Wednesday, May 4, 2005

Because "Martina" Was Taken?

I let my mind wander and I ended up in Super Mario World, more or less. I was thinking about the more obscure characters to populate Mario games and I recalled one of the first few female characters to show up: Valentina. Most wouldn’t know her, and for good reason — this lady bad guy appeared in one game and never schemed again, most because a company other than Nintendo owns the rights to not just Valentina but all the characters created specifically for a 1996 Super Nintendo game called Super Mario RPG.

One-timer or not, Valentina is notable because she was one of the first few lady bad guys ever too rain in Mario’s parade and, for someone that had reason to interact with kid-friendly notables like the Super Mario Bros., she’s also a little racy.

Check her out.

Aside from the rather prominent chest and the odd, football-shaped Betty Boop head, Valentina is constantly clutching what would appear to be a cocktail — a martini, to be exact. In Japan, she is called “Margarita,” which seems like a misnomer but, in my book, further underscores her predilection for booze. In fact, I’d bet that the translators switched her name so the association wasn’t so obvious. Also, If I remember correctly, the eventual showdown that Mario had with her in the game was made all the more notable by the fact that whenever Mario struck her, her whole body shuddered and set her breasts to a noticeable quivering motion.

Very odd.

I’m surprised Nintendo let this fly in a Mario game, much less one that kids in America got to play. They’re normally a bit more prudish than that. Perhaps it was okay that Valentina was such a bad girl because she was, in fact, a bad girl — a villain. In any case, she’s also an anti-Princess Peach who perhaps never got her fair shake at long-time do-baddery.

As to why she’s wearing a dead parrot on her head, your guess is as a good as mine.


  1. There were quite a few female villains before Valentina, but she certainly was memorable, with her drink and dress and weirdly sexy shimmy. It's like she predicted Sex and the City or something. Especially with her being evil.

  2. Are you sure her name in Japan isn't Margarie Margarita? Because that's the title of her little theme song on the Japanese soundtrack.