Mayor Pauline (ポリーン?) is a character that was the original damsel-in-distress whom her love interest, Mario must rescue from the eponymous ape in the original Donkey Kong, which marked their debut. In the same way, Mario was originally called "Jumpman," Pauline was simply referred to as "Lady" (レディ?) in Japan. It was during the game's distribution in North America that she was given the name Pauline after Polly James, the wife of Nintendo of America's warehouse manager, Don James.

Following her first appearance in Donkey Kong, Pauline appeared in Family Basic and in Pinball for the Nintendo Entertainment System. Princess Peach, who was introduced in Super Mario Bros., took Pauline's place as the damsel-in-distress in that game, eventually becoming Mario's primary romantic interest in most of the subsequent games in the series.

Pauline did not appear in another game until the 1994 Game Boy version of Donkey Kong, where she was once again taken captive by Donkey Kong and his son. Whereas the original arcade game's cabinet depicts Pauline with blond hair, the Game Boy remake features a redesigned modern Pauline as a brunette, distinguishing her from the blond-haired Peach, wearing a sleeveless red dress with a torn skirt.

Pauline makes an appearance in Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis for the Nintendo DS, where she appears as the guest of honor in the opening of the Super Mini-Mario World theme park.

Pauline made her appearance in Super Mario Odyssey, where she is the mayor of New Donk City. Kate Higgins voiced Pauline, who formerly voiced Miles "Tails" Prower and recently voices Princess Aurora, Wave the Swallow and Tina Armstrong.


Personality traits

Though in the first Donkey Kong game she was just a damsel-in-distress and, as such, didn't play an integral part in the story of the game (as characters back then were merely mechanisms for players to navigate through the game without any interactions with the environments or other characters), in her more recent incarnation in the Mini-Land games she is represented as being sweet, laid-back and caring, as well as having a sense of humor and eye for business. She seems to think highly of herself but not enough to be considered egotistic; she also is kind-hearted and enjoys spending time with her friends. Given her clothes and makeup, she also seems to be quite fashionable.

Physical appearance


In original Donkey Kong, Pauline's appearance was similar to Princess Peach's, she had blonde hair and was wearing a pink dress. In the Game Boy version of Donkey Kong, her body figure was different, she was taller, thinner, was wearing a tight red dress, big golden earrings, black high-heeled Mary-Jane shoes and had brown hair. Nowadays she is wearing a beautiful red dress, golden earrings, a golden bangle on her left hand, and black ankle strap heeled shoes. She also wears a lot of make-up: a purple eye shadow, red nail polish, and red lipstick. In Super Mario Odyssey, she adds a purple hat and often wears a red pantsuit (with her high heels) while her dress in this game has sparkly details. The 3D Street Plaza puzzle "Nintendo Heroines" implies that Pauline was at least as tall as Princess Rosalina (herself one of the taller characters in the Mario franchise).


Spoiler warning: This article or section contains spoilers you are reading at your own risk. Plot and/or ending details follow. (Skip this section)

Donkey Kong

Donkey Kong kidnaps Pauline and brings her to a dangerous construction site. Mario (Jumpman) was aware of it and defeated Donkey Kong and saved Pauline

Super Mario Odyssey

Pauline is the mayor of New Donk City, which she is addressed as The Mayor Pauline. She is the interpreter of Jump Up, Super Star! , the theme song of the game. In addition, the reason she returns and acts as mayor of New Donk City is to avert the idea that the presence of a kingdom necessarily means that the people in charge are royalty.

She first appears shortly after Mario arrives at New Donk City, where she alongside several New Donkers observes Bowser's Airship in the sky and the city being hit with a torrential downpour. She then explains to Mario she can't talk with him because New Donk City's currently in a crisis: She explains that Bowser had arrived at the city and has been causing chaos, and admitted she was not impressed with his plastering posters advertising his planned wedding with Princess Peach, stating it was "tasteless". Afterward, she then thanks Mario for saving the city as it meant everything to her, and invited him to set up the city festival.

Here, Pauline asks Mario to help rebuild her band, for which she serves as the lead singer. After that, she then tasked Mario with checking out the underground power plant and restore power. Ultimately, by the time Mario arrived at the power plant, Pauline was present, as she decided to assess the situation herself and deduced Bowser was responsible for the sabotage. They then fixed the power together, and then she personally invited Mario for the New Donk City festival as the guest of honor to repay him for making the festival possible.

Mario finds at the wedding between Bowser and Peach on the Moon Kingdom just as Mario enters, having been forced by the former to attend. She tells Mario he's "just in time."

Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details ends here.

Other appearances

Mario Tennis Aces

Pauline becomes a playable character for the first time ever in Mario Tennis Aces and the way to unlock the character in her release was to play an online tournament during a specific period of time, but a month after she became available for every player as free DLC. She is a speedy type of character.

Mario Kart Tour

Pauline is one of the two highlight characters in Mario Kart Tour's New York Tour. Her special item is the Lucky Seven.

Non-canon warning: This article or section contains non-canonical information that is not considered to be an official part of the Mario series and/or isn't considered to be part of the series' overall storyline.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Pauline appears in Ultimate as a primary spirit. Her Odyssey artwork was reused in the game. The player must defeat the puppet fighter of Peach in her red costume.[1] Although, there are three conditions that are displayed onscreen, they are more conditions such as enemy avoiding the player. Pauline also makes an appearance in another artwork of the Spirit "Donkey Kong and Lady" using her appearance from the original Donkey Kong game.

One of Peach alternate costumes resembles Pauline's original appearance in Donkey Kong. The costume also indicates that Peach has replaced Pauline, the original damsel-in-distress.

Pauline makes a physical appearance in the New Donk City Hall stage. She can be seen on a floating platform whenever the stage transitions to a part of the building. If the fighters pass by her and the other members of the "Super Mario Players", they'll play their instrument whereas Pauline will start singing. Once the stage transitions back where it started, Pauline can be seen alongside the recruited. Note that this only applies when the music playing in the stage is either "Jump up Superstar!" or "Ground Theme (Band Performance)".

Other media

  • Pauline appeared in the CBS series Saturday Supercade in 1983, but as Mario's niece rather than a girlfriend.
  • In the film Super Mario Bros., there is a character named Daniella, who's Mario's girlfriend with no royalty status. This makes her the equivalent of Pauline, which is obvious in the script where her full name is Daniella Pauline Verducci. Earlier script drafts originally had her as the sister of Eddie Scapelli (later known as Anthony Scapelli in the finished film).
  • Pauline had a small cameo in Nintendo Monopoly.
  • In the Nintendo Comics System comic "Cloud Burst," Mario mentioned having an ex-girlfriend whom he compared to Princess Toadstool and Luigi and compared to Bowser. It is possible (though unconfirmed) that this ex-girlfriend was Pauline.
  • Her appearance in Mario Tennis Aces could mean that she will become a regular character in the Mario games though limited in spinoffs.

Non-canon warning: Non-canonical information ends here.

Game data

Mario Kart series
Mario Kart Tour

MKT Pauline emblem.png Pauline
MKT Artwork Pauline.png
Rarity: High-End
Special Skill
MKT Lucky Seven.png

Lucky Seven
Surround your kart with seven items. Tap once to use them all!

Favored courses
3 items per box New York Minute
New York Minute R
New York Minute T
2 items per box Yoshi Circuit T
Cheep Cheep Lagoon T
Shy Guy Bazaar
Shy Guy Bazaar R
New York Minute T
New York Minute R

Super Smash Bros. series
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Support Spirit
SMO Pauline.png
79. Pauline
Super Mario series
Type SpiritTypeSupport.png
Class ★★★★
Cost ⬢⬢
Ability Healing Shield
Acquisition •Battle via World of Light (Light Realm)

•Battle via Spirit Board
•Purchase at Vault Shop for 15,000G

Spirit Battle
SMO Pauline.png
79. Pauline
Super Mario series
Type SpiritTypeShield.png
Power 13,700
Class ★★★★
Stage 75m
Music Jump Up, Super Star!
•Jump Power ↓
•Defeat the main fighter to win
•You have reduced jump power
•Reinforcements will appear during the battle
Enemy Fighter(s)
SSBU Peach Stock Icon 3.png Peach

SSBU Mario Stock Icon 8.png Mario
SSBU Donkey Kong Stock Icon 3.png Donkey Kong




  • Pauline's song, Jump Up, Super Star! has been used several times since Odyssey.
  • In Ultimate, Pauline's spirit battle is infamous for its difficulty.
  • Pauline was based off of Olive Oyl, which makes sense cause Mario was based off of Popeye.


  • In the Odyssey post-game, Mario can answer Pauline's quiz. She answers Mario during the quiz. She loves eating cake. Her capture in Donkey Kong was "traumatic", though it helped her grow as a person. She loves taking walks around the city. She is bad at fixing machines and does not get along with them.[2]


  1. PKG. (January 2, 2019). How to beat the Pauline Spirit in World of Light [Youtube]. Retrieved March 12, 2019.
  2. Nintendo. Super Mario Odyssey. Nintendo Switch. October 27, 2017.

External links