"You can't catch me, I'm the Gingerbread Man!""The Gingerbread Man" (or "Gingerbread Boy") is the anthropomorphic protagonist of the Fairy Tale of the same name. The Gingerbread Boy makes his first print appearance in the May 1875 issue of St. Nicholas Magazine.In the original tale, a childless old woman bakes a gingerbread boy who runs away upon creation. The woman and her husband give chase but fail to catch him. The gingerbread boy then outruns several farm workers and farm animals while taunting them with the phrase:
- I've run away from a little old woman,A little old man,And I can run away from you, I can!
This story provides examples of:
- Fragile Speedster: The little cookie can outrun grown humans, but is eventually killed with a single bite from a fox.
- Law of Inverse Fertility: In some versions, the old woman deliberately created the Gingerbread Man because she couldn't have real children. Which probably makes her the fairy-tale equivalent of a Motherly Mad Scientist...
- Public-Domain Character: The story and character have long fallen into the public domain, hence why Gingerbread Man is such a staple character in fairy tale parodies.
- Super Speed: Implied. The Gingerbread Man is at least fast enough to easily outrun grown humans.