“Dollhouse” promo typography

Posted on November 16, 2009 by


but mostly because of the badly written storyline

I do not know how many of you watch the show, Dollhouse on a consistent basis, but if you do, you should know by now that the show has been canceled. Since this blog is not about television programs, knowledge of this show is irrelevant, though I would like to take this opportunity to pat myself on the back by saying that I knew this show would tank and become obscure at a speed comparable to that of a semi-truck falling off the Bay Bridge in the Bay Area.

Back to the point of this post, to promo the start of season two in the Fall of 2009, Dollhouse advertised their show like any other show would; tv commercials, billboad ads, web banners, etc. So far so good, right?


So whats the problem? Typography is the problem (it pretty much always is).

“Whats the big deal?,” you are probably not thinking to yourself, but I’m pretending you are so I can write this blog post. You would not understand unless you saw the same web banners as I did. Lucky, I’ve taken a screenshot of it earlier this year, just in case I were to start a blog and rant about it. See below:

dollhouse web banner

Anyone can happen. Shitty typography did happen.

See the problem? Of course you do, you are not an aesthetically-disabled chimpanzee.  Well, apparently the graphic designer, the art director, and the higher-ups are these mythical aesthetically-disabled chimpanzee, as they saw that the treatment of the word “dollhouse” was perfectly acceptable and that no one would call them out on their shit. Which is probably true, because I am a nobody, and here I am motherfuckas, calling out your visually-illogically-thinking monkey shit!


like alphabet soup, except you don't want this

Note: I have never seen the show, just the commercials, advertisements, and the online consensus that the show has met less expectations than a ____________. I can go into in-depth detail on my dislike of these banners, but I am not. Instead, I just want to point out two things:

  1. randomly place letters of the word, “dollhouse”
  2. the gap between the letters “U” and “S” is so arbitrarily distracting, gap-tooth pop icon, Madonna, would agree with me

"I agree with him"

The type is scattered in a weird way, with different letters with no apparent reason being of different sizes. Maybe I should give them the benefit of the doubt. Maybe randomly having the letters be bigger than the others are a metaphor relating to the plot of the show?

dollhouse web banner

d-o-o...this..show..is..doo doo?

Point of this rant is that for a nationally televised show, with well-paid designers and art directors, someone should have scrapped this design before it went into production. Hell, it should have been scrapped before the idea ever went into anybody’s head. Hard to read words [usually] does not make for good design, and definitely does not help promote your show, especially if it was already tanking in the ratings.

Before I end this post, I would just like leave a few words expressing my feelings about the gap between the “U” and “S.”

the space between US,

ugly, arbitrary, tensioned,