Both designs are bad and lack hierarchy and flow, but between the two, I'd take the flag tail. Putting two competing logos on the same livery is cheap, and Parker should be ashamed of himself. Of course this is nothing new in airline CEOs making design decisions they shouldn't; Jeff Smisek and Glen Tilton made a handshake deal to adopt Continental's logo and livery for the new United, ignoring designers' and marketers' advice to retain the Saul Bass tulip logo.
For American, I do prefer the new logo. I respect Vignelli's design, but it was never as strong as Bass's airline logos, and it lingered on way past its lifetime.
What I would like to see is a whole new tail design to replace the flag one. I envision a design with a background color the same as the font color, not extending onto the fuselage, and somehow incorporating the "new" eagle logo and an AA of some sort. This would be a tail-only design not meant to compete with the main logo.
They are both wrong. How can you have 2 logos (old and new) on the same plane? that is not smart branding. it is confusing to everybody. Get rid of one, keep the other.
the "Piano" US Flag is so badly designed: doesnt go with the rest of the plane design (too busy/too loud), and the tail doesnt go with any other marketing strategy or branding anywhere else. It is only visible on the plane's tail. And...it is so crash, so 80's, so unsophisticated but the so-called-largest airline in the world.
They need to start from scratch and do it right!