The Visual Evolution of Mario
NFC Games has an excellent article on the visual evolution of Nintendo's Mario character. Comparing and contrasting the various character designs over the last two decades is enjoyable, but I don't agree with a bit of the analysis. The "Jumped the Shark" Mario section largely features designs not created by Nintendo's core development group in Japan - rather by Square and NST, Nintendo's in-house team in the US. I'd consider the Paper Mario 2 iteration of Mario to be the de facto 2D version of the famed mascot rather than the blurry Donkey Kong Country-style mess in Mario vs. Donkey Kong.