Rebranding a Cultural Flagship

The Second City is one of the world’s most storied comedy institutions, a cultural flagship of Chicago, and the training ground for the likes of John Belushi, Steve Carrell, Tina Fey, and dozens upon dozens of the best comedians to ever grace a stage. Known around the globe for unmatched talent and smart, irreverent humor, The Second City has been the bastion of the improv-based sketch comedy scene since 1959.

Second City Logo
Cleaning up The Second City's classic mark.
Second City Business Cards
Creating a system of sub-brands.

A Major Refresh

The Second City team selected Someoddpilot as their agency partner after a long period of sustained growth and diversification of their business. The iconic brand needed consolidation, modernization, and amplification, all while maintaining the heritage that makes it so legendary.

Second City Main Colors
Color Palette
Custom Typeface
Laugh Like a Chicagoan Type Treatment
At the Second City, When we Speak, We are Smart, Honest, and Free of Fear.

The Brand System

To craft a brand identity that hit as hard as their punch lines, and a design and messaging system flexible enough to speak to a wide variety of key audiences (which swing from late night bar crowds to kids’ camps), we developed a spectrum of visual and written communications that allow the internal marketing and design teams to dial in a precise amount of Second City provocation—a “spectrum of subversion.” With this internal tool, the brand can hone in on the correct voice, tone, and degree of irreverence and for each piece of collateral created.

Second City Business Cards
Second City Group Sales
Second City Rail Card
Let The Eat Chaos Poster
Will Ferrel Poster
Let Them Eat Chaos Posters

National Rollout

In the hands of Second City’s marketing team, the new brand identity rolled out across .com, social, print, and OOH ad placements in Chicago, Toronto, and Los Angeles.

Second City Rail Card
Second City Billboard
Second City Training Center Poster
Second City Advertisement in Newspaper
Second City Bus Advertisement
Second City Street Flags
Second City Instagram Advertisement
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