Published Jan 23, 2012Joy Division may be one of the gloomiest post-punk acts of all time, but a new merchandising campaign from Disney has bizarrely taken the iconic cover of the group's 1979 LP Unknown Pleasures for a new promotional tee to be picked up online or at the Happiest Place on Earth.
As you can see in the image above, the album's familiar pulsar motif has been morphed to resemble Mickey Mouse's silhouette for the "Waves Mickey Mouse Tee for Adults," forever creating a link between the helium-pitched cartoon star and Joy Division's late baritone-voiced frontman Ian Curtis. The write-up for the item gives credit where it's due, but still manages to stick it to the outfit by plugging how much more famous the cartoon character is compared to the band.
"Inspired by the iconic sleeve of Joy Division's Unknown Pleasures album, this Waves Mickey Mouse Tee incorporates Mickey's image within the graphic of the pulse of a star. That's appropriate given few stars have made bigger waves than Mickey!" the hardly humble ad reads.
The marketing of the copped design is a little awkward, considering the un-family friendly nature of Joy Division's name. While they formed as Warsaw in the '70s, the band soon rechristened themselves Joy Division in reference to the Ka-tzetnik 135633 1955 novella House of Dolls, which described the groups of Jewish women kept for sexual pleasure in Nazi concentration camps.
UPDATE: As Pitchfork points out, Disney is no longer selling its "Joy Division-inspired" T-shirt. A rep from the compy said, "As soon as we became aware there could be an issue, we pulled it from our shelves and our online store to review the situation further."
Thanks to the Daily Swarm for the tip.