Research

Exploring the Frontiers of Visual Identity Design as Envisioned by Science Fiction

Original Entry 11.02.2017

OMAC

Category

AI, Military, Superhuman

Scenario Date

Near Future

In the “The World That's Coming,” a corporate nobody named Buddy Blank is changed into the super-powered One-Man Army Corps (OMAC) via a “computer-hormonal operation” performed remotely by an artificial intelligence satellite called “Brother Eye.”

Project OMAC was the work of a one-man unit, a small sub-division of an expanded space program that was once known as NASA. Upon activation, OMAC works for the Global Peace Agency (GPA), an organization of nameless, faceless agents who police the globe on behalf of all nations, using pacifistic weapons. In a future where full-scale armies are deemed too dangerous to maintain and deploy by world powers, OMAC is the method for containing conflicts before they grow into full-scale war.

Identity Designed by

Jack Kirby

Source

  • OMAC (1974 comic)

Visual Identity Overview


<p><strong>Figure 1.1</strong> The symbol on his chest links the superhuman OMAC with the “Brother Eye” artificial intelligence in satellite orbit above Earth.</p>

Figure 1.1 The symbol on his chest links the superhuman OMAC with the “Brother Eye” artificial intelligence in satellite orbit above Earth.

Analysis: The Design and Symbolism of OMAC's Visual Identity

The OMAC symbol is the outline of an eye—yellow with a red pupil—seen on the chest of the superhuman OMAC (Figure 1.1). Not only does it resemble the large mechanical eye of the Brother Eye satellite, it also connects the two via remote link. This is an interesting use for a logo, where the mark is not only a symbol of OMAC’s superhuman abilities and peacekeeping role, but the thing that connects him to his powerful ally in space. It’s difficult to think of a logo at present that does something like this, so I’d say it’s pretty futuristic as far as visual identity design goes.

Beyond the direct ties between the mark and Brother Eye, the eye as a symbol has carried a multitude of meanings throughout time, for many different cultures. Like Brother Eye, the lidless eye never closes or sleeps and is a sign of ceaseless vigilance. In the Hindu religion, both the god Shiva and Buddha are depicted with a third eye—an eye of higher perception. For some Native American tribes, to “exchange” eyes with an animal is to see, as if through its eyes, and to take on its attributes and powers. In ancient Egypt, the symbol of the eye served a healing and protective function. These are just a few examples, and its interesting how they parallel the powers and protection granted to OMAC by the eye symbol he wears in this comic.

In the section that follows, I share a few pages that provide more context for the visual identity, where we can see the kind of future OMAC exists in.


The OMAC Visual Identity in Context: The World That's Coming