franchises. They are both professionals (plumber and neurosurgeon), they both have drug addictions (mushrooms and painkillers), and they both have an unwavering motivation to do what is right.
Luigi as James "Sawyer" Ford
Mario and Luigi have had a long-standing competition, much like Jack and Sawyer. Often billed as the sidekick, both Sawyer and Luigi can stand on their own two feet. And where Sawyer is a con-man, Luigi has constantly been conned. I mean, you can't explain it any other way. How would you feel to be the hero of a launch title for Nintendo's new system, only to end up starring in Luigi's Mansion?
Peach as Kate Austen
Peach and Kate are both constantly getting in trouble — and often by their own doing: Kate murders her abusive stepfather; Peach bakes delicious cakes. They can both, however, dish out as much as they can take.
Daisy as Juliet Burke
Daisy is Juliet, insofar that they were convenient additions to the fiction. Both were billed as damsels in distress to be saved by the protagonist — Daisy in the Game Boy's Super Mario Land and Juliet as a relunctant member of the Others. They quickly moved from Mario and Jack only to hook up with Luigi and Sawyer.
Wario as John Locke
Wario is as fickle as Locke. Sometimes good, sometimes bad — you never really get a proper read on either character. And much like Locke who wrote his own rules, Wario went on to create his own microgames.
Toad as Hugo "Hurley" Reyes
Toad is an obvious analogue to Hurley. Both are rotund (Toad in the head, Hurley in the belly), and both have a knack for getting themselves in trouble. They each supply unheeded, but wiser-than-it-sounds advice. Does this mean Toad will end up running the whole show? Maybe.
Funky Kong as Sayid Jarrah
Both characters have played multiple roles in their franchises that reveal each to be a jack-of-all-trades. Funky Kong has helped his friends as a pilot, arms dealer, and mechanic, while Sayid has helped his friends as radio-repair man, torturer, and zombie.
Diddy and Dixie Kong as Jin and Sun Kwon
No matter the obstacles, nothing can keep these lovebirds apart. Both couples also have bizarre circumstances surrounding their unions. Jin became a member of the Paik crime family in order to marry Sun. Diddy and Dixie have different, but perhaps as unsavory, family issues. Diddy is Donkey Kong's nephew, where as Dixie is Donkey Kong's cousin. I'm not a genealogist, but that just doesn't seem right.
Keep reading for more Mario and Lost connections….
Koopa Troopa as Claire Littleton
Much like the Koopa Troopa, when you get rid of Claire, she only comes back crazier and more aggressive than ever, killing everything in her way.
Goomba as Charlie Pace
You could argue that Goombas and Charlie Pace are characters with one-track minds — goombas love moving forward and Charlie Pace loves his heroin. Here, I've compared the two because they have funny shaped heads.
Bowser as Benjamin Linus
Bowser, much like Ben Linus, has no problem switching teams for his own motives. Bowser is the big bad in the mainline Mario games, but will join Mario and Luigi in other games, like Super Paper Mario. Perhaps Bowser, much like Ben, is just looking to fit in and belong. Kind of like when Ben kidnapped Kate and tried to romance her on the beach. That's all Bowser is doing when he takes Princess Peach.
Birdo as Desmond Hume
Desmond is a bit of an oddity in Lost's mythology. He is always somewhere where he actually isn't and living two lives at once. Birdo, the male who looks like a female, feels the same way sometimes.
Shigeru Miyamoto as Jacob
The mysterious men behind the curtains, both have made jobs of manipulating the characters in their worlds. Both are also notable for their peaceful hobbies: Miyamoto loves gardening and music, while Jacob loves weaving tapestry and spending time in the woods at his cabin.
Sega as the Man in Black/the Smoke Monster
When Sega stopped manufacturing hardware and was reborn as a third-party publisher, they wreaked terror across the video game landscape using the expanded Sonic the Hedgehog mythology, retro compilations, and Golden Axe remakes. It bears a striking resemblance to the Man in Black's transformation into the smoke monster. Both are also trapped: Sega on other consoles while the Man In Black is stuck on the Island.
Kammy Koopa as Richard Alpert
The casual Mario fan may wonder who Kammy Koopa is. I certainly did before writing this article. Kammy, for the uninitiated, is supposedly Bowser's right-hand woman, the brains behind the operation, a similar role to Richard Alpert's.
Lakitu as Charles Widmore
From a distance, Charles Widmore and Lakitu offer up devious schemes and obstacles and use their minions to terrorize. Both are also all-seeing. When it comes down to it, should the circumstances be just right, both are easy to kill.
Keep reading for more Mario and Lost connections….
Rosalina as Libby Smith
Rosalina appeared from nowhere to help Mario save Peach in Super Mario Galaxy. Libby appeared from nowhere in Hurley's past. Both are very curious figures that have a weird love for fat and cartoony characters. We never really get any proper answers for either character.
Professor E. Gadd as Dr. Pierre Chang
While E. Gadd has been in a few Mario games, many fans may remember the professor for not appearing in Super Mario Sunshine. He was a presence, however, with his mysterious inventions be used throughout the game and allusions made to his true identity. That sounds a bit like Dr. Pierre Chang to me.
Yoshi as Vincent
Vincent, for whatever reason, captured the Lost fan's imagination. The dog would show up at opportune moments but was fairly invisible and inconsequential outside of those scenes. Yoshi provides a similar role: useful when you need him but somewhat unnecessary and stays out of the way otherwise.
Bowser Jr. as Tom Friendly
Tom, if you've forgotten, was the face of the Others until Ben showed up. His connections with Bowser Jr. would seem tenuous at best, but I will remind you that both are great at appearing as something they are not and pretending to be the big bad.
F.L.U.D.D. as the science team
Nobody asked for the science team, and nobody asked for F.L.U.D.D. The geek squad came with all sorts of new abilities, as did Mario's backpack from Super Mario Sunshine, and they mostly made a quick exit. Except for Miles and Lapidus — but neither of them really did anything of significance in the end.
The Koopa Kids as the Tailies
The Koopa Kids and the Tailies are groups of rag-tag misfits that cause trouble for our heroes. And both groups, with the exception of Bernard who kind of went away, more or less, all met their ends soon after their appearances.
Waluigi as Nikki and Paulo
Waluigi is the ultimate useless character as he has very little purpose even in the very vague Mario mythology. He's almost as hated as Nikki and Paulo from Lost's third season. I say we bury him alive as well.
Mushroom Kingdom as the island
This is an obvious analogy, but it's a good one. Each has many secrets to uncover, each exists outside of the real world with its own rules, and each, while very picturesque, is probably not an ideal vacation destination.
Warp pipes as the Hatch
The warp pipe fills the role of the Hatch in early seasons. They hide secrets, wealth, enemies, and a computer from the 1970s that holds off the apocalypse. OK, that last one was just the Hatch.
The score as the numbers
Lost made such a big deal over the numbers (4, 8, 15, 16, 23, and 42 for non-Lost fans), but nothing every really justified why they were so important. Yes, they were the numbers associated with the candidates in the last season — until half of them got killed, so it's hard to see any point to the numbers at all. They remind me a little of the score in Super Mario Bros. Who is keeping score? For what reason? What does it even mean? We never get any answers to those questions either.
Minus world as the "flash sideways"
So much mystery surrounds the Minus World in Super Mario Bros. What is it? Is it real? Who has been there? What does it have to do with the real game? These are all questions we asked when the "flash sideways" appeared at the beginning of the sixth season. Turns out it was a purgatory of sorts with no real consequence. That might also be an apt description for the Minus World.
Did I miss any connections? Post your own Mario and Lost analogues in the comments!