Japanese Prime Minister as Super Mario Ignites Social Media | NBC Chicago
2016 Rio Olympic Games

2016 Rio Olympic Games

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Japanese Prime Minister as Super Mario Ignites Social Media

Tokyo, hoping to piggyback Rio's final moment in the Olympic spotlight to introduce its vision of the next games, also packed a video with Pac-Man, Hello Kitty and other manga and video game icons

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    AP
    Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe appears during the closing ceremony in the Maracana stadium at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Sunday, Aug. 21, 2016.

    How do you connect the current host of the Summer Olympics, Rio de Janeiro, and the next, Tokyo?

    Send in Super Mario, of course — with a little political help.

    Rio's Goodbye Party: Images from the Closing CeremonyRio's Goodbye Party: Images from the Closing Ceremony

    To the delight of a crowd gathered at the Maracana stadium Sunday for the closing ceremonies of the Rio Games, a video showed Japan's prime minister, Shinzo Abe, who announces he won't make it to Rio in time. So Abe turned into the Japanese video game plumber Mario and then popped up in the flesh out of a huge green pipe in the stadium that he allegedly used as a shortcut to get from Tokyo to Rio.

    Mario and Abe weren't alone.

    Tokyo, hoping to piggyback Rio's final moment in the Olympic spotlight to introduce its vision of the next games, also packed a video with Pac-Man, Hello Kitty and other manga and video game icons.

    Needless to say, the appearance of Super Mario led many Nintendo fans to envision what might be in 2020.