Dinohattan

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Dinohattan
Dinohattan Globe.jpg
Greater location Earth (parallel)
Ruler The King (deposed)
King Koopa (deposed)
Princess Daisy
Inhabitants Dinosaurs (numerous in human form), Humans, Goombas, Bob-ombs, Banzai Bills, Snifits
First appearance Super Mario Bros. (1993)

Dinohattan is the Super Mario Bros. film's equivalent to the Mushroom Kingdom, as well as Dinosaur Land. It differs drastically from both video game counterparts in history and appearance, though retains some of the fantasy qualities the games are known for.

According to director Rocky Morton, Dinohattan was directly inspired by Dinosaur Land.[1]

History[edit]

The meteorite impact into Earth was so powerful it created a parallel dimension with its own Earth. While this impact in our dimension caused the extinction of the dinosaurs and provided the conditions necessary for the evolution of mankind, it conversely caused the extinction of mammals and gave rise to intelligent dinosaurs with their dimension.

Dinosaurs living at the meteorite impact site were exposed to its geomagnetic energy, gradually evolving into the Portal Guardian cult. The Guardians were devoted to worshiping the monolith and maintaining the gateway between worlds, secretly ruling through the Monarchy. They harnessed its energy into the grid that powers their great city.

However, their deteriorating dimension forced the planet's population into the capital city, straining resources and fracturing confidence in the Monarchy. The Portal Guardian cult lost influence and faith, further dividing the already desperate people. General Koopa, head of military command, proposed merging the dimensions to claim the long-coveted stability and resources of our side. The Portal Guardians refused, though Koopa was given oversight of the city's power grid for research into conservation efforts.

General Koopa used this position to secretly develop the de-evolution technology for a military coup that saw the slaughter of the entire Portal Guardian cult and the King turned into Fungus. Only Daisy's mother escaped, fleeing into our world with her unborn daughter and the meteorite pendant necessary for Koopa's planned merge. The General pursued her into our dimension, first witnessing New York City.

This fleeting vision obsessed Koopa with recreating the modern metropolis in his own dimension. However, he was unable to accomplish it and instead created a grotesque parody,[2] which deepened his desire to rule Earth instead. While Koopa maintained that his desire to conquer the parallel Earth was meant to return his people to their former dominance, it is implied that he only sought Earth for himself.

Geography[edit]

Outskirts of Dinohattan (Koopahari Desert)

Except for the city of Dinohattan, the entire planet is a harsh desert known as the Koopahari Desert. Very little resources can be found in this environment, which is compounded by heavy pollution.

Dinohattan itself has deteriorated even further due to crime and pollution resulting from President Koopa's neglect. A thick web of fungus has also spread across the city, which has disrupted any attempts at repair or expansion.

Locale[edit]

Government[edit]

Dinohattan: the city

Dinohattan was originally ruled by the King (unrelated to the character Koopa) and his unnamed wife, a member of the Portal-Keeper society. However, Koopa, a military officer, staged a coup and de-evolved the King into the fungus that now chokes the city. His chief platform as leader is to merge their world with ours and conquering it by claiming possession of a fragment of the meteorite that had destroyed the dinosaurs.

With the king and queen gone, Koopa set up a false democracy with himself the "President". He maintained this position for twenty years through false elections and a secret police made-up of de-evolved Goombas that remove political dissenters from the public eye.

Koopa is eventually overthrown by Mario and Luigi, returning King Bowser to his human form and duties as King alongside his daughter Princess Daisy.

Currency[edit]

Main article: Coin

Repeated mention is made to "gold Koopa Coins" as well as "Koopons" throughout the film, suggesting some similarity to the form of currency seen in the games. The name features Koopa's name as well, which implies he renamed it upon taking over Dinohattan. What the currency was known as before is unknown.

Inhabitants[edit]

The inhabitants of Dinohattan are humans and human-reptile hybrids that evolved from dinosaurs displaced millenia ago from our world. While most of the population is indistinguishable from mammalian-evolved humans, some do possess reptilian traits such as tails, slitted pupils, scales, and oviparity.

Typical dinosaurs also appear in the city, yet are treated as pets or wild animals. Koopa himself calls Yoshi a "throwback", suggesting a sense of racial superiority to their ancestors. Other animals, such as real-world lizards and snakes as well as fictional video game Spinys, are seen or mentioned as food sources to this world's humans. Several typical dinosaurs are also seen eating fungus, suggesting omnivorous or herbivorous behavior.

Notable Inhabitants[edit]

Trivia[edit]

  • President Koopa derisively calls Dinohattan "Mushroom Kingdom", referencing the setting of the original video game.
  • The name Dinohattan is a portmanteau of the words Dinosaur and Manhattan, which is a borough of New York City. This is a pun on the "Man" in Manhattan.
    • Likewise, the city itself bears some resemblance to Manhattan as well, including the buildings, subway stops, and overall look. A deleted scene explained that the similarities between the two were the result of Koopa (when he was still a General) catching his eye on the skyscrapers of New York while hunting down Daisy's mom and the meteorite.
    • The name Dinohattan is never said within the film itself. It appears on a sign at a subway stop, related media, and on the back of the film's packaging.
  • Early names for the city include "Dyno-Yuck" and "Koopaville".
  • The entirety of Dinohattan and its surrounding locations were built and filmed in a vacant five-story cement factory, located in Wilmington, North Carolina, the layout of which helped shape how Dinohattan was structured.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "We knew the game and we knew one of its areas was Dino World, so we thought that it would be a great place to go into." Statement by director Rocky Morton in Australian "Dinosaur Magazine," Starlog Telecommunications, Inc.[page number needed]
  2. ^ Comments by Super Mario Bros.' art director Walter Martishius in "New York, N.Y., It's Another Town", New York Times, August 16, 1992.
  3. ^ "When [David Snyder] saw the cement factory in Wilmington, North Carolina, [he] told Jake [Eberts] and Roland [Joffé] that [they'd] come home." "Home" in this instance was the five-story factory that had been used in the past to make Ideal Cement but was now vacant. The shape of the factory and all of its accompanying ramps, conveyor belts, and catwalks influenced they way David designed the sets.[...]In other words, the shape of the cement factory determined the shape that Koopa Square, a busy location in downtown Dinohattan, would take" - From Microchips to Move Stars: The Making of Super Mario Bros., pages 34 and 35