Jimmy Munday remains the outspoken protagonist of the play until his death in Act Four. Recognizing the injustices that he faces due to his race, Jimmy aggressively argues and confronts white officials, which often results in jail sentences, which Jimmy takes in stride with an irreverent attitude. Drinking is a vice for Jimmy, and perhaps one that leads to his poor heart health, which ultimately results in his death. He is remembered by his family through his nephew's son, whom Joe names "Jimmy."
Gran Munday is mother to Jimmy Munday and Milly Millimurra, and acts as the matriarch for the entire family. She is a traditional Aboriginal woman and hates having to bow to white standards of living, preferring the traditions of her Indigenous culture. Throughout the play, Gran highlights the importance of family and does her best to keep everyone together, and she is devastated by the death of her son, Jimmy.
Daughter to Gran and sister to Jimmy, Milly Millimurra is the wife of Sam Millimurra, and works alongside Gran to support the family. Milly recognizes the injustices that her family faces, and struggles to look after her three children, Joe, Cissie, and David. Over time, Milly learns to accept the society in which she and her family live, as it is not something that she can change. Throughout the course of the play, she does her best to provide what she can for her children, even when she has nothing to give.
Married to Milly, Sam Millimurra was accepted into her family, and although fights have occurred between him and his brother-in-law Jimmy, family is a strong focus point for him. Sam acts a mediator within No Sugar, as he is constantly telling his family members to steady their short tempers. Kind and patient, Sam remains a quiet source of strength throughout the play.
Joe Millimurra, eldest son of Sam and Milly, takes after his uncle Jimmy with his outspoken nature, short temper, and distaste for the injustice he faces as an Aborigine. While living in the Moore River Settlement, Joe falls in love with Mary, and they escape together. After meeting Mary, Joe's character matures, and he works hard to protect her and his newborn child.
Cissie and David Millimurra
Middle child and youngest child of Sam and Milly, respectively, Cissie and David Millimurra are the youngest characters in the play. In spite of their youth, they can recognize the daily struggles of their family and the inequality between the white population and the Aborigines.
Auber Octavius Neville
Chief Protector of Aborigines, Neville presides over the Indigenous population, but does not seem to care much for their well-being and makes sure they remain second-class citizens. He is condescending in his treatment of Aborigines, and can quickly become hostile.
Sergeant Carrol polices Northam, and is in charge of distributing rations to the Aborigines and maintaining peace in the small town. Carrol comes to know the Millimura family well, and is the one to inform them of their forced removal from the town. While having no sympathy for their lack of rations, Sergeant does allow them to take their dogs when they leave Northam.
Mr. N.S. Neal
As Superintendent of the Moore River Settlement, Neal is in charge of the Aborigines that reside there. A creepy and violent man, Neal is known for forcing young Aborigine girls to perform sexual favors, or else leave the settlement altogether. He is also extremely violent, beating Mary while she is pregnant for disobeying his orders. Although he is supposedly a "busy" man, Neal spends the majority of his time reading the paper.
Matron Neal is Neal's wife, who works as head nurse in the Moore River Settlement hospital and genuinely cares for the Aboriginal residents. She is aware of her husband's disgusting behavior, but does nothing to stop it.
Mary is an Aborigine girl at Moore River Settlement, who falls in love with Joe. Initially an extremely shy and timid girl, Mary's confidence grows after she marries Joe and becomes pregnant with his child, exemplified in a scene where she vehemently rejects Neal's advances.
One of the most complex characters in the play, Billy Kimberly exemplifies the influence of the white people on the Aborigines. An Aborigine himself, Billy is manipulated by the white authorities to act as a policeman, revealing the secrets of the various families and betraying them to the white authorities. Billy is constantly torn between loyalty to his Aboriginal heritage and loyalty to his white employers.
No Sugar Questions and Answers
The Question and Answer section for No Sugar is a great
resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.