It’s A Heinous Act

Hallmark has some very nice trailers for its programmes, usually with great typography, and always with perfect grading. They’re very fond of them too, so you tend to see them several times throughout a programme - something that can easily drive you nuts if you’re not quick with the mute button. Still, they look nice.

This particular one, for Law and Order, uses the nice technique of placing text set in Didot into various scenes in New York. The point of view changes as the text builds up and enhances the 3D in-world effect, and as it does, dribbles of grime (blood?) trickle down from the words. It’s all very nice, but what, I say what is this I see?

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heinous-its
The proper Didot apostrophe, and the improper one.

A prime*, used as an apostrophe? A heinous crime, if ever there was one! Someone call the cops! Thing is, you’d have to deliberately turn off “smart quotes” in After Effects to get that symbol to show, and not the correct one (at right). So why?

Perhaps, and here’s a thought, perhaps they did it like that to echo the dribbles in the animation? That would make it an artistic decision, and not an ignorant mistake. I do hope that’s what it is, as the rest of the sequence is rather pleasant:

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