Font Madness: Second Round (Sans-Serif & Serif Regions)

What's the worst font ever? We're into the second round of voting in Font Madness — our quest to crown the worst font ever. This round kicks off with open voting in the sans-serif and serif regions.

View the full bracket

#1 Comic Sans vs. #9 Lithos Pro

Comic Sans vs. Lithos Pro
Why Comic Sans Is The Worst

We've addressed the elephant in the room straight away: Comic Sans and Papyrus are the odds-on favorites to meet in the "championship." If you need an explanation here, you're probably not qualified to cast a vote.

Why Lithos Pro Is The Worst

I'm 85 percent certain that this was the font used on the cover of every single "hip" internet software "How-To" manual lining the shelves of Media Play stores in the mid- to late 1990s. It also carries a bit of that Papyrus stench. Really not a good vibe all around.

Voting for this round has concluded.

#12 Franklin Gothic vs. #4 Trebuchet MS

Franklin Gothic vs. Trebuchet MS
Why Franklin Gothic Is The Worst

Franklin Gothic is the worst because it pretends to be unique. It gives people a false sense of design ability.

"Hey, look at me! I didn't just bold Arial for this headline, I scrolled down this font list and found Franklin Gothic." Just stop.

Why Trebuchet MS Is The Worst

Any font that rose to prominence because of Internet Explorer deserves a special place in typography purgatory. Trebuchet MS tried to bill itself as an early "cool" choice for a web-friendly font, but ultimately ended up being an unwanted reminder of boring PowerPoint presentations.

Voting for this round has concluded.

#11 Chicago vs. #3 Verdana

Chicago vs. Verdana
Why Chicago Is The Worst

Oh hey, it's that clunky font from your first iPod! I don't care that Chicago has an interesting past with early Macintosh computers, all I see this error message, and I start to twitch with dormant rage.

Why Verdana Is The Worst

Like I've mentioned before, you know how I know Verdana is terrible? I thought it was a good font choice in 2002. And believe me, I made NO good style decisions in 2002. Verdana and Tahoma battle it for the Most Likely To Be Confused With Arial Award. That's not a good award.

Voting for this round has concluded.

#7 Bank Gothic vs. #15 Raleway

Bank Gothic vs. Raleway
Why Bank Gothic Is The Worst

No, this is not a cool, edgy font. It's an overused movie poster font that only gets selected because it's slightly wider than most other default system fonts. What a concept! Oh, and it has its own Tumblr.

Why Raleway Is The Worst

Raleway is relatively new to the scene, growing in popularity with Google Fonts as a clean open source sans serif font. It was refreshing at first — even I've used it in the last few years — but now that damn criss-crossed "W" is like internet kudzu, suffocating all typographic life.

Voting for this round has concluded.

#16 Didot vs. #9 Souvenir

Didot vs. Souvenir
Why Didot Is The Worst

Didot has the frustrating ability to make Averages Joes think they can be amazing, "fashionable" designers. Go ahead, I dare you to italicize it and put it in all caps. So chic.

Why Souvenir Is The Worst

Souvenir is the Papyrus of the pre-internet generation. While it could probably pass favorably for "retro-hipster" in today's world, the 1970s bludgeoned Souvenir to death in just about everything.

Voting for this round has concluded.

#12 Cooper Black vs. #4 Informal Roman

Cooper Black vs. Informal Roman
Why Cooper Black Is The Worst

Yikes. Cooper Black is just Souvenir on steroids. Unless you're penning a Garfield comic or designing an album cover for your favorite disco band, avoid this typeface.

Why Informal Roman Is The Worst

The font serves zero purpose. Name me one instance where it would be appropriate to use this font and where no better alternative exists.

I'll wait. It's so bad.

Voting for this round has concluded.

#6 Wide Latin vs. #3 Copperplate Gothic

Wide Latin vs. Copperplate Gothic
Why Wide Latin Is The Worst

This doesn't even look like a real font. It looks like someone took a subpar bold font and just increased the width by 200 percent. Voilà, Wide Latin!

Why Copperplate Gothic Is The Worst

It's no surprise that many of the fonts in this bracket are overused. Some of those fonts are boring and inconspicuous enough to blend in and get away with it most of the time. They fly under the radar and get mistaken for other similarly overused fonts. Copperplate Gothic is not one of those fonts.

Voting for this round has concluded.

#7 Trajan Pro vs. #2 Goudy Stout

Trajan Pro vs. Goudy Stout
Why Trajan Pro Is The Worst

On an unsuspecting glance, Trajan Pro might seem fine. Strong, sharp serifs. Got that gladiator-esque Roman vibe to it. Kinda cool. Except for the fact that every movie poster from the dawning of cinema uses it. No, seriously.

Why Goudy Stout Is The Worst

Honestly, why? Why does this exist? Since when do fonts come in "obese" as the default weight? Who thought it would be a good idea to include this as standard font in software? So many questions.

Even the font's creator Frederic Goudy said Goudy Stout was designed in a "moment of typographic weakness."

Voting for this round has concluded.

Polls for this round close at 11:30 p.m. EST on Sunday, March 18.

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