Fungal Footmen and Mushroom Minions

Since we just looked at Ozma’s castle staff, how about that of the Mushroom Kingdom? Well, the most famous member of that royal household is Toad.

He and the other Toads you rescue in the original Super Mario Bros. are known as Mushroom Retainers, which sound like dental appliances.

Actually, though, a royal retainer is a generic term for any employee in a royal household, and Toad is sort of a general assistant to Princess Peach. He comes into Super Mario Bros. 2 as basically an extra character, since there were four to choose from in the original Doki Doki Panic. Later games tended to reduce his role to a provider of items and hints to Mario and Luigi, but he did have other playable parts. He was also a significant character in the cartoons and comics based on the earlier games.

The Super Show once identified his father as Moldy, Top Toadstool of Fungusville. In the Nintendo Power comic, one of the Princess’ guards is called Toad at one point, suggesting he’s the same character. He also might or might not be the leader of the Toad Brigade in the Super Mario Galaxy games. The Blue and Yellow Toads from the New Super Mario Bros. games could also be Mushroom Retainers, but this is just speculation, as we really don’t know anything about them at all.

The Nintendo Comics System introduced two employees at the castle, Wooster and Chef Spore.

The latter is the royal cook and appears in only one story, while the former is pretty major in the comics as well as the Nintendo Adventure Books.

Like Jeeves, he’s a servant who’s generally smarter than his employers, and I would assume he’s named after Jeeves’s own employer, Bertie Wooster. In addition to advising the King and Princess on just about everything, he has an obsession with cleanliness. The Super Mario Adventure comic also names two other members of the court Toadster and Toadman.

The Chancellor in Super Mario RPG is basically the second-in-command, taking over the castle when the Princess is gone.

And Super Mario Sunshine introduces another significant servant, Toadsworth, who has been Peach’s steward and caretaker since her childhood. He’s an old Toad with a British accent, and he’s become a mainstay of the series.

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11 Responses to Fungal Footmen and Mushroom Minions

  1. Can any of them perform magic?

    • Nathan says:

      Not as far as I know, although Toad does keep quite a collection of power-ups, and one episode of the Super Mario Bros. 3 cartoon had him pretending to be a wizard. The Princess also seems to have a certain amount of healing power, as per Super Mario RPG and the instruction manual to the original SMB. The closest career magic-worker might be Merlon in Toad Town.

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