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Cala Maria is one of the major characters in the video game Cuphead. She is a mermaid that can be found within the "High Sea Hi-Jinx" level, located on Inkwell Isle 3.
In her initial form, Cala Maria is a giant mermaid. She has lavender skin with a (presumably) deceased purple octopus on her head, acting as "hair". She has aqua-colored eyes with turquoise eyeshadow, pink lipstick, and two pink scars below her left shoulder. Her only form of clothing is a blue seashell bra. She has a green fishtail, which is mostly submerged underwater.
About a third of the way into the battle with her, Cala Maria is electrocuted by a duo of electric eels; this action causes her to transform into a gorgon-mermaid hybrid. As a result of the transformation, her skin turns pale green and she and the tentacles on her hair become snakes. Her eyes turn yellow with cat-like pupils and her teeth become razor sharp; she also gains a snake-like tongue. Her bra also turns green, suggesting that it is made of a different material other than seashells, such as seaweed or seagrass.
Cala Maria is notably flirty, as suggested when she says "you-hoo!" to Cuphead and Mugman when they first encounter her during the battle. 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.
Upon transforming into a gorgon, Cala Maria loses most of her flirtatious traits and becomes more hostile in nature.
At the beginning of the battle, she will raise up from the ocean and shout "Yoo-hoo!" in a flirtatious tone whilst fanning her eyes.
Her attack pattern during the first phase of the battle is more unpredictable compared to previous bosses; such attacks will include summoning one of three sea creatures to her aid:
- Turtle: A turtle that will fire spiked balls that will travel towards the top of the screen and then explode into eight pieces.
- Seahorse: A seahorse that will squirt a stream of water that will push the brothers into potential hazards rather than directly damage them.
- Puffer Fish: A menagerie of pufferfish that can be shot down, some of which are parryable.
She will also use a fog horn blow to fire ghost pirates that will travel in the direction of the brothers.
She will dive underwater to grab a large fish that she will use as a firearm:
- Yellow Fish: The Yellow Fish will fire an electric dolphin that will home in on the brothers, switching direction.
- Red Fish: The Red Fish will fire 6-way projectiles, some of which are parryable.
After taking enough damage, two electric eels will emerge beside her; upon realizing this, Cala Maria will gasp in shock, before they bite her waist and electrocute her. This action causes her to scream and transform into a gorgon (similar to Medusa). During this phase, her only attack is a petrifying gaze, which will render the brothers immobile unless they are completely idle. Cuphead and Mugman can recover from the gaze, but the petrification will leave them vulnerable to attacks in the meantime.
Also during this phase, six electric eel minions will constantly fire electric projectiles at the brothers in spreads, some of which can be parried.
Once she absorbs enough damage, her body will turn to stone and begin sinking into the ocean, while her head will detach from her neck and enter a cavern lined with coral hazards. During this phase, Cala Maria will continue to use her petrifying gaze, although it is now unavoidable even if the brothers don't move. Also, she will spit skulls and bubbles that will also damage the brothers.
Once defeated, Cala Maria will turn away, saddened by her loss 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.
- Fans often pair Cala Maria with Mugman.
- In the good ending, Cala Maria is shown being Cuphead's and Mugman's size. Whenever or not it's a goof or evidence that she possesses size altering powers is unknown.