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Updated: Jan 6, 2021

Cannonball is the latest competition show from USA and NBC, which pits contestants against each other in a series of wild, water-based challenges. The show features eight competitors battling for a top prize, and the producers wanted to give it the same feel of a traditional sports broadcast. However, there is also a comedic aspect to Cannonball, with embarrassing wipeouts, fun interviews, and colorful commentary from the hosts. How do you find a good balance? Well, King Penguin took on that challenge in building the graphics package for this brand new series.

In order to create the leaderboards, wipes, and lower thirds for Cannonball, we took inspiration from the logo and set design provided by the producers. We needed our elements to blend seamlessly into the show, providing functionality while also incorporating the lighter thematic elements. For example, we stuck largely with bright yellows and blues for the text, and included beads of water on the background of the leaderboard to add texture.

We decided to take a techy, futuristic approach with the on-screen graphics used to display course details and provide extra information on the show. They definitely give the broadcast an element of seriousness, and the “scientific” style feels appropriate when talking about measuring time and distance. We stuck with a lot of yellows to help keep the graphics stylistically consistent, while still allowing important information to pop off the screen. Small details, like background grids and blinking arrows, also provided more depth to make the graphics visually appealing.

Overall, King Penguin had to strike a balance between “light and fun” and “serious sports broadcast,” and with the particular choices on fonts, colors, and textures, we gave the producers all the tools they needed to enhance the Cannonball experience.


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