Nothing Strange About Stranger Things’ Title Font
The Importance of the Title Font
The title sequence of our favorite shows and movies should tell us more than who’s in the cast and crew. It should build connections between our lives and the story we are about to witness. It may even help transport us to another time and place – or sometimes, another dimension. Stranger Things, the latest Netflix series, recognizes the importance of this important branding opportunity.
The eerie series is an homage to Steven Spielberg and Stephen King, combining potentially huge fan bases. To capture those audiences, the creators knew they had to get every detail right – from the opening credits. The title sequence features dark and simple tones as it takes us to a nostalgic little Indiana town in the 1980s. And the title font makes sure we know that Stranger Things has its roots in classic science fiction.
Before viewers ever discover the show’s inter-dimensional monsters, they are drawn in by a typeface called ITC Benguiat. This typeface, named for its designer Ed Benguiat, has been with us since 1978 – and it has quite a history in science fiction. ITC Benguiat is the same font used in the title sequence for Star Trek movies from the ‘90s, such as Star Trek Generations and Star Trek: First Contact.
ITC Benguiat is also notable for its anti-pirating message as the Paramount’s FBI warning – so movie-watchers are definitely familiar with it on some level. (Of course, the spooky glow effects on the Stranger Things title have a bit more “creepiness” thank the FBI warning!)
While are always hearing about the latest Hollywood effects, it’s important to consider every aspect of the branding experience – and that includes fonts. There is a lot of “how” and “why” behind the process of selecting typefaces, whether for traditional or digital media. I know that most Stranger Things fans won’t know ITC Benguiat by name. In fact, they may not consciously notice the font at all. But there is an underlying nostalgic familiarity that immediately puts us in the right place – one that sci-fi fans will want to return to, again and again.