After a recent update to my Karmic system, I noticed my boot screen icon's colors went all hallucinogenic. I later noticed that doing a Ctl-Alt-F1 resulted in a console that was nearly impossible to read: the text was a veeery dark grey. I figured the problems were related and I was right.
Using startupmanager (in the repositories), I was able to fix both problems by setting the boot screen bit depth from 8 bits to 16 bits. Dunno exactly what happened, but it's fixed now.
Configuring grub2/boot stuff is definitely easier with the startupmanager around. Recommended.