PORTO ROCHA’s vibrant identity for Netflix is a Joke: The Festival is a deliberate laughingstock
“When it comes to the shapes and colours of the identity, we wanted to convey the idea of a comedy comeback after the pandemic,” PORTO ROCHA’s Co-founder & Creative Director Felipe Rocha tells us, setting a precedent for their rambunctious yet approachable identity for the Netflix is a Joke festival. “It was the first time in three years that many of these comedians were performing in front of a large audience,” Rocha contextualises, “so it was essential to have a colour palette that exudes energy and celebration” while aligning with the core Netflix brand.
“To achieve a more tangible and versatile design that could be translated into real-world shapes,” Rocha continues, “we incorporated tridimensional shapes into the identity system,” creating an unwavering, ownable graphic motif for the 11-day festival to use flexibly, from social posts and billboards to printed invites and digital graphics.
Billed as ‘probably’ the biggest comedy event ever, featuring the likes of Ali Wong, Bill Burr and Wanda Sykes over 280 events, the scope of Netflix is a Joke challenged PORTO ROCHA to craft an identity engaging enough to get people talking whilst being sufficiently adaptable and accessible to handle the breadth of applications. Opting for a type and copy-led approach that, alongside its electric colour set, is immediately eye-catching and attention-grabbing.
“We deliberately chose Midnight Sans, specifically the rounded cut,” Rocha details, discussing the type choice for the comedy festival’s identity. “It strikes a perfect balance between being versatile and neutral while still possessing a playful personality,” he explains, “and we needed a font that could adapt to various communication styles and contexts without overshadowing the festival’s message.”
The identity’s distinctive communication style is exemplified through PORTO ROCHA’s humorous tone of voice and brand persona, which is routinely applied across the brand and serves to playfully hype the festival while making fun of it. These engrossing traits, from self-deprecation and over-articulation to vulnerability and self-awareness, allow the brand to express itself on all scales, referencing the local comedy scene and tones of the festival’s specific acts in a technicolour candour. Marking the festival as one to laugh at as well as with.