"You are a cutie...I am not sure if I should catch and release!" —Cala Maria, Phase 1 Death Screen
Cala Maria is one of the bosses on Inkwell Isle Three on the boss level, "High Seas Hi-Jinx!" in the 1930s stylized, indie game Cuphead. Despite being a boss, Cala Maria is not evil, she is just trying to protect her soul and is more of an antagonistic heroine than a real threat.
Why She Rocks
- Cala Maria has a incredibly solid design with a dead squid haircut and a round fishtail that is obscured by water.
- She is notably flirty, as suggested when she says "you-hoo!" to Cuphead and Mugman when they first encounter her during the battle.
- Compared to most of the bosses in the game, she is notably less arrogant, as implied by her first death message if the brothers are killed by her. Being a mermaid, it is not surprising that she shares a mutual relationship with sea life, as she uses them as her minions to assist her in battle.
- Her attack pattern (during the first phase of the battle) is more unpredictable compared to previous bosses, such as attacks summoning many sea creatures to her aid.
- Once defeated, Cala Maria will turn away, saddened by her lost while one of the snakes in her hair will play a sorrowful tune on a violin, she will also sign her respective soul contract as a result; this is both tragic and hilarious.
- Her adorable, semi-canon relationship with Mugman.
- Her high-pitched voice, laughs, and grunts are voiced by little-known actress, Denise Hatton.
- The setting of her fight is similar to the Silly Symphony, King Neptune. In the short, a mermaid is held hostage by pirates and the sea creatures, along with Neptune himself and the other mermaids, try and save her. In her fight, she’s a mermaid who is trying to defend her contract and soul from Cuphead and Mugman.
The Only Bad Quality
- Even though she looks like an adolescent, her voice is high-pitched and irritating; though, this may be intentional as it's a staple of early cartoons.
- "Yoo-hoo!" is a commonly used cliche in old cartoons in which an attractive woman uses that phrase to flirtingly call out to a man who is interested in her. This line was also made famous by Minnie Mouse.