Monica (Monica's Gang)
|Monica's Gang's character|
|First appearance||Removable Newspaper strips of 1963|
|Created by||Maurício de Sousa|
|Family||Mrs. Luísa (Mother), Mr. Souza (Father). And her hyperactive dog, ditto.|
Monica is the main character of Monica's Gang (Turma da Mônica) comic strips. She was created in 1963. Mauricio de Sousa based the character on his own daughter, who is also named Monica. Monica's hair is influenced by a haircut his older daughter Mariângela gave her once when she was a kid. In 2007, Monica became a Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF.
Monica is super strong and can even lift an elephant. She has two 'buckteeth' and a shabby favourite toy called Samson (sansão) which is blue and in the form of a rabbit. Monica is also well known for her short temper. She is constantly angry with Jimmy Five and Smudge.
Her own comic book was launched in 1970 and is also the first comic of Monica's Gang, initially called Monica and Her Gang (Mônica e Sua Turma).
Concept and creation
Monica was logically based on the daughter of Mauricio de Sousa in childhood. The reason for its creation was due to a complaint the lack of female characters in Mauricio comics.  At that time were produced the newspaper strips of Blu and Jimmy Five, and other projects created by Mauricio even in the early 1960s. Mauricio was based on his daughter also named Monica to create a new character. The girl had the same features of she: wearing a red dress and carrying a blue stuffed bunny in hand. The character first appeared in a comic strip of Jimmy Five in 1963, then as a supporting rival of the protagonist who often beat him with her stuffed bunny.
Since its first appearance the character captured the interest of the cartoonist who became increasingly stories of the character in the Jimmy Five strips. Earlier Monica was a little girl, with tangled hair and an angry expression on her face, but Mauricio himself gave a way to improve their appearance to make it the character it is now. With its emphasis growing further over the years Monica became the protagonist in the late 60s taking the place of Jimmy Five and Blu. In 1970 Monica received her own comic and since then has become the most important work for Mauricio de Sousa and his studio.
Over time the character starred in his own animated films on television, and became an icon of the media in Brazilian culture.
Monica is a 7 year old, strong and decisive girl, who does not tolerate impertinence, but at the same time, has her moments of femininity. She lives with her parents, has a little dog called Ditto (Monicão), and does not let go of her blue stuffed rabbit called Samson (Sansão). This rabbit, which she loves so dearly, is also a weapon against boys. Especially Jimmy Five (Cebolinha) and Smudge (Cascão), who are always teasing her and calling her fatty, bucktoothed and shorty. She is described as possessing powerful (usually even superhuman) strength, which she uses to beat up boys who tease her, or to defend herself and her friends. She is known by the other characters as the "owner of the street". She is often at odds with Jimmy Five (Cebolinha), but backs him up whenever he gets into trouble. Monica's best friend is Maggy (Magali). Monica's also very shy to date boys, and she often causes trouble when she tries to talk or impress them. Her buckteeth (more precisely the maxillary central incisor) are her trademark, but also the main reason for people to call her toothy.
Relatives and friends
- Jimmy Five - Neighbor Monica, considered his friend while his greatest nemesis. He lives bothering Monica putting him nicknames such as "toothy", "shorty" and "chubby", and always abduct Samson therefore always being avenged by Monica at the end of each story taking a blow from Monica usually using the Samson. Sometimes Jimmy Five reaches extrapolate and gets to create Infallible Plans (that penalizing name always fail) to "defeat" Monica often using disguises and inventions of Franklin. On rare occasions he demonstrates a platonic love for Monica coming up dating her.
- Dona Luísa (Mrs. Luísa) – Monica's mother. Works as a designer for pieces of furniture.
- Seu Souza (Mr. Souza) – Monica's father. He is based on Mauricio de Sousa himself, although the surnames are slightly different (Souza and Sousa). He works in a business company.
- Samson (Sansão) – Monica's blue rabbit toy. Initially, he didn't have a name, "Samson" was suggested by Roberta Carpi, in 1983. Samson is not only Monica's favorite toy, but also the "weapon" that she uses on whoever calls her by names she doesn't like. Samson is a constant victim of Jimmy Five, Smudge or other boys who love to tie his ears in knots.
- Ditto (Monicão – a portmanteau of "Mônica" and "cão", dog in Portuguese, which can also mean Big Mônica)) – Ditto is Monica's pet. He was a gift from Jimmy and Smudge, who didn't remember to bring one to Monica's party. Ditto looks so much like her (including the Banana-like hair and the prominent teeth) that the boys decided to buy it with the initial purpose of mocking her as soon as they saw the pooch on a pet shop window. However, their plan backfired, as both Ditto and Monica got along immediately, and now stick together. Among the pets of Monica's Gang, Ditto is the most active. He is sometimes portrayed as having super strength, which often leads him or Monica to get into troublesome situations.
Monica is one of the main protagonists of the spin-off Monica Teen, published since 2008 by the MSP and Panini Comics. In this japanese-style comic-manga Monica and her friends are teenagers 15 years who now studying at the Limoeiro High School. The very first edition is shown a drastic change and evolution of Monica and her friends since childhood when they were 7 years. Monica is large and no longer tormented by troublemakers boys even though it is strong and temperamental, on the other hand is still with his teeth and hair the same appearance. She develops a passion for Jimmy Five that ends up becoming dating over the episodes with many fights and jealousy in a high comedy climate. Despite having changed in some ways it still has an adventurous spirit and continues to use his super strength to stop the enemies that appear.
Monica starred in a series of games for Master System and Sega Genesis developed by TecToy. The games were based on the Wonder Boy franchise and their adaptations were restricted in Brazil. In the adaptations of these games, Monica replaces the protagonists.
- BRAZZIL - News from Brazil - Monica, Cascao, Cebolinha - Mauricio de Sousa's Comics
- Mônica 30 Anos- Edição Comemorativa- Ed. Globo, 1993 (Portuguese)
- Beloved cartoon character Mônica is the newest National Ambassador for UNICEF Brazil
- Turma da Mônica não tinha mulheres
- Crie invente
- de Sousa, Mauricio (2011). "Por Que Todo Mundo Vai Embora?". Mônica - Amigos Especiais (in Portuguese) (20 ed.). São Paulo: Panini Comics. pp. 4–30.
- de Sousa, Mauricio (2011). "Sente Só os Bichinhos". Mônica - Amigos Especiais (in Portuguese) (48-49 ed.). São Paulo: Panini Comics. pp. 35–38.
- "Personagens da Turma da Mônica 'crescem' e viram mangá". O Estado de São Paulo. 2008-07-30.