Back in 1999, when I once thought I could be a poet, I wrote a bunch of very lame “poems” and saved them onto a floppy disk. (A FLOPPY DISK!) Even if I could somehow track them down, I wouldn’t dare subject you, reader, to my monstrous junior high prose. Still, I think the worst part of that short-lived literary project was the fact I did it entirely in Comic Sans. I mean, who can really take that squiggly font seriously?
Which brings me to this Comic Sans Typewriter, a contraption supposedly created in order to celebrate the font’s 20th anniversary. It’s a nice sentiment in theory, because who doesn’t love anniversaries and a bit of nostalgia? The man behind the gadget, designer Jesse England, made it with the intention of giving Comic Sans some semblance of sophistication and sincerity.
Typeface geeks, avert your eyes. Someone came up with the idea to ruin the old-school charms of a typewriter by adding cringeworthy Comic Sans.
Designer Jesse England says he invented what he calls the Sincerity Machine after reading a typewritten document, and realizing there was nothing stopping him from giving the words a different look. In a demonstration video, he explains his philosophy behind trolling every design snob on Earth.
“While making it, I thought a lot about the Comic Sans typeface and how ridiculed it is. But it is also a mark of sincerity for those who do not have graphic design experience. I’m not particularly enamored with this font, but I don’t think it deserves the flak it gets.”
England used a laser engraving machine to etch Comic Sans letters and glued them onto the strikers of a 1970s Brother Charger 11 typewriter. He then cut vinyl to create new key covers so you know what you’re getting yourself into when you type.
While I applaud England’s good intentions, I can’t help but echo Popular Mechanics’ feelings: I mostly find the whole thing strange and frankly unnecessary. Slap some Comic Sans on a bunch of fluffy and cute stuffed animals and call it a day, or maybe some colorful Trolls if we wanna go full-on #throwback here. Typewriters are cool, man. Leave those things alone!
Here’s England’s demonstration video in case you were interested: