I think Comic Sans has gotten a bad rap.
What’s that, you say? You don’t want to read a diatribe about my love for Comic Sans? Well, too bad. I made a bet to myself that I couldn’t make a compelling argument for the much maligned font and I’m going to follow through on proving myself wrong!
Look, I know Comic Sans has been pushed deep down into the darkest of the font dungeons. The only people who don’t seem to recognize are the folks who still like to use the font on their passive aggressive notes in the office.
And can you blame them? When trying to make a sign to get people to stop doing something that makes you absolutely furious, but you don’t want them to know it makes you absolutely furious, use cutesy little Comic Sans. No one will know how their months old cuban sandwich they’ve left in the fridge keeps you up at night.
Alright, I suppose that since it’s been at least a decade since anyone except those noted above have even thought about Comic Sans, it’s probably best for me to include an example. Here’s one I plucked from passiveaggressivenotes.com:
It’s quirky, it’s cute, and it looks vaguely like what you might see in a comic book. And while reading the above note which informs you of James’ terrible ways, you might get the feeling that he’s also just plain adorable.
But here’s the thing. There was a magical time in which Comic Sans was everywhere. As far as the eye could see.
And then something terrible happened. Those ugly trolls on the internet which love to ruin everything unique and mystical and wonderful, well, they wanted to rain on the glorious Comic Sans parade. And the next thing you know, Comic Sans had been labelled as the worst of the fonts, placed in the back of the bus with such forgotten members of the font family as Papyrus and Curlz and Wing Dings. An all out font war broke out which only the most boring of people actually cared about.
Because I’m not boring. I’m milding amusing. Or at least funny looking.
Like Comic Sans.
Look, I get it, Comic Sans has no place in a professional setting. It’s the face tattoo of fonts. You want to look smart and professional, Comic Sans won’t give you any points in that direction. But if you are a person who just wants to play around with fonts for a silly little message about how people should stop eating your three course meal out of the refrigerator, then go right ahead. We all know who you are. We already think lowly enough about you to eat your leftovers from The Cheesecake Factory. Your choice in font really won’t change our opinion of you one bit.
But the real question here is why does Comic Sans conjure such vitriolic hatred?
And I think I’ve figured it out.
Because of who it hangs out with.
My grandma, I’m guessing, is a big fan of Comic Sans. She probably has it auto-set on all her emails. I’m guessing your grandma is the same. And a whole hell of a lot of other grandmas who would be willing to do anything she could to get you to read her emails, and in order to do so, she has come up with the most perfect plan she can come up with, outside of her original attempts of just forwarding on every single joke she’s ever gotten in her spam folder. She used a font that looks like those comic books you used to read so much.
Comic sans isn’t a bad guy. He’s a cry for love. And your hatred of him just shows that you hate love..
So here’s what I say to all you comic sans haters out there. Call your grandmothers. They’re worried about you. And maybe if you’d just talk to her once in a while instead of crafting a worldwide lynch mob against a cute little font, maybe then you could teach her about font diversity. About the glories of Laconic, or Lexia, or even a good old Baskerville. Or maybe, just maybe, tell her that she doesn’t have to try so hard. That everyone feels at home with the Time New Roman. Because isn’t that what you really want your grandma to understand? That you really just want that good old comfort font of your youth?