Meet the Sam Kinison of typefaces!

Photo of typeslugs on a Hermes 3000 typewritere. Typeslugs are the elements on the end of the typebars; they strike the ribbon and transfer ink to paper.
Closeup of the Director Pica Special typeslugs on my Hermes 3000 curvytop.

Photo of a typewritten page that contains the following text. Hermes Director Special a typeface for schmucks. I enjoy putting my curvytop Hermes 3000 through its paces. Everything I heard about this typewriter is true. But the more I use my H3K, the more I dislike its Director Special typeface. Director Special is really nothing more than pica with an attitude problem. Its slightly bigger sibling, Director Pica, suffers from the same mental condition. Hermes' Director typestyles are just bolder enough than regular pica that if you bang out more than a paragraph or two the result comes dangerously akin to shouting. And that's the reason for these typefaces, I've decided. Born of Old Europe's stratified society, Director is designed to be used only by bosses, CEOs, and various and sundry overseers. Open a letter produced in Director and ... ZUT ALORS! ... you know it's much more important than something from some pica—typing plebe. The New World wasn't immune to this snootiness, either. Smith—Corona had several typefaces that filled this ecological niche, as well. Empire No. 65 and Presidential Pica No. 78 look similar to Director Pica/Special, and the description — at least what's visible in its NOMDA guide — shows these uppity typestyles are geared toward

Thanks to the Rt. Rev. Munk, you can view the NOMDA samples for Hermes and Smith-Corona.

In the photo above, I printed a Hermes NOMDA page and then typed with my Hermes 3000 to determine it’s afflicted with Director Special.

And if you don’t remember Sam Kinison . . .

3 thoughts on “Meet the Sam Kinison of typefaces!

  1. Sam Kinison… Oh the memories. 🙂

    That is some strong looking type. I actually like it though. Might be good for a first draft. Double space so that edits will stand out rather than vanish into the print.


  2. I like all the Hermes 3000 typefaces even though I do not have Director Special or Epoca. Some of the larger sizes were made for easier readability, especially when double spaced. Doubtful that many readers would notice the difference between many of them unless one received a letter written on a Mill or some other large (6 to 9 c.p.i.) typeface. Like typewriters, each has their preferred model and typeface.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I guess what I’ll never understand is why Hermes created the slightly smaller “special” versions of, for example, Director Pica or Techno Pica. The differences aren’t that big a deal. Maybe somebody said, “Hey, I know this is pica typeface but I really like annoying the recipients of my correspondence. Would it be possible to make this just a little smaller so it becomes almost as obnoxious as elite?”


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