It’s a question that has raged since the 90s, with conflicting claims about the species of one of Nintendo’s best-loved characters
In the Guide’s weekly Solved! column, we look into a crucial pop-culture question you’ve been burning to know the answer to – and settle it, once and for all
Over the course of almost three decades playing video games and 15 years writing about them, I have seen a few recurrent questions that just refuse to die. Are video games art? (Yes, when they want to be.) Is Sonic better than Mario? (Obviously not: Sonic has only starred in about three good games since 1991.) Does playing games turn you into a sociopathic murderer? (No, but having to answer that question 4,000 times has certainly given me thoughts of mild violence.) But none has ever bothered me as much as this: is that Toad from Super Mario’s actual head, or is he wearing a mushroom hat?