Mario and Yoshi versus Gumby and Pokey

I don't know which is creepier...the mounts or their riders.Mario is the central figure to one of the most successful franchises in the world. Yoshi is some sort of amphibious dinosaur creature that can catch something as large as himself with his tongue and swallow it whole. He can sometimes fly a bit, and can occasionally shoot fireballs, among other things. Gumby and Pokey don’t have the huge video game franchise that Mario and Yoshi have, but they’ve managed to carve a niche out of nostalgia of their own. They’re a pair of clay figurines that run around in the land of toys and make-believe. Well, they don’t run, per se. They really just skate across the land on one foot, since it would have been a pain to animate the claymation figures moving step by step in the 1950s when Gumby was created.

Round One:
Mario and Yoshi are riding around the Mushroom Kingdom, hopping around and collecting coins in the bizarre world of intelligent shrooms, evil turtles, and shines. Every once in a while, Yoshi sticks his massive prehensile tongue out and swallows one of Mario’s traditional foes, occasionally changing colors after he does it. Yes, it is indeed an acid trip come to life.

Meanwhile, Gumby and Pokey are on vacation from…um, wherever it is they come from. They’ve happened into the Mushroom Kingdom as well, and are amazed at the bizarre dancing pixels around them. They’re decidedly out of place, since everything else in the world runs on the smooth IBM-crafted processors of Nintendo’s modern systems, rather than the jerky stop-motion claymation that Gumby and Pokey move around in. The green guy and his red mount happen across the red guy and his green mount. Gumby and Pokey move forward, planning on making friends with these new strangers. Mario and Yoshi, shocked at the primitive and obviously dangerous way these creatures move, attack immediately. Mario hops off Yoshi, moving to hop on Gumby’s head. Pokey sees what’s about to happen and rushes forward to warn his companion. He doesn’t get very far, though, because Yoshi catches Pokey with his tongue and swallows him whole. Round One goes to Mario and Yoshi.

Round Two:
Gumby screams bloody murder after watching his best friend get devoured by a color-changing intelligent dinosaur (man, he should have seen that coming, right?). Mario jumps on Gumby’s head three times, reducing the green man to a pile of goo. The flattened Gumby starts squirming away, and Mario is about to step aside and let Yoshi finish things off. But something’s wrong with Yoshi…

Whatever was mixed with the clay of Pokey’s body is having a strange effect on Yoshi. The dinosaur shudders at the clay works its way through his system. Then his eyes go red and he starts getting paranoid. Eating a foreign food like Pokey is giving Yoshi the effect of downing a cocktail of crack, ecstacy, cocaine, and whatever other drugs sound like they would make for a particularly bad trip. Pokey lashes out at anything that moves, and what’s moving most right now is Mario. The dinosaur charges his former friend, intent on devouring his immortal soul. Mario has to use all his tricks to escape: jumping, more jumping, different kinds of jumping, and the occasional jumping. Finally, he manages to drive Yoshi off the edge of one of the many bottomless pits that lurk around the Mushroom Kingdom. The battle gives Gumby time enough to uncover somewhat, though, and he attacks Mario from behind. Still flattened, the green lump of clay engulfs Mario, trapping him and cutting off his air supply. Round Two goes to Gumby and Pokey.

Round Three:
Mario’s struggles begin getting weaker and weaker, and it looks like Gumby will avenge the death of his beloved steed. But even though his head is covered by a fold of green clay, Mario can navigate through the landscape by instinct alone. He eventually manages to dive down a green pipe, transporting himself and Gumby to another part of the world. They emerge in one of the Mushroom Kingdom’s vast subterranean oceans. For a fat greasy plumber, Mario swims remarkably well. Gumby, on the other hand, doesn’t get along with water…mostly because it dissolves him into nothing. Gumby gives one more blood-curdling scream, and then vaporizes into nothingness in the water. Mario, in the meantime, finds another pipe and escapes the ocean, victorious once again. Round Three and the fight go to Mario and Yoshi…well, only Mario really. Yoshi is still falling down a bottomless pit. And when you fall into a bottomless pit, you die of starvation.


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