Mario’s iconic sidekick, Yoshi, made his first appearance in Super Mario World. He was a faithful companion Mario could ride and command with an encouraging fist pump. JK! It turns out we’ve been socking our poor dinosaur pal in the head since childhood.
As spotted and translated by Kotaku, Yoshi creator Shigefumi Hino has finally ended the enduring “punching or pointing” fan debate. “Lots of people think that while Mario is pointing his finger forward, he’s saying ‘Go,’ and Yoshi’s tongue comes out,” Hino says. “However, the set up that I drew was that when Mario punches Yoshi in the head, the character’s tongue shoots out in surprise.” That cute little noise Yoshi makes when his tongue shoots out just became a horrifying squeal for help.
Official art over the years has painted Mario and Yoshi’s relationship in a more friendly light, but there’s a reason this whack was often mistaken for a “go.” Hino guessed that this might be upsetting for fans. “There’s an added ‘bop’ sound,” he says. “However, it seemed like people would say ‘Poor Yoshi,’ so that’s why it became that Mario is saying ‘Go.’” If you want to see this thump in action, the SNES Classic includes a copy of Super Mario World.
It’s also worth mentioning that, in addition to being clobbered many times over, this probably means Yoshi didn’t have much say over what went in his mouth. Apples or mushrooms? More like sweaty Koopa shells.
I’m so sorry, Yoshi.