Not every brand strikes gold when it attempts to design an eye-catching new logo. The following efforts all belong in a museum next to stacks of racist magazine ads and Flintstones cigarette commercials to remind us all how freaking crazy marketing can be.
Today, Starbucks has more locations than McDonald's, quickly approaching a ratio of 1 per every 10,000 people. We don't even get that kind of representation in Congress. Their logo of a nude monarch holding two lobster tails is one of the most recognized in the world:
But from 1971 to 1986, Starbucks had a logo that looked more like a Nordic sailor's casket engraving.
Or the sluttiest mermaid of all time.
Surprisingly, when the company expanded, they discovered that most people don't want to look at a two-tailed mermaid with a pair of calloused winesacks drooping from her chest, so they changed the logo.
#4. Delta Airlines
Delta Airlines has a logo that looks like it was designed by a focus group of robots to be sterile and inoffensive:
Delta Airlines: 200 percent more pyramids than Jet Blue.
However, Delta originally began as the Huff Daland Dusting Corporation, and their logo depicted an angry Thor crushing the landscape below with his furious wind. When the company became a commercial airliner, they inexplicably continued to use the same logo:
They replaced it a year later, deciding that a giant blowing the sky to the ground was perhaps not the best image to lure customers into their airplanes.
#3. Detroit Tigers
Today, the Detroit Tigers have an elegantly simple logo:
"D" for "Detroit."
However, that logo came at the end of 70 years of terrible decisions. Back in 1927, a logo redesign resulted in this:
"Derp" is the only sound we can imagine this thing making.
It's as if the team owner just told his kid, "Hey, draw me a picture of whatever the fuck a tiger looks like." Another attempt in 1934 didn't fare much better:
Somehow, that pancake-faced obesity stamp lasted until 1960, at which point the logo received yet another redesign that transformed it into a wide-eyed terror mask a hair's breadth from exploding into a blind psychotic rage:
They finally stopped trying to use tigers in 1994 and just went with the "D."
Android hasn't been around for too long, so it's hard to believe they ever had a different logo than this jaunty little fellow:
But the original concept was like a kaleidoscope of LSD and terrible children's programming:
Are those muscles or tumors on that robot's biceps?
These robots never made it into the public eye, but were unanimously supported by early Android board meetings. They offer us a glimpse into what The Jetsons would've been like if all the robots were fueled by human bones. Luckily, another artist drew up the familiar logo, and everyone came to their senses.
#1. The Cleveland Browns
The Cleveland Browns admittedly have a difficult task in designing a logo, because their team name is completely boring and meaningless. Still, their current decal does a fine job of getting its point across without upsetting anyone:
"Attention, everyone: The Cleveland Browns are a football team. That is all."
However, their past logo is so astonishingly nonsensical that it should be given some kind of award:
We don't even know what the hell that is. An imp? A leprechaun? Why? What does that have to do with the words "Cleveland" and "Brown"? Dear God, what does it have to do with anything? To their credit, he is holding a football, though we assume that was a last-minute addition mandated by a stern memo that read something like "At least put a football in there so people don't think we're goddamn lunatics."
You can find Kier on Twitter or do him a solid and check out his friend's new book about death. Evan V. Symon is a moderator in the Cracked Workshop. When he isn't busy substitute teaching, he can be found on Facebook, and be sure to bookshelf and vote for his new book, The End of the Line.