Wigan Warriors ‘new normal’. New, but not so normal. Ancient and loyal. At least they can’t take that away from us. Sitting comfortably in first place, yet again, at the top of the Rugby Super League table are the mighty Wigan Warriors. That’s no real…
Wigan Warriors ‘new normal’. New, but not so normal.
Ancient and loyal. At least they can’t take that away from us.
Sitting comfortably in first place, yet again, at the top of the Rugby Super League table are the mighty Wigan Warriors. That’s no real surprise, they’ve been looking down at lesser teams in the table on many occasions since their birth in 1872. This beast of a team don’t lose often. And when they do, neither the fans or players are pleased.
No wonder. I myself am a Wigan supporter, and seeing them lose ain’t fun. Seeing them out of sorts is miserable. Only, it’s me and several hundred likeminded fans that are feeling out of sorts with our team today – well not the team, more the strip. We have to move with the times, that’s a given. But we don’t need to change so radically, so full-circle. Yes, I’m talking about that new badge.
I thought maybe it’s just me. I’m a designer; I’ve an open mind; minimalist can be good (at times); the colours, cherry and white makes perfect sense (it’s plays to our nickname after all), and everything seems to move so quickly in this digital age. But this thing, that’s to be our new badge, just feels so wrong. And I wasn’t alone – 100s on social media voiced their (predominantly distaste, and some even hatred) dislike and disbelief for the badge.
If we take another controversial change of badge, such as the Juventus football team, there are always going to be those that dislike the change. The old emblem is what they grew up with, the fantastic memories of winning it held, the times when no other team could knock them off their first place pedestal in the league table. The thing is more and more people have now chosen to celebrate Juventus’ badge. They’ve wholly embraced it in a relatively short period of time.
But that’s Juventus. And to be honest there’s not much change between their previous badge and their new one. The problem with our new badge is the way it’s slowly evolved over time (a very, very long time), and we’ve come to accept those small updates. But this latest effort is just so sudden and radical.
In fact, I lined up all the past badges since we began, and plonked the new design at the end of the line. And you know what I did after that? I laughed. I shouldn’t have, but I laughed so hard at this awkward evolution of our team’s emblem. If this was April, I’d honestly believe it was an April fools’ prank. But I wasn’t laughing for long. It felt like our club’s proud, staunch heritage had been sabotaged.
I understand that the sport of rugby league is celebrating its 125th anniversary – and as one of the most famous and decorated clubs out there we had to put on a show. But this felt more like a side show. A laugh. Indeed ‘elements’ of the old crest remain but the ‘fierce and determined’ warrior that is the badge’s focal point just feels somewhat out of place. Maybe the change was too soon. Perhaps this was the badge we would eventually into in some years to come. But not now. Not so suddenly and unexpectantly.
The Warrior’s website said “The current Wigan Warriors crest is the most traditional in the sport. The crest will always remain part of the club’s identity and still have a key role to play for the club moving forward.”
For now, I’m not convinced. And by the looks and sounds of it, most Wigan fans feel the same. But what is done is done. Like many events that are happening in the world right now, far more serious than this one, we are having to adapt to a new normal. And after all, heritage aside, it’s only a badge.
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