It's no secret that Donkey Kong was never the cuddliest character in Nintendo's arsenal. Though his red tie is plenty adorable, most people have had trouble getting over his past history of kidnapping and child abuse. But video game DK looks like Curious George in comparison to the hulking mass of nightmares that is his CGI TV counterpart.
It's hard to decide on the creepiest part of Donkey Kong from the Donkey Kong Country cartoon. Is it his pop out eyes that see straight through your soul to your deepest fears? His bulging muscles that make you question the validity of natural selection? His smooth R&B-esque singing voice that makes you long for him to serenade you on a sunset cloaked beach? Because he sings, you know. All the characters do. Twice per episode.
And the worst part? The songs are actually kind of catchy.
SMBSS was the uncanny valley of Mario shows, as all of the familiar elements of the games were indeed present, but twisted in perverse and horrible ways. Each episode began with live-action Mario and Luigi rapping over an animated cartoon, and proceeded to feature the two actors in an actual set, performing skits that had little to do with Mario and even less to do with making sense.
Plots included such subjects as entering a contest to see who could best imitate Elvis Presley, the visiting of 'Aunt Lugina' or the pair's hillbilly cousins (played by the principle actors in drag), and similar inane events. After your brain was sufficiently destroyed by that segment, the cartoon half would kick in- often based around pop culture parodies, including characters like 'Slime Busters' and the 'Provolone Ranger.' Seeing as that wasn't enough to break viewer's spirits, an episode was released focusing on King Koopa kidnapping Milli Vanilli and forcing them into a private performance. In the clearest and most concise argument ever made for Mario being a villain, he rescued them- and this was months after the lipsynching scandals.
The show's influence wasn't lost on the series, this being one of the first times Birdo was shown to be female, but the three prosperous, insane years of the show finally ended in 1991.