In the movie, it was called Blue Shell, but Nintendo hasn’t called it that in over 25 years.
Super Mario Bros. The Movie is celebrated for how faithful it is to its source material and how many references it manages to make in 90 minutes. However, there is one moment in the film where longtime fans debate what a particular Mario Kart item should be called. A flying cannonball that can be used to take out a race leader. Is it a blue shell or a prickly shell?
Light spoilers for the Mario movie ahead. There’s a section of the movie where a lot of the cast races down Rainbow Road, Mario Kart style. Fearing loss to the good guys, Koopa Troopa fires a blue cannonball at Mario, sending the plumber and Donkey Kong into the sea below. We’ve all been there except for the movies. Latiku wasn’t even close to saving them.
At that moment, it became controversial because the item that drowned Mario and DK was a blue clam. Most people have called it that for years (I know), but it turns out that it is not an officially known shell. They are actually prickly shells and there is a lot of evidence to support that.
Turns out, this item has been called the Spiny Shell ever since it was first introduced in the Mushroom Kingdom in Mario Kart 64. Pictures of the items can be found in the game manual, with the name thorn just above. husks. It seems to have been called that in every Mario Kart game up until Mario Kart 8 Deluxe which includes the Spiny Shell Cup.
There’s an argument to be made that the item referred to as the blue shell in the Mario movies has changed lore because too many people are already calling it that, but one could argue that Mario is too new to the Mushroom Kingdom in the movies. He doesn’t know a proper name. The same logic could be applied to the Tanooki Suit where DK mentions it’s a raccoon suit and Mario doesn’t modify him.
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