Turns out Bowser actually existed . . . kinda.
This extinct species of turtle was five-feet wide and weighed half a ton. It also looks a lot like a certain Nintendo villain.
The dog nose, the horns, the beaked mouth, the (relatively) enormous size...it's official name is Meiolania platyceps, but it may as well have been called Meiolania Bowserus, so uncanny is the resemblance to Mario's chief antagonist.
I know, Bowser and his Koopas are supposed to look like turtles, but this one goes a little further than looking like a turtle. I think it's the horns. And especially the eyes. Those dark, angled, evil eyes.
The Meiolania platyceps was in the news last week because a team of Australian paleontologists discovered that it was part of a species believed to have died out over 50,000 years ago, but has recently been found to have died out only 3000 years ago.
As is often the case with animals that have gone extinct since humans first learned to walk upright, hunting is believed to have been the cause of their demise.
Nintendo has taught me everthing I need to know: Italians are all fat with big mustaches, giant turtles are meant for killing, shrooms are bad, but "Star Power" makes you invicinble!!