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Artwork from the Nintendo Switch version of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door
First appearance Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door (2004)
Latest appearance Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door (Nintendo Switch) (2024)
“I'm with Mario all the way! Today, Sis...I'm going to punish YOU, you hear me?”
Vivian, Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door

Vivian is a major character in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door and its Nintendo Switch remake. She originally worked as a member of the villainous Three Shadows alongside her sisters, Beldam and Marilyn. Later, Vivian defects from the Three Shadows and joins Mario as his fifth party member. She is frequently put down by her oldest sister, Beldam, and has had a poor relationship with both her sisters for quite some time when Mario meets her. Although she suffers from an inferiority complex throughout the events of the game, she learns to respect herself as she travels with Mario.

In the Japanese version of the original game, as well as some of its foreign localizations, Vivian is inconsistently depicted as either a transgender woman or a male-identifying cross-dresser; however, due to the age rating the localizers were aiming at when translating Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door,[1] the original English version removed this aspect from her character.[2] In the remake, Vivian is consistently portrayed as a transgender woman in both the Japanese script and the revised English localization.[3]


Paper Mario series

Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door

Vivian after getting defeated.
Vivian after being defeated

Vivian's first appearance in the game is during the interlude following Chapter 1, during which she and her two sisters are sent by Sir Grodus to ambush Mario in the Boggly Woods. When Mario arrives there, however, he learns that the picture they were to use to identify him was misplaced by Beldam, who is quick to blame Vivian for the loss. Mario is forced to battle the sisters when he comes to claim Flurrie's Necklace, which Vivian had found in the woods. Upon her defeat, she departs with Marilyn and Beldam, leaving the necklace behind. During the battle with Vivian, she can use Fiery Jinx when her HP is low, but when Vivian joins Mario's party, she has to be Super Ranked to learn that ability. Additionally, her Fiery Jinx cannot be Superguarded.

Doopliss (disguised as Mario) and Mario (in shadow) confronting, Vivian aside in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door
Vivian with the real Mario (as a shadow) facing against Doopliss

After Mario's name and appearance are stolen by Doopliss, Vivian appears in Twilight Town alongside her sisters, who plan to defeat Mario using a Superbombomb. When the weapon turns up missing, however, Vivian is once again blamed and sent to find it. When Mario finds the bomb and returns it to her, it turns out to be broken, but she gives him a kiss to thank him for his help and, after learning of the theft of his identity, resolves to return the favor by helping him, unaware that he is truly Mario. Using her powers, Mario eventually learns Doopliss's real name, and the duo corners him at the top of Creepy Steeple.

As she has to be fought before joining Mario's party members in Chapter 4, Vivian is the only party member with an entry in Mario's Tattle Log. If the player looks through Professor Frankly's trash can after fighting the Three Shadows without tattling them, Vivian's Tattle is found, while Marilyn's and Beldam's are absent. This may foreshadow that Vivian joins the party while Marilyn and Beldam are fought later since only Tattles of one-time enemies are found in the trash. Goombella's field tattle on Vivian is viewable only when Mario first comes across the Three Shadows in Boggly Woods.

Upon learning Mario's identity, Vivian is reluctant to assist in the ensuing battle, though she returns to his side after two turns, having decided that he treats her better than her sisters and is more deserving of her help. Following Doopliss's defeat, Mario stands up for Vivian when she is questioned by his other partners; she ultimately thanks him by handing him the Ruby Star and thus joins Mario's team.

When Mario prepares to leave Rogueport with Princess Peach after having defeated the Shadow Queen, Vivian is about to tell Mario that she has a crush on him, but decides otherwise, saying that she thinks he and Peach will make a good couple. Later, Goombella's e-mail to Mario reveals that Vivian has returned to Beldam and Marilyn, who both have ended their villainous activities and promise to never mistreat Vivian again.

Super Paper Mario

Vivian's plush from Super Paper Mario

An unused sprite of Vivian in Super Paper Mario.
Vivian's unused sprite in Super Paper Mario

In Super Paper Mario, Vivian appears as a Catch Card won by winning the Duel of 100 in the Sammer's Kingdom. Francis also has a Vivian plush doll, and there is a painting of her along with Goombella, Koops, Flurrie, Yoshi, Admiral Bobbery, and Ms. Mowz in Mario's house. Like Mario's other past partners, there is unused sprite data for Vivian, suggesting that she was originally going to appear in Super Paper Mario, but was removed during development.

Super Smash Bros. series

In the Super Smash Bros. series, Vivian is featured in a few collectible items. In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, there is a sticker of Vivian, and it can be equipped to any fighter in The Subspace Emissary to increase their attack power of energy-related attacks by 5 points. In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Vivian is an Advanced-class Shield-type primary spirit. Fighters equipped with the spirit have reduced weight during battles. In the spirit battle, the player faces an invisible Mr. Game & Watch on the Battlefield form of the Luigi's Mansion stage.

General information


Vivian is best characterized by her shyness. Throughout the game, she is unable to stand up to Beldam and her cruel nature, constantly taking the blame for things that are really Beldam's own fault. She develops herself in Chapter 4 when she decides to join Mario and leave her family after he shows her an act of kindness. In the Palace of Shadow, Vivian gains the confidence to battle Beldam as payback for all the abuse she suffered. She is still loyal to Beldam, though it is mostly out of fear or dislike of getting "punished" by her.

Unlike her sisters, Vivian is actually caring and kind. She wonders if it is bad to do away with Mario and his partners in Chapter 2, and she is a forgiving person, going back with her sisters in the epilogue (despite all the trouble Beldam caused). She seems to have a fondness for jewelry, because when she finds Flurrie's Necklace, she quickly took it, and was upset when Beldam took it from her. Due to how much Beldam calls her sisters "lovelies", Vivian refers to her clan as the "Shadow Beauties" when introduced, much to Beldam's anger.

Powers and abilities

Outside of battle, Vivian possesses a similar ability to Lady Bow's ability in Paper Mario. While it functions essentially the same, Vivian pulls Mario into her shadow, allowing the two to hide, unlike Lady Bow, who rendered herself and Mario invisible. This allows Mario and Vivian to get past objects that move over them and avoid sight from enemies and their attacks. In battle, Vivian can also attack with fire-based magic, most notably with her Fiery Jinx, which can burn and pierce the defense of every enemy in the battle. In the Japanese version, while in the ground with Vivian, the player is able to open the pause menu at any time, even when in a cutscene. If the player does this during Vivian's tutorial, the game will soft-lock after the tutorial.


In the original Japanese script of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, Beldam insults Vivian by calling her 「オトコ」, "a man". In the English localization of the game, Beldam uses gender-neutral insults instead.
In the original Japanese script of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, Beldam insults Vivian by calling her 「オトコ」, "a man". In the English localization of the game, Beldam uses gender-neutral insults instead.
In the original Japanese script of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, Beldam insults Vivian by calling her 「オトコ」, "a man". In the English localization of the game, Beldam uses gender-neutral insults instead.

In the Japanese Nintendo GameCube version of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, Vivian is implied to either be a transgender woman or a male-identified crossdresser. While various other characters and narrative text describe Vivian using masculine terms such as otoko ("man"), and otōto ("little brother"),[4][5][6][7] Vivian initially describes the Shadow Sirens as san shimai "three sisters",[4] and routinely uses the feminine first-person pronoun atai, though this pronoun is also used by some effeminate male or gender-ambiguous characters in Japanese media.[8] Furthermore, she becomes upset when Beldam insults her by referring to her with masculine terms. In both her party profile in The Thousand-Year Door and her Catch Card in Super Paper Mario, Vivian is referred to using the term 「オトコのコ」, otokonoko; being written in katakana, this can be interpreted either as 男の子 ("boy") or 男の娘 (otokonoko, literally "male daughter", a Japanese-language term that refers to a feminine-presenting or cross-dressing man).[9]

In the English and German localizations of the game, explicit reference to Vivian being either transgender or gender non-conforming is removed, as are instances where peers and flavor text refer to her with masculine terms. Consequently, Beldam's insults are changed to be gender-neutral. However, all other localized versions of the game contain a version closer to the original.[1][10][11][12] The Italian version more explicitly identifies Vivian as a trans woman; her description as a party member states that "she used to be a man, but now she's a woman and proud of it," a sentiment that she reiterates during her initial appearance.[12][1]

In the Nintendo Switch remake, Vivian is treated more overtly as a transgender woman. The Japanese script adds in a line where Vivian says, "I have a boy's body, but my heart is a cute girl's!"[13] Additionally, Vivian's party description is changed from "She looks like a girl, but she's really a boy," to "She has a boy's body, but the heart of a girl."[14] The Japanese script also removes lines that refer to Vivian as a man; for example, Beldam's line 「どこが 三姉妹だよ!あんた オトコじゃないかい!」 ("Where do you see three sisters?! Aren't you a man?!") is replaced with 「三姉妹じゃなく 三人組だって いつも いってるじゃないかい!」 ("I always tell you we're a trio, not three sisters!")[15] Goombella's tattle also no longer refers to her as a man, or mentions her gender at all.[16] The English localization likewise makes it clear that Vivian is transgender, a change from the English release of the GameCube version. Her dialogue now includes a line where she says, "Truth is, it took me a while to realize I was their sister...not their brother."[3][17][18][19] Much like in the Japanese script, Vivian refers to the Three Shadows as the "Three Shadow Sisters", and Beldam corrects her without insulting her appearance.[20]

Profiles and statistics

Paper Mario series

Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door

  • In-game description: One of the Shadow Sirens, Vivian suffers from a bit of an inferiority complex. Press X Button to hide with Mario in the shadows. When hiding, nobody can find you.
  • Field Tattle: "This is the youngest sister of the three. The oldest one REALLY picks on her, huh? I don't know whose picture they're talking about, but you think she really lost it?"
  • Player's Guide: Vivian is one of the Shadow Sirens that work for Sir Grodus, but she joins Mario when he shows her an act of kindness. Though she suffers from an inferiority complex, she's perhaps the best partner in the game. Press the X Button to pull Mario into the shadows, where nobody can find him.[21]

Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door enemy
Vivian's idle sprite from Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door Max HP 10 Attack 1 Defense 0
Location(s) Boggly Woods Role Boss Level 26
Sleep? 70% Dizzy? 70% Confuse? 70%
Tiny? 80% Stop? 80% Soft? 95%
Burn? 100% Freeze? 50% Fright? 0%
Gale Force? 0% KO? 0% Moves Shade Fist (1), Fiery Jinx (1 HP to both characters, Piercing)
Exp. points 0 Coins N/A Items None
Tattle Log #:
Log One of the Shadow Sirens and Beldam's youngest sister. She's so cute, she's able to infatuate anyone.
Tattle That's Vivian. She's the youngest of the three Shadow Sirens. Max HP is 10, Attack is 1, and Defense is 0. She doesn't seem all that noteworthy. Uh... She is kinda cute, I guess... She might even be cuter than I am... I guess... ...Uh... What am I thinking? (GameCube)
That's Vivian. She's the youngest of the Three Shadows. Max HP is 10, Attack is 1, and Defense is 0. She doesn't seem all that noteworthy. Uh... She is kinda cute, I guess... She might even be cuter than I am... I guess... Wow. I think I might be jealous. (Switch)

The following are Vivian's attacks and stats:

  • Initial: 15 HP
  • Super Rank: 20 HP
  • Ultra Rank: 30 HP
Name FP Needed Effect Action Command Attack Power Move Rank
Shade Fist 0 Sets enemies on fire with a burning punch. After three lights flash, player presses the mystery button shown (A Button,B Button,X Button or Y Button). Initial: 3
Super: 4
Ultra: 5
Veil 1 Hides Mario in the shadows to avoid enemy attacks. Player presses the 5-button A Button/B Button combo that appears on the screen. N/A Initial
Fiery Jinx 6 Deals fire damage to all enemies, piercing defense. It also burns them. Player presses the 5-button combo of A Button,B Button,X Button, and Y Button that appear on the screen. Super: 5
Ultra: 5
Super Rank
Infatuate 4 Blows a kiss to all enemies to confuse them if effective When a heart appears above an enemy, player presses A Button. N/A Ultra Rank

Super Paper Mario

Catch Card
  • Card Type: Rare
  • Card Description: It's Vivian from the last Paper Mario adventure. She was a great friend once she split from her sisters.

Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door (Nintendo Switch)

  • In-game description: Vivian was one of the Three Shadows but has now chosen to leave her two sisters behind. Press X Button to hide with Mario in the shadows. When hiding, nobody can find you.

Super Smash Bros. series

Super Smash Bros. Brawl

A Sticker of Vivian in Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
Artwork from: Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door
Effects in The Subspace Emissary: [Energy] - Attack +5
Usable by: Anyone

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

#98 Vivian
Artwork of Vivian from Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door Series/game Paper Mario Series
Type Primary
Slots 1
Class Advanced
Strength / effect(s) Shield
Weight ↓
How to obtain Spirit Board
Spirit battle Opponent(s) Clear Mr. Game & Watch

  • The enemy is invisible
Stage Luigi's Mansion (Battlefield)
Song Paper Mario Medley


Names in other languages

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ビビアン[2]

Chinese 薇薇安

Dutch Vivian
French Viviane[10]
German Barbara
A given name
Italian Ombretta[12]
A common given name, meaning "little shadow"; shared with Twila and Bogmire
Korean 불비안
Combination of "불" (bul, "fire") and "비비안" (Bibian, "Vivian")

Russian Вивиан

Spanish Bibiana[11]
Vivian. Also a reference to Bibiana Fernández, a Spanish trans actress.[22]


  1. ^ a b c Marco, Francesca Di. Revista Tradumàtica. (European Spanish). Archived June 7, 2021, 11:15:28 UTC from the original via Wayback Machine. Retrieved May 21, 2024.
  2. ^ a b Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door From Japanese to English. The Mushroom Kingdom. Retrieved June 13, 2008.
  3. ^ a b "Truth is, it took me a while to realize I was their sister...not their brother. Now their usual bullying feels heavier."Media:PMTTYD NS Vivian Transgender Confirmed.jpg - Vivian, Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door (Nintendo Switch)
  4. ^ a b
    nepsaty123 (February 28, 2011). ペーパーマリオRPGを実況プレイ! part13. YouTube. Retrieved March 30, 2014.
    Beldam: 「ヒッヒッヒッヒィ・・・
    のるほどのものじゃあ ないけど
    いちおう のって おこうかねぇ


    "Hee hee hee heeee...
    It's not even worth giving you our names,
    but I guess we can.

    We are..."

    Marilyn: 「カゲ・・・」

    "The Shadow..."

    Vivian: さん姉妹しまいっ!!」

    "Sisters Three!!"

    Goombella/Koops: 「カゲさん姉妹しまいっ!?」

    "The Shadow Sisters Three!?"

    Beldam: 「コラッ! ビビアン!!
    なに いってんだよ あんた!
    カゲ三人組さんにんぐみだろ! 三人組さんにんぐみ!!

    どこが さん姉妹しまいだよ!
    あんた オトコじゃないかい!!!!!!」

    "Hey! Vivian!!
    What do you think you're saying!?
    We're the Shadow Trio! Trio!!

    Where are there three sisters!?
    Aren't you male!!!!!!?"

    Vivian: 「ゴメンナサイ~ おねえさま

    "I'm sorry, dear sis'.
    I just..."

    Beldam: 「つい・・・ じゃないよ!
    あとで きっちり

    "You just... nothing!
    Because after this,
    I'm absolutely punishing you!!"

    Vivian: 「うぅっ・・・」 "Sniff..."
  5. ^
    nepsaty123 (February 28, 2011). ペーパーマリオRPGを実況プレイ! part13. YouTube. Retrieved March 30, 2014.
    Goombella: 「『ビビアン』よ
    カゲ三人さんにんぐみ一人ひとりで いちばんしたいもうと
    ・・・じゃなくて おとうと

    こうげきりょくは『1』 ぼうぎょりょくは『0』よ
    これといった とくちょうは ないみたい

    それにしても カレって なかなか

    ひょっとしたら あたしよりも


    あたしったら なにを
    "That's Vivian.
    One of the Three Shadows, and the youngest sister
    ...I mean, brother.

    Max HP: 10
    Attack power: 1, Defense power: 0
    Seems there's nothing special here

    nevertheless, 'he' is quite
    cute, huh...

    Possibly, maybe even
    cuter than me...

    ...that is

    No way...
    Jeez, I wonder what
    I was thinking."
  6. ^
    Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door From Japanese to English. The Mushroom Kingdom. Retrieved June 13, 2008.
    Menu text: 「カゲ三人組の一人だった
    オンナのコのようで ホントは オトコのコ」
    "Vivian was one of the Shadow Trio.
    (He's) Actually a boy who appears to be a girl."
  7. ^
    Goom Goom's quest
    Goom Goom: 「おお! これは かわいい・・・
    ってキミ・・・ どっちなの?・・・
    オトコ・・・ だよね・・・

    ようするに オスじゃん!」
    "Oh! This one's cute...
    but you... which (gender) are you...?
    You are a male... right...?

    In short, this one is male!"
  8. ^ Clyde Mandelin (June 1, 2019). Tricky Translations #4: "I" & "Me" in Japanese. Legends of Localization (English). Retrieved May 28, 2024. (Archived May 28, 2024, 22:15:21 UTC via Wayback Machine.)
  9. ^
    inu651225 (October 23, 2010). スーパーペーパーマリオ 全カード集{ネタばれ注意}. YouTube. Retrieved July 28, 2015.
    Catch card: 「『ペーパーマリオRPG』に
    とうじょうした マリオのなかま
    火の魔法を 使う キュートな オトコのコ
    カゲ三人組という てきの1人だった」
    "A partner of Mario's who appeared
    in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door.
    A cute boy who uses fire magic,
    Vivian was one of the enemy group called the Shadow Trio."
  10. ^ a b In the French version, Vivian uses the name "L'Obscur Trio de Sœurs" ("The Dark Trio of Sisters"), to which Beldam retorts "Quoi! Viviane! Qu'est-ce que tu racontes? L'Obscur Trio! Tout court! Où tu vois trois sœurs, toi? Tu es un garçon!!!!!!" ("What! Vivian! What are you talking about? The Dark Trio! Period! Where do you see three sisters? You're a boy!", with "garçon", "boy", being written in red font for extra emphasis). Vivian apologizes and starts to try to argue her case, but Beldam cuts her off and threatens punishment for her words (Vivian says "Désolée, Marjolène. Enfin...", "Sorry, Beldam, [but] let's just say...", and Beldam cuts in with "Il y n'a pas de « enfin »!", the equivalent to "there is no 'but's"). ~ Frigiel. (August 13, 2012). Paper Mario : La Porte Millénaire Let's Play - Episode 4. YouTube. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
  11. ^ a b In the Spanish version of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, during her Tattle for Vivian ("Bibiana" in the localization), Goombella originally uses feminine terms for Vivian ("la más pequeña") but then corrects herself and uses the masculine version ("el más pequeño") instead: "¡Es Bibiana! La más pequeña del Trío... Bueno... EL más pequeño [...]". ~ TheMegajorn. (September 15, 2012). Paper mario la puerta milenaria parte 8 español. YouTube. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
  12. ^ a b c In the Italian version, Vivian attempts to introduce the group as the "tre sorelle ombra", "Three Shadow Sisters", but Beldam reproaches her, insisting that they are the gender-neutral "Trisdombra", calling her a liar and asking her how they could be described as "three sisters" ("Ma quante scempiaggini dici, fanfarona di un'Ombretta? Siamo il Trisdombra! Imbecille! Ti sbugiardo davanti a tutti! Spiegami: come facciamo ad essere tre sorelle? Avanti!"). Vivian admits that Beldam and Marilyn are the real sisters, but says she feels like a woman too and is proud of it ("Siete due sorelle, è vero... Ma anch'io mi sento una donna e sono fiera di esserlo diventata!"), which Beldam waves off with the disparaging comment that Vivian probably thinks she's the prettiest too, and deserves to be punished ("E magari credi anche di essere la più bella, eh? Meriti una punizione!"), causing Vivian to slump to the ground with a sigh. ~ TheGamerDani. (May 23, 2012). Let's Play Paper Mario:il Portale Millenario parte 14 - Trisdombra e Spirù. YouTube. Retrieved December 28, 2013
  13. ^ OatmealDome (May 21, 2024). (Paper Mario: TTYD) Here's the original Japanese for this Vivian line. それに じつは アタイ・・・ 体は オトコのコだけど ココロは カワイイ オンナのコなの "The thing is... I... I have a boy's body, but my heart is a cute girl's!" (using feminine first person pronouns). X (English). Retrieved May 21, 2024. (Archived May 22, 2024, 03:24:15 UTC via
  14. ^ OatmealDome (May 21, 2024). (Paper Mario: TTYD) Vivian's Japanese party menu description was updated. GC: "He may look like a girl, but he's actually a boy." (TCRF translation) Switch: "Has a boy's body, but a girl in their heart." This was removed in the English translation on both GC and Switch.. Retrieved May 26, 2024.
  15. ^ e3ka33ri (May 22, 2024). ここのセリフ変わっとる!!!!!!!!!GC版だと「あんたオトコじゃないか!」ってマジョリンが言ってたしビビアンは「つい…」としか言ってなかったのに. Retrieved May 26, 2024.
  16. ^ OatmealDome (May 21, 2024). Goombella's tattle was also updated to remove all mentions of Vivian's gender in Japanese. Instead, she goes on a little ramble about Vivian being cute and how she might be a bit jealous. This was kept for the English translation.. Retrieved May 26, 2024.
  17. ^ Nintendo Life (May 21, 2024). Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door Nintendo Switch Review - Is It Worth It?. YouTube. Retrieved May 21, 2024.
  18. ^ nintendojam (May 21, 2024). Review: Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door for Nintendo Switch. My Nintendo (English). Retrieved May 21, 2024. (Archived May 21, 2024, 18:02:17 UTC via Wayback Machine.)
  19. ^ GameXplain (May 21, 2024). Confirmed: Vivian is Trans in the Paper Mario TTYD Remake!. YouTube (English). Retrieved May 21, 2024. (Archived May 21, 2024, 19:59:37 UTC via Wayback Machine.)
  20. ^ BeardBear (May 22, 2024). Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door Remake - All Bosses (No Damage). YouTube (English). Retrieved May 23, 2024. (Archived May 23, 2024, 09:16:03 UTC via Wayback Machine.)
  21. ^ Thomason, Steve (October 1, 2004). Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door Nintendo Player's Guide. Nintendo of America. ISBN 1-930206-51-8. Page 16.
  22. ^ "When @mantisdeimatica and I were playing our first round to get to know the content and tone of the game, and we reached the part where ビビアン appears and their gender identity is revealed, we immediately looked at each other and said, 'in Spanish, it can only be Bibiana.' Obviously. It was just handed to us on a silver platter, darn..." ("Cuando @mantisdeimatica y yo estábamos haciendo una primera partida para conocer el contenido y el tono del juego y llegamos a la parte donde aparece ビビアン y se revela su identidad de género, inmediatamente nos miramos y dijimos, "en español solo puede ser Bibiana". Obviamente. Es que estaba servido en bandeja, joert...")[1]. Twitter. Retrieved September 15, 2023.