Faster than a speeding ... spin?!?
May 12, 2005 7:04 AM   Subscribe

Goodbye, DC Bullet. Hello, DC Spin. Branding is very important for business, even when that business is comic books. So this week, DC Comics announced their first new logo in 29 years. Why? Ask DC's President Paul Levitz: "The hope always, for a brand like ours, is that somehow you can have a logo that somehow acknowledges all the wonderful things that have happened in the past, and looks forward with a sense of 'We’re as cool as tomorrow.'" Compelling, but Senior VP and Creative Director Richard Bruning has a more practical explanation: "[A]s we moved into other areas, and got into things like manufacturing toys or action figures or statues, the physical construction of the bullet, the little hairlines that are built around all the letter shapes, made it very difficult to reproduce on any other medium or form than large and on paper." Another good point ... but can a spinning baby blue swoosh really replace that classic Milton Glaser logo?
posted by grabbingsand (33 comments total)
Ugh. All I can think of when I look at that new logo is the fresh spring scent of new extra-power Tide.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:08 AM on May 12, 2005

posted by PenDevil at 7:12 AM on May 12, 2005

The only time changing a logo has ever helped was when the Denver Donkeys changed their logo. Other than that, it's just a sign of weakness and desperation.


As a DC Fanboy, I'm a bit disheartened.
posted by Hugh2d2 at 7:45 AM on May 12, 2005

Hm. When I first saw it, I didn't think it was so bad-- visually interesting, while still reminiscent of the old logo. But now that I've read XQUZYPHYR's comment, it will be detergent for me from now on. Oh, well.

(For what it's worth, I'm a huge Vertigo and (to a lesser degree) WildStorm fan, but haven't found much value in the DC-branded titles for the past ten years or so.)
posted by Faint of Butt at 7:50 AM on May 12, 2005

What a bad redesign, very boring, unoriginal, and unimaginative. What the hell were they thinking? Not as bad as the UPS redesign though.
posted by helvetica at 7:53 AM on May 12, 2005

Reminds me of the, "The More You Know..." logo on NBC.
posted by Hugh2d2 at 7:54 AM on May 12, 2005

The oval swoosh was already overused in 1999. Good lord.
posted by fleetmouse at 7:55 AM on May 12, 2005

Yeah... but it doesn't look as cool as tomorrow. It looks as dated as last week.
This is an example of a corporation following a trend rather than coming up with something timeless or something so new that it creates a new trend.
The typeface is strong, but it's undermined by the color, and the design is too curvy to suggest anything durable or imposing. This should be the logo for Scrooge McDuck and Little Lulu comics, not DC. C'mon!
posted by klangklangston at 7:55 AM on May 12, 2005

Is this "DC" a new NBA expansion team?
posted by gramschmidt at 8:07 AM on May 12, 2005

It does look like the logo for a fabric softener. Nobody wants to read "Snuggle Bear Comics".

They need something more manly, like the image of an erect phallus with "DC" in bold letters across the side.
posted by Gamblor at 8:26 AM on May 12, 2005

"...the little hairlines that are built around all the letter shapes, made it very difficult to reproduce on any other medium or form than large and on paper."
Any soft-mod of their old logo to avoid these "issues" that they were having would have been an infinitely superior decision than introducing this kind of garbage. Weak.
posted by prostyle at 8:26 AM on May 12, 2005

Too bad DC didn't have access to some good graphic designers and artists. They could have helped them with something like this.
posted by Gamblor at 8:29 AM on May 12, 2005

posted by WolfDaddy at 8:32 AM on May 12, 2005

As a person who has purchased every Superman and Justice League comic for the last 8 years, I like it. It's got a three dimensional aspect to it, and while it may be "conforming to a trend", it at least looks more up-to-date than the old logo. The only problem I have is that, initially, it reminded me of Captain America's shield.
posted by boymilo at 8:38 AM on May 12, 2005

Free Image Hosting at
posted by anthill at 8:39 AM on May 12, 2005

I wonder what Stan Lee has to say about all of this? Not that he should really care since he's a Marvel guy but still.

I kind of like the new logo though. Not that it'll get me to buy comic books again (and certainly not, shudder, DC books) but its a nice logo.
posted by fenriq at 8:41 AM on May 12, 2005

It could be worse...

It's a mediocrity that probably springs from an assortment of logos that are in use by companies with the same perceived market demographic. Many consumers will like it.

On preview, consumers like boymilo. Boymilo, real question: do you drink Mountain Dew?
posted by mania at 8:44 AM on May 12, 2005

It's nice to see that they have a swoosh and a star..
posted by bshort at 8:53 AM on May 12, 2005

Short answer: Yes Long answer: Not if there is Coke or Pepsi available. If I don't need caffiene I'll go with Grape Crush.

I can't help but wonder what this has to do with anything.
posted by boymilo at 8:55 AM on May 12, 2005

The new logo blows.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:13 AM on May 12, 2005

Yeah, the new logo is derivitive and unimaginative.

But, the old one was so bland you hardly noticed it. I have to say this is an improvement.

Back in my comic buying days DC was like, I dunno pretty friggin boring. Marvel all the way.
posted by delmoi at 9:24 AM on May 12, 2005

you know what would kick it up a notch? LENS FLARE, am i rite?
posted by keswick at 9:43 AM on May 12, 2005

I'm glad we all agree that among the heroes, the villains, the social commentary cloaked in mythos, the progress made in visual storytelling, the outlet of power fantasies that inspired generations, and the creation of a rich mythology that serves as a cultural touchstone that millions appreciate, what really matters is a blue circle with a star.
posted by NickDouglas at 9:46 AM on May 12, 2005

helvetica, I second that comment about worst redesign *since* UPS (operation brown shield). When will good design be recognized? We need a standard... *plants seed of epic plan*.
posted by uni verse at 10:08 AM on May 12, 2005

Have mercy on that poor graphic designer, o Lord, for clearly they know not what they do .

That is, make themselves look like some dot-com upstart with an in-house designer who just discovered Illustrator. Seriously, the old logo could've been retooled just a bit and still meet their new specs for printing, toys, or whatever the hell it is that made them decide a SwooshStarEXTREME!DUDE!Vortex would be better.
posted by Vervain at 10:41 AM on May 12, 2005

Bring back the checkerboard banner!
posted by davros42 at 10:54 AM on May 12, 2005

Boymilo, the logo reminds me of some of the brand signals used by Mountain Dew a couple of years back (they've altered it a some of late).
posted by mania at 10:57 AM on May 12, 2005

Ah, The Swoosh
This, I believe, is a standard planetary orbital swoosh.
posted by Lazlo Hollyfeld at 11:16 AM on May 12, 2005

Back in my comic buying days DC was like, I dunno pretty friggin boring. Marvel all the way.

Obviously, you missed Grant Morrison's run on JLA, where Aquaman often contributed his part be telling us all what he learned from the psychoelectric field displays of schools of tuna fish.
posted by WolfDaddy at 12:16 PM on May 12, 2005

"Can we put it in more of a hip-hop context? I feel we should swooshify it by ten percent."
posted by gigawhat? at 1:48 PM on May 12, 2005

I was a DC fan back in the 70s and 80s. Firestorm, JLA, Teen Titans, Dial H For Hero, Batman, The Flash, I never understood why so many Marvel fans would browbeat DC, as if collecting comics was like watching football. Marvel fans would act like they were Red Sox fans bitching out the New York Yankees. In hindsight, it was like they were giving a backhanded compliment. DC fans didn't have to retaliate: we knew our comics were superior. We didn't have to try and prove it.

After 1985 though, I started losing interest. They did the Crisis on Infinite Earths which was in my opinion the height of DCs greatness. Everything after that seemed rather anticlimactic. I've since learned about Zero Hour and other attempts to rekindle that spark, but after killing off Barry Allen and Supergirl -- how do you top that? That was amazing! By around 1992 I was occasionally picking up Neil Gaiman's Sandman, and everything else had lost its appeal. Marvel, DC, other titles, didn't matter. It all seemed to have been done before and I haven't collected comic books regularly in about fifteen years.

So DC could put naked girls on their logo for all I care. It won't encourage me to buy any of their stuff.
posted by ZachsMind at 2:36 PM on May 12, 2005

I keep squinting, but I can't see the bullet in the old logo.
posted by straight at 11:18 PM on May 12, 2005

As Kibo once demonstrated, press releases about new logos can be really silly.

posted by straight at 11:41 PM on May 12, 2005

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