Gingerbread Man (1992) producers: David Wood / FilmFair Ltd animation: stop-motion animation episodes: 13 x 10 mins
won't be beaten till I'm eaten,
and I won't be eaten till I'm beaten!"
Sssh! - Is it night time? Are the
Big Ones asleep? - Good.
Then it's time to meet the folks
who inhabit this big old kitchen dresser.
There's the condiment couple, Salt
the sailor and Miss Pepper. There's
Herr von Cuckoo, he's the eccentric
wooden bird from the cuckoo clock.
Then there's the zoot-suited mouse Sleek,
and the crinkled Old Bag, who
dwells in the top shelf teapot.
But most importantly of all, there's that
happy-go-lucky fellow with a permanent
smile, the Ginger-Ginger-
The Gingerbread Man was originally found
unfinished in a baking mould by
Salt, Miss Pepper and Herr von Cuckoo.
The trio added a cherry slice mouth
and two raisin eyes before rousing
him into excitable life with a handful
of pepper. Ginger's gambolling and merriment,
dancing to the muzak on an
old radio, roused the slumbering
Big Ones and threatened to end our hero's
new-found life there and then. ''Maybe
we made his mouth too big!" says
sailor Salt. But the Big Ones were
enamoured of his big cheeky grin and
decided to keep him "as
a sort of decoration".
The Big Ones are never seen on screen.
But they're often heard approaching
and quick as a flash, our heroes
must make themselves scarce. You see,
those Big Ones regularly intefere
with the contents of the dresser, and
who knows what cruel fate may fall
upon Ginger and company, if they
don't take to their heels...
Hard to believe, perhaps, but Old
Bag really is a walking, talking tea bag.
Actually, she's more of a miserable,
grumbling tea bag with horn-rimmed
spectacles. The Gingerbread Man
climbs up to her shelf in the second
episode, whereupon he uncovers her
softer side. Poor Old Bag reveals how
she is all alone on her shelf, because
the other teabags in her packet were
used up ages ago. The Gingerbread
Man thus agrees to spend his nights
sleeping by her teapot in an orange-striped
deckchair, to keep her company.
And that's exactly where we
find him for the rest of the series...
Meanwhile, there's Sleek, the green-suited
mouse with a muddled gangster
attitude. He makes his first appearance
in the third episode, which is
even titled after him. Sleek is
constantly hungering for a nibble of Ginger
and indeed, a nibble of Old Bag's perforations
too. He emerges from a hole in
the dresser, behind a china plate,
to stalk the shelves and tease our
heroes with his twisted, cockeyed
This animated series was actually
adapted by playwright David
Wood from his
tremendously successful touring stageshow
from the 70s. Wood's
other plays include "The Tinderbox"
(1967), "The Owl and the Pussycat Went to
Sea…" (1968), "Flibberty and
the Penguin" (1971) and "The Ideal Gnome
Expedition" (1980). "The Gingerbread
Man" play was published as part of a
Wood anthology "Wood Plays
1" courtesy of Methuen Books, in 1998.
Time Out said this of the production:
"The perfect children's
play, with lots of superbly silly jokes and
foot-tapping songs ... a
magnificent epic of comic disarray"
Such diverse thespians as Imelda
Staunton and Melanie "Generation Game"
Stace have played the role of Miss Pepper
on tour with the show over
"Newly-baked this morning,
take a look at my tan,
Hey, hey, I'm the Gingerbread Man!
Like a magic spell I just appeared
with a bang,
Hey, hey, I'm the Gingerbread Man!
From the tip of my toes to the top
of my head,
I'm guaranteed genuine gingerbread!
Soon as I arrived the dresser party
Hey, hey, I'm the Ginger, the Ginger,
Ginger, Ginger, Ginger..."
The Arrival Locked
Cuckoo's Cuckoo Weekend
Sleek the Mouse Old
Bag in Danger
Hide and Squeak While
the Cat's Away
A Pinch of Salt
The Gingerbread Man on DVD
All thirteen episodes of this singalong
been released on these two discs:
The Gingerbread Man by David
Wood a FilmFair production for Central
dir of animation: Martin
Pullen asst producer: Kath
Swain exec producer: David
David Wood animation: Mark
Waring, Andy Joule camera: Simon
Paul art director: Alan
Murphy models: Heather
Boucher, Colin Armitage costumes: Laura
Harris, Margaret Haden puppets: Maxine
Guest, Simon Quinn
Kevin Griffiths, Gary Kachelhoffer editor: Andi
Sloss asst editors: Simon
Cox, Christopher Norman dubbing mixer: Peter
Hodges prod supervisor: Robert
Dunbar voices: Andrew
David Wood's official site is stuffed
with information about his many
stage plays and literary works -
"Gingerbread Man" included,
Abbey distribute the UK DVDs. They
have their very own
web store too...