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Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Samus Will Smile in the Presence of Round Things

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Samus's opportunities for happiness.

When Metroid Dread released on the Nintendo Switch last October, fans of heroine bounty hunter Samus Aran rejoiced at their new game and its characterisation of Samus as a badass (though less thoughtful than how she was in Metroid Fusion). However, some writers, like Ian Walker of Kotaku (different writer than the Kotaku editor that promoted piracy of Metroid Dread), believe that “Samus Doesn’t Need To Be An Emotionless Robot To Be Badass.” (Note that the Kotaku article spoils the story of Metroid Dread, which I promise isn't the point of the KoopaTV article you're currently on.) They wanted Samus to vocally express herself when grappling with revelations about herself and her past. Instead, as fans will point out, Samus expresses herself with subtle body expressions (and sometimes facial expressions when you can see her face through her mask). She's not emotionless. Just quiet.

The Kotaku writer went as far as to say that he'd expect “someone in that position to let her guard down a bit and ask a few questions, maybe even crack a smile. But no, Samus Aran is Samus Aran: cold, emotionless, unfazed.” In other words, Samus needs to smile more. I'm not familiar with Mr. Ian Walker's full line of work, but I wonder how much he asks male characters that they need to smile more and write articles about how they're deficient for not contorting their facial muscles to his liking.

But it is true that Samus rarely smiles. But there are reasons for that. Samus Aran enjoys her life in only a few circumstances—when surrounded by round objects. That's according to the Super Metroid 4-koma manga published in Shounen Oh Game Comic back in 1994. The first issue, “Round and Round”, written by manga artist Matsumoto Hidetaka, shows Samus Aran in many contexts only expressing happiness and satisfaction when encountering round things. Unfortunately, it takes a much longer time than the average, usual Metroid game for Samus to acquire the Morph Ball ability in Metroid Dread—and that's an excellent reason for her to be cranky when she can't do this:

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Zero Suit Samus Gaur Plain crouch
On the wide, grassy plain...

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Gaur Plain Samus Morph Ball round
I make myself at home.
“Aaah... relaxation!”

However, there's hope: Samus is still in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate for the Nintendo Switch. And there are many round things to keep her interested and happy with what's going on around her. For example, her travels took her to Yggdrasil's Altar, where she encountered some adorably round Slimes from Dragon Quest:

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Zero Suit Samus reaching Slime Yggdrasil's Altar
Zero Suit Samus wants to grab and hold the round Slime!

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Liquid Metal Slime Yggdrasil's Altar Zero Suit Samus Dragon Quest
...But all of a sudden, a Liquid Metal Slime appears!

But the Liquid Metal Slime fled down the rainbow? Samus jumped down to try to unite with the cute round thing, and ended up in a land full of round and very happy things: Yoshi's Island's Super Happy Tree! Samus was overcome with joy at the sight and instantly rolled up into her Morph Ball. You can't see her face while she's balled up, but she is SUPER HAPPY.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Super Happy Tree balls round spheres Jigglypuff Morph Ball Slime Kirby
Samus is surrounded by many spherical objects, like Jigglypuff, Kirby, Slime, a soccer ball, her own bomb, and even the grapes growing on the Super Happy Tree!
And I must admit, other than the soccer ball, all of those things make me happy too.

All of that anxiety and feelings of DREAD (I mean, her latest game was literally called Metroid Dread for a reason... and I'm sure Samus is also feeling anxious at the lack of existence of Metroid Prime 4) just melt away when surrounded by all of the cute round things... especially when Samus can herself turn into a cute round thing. Maybe those perpetually angsty and outraged videogame journalists should try that out.

Heart Fruit Super Happy Tree Samus Morph Ball Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

KoopaTV reader ShinyGirafarig specifically requested an article featuring Samus surrounded by spherical objects for the purpose of getting her to smile through KoopaTV's Requests system! If it would make you happy to see KoopaTV make your content dreams come true, you should also submit a request to KoopaTV by following the directions at that page! (Unless you are reading this after 2022; then go to that page and follow the directions to get to the appropriate year's requests page.)

This wonderful article was rightfully awarded the Best KoopaTV Artistic Corner Contribution of 2022 award.


  1. I definitely could not have anticipated the places this article would go. Thanks for making me laugh. XD

  2. Mother Brian is kind of a round thing, so are the EMMI’s faces from Metroid Dread. Will Samus smile in the presence of those?

    1. wtf the commenting format changed all of a sudden >_>;

      Mother Brain isn't...really round, but the EMMI eyeholes absolutely are.


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