Remake of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door restores trans identity of beloved character

Nintendo's most recent release, a remake of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door for the Nintendo Switch, has sparked controversy among fans due to the restoration of Vivian's trans identity.

Published on May 22, 2024  |  02:40 PM IST |  95K
(Image Courtesy: Nintendo)
Image Courtesy: Nintendo
Key Highlight
  • The remake of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door accurately portraying Vivian as a trans woman
  • Vivian's story of self-discovery and acceptance resonates deeply with players

Nintendo's remake of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door for the Nintendo Switch has delighted fans with its faithful restoration of Vivian's trans identity, which differs significantly from the original English localization as per IGN. 

Vivian's journey from villain to hero 

Vivian begins her journey through The Thousand-Year Door as one of the game's antagonists. Vivian's first mission, alongside her sisters Marilyn and Beldam, is to thwart Mario's plans.

However, due to Beldam's relentless bullying, Vivian eventually leaves her sisters and joins Mario's party. This transformation from foe to ally has always been an important event in the game, and the remake enhances it by accurately reflecting Vivian's true identity. 

Restoring Vivian's trans identity 

In the original 2004 Japanese version, Vivian was portrayed as a transgender woman. This important aspect of her character was overlooked in the English translation, where Beldam's taunts focused on calling Vivian ugly rather than misgendering her.

The new remake corrects this oversight. In Twilight Town, Chapter 4, Vivian reveals her true identity to Mario. "Truth is, it took me a while to realize I was their sister... not their brother," she continues. "Now their usual bullying feels heavier."

Image Courtesy: Nintendo

Affirming Vivian's gender 

The remake is far more accepting of Vivian's gender than the original English version. In the Japanese version, Beldam, Goombella's tattle, and her in-game character description frequently misgender Vivian. This time, Beldam's remarks are toned down, and other characters and texts consistently refer to Vivian as a woman. 

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Goombella's tattle now refers to Vivian as "The youngest of the Three Shadows. She's so cute, she's able to infatuate anyone," while her character bio reads, "Vivian was one of the Three Shadows but has now chosen to leave her two sisters behind."

Image Courtesy: Reddit

A welcome change for fans 

Fans have long regarded Vivian as one of the most memorable characters in The Thousand-Year Door, and the English version's restoration of her trans identity has received widespread acclaim. The more sensitive and accurate portrayal not only adheres to the original Japanese narrative but also reflects societal progress in recognizing and respecting transgender identities. 

The remake of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door has gotten rave reviews. Critics have praised the game for faithfully recreating the beloved classic, with enhancements that introduce it to a new generation of players while retaining the original's charm and depth.

According to a review, "There’s a reason The Thousand-Year Door has been considered one of the greatest Nintendo games for the last 20 years, and this brilliant remake ensures it will maintain that reputation for at least a thousand more."

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Know more about Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door remake and Vivian's trans identity:

Who is Vivian in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door?
Vivian is a character who starts as an antagonist working with her sisters against Mario but eventually joins Mario's party due to mistreatment from her sister Beldam.

How was Vivian's identity represented in the original Japanese version?
In the original Japanese version, Vivian was written as a transgender woman.

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Sakina is a seeker of truth and uncovers hidden perspectives, ensuring her readers are not just informed but

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