Name: Super Fat Bob
Designer: Jean-Baptiste Morizot
Foundry: Phantom Foundry
Release Date: June 2018
Back Story: Throughout his career, Jean-Baptiste Morizot has been designing typefaces steeped in the history of the craft. But recently, the desire to create a font entirely informed by pop cultural references, and which ignores the history of type design, swept over him. “In a bizarre way, I think I wanted something where the letters look just like Super Meat Boy,” Morizot recalls.
It was while devouring episodes of Sponge Bob Square Pants and playing endless hours of indie video games that Morizot drew Super Fat Bob. Each letter is bold with wavy inner contours, and their forms refer to those “chunky bricks on which a 2-D character in Super Mario walk.”
Currently, the font is published on FutureFonts, a platform that allows designers to license typefaces while they’re still in progress. “The design is almost fixed, but will certainly continue to evolve a little,” notes Morizot.
Why’s it called Super Fat Bob? The name playfully shows its influences: video games (Meat Boy and Mario) and of course, Sponge Bob.
What are its distinguishing characteristics? It’s super bold for one thing, with square-ish letter-shapes and huge ink traps. Some letters, like u and n, have sharp angles where you’d traditionally find rounded forms. The descenders are extremely short to allow for tight and striking letter spacing. The most important feature, though, is the wavy inner counters that create an oozing, jelly-like pattern in words, and which dynamically contrast with the straighter, angular shapes.
What should I use it for? Anything super big. We’d recommend a poster, or a tongue-in-cheek project that requires a display font in a large, arresting size. It could also work neatly as a logo, as the typography seems to vibrate like a catchy jingle. Super Fat Bob is certainly well-suited to entertainment; we can see it on a YouTube channel, or even splashed across a grabby magazine cover.
What other typefaces do you like to pair it with? Super Fat Bob pairs neatly with clean typefaces for contrast, such as a geometric sans or a sharp grotesque. You could also sit it alongside Phantom Foundry’s very own Phantom Sans.