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The Last Tycoon, Penguin Paperback

Contributed by Mark Butchko on Aug 13th, 2016. Artwork published in .
    The Last Tycoon, Penguin Paperback 1
    Photo: Mark Butchko. Penguin Books. License: All Rights Reserved.

    This Penguin paperback book cover was published in 1977 as a tie-in to the film version of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s 1941 book The Last Tycoon. The book’s title is set in Manhattan and the secondary type is Kabel.

    Manhattan was designed by Tom Carnase in 1970 while a part of Lubalin, Smith, Carnase, Inc. (hence the LSC in the “26 reasons” image). Its name is clearly an acknowledgment of the influence of the 1927 typeface, Broadway, designed by Morris Fuller Benton. Thanks to the onset of phototypesetting, Carnase was able to take Broadway’s high contrast strokes to a further extreme with Manhattan. Its hairline stems would have been nearly impossible to create and reproduce using traditional hot-metal typesetting techniques.

    ITC type specimen.
    Photo: Mark Butchko. International Typeface Corporation. License: All Rights Reserved.

    ITC type specimen.

    ITC type specimen.
    Photo: Mark Butchko. International Typeface Corporation. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Manhattan's full character set.


    • ITC Manhattan
    • Kabel




    Artwork location

    In Sets

    3 Comments on “The Last Tycoon, Penguin Paperback”

    1. Rob says:
      Aug 19th, 2016  2:18 pm

      Thanks for the interesting info on ITC Manhattan!

      I have to say I am baffled as to why type companies go to the trouble and expense of digitizing and marketing a typeface like this but omit the alternate characters. It seems like the typeface would be much more appealing with the full set of characters. There are two versions I find online for sale and neither has the full set of alternates. This is a problem not with just ITC Manhattan but with many pre-digital fonts. 

      I would be willing to pay more for the full set of characters!

    2. Mark Butchko says:
      Aug 19th, 2016  6:27 pm

      Damn straight Rob!!

      Every major ITC typeface had a variety of alternate letters that have all but disappeared since being digitized (The “Pro” version of Avant Garde is an exception). But Serif Gothic, Lubalin Graph, Grouch, Benguiat, Tiffany, etc all had wonderful alternate characters that aren’t available in their current digital form.

      The irony is that OpenType makes it extremely easy to include such ligatures and alternate glyphs. I think you can put this down to laziness and oversight.

    3. Aug 19th, 2016  6:54 pm

      Yes, a lot of metal and photo digitizations are lacking alts. One reason is that so many were done quickly in the early years of DTP, and before the benefit of OpenType. Alts had to be plopped in a separate file (remember “Expert” fonts?) which was difficult to market and a hassle for users. To their credit, Monotype has gone back and revisited a few of the fonts in their massive library, but lesser-used stuff like ITC Manhattan will probably be neglected — perhaps until automation tools make it financially viable to update them.

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