You know... I never realised just how cute those little red polka dots look on top!
|I even like the box design this time.|
I know Mansion has its haters, a lot of the reviews being mixed and the game being criticised for its short length, but nevertheless, it opened new ground for Luigi, gave him a theme to focus on (in most subsequent games, Super Mario Galaxy for example, he's usually found in a haunted house), and was very playable, which was good. However, there was something else in the game... something more noticeable.
I wasn't the only person to spot it. On a forum I used to haunt (I won't say which, but my user icon was a Magikarp for a while, so you can sort of guess what the theme of the forum was), one of the regulars pointed out that Luigi might be gay. I looked at the clues that she pointed out, and was suddenly overwhelmed by them... I saw subtle hints everywhere! I pointed this out to a close friend who's now hosting a video gaming webseries, and he started picking them out, as well. So... the big question...
Is Luigi gay?
|Yeah, sure he couldn't be gay, could he?|
It's been noted that Luigi doesn't really have an equivalent. Princess Daisy has been put forward as a potential romantic partner for Luigi, but I don't think so somehow. Although her trophy in Super Smash Bros. Mêlée mentions rumours of her as "Luigi's answer to Mario's Peach," it places a lot more emphasis on her being a tomboy in comparison to Peach, which is a much more important part of her character. Additionally, Luigi didn't even appear in Super Mario Land, the game in which she made her first appearance.
This dress looks kind of comfortable... Nah, I'll stick with my duds!But it's not the lack of girlfriend that makes me think he's gay. It's a combination of the stuff he says and how he acts. His voice is the first clue - it's much higher-pitched and more, well, camp, than his brother's. He shrieks, rather than yells, stutters when he's scared, and generally sounds a lot more effeminate than Mario - Mansion is a good game for this, as pressing button A will have him call out Mario's name, usually with increasing pitch and tone. His quotes - although they're few - point towards a more feminine side and an eye for the aesthetic and, although this isn't a trait limited to homosexual men, stereotypically it does tend to be.
Then there's the way he physically acts. Originally he was just a palette swap of Mario, but since Super Mario Bros. 2 he's has his own characteristics - in addition to being taller and thinner. His jumps, while a lot higher than any other character, are frenetic and seem uncontrollable - in SMB2 he kicks his legs in a "fiddly" fashion (thanks to Robinson for the adjective there), and in Super Mario Galaxy - another game in which he plays a minor role, but a good one - his triple jump involves flailing limbs, as opposed to Mario's, which is a mid-air flip. His Final Smash in Super Smash Bros. Brawl is a crazy dance with weird exotic music, causing everyone else to fall asleep, whereas his taunts all do look slightly ridiculous. He's not a muscleman, but he isn't weak either - yet he does have a tendency for stringy, bendy and exaggerated movements.
|You've never seen gay until you've seen Rainbow Luigi.|
It's true that there are some more openly homosexual characters out there in Nintendo canon. Birdo is a transsexual (she's presented as a girl now, but in the earlier days, Nintendo cards - given out with Frosties - actually read, "this batty bird thinks he is a girl!"... verbatim), something they could have made more of a deal about. Chrono Trigger for the SNES featured a transgender villain named Flea. Bully contains gay content, a number of recent FPSs have hinted at it, and let's not forget the slew of South Park games featuring Big Gay Al. But I think Luigi deserves special attention. He's a main character. Maybe he's gay - maybe he isn't. But he acts in an openly camp way, and what with the option to hump tables in Mansion (seriously, go up to a table and press B, it's hilarious), I think that, whoever or whatever Luigi is, he's enjoying life when he can... and doing it with a healthy amount of joie de vivre.
Luigi, I salute you. Now please excuse me while I go and buy a 3DS.