One of the most highly debated issues in the world of comics is DC Comics and Marvel’s joint ownership of the SUPER HERO trademark. Another interesting battle has begun over the mark and this time the opponent is the walking dead.
As we have discussed in this blog previously, back in 1966, Marvel and DC Comics jointly filed and were granted a trademark registration for the mark SUPER HERO. Over the years, the comic book giants have registered several iterations of this mark and they enforce the mark rigorously….much to the chagrin of some other comic book companies and artists. An upstart clothing brand founded by two Brooklyn residents filed for registration of the mark TEENAGE ZOMBIE SUPERHERO TZS. On the brand’s website the mark is predominantly featured; also featured is a “Thriller” zombie of Michael Jackson with the mark as seen to the right. (Let’s hope they got permission to use that image from Michael Jackson’s estate before putting it on merchandise.) The applicants for the mark claim they first started using the mark in 2011.
Marvel and DC Comics claim that the mark is confusingly similar to their SUPER HERO mark and the consuming public might believe that the goods distributed by the Teenage Zombies are affiliated with and associated with the comic book companies and their trademark. While initially missing a deadline to answer the comic book companies’ opposition, the applicants recently sought and were granted an extension of time until mid-October to respond. Seems like the dead still have some life in this fight and we shall keep it monitored.