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Everyone is familiar with Goombas, the ubiquitous, low-level henchmen found wandering around the Mushroom Kingdom. But, one thing unbeknownst to most is the notion that the Super Mario Bros.’ characters have arms.
If most people are asked whether or not Goombas have arms, their reaction may be to scoff. “Of course not! Does Donald Duck have a penis?” The answer to both of those questions, incidentally, is yes.
On Friday, Twitter user Joe Piconi posted a photo of an old Japanese Keshi collectible figure–likely from the 1980s. A glimpse of figure’s backside plainly reveals two evidently long-forgotten appendages. “Goombas have arms and hands,” he wrote. “They are folded neatly behind their backs.”
Goombas have arms and hands. They are folded neatly behind their backs. pic.twitter.com/nRXVi6u92f— Joe Piconi (@joepiconi) April 19, 2019
It’s mine. It’s an old keshi rubber figure. I think I got it on eBay.— Joe Piconi (@joepiconi) April 19, 2019
Naturally, cool and collected heads prevailed as people soaked in this shocking revelation.
EVERYTHING I KNOW IS A LIE— Nicely done. (@ngjperron) April 19, 2019
I really hope this is a bootleg. pic.twitter.com/ImHQwdOrCB— Nick Raffa (@animallover360) April 19, 2019
Others had questions, particularly when it comes to the Goombas’ ability to hold a baseball bat and participate in other types of activities.
Is that why they can hold baseball bats and participate in party games? Did their arms become invisible later on? The questions!— Lex (@Sibblexis) April 19, 2019
Twitter account Forest of Illusion, dedicated to “saving Nintendo’s past since 2004,” pointed out that this actually isn’t the first time we’ve seen Goombas with hands and arms. “Very good find!” they wrote. “Goombas also were able to be seen with hands during certain scenes of the 1986 Great Mission to Rescue Princess Peach.”
Very good find! Goomba's also were able to be seen with hands during certain scenes of the 1986 Great Mission to Rescue Princess Peach. 🙂— Forest of Illusion (@forestillusion) April 19, 2019
Yet another person broke out a wild theory: “Maybe Goombas are so slow and unobservant because they are entirely focused on keeping their hands unseen because it’s impolite to let them be seen in their society,” Twitter user @CurvyAkane wrote. “Which is why they hate the Mushroom Kingdom.”
Maybe Goombas are so slow and unobservant because they are entirely focused on keeping their hands unseen because it's impolite to let them be seen in their society - which is why they hate the mushroom kingdom.— Hibiki Akane (@CurvyAkane) April 19, 2019
Either that or perhaps it’s something completely obvious, like the inception of characters growing and evolving over time. It could also be that missteps often are made and liberties taken when content gets licensed out to third parties.
We may never know.
Stacey Ritzen is a reporter and editor based in West Philadelphia with over 10 years' experience covering pop culture, web culture, entertainment, and news. You can follow her on Twitter @staceyritzen.