Launched in 1996 and originally part of a Nickelodeon programming block called Nick at Nite, TV Land is a cable television channel aimed (according to owner MTV Networks) at the 40- to 50-year-old with a blend of original programming, classic and contemporary television series acquisitions, and movies. What originally started as a nostalgia-filled, black-and-white-tinted programming has grown into a Betty White-fueled feel-good programming. This month TV Land introduced a revised logo and a new on-air look both designed by Trollbäck + Company, who also designed their previous on-air package.
In a bid to move away from TVLand’s retro vibe, Trollbäck + Company wanted to refresh the network’s on-air graphics with a focus on original programming and a new tagline: Laugh More. The final package supported that initiative with colorful and energetic graphics including an amped-up TVLand logo that moves in unexpected ways.
It’s pretty amazing that TV Land has kept the same basic logo since launch — see original here — 16 years ago and that it has evolved in baby steps. By now you would think someone new in charge would have stepped in and asked to get rid of that thing. But its quirkiness has probably more equity than anyone would like to acknowledge. The latest version, however, starts to chip off much of its vintage patina and 1950s-TV-Atomic-Dinner aesthetic leaving only a strange holding shape with slightly contemporary typography inside. Clarendon does not quite take me to where the spiked serifs of the old one did and its relationship with “LAND” below it has also changed having less size contrast but not enough. If TV Land does one more exercise of updating the logo without really changing they might end up with a real mess.
Luckily, the on-air package provides the vibrancy and energy that the new logo lacks. A lovely color palette and a nice range of motions give TV Land a fresh and contemporary vibe while still keeping some of that old school 1970s animation look. It’s funny that the logo also flips like the recently reviewed More4 on-air identity — not saying either one copied the other, just funny how a similar effect plays out in different cases so close to each other. Overall, the logo is not quite the improvement or update that TV Land needed but Trollbäck + Company has delivered another crisp package.
Update: The “after” logo is not recent, it’s been out for at least a year. Apologies for the confusion. Opinion still applies. On-air package IS new.