Donkey Kong Wiki
Pauline's artwork from the game Mario Tennis Aces, as well as Mario Kart 8 Deluxe for Switch.
Alias(es) The Lady
The Beautiful Girl
Mayor Pauline
Mario's 1-Up Girl
Daniella Pauline Verducci (according to Super Mario Bros.: The Movie)

Residence(s) New Donk City of Metro Kingdom
Species Human/Homo Nintendous[citation needed]
Gender Female
Affiliation(s) Mario (also known as Jumpman) (ex-boyfriend and friend)
Occupation(s) Mayor of New Donk City
Enemies Cranky Kong (also known as Donkey Kong Sr.) (formerly),
Donkey Kong the Third (formerly)
Game(s) Donkey Kong,
Donkey Kong '94,
Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis,
Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Minis March Again!,
Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem!,
Mario and Donkey Kong: Minis on the Move,
Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars,
Super Mario Odyssey,
Mario Tennis Aces,
Mario Kart Tour,
Mario Golf: Super Rush,
Mario Strikers: Battle League
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
First Appearance Donkey Kong (for Arcade) (1981)
Latest Appearance Mario Strikers: Battle League (2022)

Pauline, formerly known as The Lady, is Mario's first love interest and ex-girlfriend. She first appears in the game Donkey Kong for Arcade.


The First Damsel

The Lady was the damsel-in-distress kidnapped by Donkey Kong Sr. in the 1981 Arcade game of the same name, a mighty ape who wanted revenge against Jumpman, the carpenter who laughed at him during the game Donkey Kong Circus. The gorilla escapes, taking Lady to a construction site. After traversing the four areas of the location, Jumpman reaches the Lady, and defeats Donkey Kong by making him to fall down from the girders.

Kidnapped again

In the game Donkey Kong for Game Boy, the Lady, now known as Pauline, is kidnapped again by Donkey Kong Sr., who is assisted by his son, Donkey Kong Jr. Mario, formerly known as Jumpman, follows the ape into a construction site similar to the one of the first game. However, after clearing this area, Donkey Kong Sr. escapes with Pauline again. Mario pursues the Kong throughout stages of nine worlds, traversing multiple environments and facing many enemies and obstacles. Eventually, the hero confronts a giant, mutated Donkey Kong at the top of a Tower. After defeating the gorilla, Mario recovers his regular height and is kissed by Pauline. At the final cutscene of the game, Mario, Pauline, Donkey Kong Sr. and Junior are seen taking a photo together, hinting that they subsided their grudge.

Mario vs. Donkey Kong series

Pauline regularly appears in the Mario vs. Donkey Kong series. In the game Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis, she is given the choice between taking a Mini Mario toy, or a Mini Donkey Kong toy. When she chooses Mario's, DK is not happy about this rejection and drags Pauline to an elevator; Mario also tears her dress as she's snatched. DK and Pauline enter the elevator and Mario chases after them, but the doors close as he reaches them.

In the end, Mario and his army of Mini Mario toys rescue Pauline but it is revealed that Donkey actually did not harm her, he just gave her a room full of presents and cake: two things that she loves. While Pauline continues to not reciprocate Donkey's childlike crush she still accepts his Mini DK toy.

Mayor of New Donk City

After years of minor appearances, Pauline makes her big comeback in the game Super Mario Odyssey, where she is revealed to be the mayor of New Donk City. Upon arriving at the city, Mario finds Pauline observing Bowser's Airship in the sky amidst a rainstorm. She explains that Bowser had arrived at the city and has been causing chaos, and admitted she was not impressed with his posters advertising his planned wedding with Princess Peach, stating it was "tasteless". After Mario defeats the Mechawiggler (who was draining the city's power) the city returns to normal, and Pauline thanks Mario for saving the city as it meant everything to her.

Later on, Pauline tasks Mario with restoring the city's underground power plant. After the power is restored, Pauline invites him to the New Donk City festival as the guest of honor. However, before the festival can begin, Mario has to find all of Pauline's band members. Once the band is together, the festival finally starts, and Pauline serves as the lead singer.

Near the end of the game, Pauline is once again seen in the Wedding Hall, as one of the guests forced to come to Bowser's wedding. She later appears on the Darker Side of the Moon alongside her band and various other characters to root for Mario as he undergoes his last challenge.

Spin-Off Appearances

Since Super Mario Odyssey, Pauline has become a playable character in Mario sports games, starting with Mario Tennis Aces, and later in the games Mario Kart Tour and Mario Golf: Super Rush. She is also set to appear as a playable character in Mario Strikers: Battle League alongside Diddy Kong in a free update set for September 2022.

Pauline was added to Mario Kart 8 Deluxe as a playable character in the final wave of the Booster Course Pass DLC. She is in the heavyweight class.

Physical Appearance

In her first appearance in Donkey Kong, Pauline was depicted with blonde hair and a red dress, though her sprite in-game showed her with red hair and a pink dress. From Donkey Kong '94 onwards, Pauline has brunette hair and a red dress, with gold earrings and black heels. In Super Mario Odyssey (prior to the festival) she wore a red blazer and a bluish fedora. In Mario Tennis Aces, she wears a short dress and a visor, and trades her heels for some sneakers. In Mario Golf: Super Rush, she wears a red shirt and black pants with a matching red beret.


Artwork & Renders




  • In the original Donkey Kong game, Pauline's sprites depict her in pink long clothing, while artwork for the game and modern incarnations show her in a standard red strap dress.
  • Pauline's current connection with the Kong Family is unknown, but given that most streets of New Donk City in the game Super Mario Odyssey are titled after characters from the Donkey Kong game series, it is likely she still has contact with the DK Crew.
  • It seems Pauline still has feelings for Mario as she calls him her hero in the game Super Mario Odyssey.
    • When Mario possesses a Goomba (it has Mario's mustache and is also wearing Mario's cap) and interacts with another Goomba wearing Pauline's hat they are clearly attracted to each other.
    • Pauline at a point in the same game wears Mario's hat and during her dancing does a move resembling Mario's jump.
    • Some verses of the song "Jump Up, Super Star!" (also known as "Let's Do the Odyssey" or "I'll Be Your 1-Up Girl") that Pauline sings directly to Mario seem to imply affection towards her hero.

External Links