Marvel to Go After Illegal Use of Punisher Skull Logo
Brands work hard to develop their image, and spend a lot of money to find just the right logo to represent that brand. Comic book publisher Marvel has always been known to be especially stringent about the rights to their logos and how those images are portrayed. Marvel has been especially protective of imagery related to The Punisher since it's an iconic logo that works well with the biker and outlaw lifestyle, making it susceptible to copyright and trademark infringement by brands that want to steal the skull logo for a quick profit.
According to comicbook.com, now that the character has his own tv series streaming on Netflix, Marvel is pushing even harder to crackdown on the usage of The Punisher skull logo. Marvel recently went after companies manufacturing motorcycle parts and merchandise with logos resembling The Punisher, specifically HTT Group for the following infringements:
"...parts of motorcycles, namely, master cylinders, brake levers and shift levers; structural parts of motorcycles; components and parts of motorcycles, namely, handle bar ends, bolts toppers, chain guards, crash bars, derby cover, aerodynamic fairing bolts and fairing kit for vehicles, foot pegs, frame slider, gas cap, grab rails, handlebar grips, handlebar riser, horn cover, kickstand, lamp clamp, lowering links, luggage rack, mirror block off base plates, fitted motorcycle cover, radiator grille guard cover, saddlebag bracket, seats, sissy bar, backrest, stator cover, stay bracket, switching housing cover, and windscreen…”
Another company, Loyalty Bound LLC of Texas, is being looked at for producing merchandise like beverage can cozies, and merchandise inspired by Iraq War sniper Chris Kyle, who was the subject of the Oscar-winning biopic, American Sniper.
The Punisher logo is, in and of itself, so close to universal images of death that it's easy for it to be interchanged or substituted in any number of ways. It's also pretty damn cool, which is why people want to wear it so much. However, for Marvel, now is the time to be reaping the benefits of Punisher merchandise, so a lockdown on the usage of that imagery is not surprising at all.