Toad, the mushroom-headed character from the Super Mario series of video games that dates back almost 30 years now, is a character known to millions around the globe. Clear a castle in the original game and he’s there to break the news that the princess isn’t actually there. Slip on a banana peel while burning rubber in Super Mario Kart and it’s often his shrill voice you’ll hear echoing through the enormous green pipe tunnels. Need a man to pick and throw vegetables super fast in Super Mario Bros 2? Toad’s your guy.

Little did we know, though, that Toad has been harbouring a terrible secret the entire time we’ve known him. One that shocked Japanese fans and Twitter users to the core when the following photo came to light.

Spotted by an eager Japanese viewer, this image comes from the Super Mario animated series. We’re not entirely sure what the overall theme of this episode is or whether it focuses entirely on Toad revealing his secret to our hero Mario, but this is a scene that few of us will ever be able to forget.

Not only is the upper portion of what we long thought to be Toad’s head not connected, but he’s clearly suffering from severe hair loss. Perhaps all these years of fretting over Princess Peach’s whereabouts have taken their toll on the poor little guy?

▼ Even Mario looks concerned…

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We’re not going to give Toad a hard time for not possessing a full head of hair, but if that’s actually a hat he’s been wearing all these years, then he’s clearly not actually a mushroom, despite being called Toad and being a retainer in the Mushroom Kingdom. Which begs the question: what the hell is he!?

So many childhoods… ruined.

▼ Your secret’s out, little man. Give it up.


Source: Togech

Inset image: Yahoo! Japan