Wednesday, July 18, 2018

LOGOS: Pretty Woman: The Musical

Just last week, I lambasted Gettin' the Band Back Together for using a red/white/black combo logo - particularly when so many shows are currently using the same color combination for their established shows. This week, I'm looking at another logo with the same color combo, but this time it works much better. I'm talking about Pretty Woman: The Musical.

Grade: A

So why does this logo get a passing grade? Well, it's all about brand recognition and audience expectation. Much like the iconic red and white logo for Hello, Dolly!, and the familiar (if not exactly like the beloved books) font used for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, there are certain things so beloved by the public, you just don't mess with it. Much.

I remember the scuttlebutt on the chat boards when this logo first appeared during the pre-Broadway run in Chicago. People scoffed that it was "lazy" and "exactly like the movie logo." Well, smartly, the logo is close - even, apparently, close enough that people think its just a ripoff. But the Broadway version is a clever spin off.


The logo is the same font and positioning that audiences remember from the movie (or VHS or DVD or Blu-ray).  And the character pose is the same. But here's where I think it is clever. The characters are wearing the iconic "opera scene" outfits: black tux for him, red gown for her. All at once familiar and reassuring. This is the story we know, with beloved scene intact. And a certain elegance, because well, a hooker-as-logo is a dicey proposition these days.  I'd also like to give kudos to the designers for keeping their faces in silhouette. After all, what happens when the audience doesn't see Andy Karl and Samantha Barks? (Take a lesson, Mean Girls!)

Pretty Woman:The Musical begins previews on Friday at the Nederlander Theatre, with an opening night scheduled for August 16, 2018.

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