I think we have discovered the worst superhero power ever: the ability to unclog toilets. DC Comics has filed a request for an extension of time to oppose the trademark of a plumber’s mascot who is a kid wearing a Superman-looking outfit…and carrying a plunger.
In September 2016, A Corp, doing business as “Rooter Man”, filed a trademark registration for the logo that can be seen to the right. The mark was in a class covering the ever popular “drain cleaning services.” Rooterman was established in 1970, out of Massachusetts, and is a chain of plumbers across the United States and Canada. Your filth is their fun. (Trademark that slogan right now.) Why he is called Rooter Man? I have no clue but there is another man who has a problem with this mark, one Superman.
DC Comics sought and was granted an extension of time to oppose the logo. This is the usual first step, it allows the potential opposer more time to evaluate the case before it opposes the mark or even permits the parties time to try to work out a settlement. There can be no doubt that the logo looks a lot like a younger version of Superman. From the color scheme, to the flowing cape, the logo brings Superman to mind. The test for infringement is whether two marks are confusingly similar and DC Comics would argue that consumers would be tend to believe that Potty Boy is associated with Superman and DC Comics, when he is not.
DC Comics has until July 5, 2017 to decide whether it will oppose the trademark and get their hands wet in an all-out trademark war.