FRIENDS AND FAVORITES
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Posted 2004 November 4
Every once in a while I run across a logo where I honestly can't decide what I think of it. When this happens, I generally wind up staring intently at it while I think about it. And when this happens, my dog sometimes starts staring intently at me, presumably trying to figure out what I'm looking at. The was one of those logos, and as it so happens I was staring so intently that I didn't even notice him come in. (This isn't quite as odd as it sounds. He's a greyhound, and they can very quiet and calm when they're not running at forty miles an hour. I don't think he could have slipped in so easily if we was a Labrador retriever.)
Anyway, I was surprised when I noticed him, and immediately I was struck by the silliness of a greyhound looking staring intently at a human who was staring intently as a bulldog.
Well, I thought it was funny, at least. Maybe you had to be there.
Anyway, even the break I took from looking at the logo (much of which was spent scratching a certain greyhound behind the ears) didn't help me figure out what I think of this logo. It really should be simple: The team is called the Bulldogs, the logo is a drawing of a bulldog, and it's either well drawn and I like it or it's poorly drawn and I don't.
But it isn't so simple.
In part, I blame the canine specimen shown to your right, which is the same one I just spent several minutes scratching behind the ears. Several things should be immediately apparent. First, there's the fact that my dog is a lazy bum. (My wife, who can not be trusted with a camera, has taken dozens of pictures of this creature, and he is being more active in this one than just about any other picture of him we have...by which I mean he's actually awake.) Second, he looks like a cow, which is why we named him Larson (in honor of Gary Larson, creator of The Far Side). Third, if I walked up to a person who had never seen a dog, showed him a picture of my greyhound, then showed him a picture of a typical bulldog and explained that these were two examples of the same species, he'd probably get mad at me for insulting his intelligence. But for the past six years, this has been my primary example of "dog". When I hear "dog", this is what comes to mind. So as you can imagine, bulldogs, who are so stocky they have jowls, look ridiculous to me after all this time. So when the Hamilton Bulldogs made a logo which is, I must admit, a reasonably accurate depiction of a bulldog, they made something that looks ridiculous to me.
The fourth thing that would be immediately apparent if you saw the full-size version of that photograph (it's hard to see his facial expression on this reduced version) is that the idea of my dog trying to look mean is laughable. He can sound pretty mean when the need arises, but he still doesn't look the part. So again, the depiction of the bulldog looking mean just strikes me as absurd.
Mind you, there are other things about the logo that would be a bit silly in any case. The glowing red eyes are an example; why do so many teams want to make it look like the animals in their logos are possessed by demons? The collar is another thing. That collar is way too big for that dog's head, and were this a real dog the collar would slip off the first time he bent down to sniff something...and we all know how often dogs do that (even my dog, who is supposedly a "sighthound", can't walk five feet in our back yard without stopping to sniff something).
Finally, there's the bone. Okay, so dogs chew bones. And it implies a certain viciousness. And that's just the problem; remember what I said a couple of paragraphs about dogs looking mean? Between the bone and the glowing eyes and the furrowed eyebrows, it's so over the top that once I finally figured out what my reaction was, that reaction involved copious amounts of snickering. And it's really not the logo's fault. But that's the effect it has on me.
Anyway, onto the scoring. I'm surprised at how few penalties this team took. Mind you, it's a lot of points for a single penalty, but still, only one applies. Even two of the three teams with negative scores have more penalties than Hamilton; it's just that they have bonuses to balance them out. If they had only picked a less jarring color scheme (simply using black instead of blue would have been enough), they might have become the first team to have absolutely no penalties whatsoever.
Final Score: 13 points.
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