Ginger Meggs is Australia’s longest-running comic strip. It was created in 1921 by Sydney cartoonist Jimmy Bancks. Five cartoonists and 100 years later, kids and grown-ups alike are still revelling in the rambunctious adventures and comical capers of the red-headed larrikin kid who never gets old.
Celebrating 100 years of the iconic character and Aussie legend, Ginger Meggs features four brand-new and original stories written by Tristan Bancks, the great-great nephew of creator Jimmy Bancks. It’s also illustrated in full colour by the current Ginger Meggs comic-strip cartoonist, Jason Chatfield.
There’s an unparalleled level of sentiment to this new book. Tristan Bancks’ connection to the famous character was an inspiration for his career as a storyteller. His proudest childhood moment was winning a Ginger Meggs showbag at Sydney’s Royal Easter Show. It’s clear that his connection is valued through his storytelling in this book.
Nostalgia also rings true for Chatfield. As a child, Ginger Meggs was the first book Chatfield ever borrowed from the school library, and after reading it, he fell head over heels into the Ginger Meggs world. He pinches himself every morning when he sits down to work on the strip.
This isn’t my first encounter with the iconic character either. Like Chatfield, I remember seeing this in my school library and flicking through its pages. The four new stories transported me back to the early 2000s, reminding me of the mischief, humour, and adventure that’s so iconic to Ginger Meggs.
Celebrating 100 years is surreal to me, and I think it’s the ideal time to introduce the red-headed character to a new generation. Readers aged 9+ are introduced to Ginger’s mates, enemies, families, and pets – everyone who comes on his adventures! With the end of the book’s timeline on Ginger Meggs’ history, you’ll be an expert on all things Ginger in no time.