PETA: That Bloody Mario Thing Was Just A Joke

Looks like PETA bit off more Fusarium venetum then they could chew when they attacked Mario for his Tanooki-suit wearing ways. The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals tell Kotaku that their bloody video game take-down of Mario was meant to be "tongue-in-cheek."

"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."

The email comes days after the organisation launched a "Mario Kills Tanoki" media campaign meant to draw attention to the very real slaughtering of raccoon dogs for their furs. The campaign blasted Nintendo and their beloved gaming plumber Mario over what they claim was a message that it's OK to wear animal furs.

In Super Mario 3D Land, which was released this past weekend, one of Mario's many power-ups is a Tanooki suit which grants him the ability to glide across the screen after jumps. The suit looks more like a one-piece jumper or costume than it does a fur, but PETA said the game was sending the wrong message to gamers.

On the Mario Kills Tanooki website, players can turn the tables on Mario, taking on the role of a bloody and skinned tanuki chasing a surly Mario as he drifts through his familiar world, a trail of blood dripping from his suit.


    PETA are a bunch of stupid crazies. I loved it when the super meat boy creator managed to troll them so hard that they actually made super tofu boy, which was the creators own idea lol.

    Yeah... after playing mario i just had a sudden urge to go buy furs... grow up PETA its a game not an ad campaign, people dont actually take note of these things.

    That old excuse when someone's being a complete knob and everyone reacts negatively - 'Nah I was really just joking, see?' No one's buying it, especially with a track record of stupidity like PETA's.

    ahhh peta standing behind there convictions bahahahah herpderp

    Ah yes, a hilarious, light hearted violent bloody joke.

    Awsome so you're totally allowed to discredit one company to draw up interest for your own cause. BUT IT'S A JOKE SO IT'S OK

    Ah yes, a hilarious, light hearted violent blood-filled joke.

      Seriously? I can't comment the word "bl00dy" but you can use it in the title?

      Ahh crap. Mobile for the lose. Ignore me.

    Everyone knows that the Tanooki suit is actually made from a polyester/cotton blend. It breathes better when gliding.

      Also, should the next article be about how PETA doesn't care about turtles (or turtle like creatures). Will somebody please think of the Koopas!?!

    I'd suggest that PETA read The Boy Who Cried Wolf, but they'd probably come back and say that it supports cruelty to wolves somehow.

    One minute it was a joke - made to be tongue-in-cheek, next it is a serious issue...

    "A fun way to call attention to a serious issue"....seems like an oxymoron to me...the message has certainly been lost somewhere...


    Nintendo should sue their arse for direct defamation if their IP.

      As they say in the US, "That and a quarter will get them twenty-five cents."

      Agreed, Nintendo should go after them for unauthorised used of their character.
      PETA had turned into a sad joke

      Maybe they already did, which is why it's now just "meant to be tongue-in-cheek".

    Anybody bashing PETA over this is completely missing the point. The fact that you're talking about it means that their marketing worked, it made news sites and people talked about it with their friends. It's not a failure just because people didn't get the joke, they have a message that they want to get out there and they did. It's consistent with their past marketing as well, relying on shock and surprise to make people think. I think it's a very funny and well executed strategy.

      Even so Puck, this is compeltely stupid for 2 reasons.
      1. This is a game, people dont take things seriously.
      2. The fact that they are actually so pissed off about a game in the first place
      In my eyes, that really isnt a good marketing strategy if they are trying to get a message across

      If by funny, you mean make themselves look stupid kind of funny, well maybe. And by well executed, you mean losing all credibilty they had left, I guess if that was the plan then yeah.

      The whole thing seems kinda childish to me.
      Nintendo: ..........
      Public: You guys are idiots
      PETA: hahaha we were just joking get it? JOKING!!!! You guys just didn't get the joke. It's not funny if I have to explain it ಠ_ಠ

      People didn’t “get the joke” as it wasn’t a joke. It’s being disguised as a “joke” now because PETA because realised they screwed the pooch and are now back peddling to distance themselves from their own stupidity.

        I disagree; I think it was always meant to be a joke. I wouldn't be surprised if PETAs media coordinator had that second email already written before the media campaign started. It's naive to think they didn't expect this reaction - these marketing people do this for a living every day, they plan these campaigns out and spend lots of money on them. People who are reacting negatively to this are just falling into their plans. You have to think of it like 'feeding a troll' on the internet - by reacting you are giving them what they want. They wanted publicity and that's exactly what they got. All these people who never talked or even thought about PETA are now talking about them. If they had said "Hey guys, Mario kills Tanooki" and then "Hey guys, it's a joke" and no news sites ran it, and then the ones that did had 0 comments on them, THEN that would have been a failure.

        It's not always the case that 'all publicity is good publicity', but generally it's true. And PETA has always tried to get a reaction with their marketing, think about the "Vegetarians have better sex" campaign (semi-NSFW):

        Having it banned from the Superbowl was the best thing for them, lots of free media attention.

        Anyway, I think it the Mario joke was funny as well as being successful, obviously most people disagree though. :)

          I guess we agree to disagree :)
          For me it comes down to PETA having a long track record of not finding anything remotely related to animals funny, especially when it has any slim relation to killing animals for anything. By your reasoning, they are not only ok with making light of it now; they are actively doing it themselves.

          I just dont see them actively making this decision before the backlash, but I guess we will never know.

          I do agree whole heartedly with you on one point though.
          "You have to think of it like ‘feeding a troll’ on the internet – by reacting you are giving them what they want"
          This is the last time I do that with a comment.

          Yeah... except PETA's ad campaigns frequently get them publicly lambasted by human-based rights groups for being exploitative and degrading to women. They are frequently lambasted by the media at large for putting so-called animal rights above human rights and they are generally considered by the public to be out of touch at best. It's also frequently noted that they do almost nothing to help the causes of people who diligently work to actually improve animal welfare.

          Every single time they appear in the media, they are met with hostility and derision on all sides. They have strong links with at least one organisation that is unofficially considered an eco-terrorist group and for all the money they spend on ridiculous advertising and shit like this, they could be using that cash on animal shelters and education programs.

          PETA are a huge, unfunny joke with a punchline akin to a big fart that accidentally follows through and dumps a runny shit in their collective pants. Almost nothing they have ever turned their hand to has improved anything for animals and any small victory they manage is trumpeted from the rooftops to hide their irrelevance and general insanity.

            All very good points, especially about the perception that they put animal rights above human rights. I'm not agreeing with PETA, just saying that in my opinion their Mario "joke" was better than people were giving it credit for.

              It was a joke! When everybody gets angry, it was a joke ...

    you people are so easily trolled when it comes to video games.
    everything is above sacred apparently.

    Reading this make me feel like a nice steak. Pub counter meal for lunch methinks.

    I think I get the message now:

    Two men walk into a bar.
    They are Italian plumbers, and skinning animals alive is the punchline.

    What I have learned:

    The PETA "brand" is more important to PETA than the actual protection of animals.

      The crazy thing is that in most peoples minds the "PETA brand" stands for a bunch of out of touch loonies who don't actually achieve much at all except their own promotion.

      It would be akin to Sony going out and doing everything they could to make people believe their products (and service) are worthless and you shouldn't buy them, then proudly congratulating themselves for their huge levels of brand recognition - right before going broke.

        Brand recognition in and of itself isn't always good - just ask the directors of "James Hardie"

    Wayyyyyyyy too late to back pedal PETA ya fkn dropkicks.

    Mario can now sue them for libel (Settlement amount, 100 coins). He has never killed a Tanuki, he simply uses their transformation leaves...

    PETA really had no clue what they were doing with this campaign. As far as I've seen, it's just raised awareness of the fact they don't know games. What I'd like to see, is the counter-game where Nintendo's lawyers chase PETA across a familiar landscape.

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