Here’s a better look at John Cena’s new t-shirt. Let’s get the easy part out of the way, what is the same on both designs. They both employ the shield, five eight-pointed stars at the bottom of the shield and red, white and blue colors. Some of the other logos I found online even had a black background to match the shirt color.
The differences are pretty obvious with the lettering being replaced by John Cena’s motto “Hustle Loyalty Respect” and then using the initials “H L R”. The men wrestling have also been changed out to depict Cena STFUing no one that I can make out from the enlarged photo.
I actually like the new lettering better because the words are shorter so they don’t look like they’re ten pounds of crap being stuffed into a five pound bag. It helps to balance out the lettering to in terms of centering it on the middle of the shield since Hustle (six letters) and Respect (seven) are closer in terms of letters than American (eight) and Association (eleven). Loyalty is centered perfectly while Wrestling slides off the left hand side of the original logo.
The lettering in the middle of the red portion of the shield is better in the original shirt since the initials are an anogram. H and R are pretty similar though so that part doesn’t look too bad but the L just looks lonely in the middle especially since they deemphasized the horizontal portion of the letter and widened the H and R to make up for the fact that W took up the majority of the room on the original.
It seems the majority of professional sports leagues tend to keep a generic character as their icon rather than someone specific despite them using a real idvidual to pattern it after, like the NBA logo using Jerry West. The AWA kept with this theme but there’s no reason not to feature Cena on his own shirt. Using a picture of him giving the STFU works perfectly to keep a low design out of the way of a majoirty of the lettering, similar to the original design. The WWE tried to add extra by adding more black to create more shadows to the wrestlers but they would have been better off going with an outline and some highlights like the original.
Do I really even have to mention the back? It’s awful. It’s not quite “It’s (picture of a clock) for a change” bad, but it’s up there. I will say that I like Cena’s recent theme of keeping things retro or “Old School” as the kids say these days. It’s an in thing to do so someone in merchandising may as well capitalize on it even if the consumer may not know what design was ripped off to come up with the new one. If the WWE were exceptionally smart, they’d sell the shirt in a package deal with their AWA DVD to really capitalize on Cena’s newest shirt design. I can’t bash them too much though because they’re still not as dumb as TNA who still has yet to put Scott Steiner’s new shirt on ShopTNA.com even though he has now been back on TV for a month. – Kevin