If you have turned on a television lately, you have probably heard of Comedy Central. This network may have begun just two decades ago—making it a virtual infant in the television world—but it is a favorite due to well-known programs such as South Park and The Colbert Report. However, beginning this new year you will likely see new programming as well as an entirely new logo design and visual identity for the comedy station.
The old Comedy Central logo design featured a skyscraper on a globe, a cartoony image that represented the network’s somewhat juvenile fare. However, the station is becoming more and more serious, offering a funny yet factually accurate take on the news of the day and a special breed of humor more suited to adults than adolescent boys. Could this slight change in programming and audience be represented by the old logo design? We didn’t think so either.
The new logo design features the name of the network written in a plain, serious font. However, the word ‘Central’ has been placed upside down and backward. This suggests that while the station is a part of the ‘serious’ adult cable lineup, it offers a very different take on things.
Further, in the center of the two words is an image of layered C’s. Because one of the C’s is backward, matching the lettering, it resembles the well-known corporate copyright symbol. This was likely done on purpose, to add to the sense of straightforward maturity that the network is trying to achieve with this change in visual identity.
Many people on the internet are critical of the resemblance and even find it offensive. However, in Cody Central’s defense the image is simple, memorable, and a good match for the new brand. It will look fine in the corner of your television screen or on company literature. The logo has been designed so the image can be placed between the two words Comedy and Central or above them, allowing the logo to work well in both rectangular and square spaces. This versatility combined with the stand-alone recognizability of the layered C’s will allow the station to subtly place their logo design in a variety of contexts without looking out of place or obvious.
Versatility is one of the most important parts of a modern logo design. Even the smallest companies find that their logos need to be used on websites, on paper, and even in Flash animations. It can be hard to achieve a design that works well in a wide variety of media while still being recognizable and relevant to your brand. Although fans are protesting the new Comedy Central logo design, we predict that the outcry will die down and the new logo will catch on as the face of a large and diverse range of programming.
Change is never easy; in fact for many of us, it is downright terrifying. With the help of a professional logo designer, companies can ensure that they make it through the transition successfully and leave with a visual identity and logo design that will take their company proudly into the future.