Aug 26, 2023

Mortal Kombat 1 Implies A Mirror Match Is Just Johnny Cage In Makeup

Well... that's one way to explain it.

Like in every fighting game, mirror matches have always been possible in Mortal Kombat. This got a little more complicated in Mortal Kombat X though, as all characters had unique pre-fight banter with each other. This meant that the writers had to come up with semi-logical reasons for each character to be beating themselves up, whether they be evil clones or versions of themself from a different timeline.

Mortal Kombat 1 has taken a bit of a different approach, however. As spotted in a Kung Lao mirror match, it's stated that one of the Kung Laos is actually just Johnny Cage in makeup. Because who needs dimension hopping when you have professional makeup artists?

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"Amazing! You look just like me, Johnny!" says one of the Kung Laos, immediately making clear that we're not dealing with the usual multiverse shenanigans.

"Gotta love those Hollywood makeup wizards," replies the other Kung Lao. Or technically, Johnny Cage, we should say.

We've heard some bonkers explanations for mirror matches before, but this is somehow both the most grounded and the wildest we've ever seen. So it's no surprise that fans are pretty on the fence about it.

That said, those that like it really like it, and hope to see more mirror matches imply that Johnny just likes to cosplay during his downtime. It would be especially impressive if he could pull off playing the ladies, since they're pretty much all fighting in high heels. Must be the uniform in Outworld, or something.

So far, the devs have definitely had a lot of fun with these matches. We've seen them used to reference the events of the animated film Mortal Kombat Legends: Snow Blind, mentioning an alternative timeline ruled by Kano. Another version of Kitana tells her current self that Mileena isn't really her sister too, referring to previous timelines where she was instead a clone of the princess.

But of course, Mortal Kombat 1 is mixing things up all around, so we can expect all the mirror match banter to be weird and wacky like this. Things are so different here, in fact, that Ed Boon is already preparing fans to cool their expectations for the roster, hinting that series mainstays like Jade and Sonya won't make it into the starting lineup. There's always hope for DLC though - us Mileena stans had to wait until pretty late into Mortal Kombat 11's lifecycle to see her return. Not that the fanbase was particularly quiet about it, mind.

Mortal Kombat 1 is set to launch on September 19 and will be available on Xbox, PlayStation, Nintendo Switch, and PC.

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Rhiannon is the Deputy News Lead at TheGamer, and can often be found starting yet another playthrough of Dragon Age: Origins. Otherwise, she's watching Star Trek, or caring about the Sonic series way too much.