This page explains in detail the interactions between the Donkey Kong series and the Popeye series.

Donkey Kong

DK poster

Poster for the arcade version of Donkey Kong, with Jumpman's appearance inspired on Popeye's.

19810709 July 09, 1981


Donkey Kong4Arrow L Popeye

Nintendo was originally going to release a videogame based on Popeye, but after they decided to create an original game, Shigeru Miyamoto, designer of the game, used the love triangle of Popeye, Olive Oil and Bluto as an inspiration for Donkey Kong, most notably replacing Bluto with a gorilla character based on King Kong (see Donkey Kong X King Kong). Original designs of the main character, called Jumpman clearly show him based on Popeye, however he would soon be redesigned into his current appearance as Mario.


Nintendo bought the rights to create a Popeye arcade game, but ultimately decided to only use minor elements in their 1981 game. An actual Popeye game was released the following year.