Why Luigi is better than Mario

Initial Comparisons

Mario and Luigi are brothers. The best we can decipher, their last name is inexplicably also "Mario." Why? Because when you think of, say, the Koch brothers you don't assume that one of them has the first name "Koch." Mario Mario is a dumb name, I'll say it. Luigi Mario isn't much better, but at least his parents didn't hate him. Point Luigi.

Luigi has played second fiddle even since they were children, and certainly since they were first brought into this world. He's only ever been tossed a bone whenever his brother has somehow been caught in over his head. Despite decades of this, you rarely see him trying to usurp the spotlight out from under "everyone's" favourite plumber. He is Mario's second-in-command, and as that phrase goes, "If you want to make someone disappear, make them vice president." It's also been shown that silver medalists are less happy/satisfied than bronze medalists. Despite all of this, he doesn't ever seem to be bothered or complain about it. Point Luigi.

If we were to look at their physical attributes, Luigi is taller, faster, and can jump higher. I'd like to point out that jumping is the only thing that makes the Super Mario Bros super (before drug enhancement, of course). That's like The Flash having a sidekick who is faster than him. Point Luigi.

Say What!
All of this is secondary for the main reason for why Luigi is better than Mario: He's a coward.

Ever since his lead role in "Luigi's Mansion" (and possibly before), He has been portrayed as a milquetoast, terrified wimp. That may be the case, I'm not going to I don't believe this to be the entire story.

Some definitions of a coward is someone who lacks bravery, but I'm choosing the interpretation as someone who is full of fear. Mario rarely, if ever, seems overly scared about the situations he gets himself into. This is a bad thing. Why?

Fearlessness is not the Goal

No, fearlessness is not what it's cracked up to be and should be a red flag. It implies that one is oblivious to the inherent risks that they're about to undergo. If you're about to jump from pillar to pillar while fireballs are tossed from any direction, mages will attack you, undead things will be everywhere, and sentient concrete slabs try to grind you up.. If that's the case and you're not terrified, then you are utterly insane. Best of luck to you.

No, fear is the most appropriate response to that sort of situation, and it's a natural inclination that we all feel. Fear acknowledges that what you're about to do is dangerous, and your survival might depend on performing well.

Nice Socks, L

Bravery Requires Fear  

I'll repeat: Fear is required for bravery to exist because it means you are aware of the danger, yet you are pushing yourself through force of will to do what you believe is right. That takes balls. That is what should be impressive.

They say there's a fine line between Bravery and Stupidity, and that line is defined by fear.

Do we see Luigi run away? Sometimes he does, yeah. He has a weaker constitution. Despite that, he consistently comes through when it's required of him. Point Luigi.


  • Luigi Mario > Mario Mario
  • Not a Showboat
  • Faster, Taller, Jumps Higher
  • One of the Bravest men in his universe
It's this last feature that is the most relevant to those of us in the real world. We are all afraid, and the media does its best to keep us that way. As Edward R Murrow famously stated: "We are not descendants from fearful men." Despite how everything may appear, how everything may seem, we cannot let fear rule our decisions or govern our actions. We can take charge and do what we believe is necessary and right.

 I'll close with another quote from the real world, spoken by one Nelson Mandela:

I wish I could draw this well
"I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear."

Editing Music: Lousy Connection by Ezra Furman

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