Is Super Mario Bros, History's Greatest Masterpiece Of Surrealism?

The surrealism of Super Mario Bros. would seem to be self-evident but, as PBS' Idea Channel on YouTube says, perhaps it has been around for so long that its non sequiturs are taken for normal.

Its wide acceptance (and a catalogue of work spanning more than two decades) may make the Super Mario Bros. franchise the world's greatest piece of surrealist art. It's a great argument, but first, let's understand what surrealism is.

This video gets the conversation going with a discussion of surrealism and its essential qualities. Simply being bizarre isn't what makes something surreal. And the video points out that the surrealism of an interactive medium can end up having real-world applications, in ways a static painting could not.

C'mon, maybe it's a Sunday, but you can still learn something today, too. I did.


    As you state simply being bizarre is NOT surrealism. Non -sequitars are also not surrealist. Try reading the surrealist manifesto.
    As Wikipedia points out - surrealism is 'pure psychic automatism, by which one chooses to express.... the real functioning of thought. Dictation of thought in the absence of all control exercised by reason, outside of all aethetic and moral preoccupation'.
    Mario bros has more in common with dada and the post modernist movement (i.e. Cut-up) than being classed merely as surrealist.

    Mario is no more bizarre than other games from that period.

    Surrealism is not merely being bizarre but super Mario is surreal because it is bizarre.

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