Two cable networks, E! and Lifetime, made wardrobe changes this week, ditching their old duds for new logos AND new taglines to better indicate who they are now. And apparently one of them likes to get drunk and the other is a multitasking woman. So let's take a gander at both new looks and do what we do best: Critique them to tears while we lounge about in the pajamas we haven't washed in weeks.
First up... E!, the channel with 20 Kardashian shows, a dozen Chelsea Handler shows, and Playboy bunnies.
The Logo: I gotta admit, it's nice that E! finale realizes that it's no longer 1993 and that Beverly Hills, 90210 was canceled years ago. Today's brands are sleeker, blacker, and all about skinny fonts. I'm guessing the people in charge of this drew inspiration from The Soup host Joel McHale's ties. But the lack of symmetry in the logo leaves it with more unnecessary whiteness than an episode of The Bachelor.
The Tagline: The old tagline was one of those ideas that gets suggested early in a brainstorming session, everyone says, "nahhhh," then spends a week trying to come up with something better but can't (fun fact: that's how we first named Swell-o-vision vs. Hell-o-vision, now known as FTW vs. WTF). But "Everything Entertainment" is about as grandma as you can get, so it had to go (not that it should have been there in the first place). The new tagline, "Pop of Culture" is more in line with E!'s mindless, Kardashianated idea of entertainment, because like everything on the network, it doesn't make sense. "Pop of Culture?" Are they missing an "o" in that first word? I do like the golden hue of the "pop" though, and I'm guessing that's supposed to subliminally remind us of champagne or awards season or something.
Verdict: Aside from the clusterf*ck of a phrase that's supposed to be E!'s new tagline, the unevenness of the logo, and the general ho-hum nature of the whole thing, we'll call this a successful re-branding because the old one was lame 10 years ago.
Next... Lifetime! The network famous for horrible made-for-TV movies and Dance Moms!
The Logo: The old Lifetime logo looked like something you scrawl on a wall if you're trying to warn others about monsters and/or a viral outbreak. Yet compared to the new monstrosity, it still manages to appear feminine, which is what the network that features a show starring Jennifer Love Hewitt as a pro tug-and-rub specialist is all about. The first thing that comes to mind when looking at the new logo is a frog's egg. The second thing that comes to mind is a shiny red period, and I'll let you go there because I'm staying away from that.
The Tagline: THANK YOU LIFETIME FOR REMINDING ME THAT THIS IS MY LIFE AND MY TIME. For a second there I forgot about free will and all that. I don't know why Lifetime has such a hard time with slogans. Take their previous attempts: "Television for Women." "My story is on Lifetime." "Connect. Play. Share." When "Television for Women" is your best motto, you've got problems. The new slogan, "Your Life. Your Time." is "designed to integrate the network's new programming direction with the sensibilities of today's multitasking gal," says The Hollywood Reporter with a Lifetime PR person's hand up its ass. Instead I see condescending pandering to a group that's a lot smarter than that. And couldn't the designers have at least matched the fonts to appease the obsessive-compulsive disorder in all of us?
Verdict: This is the TV logo equivalent of a regrettable tattoo. Simply awful.
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island with one of these two new logos, which would you choose? And what other networks are in need of a brand makeover?