T-Shirt Hell shuts down, internet gasps

by Andy on January 26, 2009


Considering how little attention T-Shirt Hell used to get from the tee blogging world, the announcement of their closure seems to be creating quite a stir. I think they didn’t get much attention simply because most of ‘us’ didn’t care for their style of design, and also it’s pretty rare to find a blog that regularly writes about offensive t-shirts like the ones T-Shirt Hell sold.

The story, and with T-Shirt Hell it’s always hard to tell what the truth is, is that after receiving hate mail for more than 8 years, the founder and owner of the brand, Sunshine Megatron (no, really), has decided that enough is enough, and instead of selling on a business that sells 3000 t-shirts a week to someone that won’t do it justice, he’s just going to close the doors on February 10th and be done with it. There’s a long and fairly funny open letter on their site if you want to check it out, but I’ve given you the gist of it just then.

For me, I won’t be sad to see them go. I rarely found the tees particularly funny, and I do think that some of them crossed the line in terms of subject matter. I totally understand that the tees themselves are not meant to be hate speech, they’re meant to be sarcastic and ironic, but sarcasm and irony are almost entirely determined by their context and not the t-shirt itself. Let’s say a black guy was wearing the “Arrest black babies before they become criminals” t-shirt, fair enough, I get it, that’s actually a fairly powerful political and social statement, but what if it was a racist wearing the same tee and actually wanted to lock up black babies? I know there’s no way for T-Shirt Hell to control who wears their shirts, but I’ve never liked their idea that just because the tees aren’t meant to cause offense means that they aren’t meant offensive.

You have until February 10th to purchase tees that I’ve never seen anyone in public wearing.

  • http://t-shirts-around.blogspot.com/ Kat

    I certainly agree with you, although I liked the fact that it was there to get the heat. If you’re a nazi idiot and you actually buy the shirt beacuse you take it literally and you’re wearing the shirt publicly and you’re proud, you’re still a nazi idiot with or without the shirt. Anyway I guess most of “us” won’t miss it… ;-)

  • http://www.spraygraphic.com matt

    Visit Spraygraphic.com for tshirt designs that look cool and actually have something important to say…

    Spraygraphic hopes to make the world a better place…

    I am glad to see tshirt hell gone…


    other cool member art is also worth a look…

  • http://www.cottonable.com Rangga

    i hope it’s not publicity stunt as some people predict,

    anyway my take on this

    and some discussion on techcrunch (they can even make it to techcrunch!)

  • kitsune_baka_hentai

    I loved t-shirt hell for it’s sick and twisted sense of humor, the type of people who didn’t get Tshirt Hell’s brand of satire are probably the same kind of comically brain-dead uppity fucks who screamed “THAT’S RACIST!” at Wonder Showzen (one of the only GOOD shows to ever come out of MTV). “It’s Not Gay, If You Beat Them Up Afterwards” this joke actually takes a little thought on your part. See, it’s a stab at all those sexually repressed closeted hicktown churchie fucks who end up playing around with another person of their own gender and then murdering or brutalizing the person they did stuff with to get rid of the evidence/witness. Do you get it NOW? The shirts were never ENCOURAGING or ENDORSING the actions they described, they were MAKING FUN OF THEM (Kinda like how Wonder Showzen made fun of everyone, from Jews, to Xtians, to Blacks, to sister-fucking, wife-beating, meth-cooking Rednecks).
    T-Shirts Hell will be missed, just as I still miss the original incarnation of SatanLovesMe.com / PunkAssGear.com before they turned into a pussy ass Emo/Horror Movie shirt site, probably cuz some christfag complained that their stuff was “too controversial.” Atleast I got my “Partnership for a God-Free America” and “Jesus Hates You” shirts BEFORE they lost their balls.

  • http://andrewbowness.com Andy

    Hmmmm, kitsune, did you really read what I wrote? I think it is fairly clear that I do understand their designs and slogans, but I do not particularly care for their brand of comedy.

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