Worst. Kerning. Ever.

Seen at the Berri-UQAM metro:

Horrible kerning

Horrible kerning (2)

Looking at the website of the Rendez-vous du cinéma québécois, I admit it’s possible this comically awful kerning job was done on purpose. But if so, it looks silly.

And the fact they misspelled “québécois” inconsistently (note a missing accent on the second version), I’m thinking maybe Astral Media was just incompetent designing these ads.

7 thoughts on “Worst. Kerning. Ever.

  1. DAVE ID

    Damn that is awful. With all the tools today you’d think they could come up with something better.

    Most French people won’t notice the missing accent on the second e. Most people forget that Desjardins takes an S at the end. Because it’s two words DES and JARDINS. And these days I here French people speaking, after reading Nuovo mocking such type of “speak” as impossible and it drives me nuts. “Pis comment vas ta sister-in-law?” that kind of speak.

    The French language will die. Not because the PQ wasn’t elected, not because the government did nothing. But because the French forgot to make an effort to speak it properly.

    (Slightly miffed)

  2. Martine

    Wow Dave. Quite the statement there! The truth is, French hasn’t been spoken “properly” here since “les premiers colons” arrived. I think it’s going to hang around for a while still. ;-)

    But back to the main subject of this post: I have the program of the Rendez-vous on my desk and as I’m looking at it, I think they tried to go for the “marquee” look. You know how letters are never perfectly aligned when they are put up the old fashioned way? See this picture as an example: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nivuniconnu/50133484/

    I’m not sure it’s graphically very successful though, and I don’t know why the accents are inconsistent.

  3. DAVE ID

    Maybe I should have said IF the French language dies.

    I thought of the marquee also but if that’s what they went for they did it all wrong, the should have had on letter crooked to really communicate what they were going for.

  4. Tim

    I also dismissed the kerning as an attempt at marquee style. It’s reinforced by the lines. But I agree with Dave, they should have added a crooked letter (just a good 2 or 3°), as well as a backward 3 to replace an E and one letter off colour (typical solutions that were used when common letters were used up in the character sets).

    Also, it seems to me that usually on marquees like that people didn’t concern themselves with accents. (It’s acceptable not to use accents on capitals, an exception that dates back to the technical limitations of typewriters, and other character sets; they’re still commonly ommited in France but the practice is frowned upon in Quebec since the advent of desktop publishing.) But you don’t put one accent and not a second.

  5. chris

    I’ve seen those ads and i think the spacing for the letters is done deliberately to emulate a board with slide-on letters. besides the strange choice of text, the ads are kinda psychedelic.

  6. Nicolas Ritoux

    The concept of the marquee looks pretty obvious to me… But at least this post teached me what “kerning” means.

    True, the second E on Québécois should be a É. Artistic licence I guess.

  7. Pingback: Euro-Kerning Fail | Awesome Kerning

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