I generated a bit of controversy when I mentioned Koops, the Koopa partner from Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, is someone I don't like in my defence of Paper Mario: Color Splash article:
“Anyway, there will be multiple kinds of enemy battle cards, not just weak and worthless Shy Guys. Koopa Troopas and Buzzy Beetles are also confirmed, and having a generic Koopa Troopa is already better than having Koops.”
That created a huge problem for a lot of anti-Color Splash people on the hateful, resent-filled Paper Mario sub-reddit, with comments such as:
“that's clearly an opinion, and quite a few people do like Koops”
“...subjective comments like this really don't have a place in what should be a relatively objective defense article”and
“You shut your stupid face. Breakdancing Koopa bro was best partner after Yoshi Kid.”It's pretty rare (and it shouldn't be since we indirectly incentivise it) that KoopaTV articles get shared by non-staffers to the outside world who have no idea what kind of website this is. But, yeah, Koops has fans. Yet, for whatever reason, I have been disrespecting Koops for over a decade.
First, I'll explain his background. And then...why I dislike him. Lastly, who I like instead.
Koops is a fragile little Koopa boy living in Petalburg, a village east of the seedy Rogueport. Petalburg is basically a Koopa-populated suburb of Rogueport. Petalburg lacks the crime and mafia influences that Rogueport has, and the people get along in harmony. That is, except for the occasional dragon that eats people.
Koops has had a privileged life, besides whatever caused his nose injury. He has a girlfriend, Koopie Koo, who is actually pretty cute and looks suspiciously like Noxial. Yet he knows he's a weakling. He has little confidence in himself, and has never had to prove himself or do anything useful for anyone. That's what happens when you live in a little bubble utopia.
|The other Koopas in the village are weaklings, too.|
Let me tell you something about Petalburg. As you see in the above screenshot, the Koopas living there have no respect for the true King of Koopas, King Bowser Koopa. Petalburg, in fact, is a rogue colony that is populated with traitors to Koopa Kingdom. They've turned on their true ruler. They've gone from a lovely, burning visage to a bright, static one.
Koops was born into that life, so I suppose I can't hold it against him. He didn't choose to be a traitor. However, he quickly became one once he joined up with that plumber and started assaulting loyal Koopa Troopas.
|He's not only assaulting Koopas, but he's posing (allegedly in a STYLISH! fashion) as he causes his fellow Koopas to perish!|
So yeah, how can I sit here and support a traitor?
But not only is Koops a traitor, but he began his life as a loser and continues it as a loser. He never became a respectable person. Character development? Forget it. Koops is a complete embarrassment, and I feel uneasy just being in the same species as him.
He reminds me of a certain class of contemptible people, including Pajama Boy (otherwise known as Ethan Krupp), the Obamacare advertisement guy encouraging people to sign up for health insurance through that disaster.
|Left: Pajama Boy. Right: Koops. They're basically the same type of man: Weak. Ineffective. Total lack of presence.|
It also doesn't help that, in terms of fighting, Koops is a weaker derivative of Kooper, from Paper Mario. Koops is totally useless against many minions who aren't ground-bound, too, and he has the weakest stamina of any partner.
[Update 7/28/2016] On Character Development
Some people don't like that I just said Koops doesn't have character development, and don't like that I said that without providing evidence. Why, Koops clearly says at the end that he feels more confident and stronger by the end of his adventure because he was hanging out with the plumber. He's obtained COURAGE.
I strongly disagree with this assessment. You see, Koops only SAID he feels more courageous and developed. However, words mean nothing. ACTIONS mean something. He wants to run for mayor of his traitor colony Petalburg at the end and live in peace? So what? You don't have to be courageous and effective to run for mayor. Just look at fellow slow-and-steady-but-failure JEB! Bush, a man who walks around with turtle trinkets in his pocket like he's Officer Jenny.
Besides, Koops betrays his sentiment by his non-verbal cues. According to social psychology, a substantial part of communication comes from those non-verbal cues — meaning there is much more than just the words you say. Observe Koops's communication and what others say about him to Kooper:
|Koops is on the left side, and Kooper is on the right side. The respective Koopas speak for themselves in the bottom half,|
and Goombella and Professor Kolorado give their assessments of the respective Koopas in the top half.
Kooper is standing up tall, accomplished, and proud (as much as you can with a shell), while Koops is slouching as much as he did at the beginning of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door. According to the Body Language Project, slouching in Koops's context would indicate “social withdrawal and/or submission.” It also describes that the sloucher may “have trouble coping with the difficulties [life] presents us.”
Does that sound any different than how pathetic Koops was when Mario met him? Koops claims he has found courage and inner strength, but he is only really saying that because he promised his girlfriend, Koopie Koo, that he'd return to Petalburg a stronger Koopa. Since he didn't actually do that, he's lying.
Kooper doesn't need to lie, on the other hand. He actually is taking opportunities to fulfill HIS dreams — exploring with the famous Professor Kolorado.
[end update 7/28/2016]
Kooper is great. He was brave. Adventurous. Competent. Proud of himself, and actually wants and works towards that future. He's a strong Koopa. Parakarry as well. Parakarry is a loyal, hard-worker. A great Paratroopa.
Of course, I admire and like all of Koopa Kingdom's Troopas the most. Those are the best set of Koopas. Selfless and courageous. And they do not side with the genocidal plumber.
And, of course, I like myself, my siblings (...eh), and my father. We all work hard to complete our goals. I like that goal-oriented attitude. Koops? He doesn't even have it!
Koops is perhaps the worst of the plumber's partners, only being better than Flurrie. Goombella is better. The Yoshi Kid is better. So are Vivian, and Admiral Bobbery, and Ms. Mowz. In personality. In usefulness. ...In really any comparable way.
If Paper Mario had a choice between only having partners like Koops, or being like Paper Mario: Color Splash, I believe the correct answer is clear. Whatever avoids this:
|Koops is the ultimate loser.|
Ludwig has been hating Koops since 2004. What do you think about him? Do you prefer your Koopas to be witty, loyal, or useful? Or do you like cowardly, incompetent, and scatter-brained fools? Let KoopaTV know in the comments! KoopaTV is the official website of Koopa Kingdom, and has little patience for traitors.