Art of the Title: TV

Recently, I found this great site: The Art of the Title, which explores and deconstructs title sequences from movies and television shows. I was especially intrigued by reading about the making of the Mad Men opening on the site. I have always been fascinated by the creative attempts at titles and I have taken note of the increasing attention that directors are paying to their title sequences.

At the same time that some cable channels and filmmakers have paid more attention to this art, many of the networks have all but done away with creative titles. I miss the days of singing along to the Cheers and All in the Family opening sequences. What happened to theme songs for network shows like the classic ones of my childhood: Facts of Life, Punky Brewster, and Charles in Charge? Who can forget the ever changing opening for the Cosby Show? Luckily, the art of the title hasn’t disappeared entirely from the small screen. Below are a a few examples to consider.

To me, the best title sequences orient the viewer in a specific time and place and set the tone for the series. Here are a few of my (mainly) recent favorites.

Enjoy, Mari

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Mad Men

Weeds

Six Feet Under

Happy Endings

The Simpsons (Banksy Version)

United States of Tara

Freaks & Geeks

Carnivale

Sherlock

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