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Comedy Central Bosses Pray Their New Logo Won't Meet Gap's Fate

Comedy Central is changing its logo to something that looks like the Chanel logo. Back in the day, logo changes were a breeze, but now we know -- think Gap and Tropicana -- that for brand managers they're fraught with drama and angst. The web and social media have given consumers the power to rebel against management-ordered rebrandings, and to demand their old marques back.


It's not clear if the masses will resist the "sensible" new look yet (designed by The Lab; launches officially in January). But I predict they will not: After all, you can't take Comedy Central seriously, so complaining about its logo just seems ... lame. Also, the company already rebranded itself twice from its original name (via "The Comedy Channel" and "CTV") and no one even noticed. Here's the early media reax:

The overall effect is a little more "high-end design magazine" than it is "channel that plays Ghostbusters 2 a lot on weekends,"

... the new design doesn't look like it belongs to a channel where you can watch people be funny and sometimes offensive (we're talking to you, Daniel Tosh) so much as it does a high-end clothing line. And not just any high end clothing line, but the premiere high-end French clothing line, Chanel.

No, seriously. Look at the new font, the understated use of black and white and the C's that have entwined themselves around one another and tell us you don't see the similarities.


Comedy Central also helped itself by explaining in plain English why it's revamping the brand after 10 years with the old one:
"The upside down typography represents an 'irreverent wink,'" said Bob Salazar, senior VP, brand creative director at Comedy Central. The new look fits with all type of comedy and with all audiences, on all platforms, he added.
The logo is also designed to work on new digital platforms and work in social media, where it will fit in nicely with the familiar logos of Facebook and Twitter. "The new clean image is ideal in small spaces, like in social media," [Comedy Central President Michele] Ganeless said.
The Gap, memorably, failed to announce its logo change ahead of time and then published a say-nothing, corporate-speak statement that rang hollow. The channel also made a video explaining its move:
Our logo has changed. No longer do you see the big buildings and globe, that quite literally said COMEDY CENTRAL on top of it. Please welcome the new mark. We affectionately call it the COMEDY MARK. It works WAY F*CKING better than that other one we had. Big building globe, you served us well, but we moved on
A much more interesting rebranding prospect within the Viacom (VIA.B) fold is MTV, which, let's face it, has a truly ugly logo in desperate need of change. At this point, however, viewers have probably become so attached to it that it may not be possible to officially kill off the 1980s-inspired lettering.

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