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"I'm a 1-UP Girl!"
—Pauline, Mario Kart Tour

Pauline (ポリーン Porīn?) is a character who first appears in the Donkey Kong arcade game. Here, she was once a damsel-in-distress whom Mario had to rescue from Donkey Kong. Pauline has not often reappeared in the Mario franchise and related media, mainly because Princess Peach has taken the main role of damsel-in-distress since her first appearance in Super Mario Bros..


Personality traits[]

In the first Donkey Kong game, Pauline had little other characteristics aside from being a damsel-in-distress. Years later, in appearances such as the Mario vs. Donkey Kong series and Super Mario Odyssey, Pauline is represented as being sweet, laid-back and caring, as well as having a sense of humor and eye for business. Pauline 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, Pauline also seems to be quite fashionable.

Physical description[]


In the original Donkey Kong, Pauline's appearance was similar to Princess Peach's: she had blonde hair and was wearing a pink dress, although artwork and the Saturday Supercade still showed Pauline having a red dress. In Pinball and VS. Pinball, Pauline's dress is pink, although her hair is brown, possibly due to palette limitations. This design was retained for Family BASIC, but in the Hearts minigame of Family Basic V3, Pauline shares a palette with Mario, so her hair is blue and her dress is red. In Perfect Edition of the Great Mario Character Encyclopedia, Pauline has a pink dress and blonde hair like her sprite in Donkey Kong.

Since Donkey Kong for the Game Boy, Pauline was changed to a brunette, possibly to distinguish her from Princess Peach, and was given a taller and thinner body. She wears a tight red dress, big golden earrings, a golden bangle on her left arm, and black high-heeled Mary-Jane shoes. Pauline also wears a lot of make-up, including 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 a gold pin on the right collar (with her high heels) while her dress in this game has sparkly details. In The Super Mario Bros. Movie, she wears her pantsuit, although without the pin or hat. The 3D Street Plaza puzzle "Nintendo Heroines" implies that Pauline was at least as tall as Rosalina (herself one of the taller Mario characters).

In Mario Tennis Aces, Pauline wears a red sundress derived from her trademark dress. Also included in the build are red and white cross-trainer shoes and white ankle-length socks. Similarly to Peach, Daisy, and Rosalina, she wears a yellow and white sweatband on her right wrist that matches the color of her jewelry. In addition, she appears to have a black sports bra barely visible under her dress, and she wears a red sun visor over her forehead with a golden heart on the left side of the brim.

In Mario Kart Tour, aside from her trademark dress, Pauline also wears three additional outfits for her Pauline (Party Time), Pauline (Rose), and Pauline (Cowgirl) variants. The first is composed of a knee-length red skirt, red heels, black opera gloves, a pearl bangle on her left wrist, a sleeveless high-neck mirror-patterned top reminiscent of a disco ball, large white pearl earrings, a gem-encrusted belt with golden borders consisting of spherical sapphires and smaller rectangular amethysts, and various decorations on her hair composed of various colored gems, hearts, and stars. For the second alternate form, she had a similar dress to her trademark dress, only black fading to a deeper shade of red near the bottom, as well as a poofy red collar around the chest that was reminiscent of a heart, a red beret with a heart design on top, matching red heart earrings with gold borders, red mary jane pumps with bows on the straps, and had a rose bouquet on her hand with a red ribbon. Her third alternate appearance consists of blue jeans, a tan belt with pouch and a pink heart on its silver buckle, and a red, long-sleeved, plaid shirt with gold buttons and partially rolled sleeves, along with a sleeveless tan vest with small red heart pins that partially hides her brown suspenders. In addition, she wears red, heeled cowgirl boots with two white stripes at the top and tan soles, a red cowgirl hat with a purple hatband, a pink neckerchief, brown gloves, and gold earrings shaped like horseshoes.

In Mario Golf: Super Rush, Pauline wears a sleeveless red polo shirt with a golden heart emblem near the collar, white cleats with black and red accents, and black leggings held up by a thin pink belt with a golden buckle. She also wears a red Newsboy cap and a matching golf glove on her left hand.

In Mario Strikers: Battle League, Pauline wears a soccer uniform consisting of a short-sleeved jersey and shorts with knee-length socks and cleats that can be customized with or without armor.

In Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, while she retains her trademark dress (yet with slightly sparkly details; similar to her appearance in Odyssey) when riding karts, Pauline wears a red and white racing suit with cream-colored edges on the sides and chest when riding bikes and ATVs. She also has a matching red belt and heeled boots with white edges on top. Additionally, her hair is also tied to the back in a ponytail for the first time. Unlike Peach, Daisy, and Rosalina, her suit lacks a scarf and gloves, only having a high-neck collar, and instead of heart design in the back, it has a rectangular gray patch in the front (presumably with the "Mario Kart" logo) rather than a brooch.


Donkey Kong[]

Pauline DK

Pauline in Donkey Kong dressed similar to the 1930s Fay Wray

Donkey Kong kidnaps Pauline in a ripped dress and brings her to a dangerous construction site in New York City. Mario (Jumpman) was aware of it and defeated Donkey Kong and saved Pauline.

In each stage, Pauline can be found at the end, crying for Mario's help. The first three levels—25m, 50m, and 75m—each end with Mario and Pauline reuniting for a few seconds before Pauline gets snatched by Donkey Kong and taken to the next level. In the final level, 100m, after Mario removes every bolt holding up the girders, Donkey Kong falls below, and both Mario and Pauline are properly reunited.

Super Mario Odyssey[]

SMO Pauline

Pauline in Super Mario Odyssey

Pauline had become the mayor of New Donk City, which she is addressed as The Mayor Pauline. She is the singer of Jump Up, Super Star! , the theme song of the game, and wears 1940s clothing. 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. Then they fixed the power together, and then she personally invited Mario to the New Donk City festival as the guest of honor to repay him for making the festival possible.

Pauline will host a quiz for Mario to answer her questions about her.

  • What am I bad with?
    • Festivals.
    • Fixing machines.
    • Talking to people.
  • What do I plan to eat for dinner tonight?
    • Fried Mushrooms
    • Leaf Salad
    • Flower Stew
  • What kingdom would I most like to visit right now?
    • Wooded Kingdom
    • Cloud Kingdom
    • Seaside Kingdom
  • What kind of music do I like?
    • You don't like music.
    • Relaxing music.
    • Peppy music.
  • What do I do on my days off?
    • Garden!
    • Fix machines!
    • Practice singing!
  • What is my most treasured possession?
    • A purse.
    • A hat.
    • An umbrella.
  • Which of these things did I actually do a long time ago?
    • Raised sheep.
    • Wore raccoon suit.
    • Captured by ape.
  • What do you think my hobby is?
    • Going on walks.
    • Driving RC Cars.
    • Flower arranging.
  • What do I just adore?
    • Machines.
    • Cake.
    • Flowers.
  • Give me your honest opinion-how am I doing as mayor of this city?
    • OK, I guess...
    • Badly.
    • Fantastic!

Mario finds her at the wedding for Bowser and Peach on the Moon Kingdom as soon as he enters. Pauline was forced by Bowser to attend. She tells Mario he's "just in time."

Donkey Kong (Game & Watch)[]

Mario has to rescue Pauline again after she gets kidnapped by Donkey Kong again, and

Donkey Kong (Game Boy)[]

Mario has to rescue Pauline again. Mario has a larger journey than before, as he pursues Donkey Kong and his son Donkey Kong Jr. through a series of different worlds.

In the ending, after Pauline is rescued by Mario, the two of them are seen in a setting resembling the Mushroom Kingdom from Super Mario Bros.. Pauline gives Mario a Super Mushroom, which works to his advantage when he lifts Donkey Kong as Super Mario. Following this, the group has their photo taken at one of the previous levels, Rocky-Valley.

In Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis[]

Pauline appears as the guest of honor in the opening of the Super Mini Mario World theme park.

In Pinball / VS. Pinball[]

Pauline, named Lady in this appearance, makes an appearance in the Bonus Stage, where she runs back and forth across the top of the screen. When the floor below Pauline becomes too short for her to jump across, she falls, and Mario has to catch Pauline before she lands onto the floor. If Pauline reaches the exit, she returns at the top of the screen.

In Family BASIC[]

Lady is one of the sprites that users can use while making their own program. Pauline also appears in the Hearts minigame added in Family BASIC V3.

In the Game & Watch Gallery series[]

In Game & Watch Gallery 2 and Game & Watch Gallery 4, Pauline appears in the Classic version of the Game & Watch game Donkey Kong. In the Modern version featured in both Game & Watch Gallery titles, Princess Peach takes Pauline's role instead.

In the WarioWare series[]

Pauline makes minor appearances in various games based on the Arcade and Nintendo Entertainment System versions of the Donkey Kong game,

In 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.

In Mario Kart Tour[]

Pauline is one of the two highlight characters in Mario Kart Tour's New York Tour. Pauline's Special Item is the Lucky Seven.

In Mario Golf: Super Rush[]

Pauline is a playable character in Mario Golf: Super Rush.

In Mario Strikers Battle League[]

Pauline is a playable character in Mario Strikers Battle League.

In Mario Kart 8 Deluxe[]

Pauline is one of the four characters added into Mario Kart 8 Deluxe in Wave 6 of the Booster Course Pass, returning from Mario Kart Tour. She was added to the game on November 9, 2023.

Crossover appearances[]

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate[]

Pauline appears as a Primary Spirit, which depicts Pauline's Super Mario Odyssey artwork. 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)".

In other media[]

Saturday Supercade[]

Main article: Pauline (Saturday Supercade)

Pauline appeared in the CBS series Saturday Supercade in 1983, but as Mario's niece rather than a girlfriend.

Super Mario Bros. film[]

Main article: Daniella Verducci

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).

Nintendo Monopoly[]

Pauline had a small cameo in Nintendo Monopoly.

Nintendo Comics System[]

Main article: Pauline (Nintendo Comics System)

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.

The Super Mario Bros. Movie[]

Pauline is the mayor of New York City in The Super Mario Bros. Movie where she appears in an interview on the news.

Behind the scenes[]


Originally, Pauline was named "Lady" (レディ Redi?) in Japan. It was during the game's distribution in North America that she was named Pauline, after Polly James, wife of Nintendo of America's warehouse manager, Don James. However, in Pinball and VS. Pinball, Pauline is named Lady, translated from her Japanese name.

Game data[]

Mario Kart series
Mario Kart Tour

MKT Pauline emblem Pauline
MKT Artwork Pauline
Rarity: High-End

Special Skill
MKT Lucky Seven

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

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

Base points 500 Base cap 800
First raised cap 980 Second raised cap 500
Third raised cap 1430 Maximum cap 1610

Super Smash Bros. series
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Support Spirit
SMO Pauline
79. Pauline
Super Mario series
Type SpiritTypeSupport
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
79. Pauline
Super Mario series
Type SpiritTypeShield
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 Peach

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

Behind the scenes[]

Creation and development[]

When the Donkey Kong arcade game had to be created with original characters because Nintendo's license for Popeye expired, Pauline was made to replace Olive Oyl.

Real-world influences[]

In pop culture[]

  • In Ultimate, Pauline's spirit battle was considered infamous by players for its difficulty, including skilled players.[2]


  • Pauline's song, Jump Up, Super Star! has been used several times since Odyssey.
    • It has been in Pauline's appearances outside of Of Odyssey, to the point where it is considered her main theme. Some of her voice clips make reference to the song.
  • In the UK, print advertisements of the Game & Watch game Donkey Kong names her "Louise."
  • Despite being based off Olive Oyl, she has been compared more to the character, Jessica Rabbit from the film Who framed Roger Rabbit, ever since her appearance and portrayal in Odyssey, due to them sharing more similarities.
    • They have similar appearances, both being beautiful young women with long hair and wearing long red dresses and makeup, as well as being very talented singers.
    • Jessica also has a website called A post about Pauline can be found there, which also happens to be one of the websites most popular posts.


  • In the Super Mario 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.[3]


Hat mario To view Pauline's
quotes click here.


Hat mario To view Pauline's
image gallery, click here.


  1. PKG. (January 2, 2019). How to beat the Pauline Spirit in World of Light [YouTube]. Retrieved March 12, 2019.
  2. Julian Cannon (2019-01-22). THE HARDEST SPIRIT BATTLES IN SUPER SMASH BROS ULTIMATE. Alternative Mindz. Retrieved on 2023-05-23.
  3. Nintendo. Super Mario Odyssey. Nintendo Switch. October 27, 2017.

External links[]