Welcome back to the Weekly Wizard, the segment of Miketendo64 brought to you by the ne’er-do-well cad behind Wizard Dojo, where I talk about Nintendo-y stuff!
You know what I’m sick of? People constantly whining that Princess Peach is a bad role model for girls, and that the Super Mario series is “sexist” because said Princess gets kidnapped in so many games in the series. I know we live in a time when people actively look for reasons to whine and complain about non-issues, and accuse anything of one form of prejudice or another just to make themselves feel better, but come on! Super Mario is one of the most harmless and inoffensive franchises in all media.
Well, as always, I’m all too happy to call out such annoying virtue signalers on their BS. Especially in a case like this, because not only are Mario games great, but Princess Peach is awesome! Here’s just a little bit why Princess Peach is a strong female character, contrary to what obnoxious SJWs want to think.
First, let’s just point out the obvious: Princess Peach getting kidnapped does not make her weak. The Super Mario series is in no way, shape or form trying to make any kind of societal statement against women (despite what the tumblr crowd want to believe). Super Mario is just a more contemporary take on the classic “knight in shining armor” fairy tale archetype, only with the knight being replaced by a cartoony plumber. Like in those old fairy tales, the original Super Mario Bros. told the story of a hero trying to save his love. And because the Super Mario Bros. is a series built around gameplay and not plot, the games have often re-used this classic setup because, well, it works. Having a loved one in need of rescue is certainly incentive enough for a hero to go on their adventure, so for a series that doesn’t rely on plot, it’s a decent backdrop to return to time and again.
Now, more importantly, let’s get to Princess Peach herself. So many people want to act like she’s such a negative depiction of women because she gets kidnapped frequently and because she’s “traditionally feminine.” But that’s all a big croc. For one thing, what’s wrong with being feminine? The color pink? Awesome! Fancy dresses? Awesome! Princesses? Awesome! Seriously, I fail to see why these feminine traits are seen as negatives.
All the better still is that Princess Peach, when it comes right down to it, is a badass. I know, people will wonder what I mean by that, considering, once again, that she gets kidnapped so often. But again, she’s only kidnapped when the game in question needs a simple backdrop. When Peach is at the forefront, however, she shows just what a capable adventurer she is.
In fact, when Peach is a playable character, she’s more often than not the best possible playable character in any game!
In Super Mario Bros. 2, peach is easily the most useful character due to her floating ability. She not only makes the platforming easier, but it’s also eases getting on top of enemies and items to throw them at more powerful foes.
Then we have Super Mario RPG, one of the greatest Mario games of all time, in which the Mushroom Kingdom princess is the most valuable party member. Not only can she heal and revive teammates, but also has one of the most devastating special moves in the game in Psych Bomb.
Better still, Super Mario RPG showed what a strong-willed and determined Princess Peach is, and gave a new dimension to her character.
For those who complain that Peach is always kidnapped, the plucky princess had the chance to rescue Mario himself during her own Nintendo DS outing, Super Princess Peach. Some bemoan that Peach used her emotions as powers in the game, but I don’t think that had to do with her being a woman. I just think Nintendo had a fun, emotion-based gameplay system, and they just happened to use Peach for it. Besides, she rescues Mario! How awesome is that?!
Fast-forward to Super Mario 3D World, and Peach was once again the most useful of the starting characters. With her hovering ability back in tow, Peach was once again the most powerful character…that is until you unlocked Rosalina.
Notice that the one time you could play as a more useful character than Peach, it was another female character.
Speaking of which, Rosalina is the most developed character in the series, and is so badass she defeated Bowser’s entire armada with her magic. Even Princess Daisy (a character I simply can’t stand) is still made out to be a strong character. So why does the Mario series get so much flack from would-be feminists? All of the main female characters are made to be strong and independent. Sure, Peach gets kidnapped a lot, but whenever she’s not kidnapped, she kicks ass. In fact, the reason why Bowser kidnapped her in the first place (in Super Mario Bros.) was because she was the only one who could break his spell on the Mushroom Kingdom. He kidnapped her because she was strong and could stop him!
In short, Princess Peach is great, and doesn’t deserve the unjust ridicule she receives. Okay, so she’s often used as a plot device. But whenever she isn’t, she kicks so much ass and takes so many names, that she’s one of the stronger women in gaming. Princess Peach is girl power!
That’s all for this edition of The Weekly Wizard! Feel free to write about how awesome Princess Peach is in the comments! And stay tuned to both Miketendo64 and my site, WizardDojo.com, for some writings on my upcoming E3 adventures. Cheers!