The Origins of the Comic Book Font Science, Technology & Curiosity 02 SEP 2016

The basic font used in comic books is almost universally recognised – which is weird when you consider that there is no one comic book font.

Instead, fonts used in comic books generally all have the same look and feel, but for a very good reason – it all stems from the past where comic books were hand lettered, with the aim of getting as much information crammed into as small a space as possible, while at the same time keeping it legible enough despite the poor quality (read “super cheap”) of both paper and printing equipment of those early days.

comic book display

Vox’s Phil Edwards looked into it, and the result is this very slick video giving us a bit more information and history around the non-existent, yet universally recognised “comic book font”:

So, do you have a modern letterer whose comic book work you rather enjoy?

(I might not have a favourite, but I do know what I hate – the use of decorative cursive text in comic books. Those speech bubbles are pretty much entirely unreadable!)

Related Link: Vox | YouTube | Comicraft Fonts

About Craig Lotter

Software developer, husband and dad to two little girls. Writer behind An Exploring South African. I don't have time for myself any more.