mario and luigi plumbers janitors new york times New York Times calls Mario and Luigi 'janitors' in Hiroshi Yamauchi obit, publishes correction

The death of former Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi was one of the biggest stories of last week, as the 85-year-old was one of the most influential people in making video games the popular medium they are today. That’s part of why it’s so ironic that the New York Times incorrectly reported on two of the most important video game characters that he helped create.

In the Times’ obituary of Yamauchi, the newspaper wrote that the iconic Nintendo characters Mario and Luigi were janitors, incorrectly identifying their actual occupation as plumbers (or princess-savers, as they so often have to help royal damsels in distress).

“An obituary on Sept. 20 about Hiroshi Yamauchi, the longtime president of Nintendo, included a quotation from a 1988 New York Times article that inaccurately described the Nintendo video game Super Mario Bros. 2. The brothers Mario and Luigi, who appear in this and other Nintendo games, are plumbers, not janitors,” the NYT correction reads.

Clearly whoever fact-checked this article did not grow up playing “Super Mario Bros.” Though the Mario Bros.’ trade doesn’t really come into play with their games’ storylines (with the exception of the pipes they use to travel), it is something that everyone will hopefully remember about the TV icons.

Posted by:Terri Schwartz