The popular comic strip, “Nancy,” has been iconic for more than eight decades. But the bushy-haired, red-bowed comic main character has always been rendered by a man.

Finally, that’s changing.

On Monday, Andrews McMeel Syndication announced that the cartoonist Olivia Jaimes has inherited the iconic strip and will provide a “21st-century female perspective,” says John Glynn, Andrews McMeel’s president and editorial director.

“Nancy has been my favorite sassy grouch for a long time,” Jaimes says in a syndicate statement. “I’m excited to be sassy and grouchy through her voice instead of just mine, and I can complain to the whole world about things that bother me instead of just my friends and family.”

History of “Nancy”

Nancy debuted on the comics page in 1933 in the United Feature strip “Fritzi Ritz,” which was launched in 1922 by creator Larry Whittington.

After Nancy appeared as Fritzi Ritz’s niece, the girl’s popularity increased until by 1938, the strip’s title was changed to “Nancy.”

Iconic status

“Nancy” is syndicated to about 75 newspaper clients and enjoys a unique fandom with some professional cartoonists, who uphold examples of the strip at midcentury as a pinnacle of formal minimalism.

The strip’s cult artistic status is celebrated in the recent book, "How to Draw Nancy: The Elements of Comics in Three Easy Panels,” by Paul Karasik and Mark Newgarden.

Jaimes brings a love for the vintage Bushmiller work to her “Nancy,” Glynn says, but with a voice that he hopes will resonate today.

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