The Misfits (aka Original Misfits) have filed a lawsuit against publisher Abrams “alleging misappropriation of the group’s iconic Punk logo for a coffee table book, according to the website www.worldipreview.com. The complaint was filed by Misfits AD, a company established by founding members of the band Glenn Danzig and Jerry Only to manage activities related to their reformed version of the band, on March 9th 2020. Abrams is accused of reproducing the band’s “Fiend Skull” design, registered with the US Copyright Office, without authorization. In July 2019, Abrams, which specializes in publishing illustrated books, released “Scream With Me: The Enduring Legacy of The Misfits”. The book is a coffee-table book advertised on the publisher’s website as the “ultimate visual history paying tribute to one of punk’s most iconic bands”. According to the suit, the “Fiend Skull” design is displayed prominently on the front cover and repeatedly throughout the book. The band has accused Abrams of both copyright and trademark infringement, as well as false designation of origin. The Misfits logo itself comes from the Crimson Ghost cult serial and has been copied, parodied and produced on millions of shirts and other merch for decades.
“Abrams’ unauthorised copying of the ‘Fiend Skull’ mark as the main image on the cover of the book is likely to cause confusion and lead consumers to mistakenly believe that Abrams and the book are endorsed, approved, or sponsored by, or affiliated, connected, or associated with Misfits AD,” the complaint said.
The current incarnation of the band reunited in 2016, as The Original Misfits, following the group’s breakup in 1983, and several subsequent reunion shows.
WIPR has contacted Abrams for comment in response to The Misfits’ allegations.