But hey, it's an actual opening credits sequence and a theme song, which is more than most shows have today, so let's not argue. (Here's the opening of the 1992 Rick Springfield version of the show.)
The show started on TV in 1952 (from radio). Here's the 1953 opening:
Before they hit the "viralsphere" with Lasagna Cat, the production team and creative geniuses behind Fatal Farm created an incredibly twisted, brilliantly subversive, and unarguably hilarious series of "alternative intros" parodying the openings to classic sitcoms. No two intros follow the same theme or formula, except to say that they're all unequivocally... Messed. Up.
From blood and guts to go-carts and the hinting of pedophilia, each parody brings with it an innate ability to eviscerate any leftover nostalgia from the sight of, say, the Happy Days jukebox or the beginning chords of the theme to Cheers. (Believe us, you'll never think of Rhea Perlman the same way again.)
Strap in, sit back, and take an incredibly disturbing trip down Memory Lane, courtesy of your friendly tour guides at Fatal Farm:
Here we are, two seasons removed since House disbanded his trio of cronies to find a new batch of talented doctors to humiliate, and some things haven't changed. Things like House's acerbic nature, his addiction to pain pills, the hospital he works at, Cuddy's very long legs (men, I'll give you a moment...okay) and the weekly patient who has a medical condition that can't be solved until the very last moment. Oh, there is one more thing that hasn't changed...the opening credits.
I don't know if anyone else has noticed, but Jennifer Morrison, Omar Epps and Jesse Spencer (Cameron, Foreman and Chase on the show) don't really have star status like they used to. Heck, sometimes they aren't even on the program. They have been replaced by Kal Penn, Olivia Wilde and Peter Jacobson, who now do the diagnosing. Yet, these three can't get a break. They just get an 'Also Starring' credit after the opening credits roll. Gosh, the original three members of House's team are still shown walking behind him as the credits end.
We've talked a lot here about theme songs and how they just don't make them like they used to. The openings to shows used to be a lot longer, a real part of the show. Today we're lucky if we get a few bars of music and maybe a credit or two. Heck, one show, Lost, only plays one note and shows the logo.
The Popcorn Trick has a list of the Top 25 Opening Credits of '80s Action Shows, and you can't argue with most of the picks. Magnum P.I. is on the list, as is Riptide, Miami Vice, and The A Team. I would quibble a little bit with the choice of The Rockford Files. One of my favorites, but it was really more of a '70s show than '80s (it ended in 1980). I was 13 years old when Vegas premiered (in 1978 - it ran until 1981) and I wanted to be Dan Tanna and live in Vegas and have hot girlfriends and drive around with a lion in my sports car.
Cagney and Lacey shouldn't be on the list though. It should be replaced with one of several other shows from the '80s. After the jump, the five shows they missed.
For years now fans of The Simpsons have broken the pause buttons on their DVD and, back in the olden days, VCR players in order to get a glimpse of the intro to that long-running program. Particularly the section between Marge and Maggie driving home from the supermarket, and Homer pulling into the garage, which seems to just whip by in a blur. We've been able to catch glimpses of what actions are taking place, but we never got the full panoramic picture.
Until now, that is. Thanks to an apparently anonymous source, this entire scene has been made into a panorama showing everything that goes on.
Are you one of those people (like myself) who can tell what era a M*A*S*H episode is from just by watching the first 10 seconds of the opening credits? Do you know the subtle theme changes by heart? Do you murmur 'Season 8' when you see the wide shot of the choppers without the initial over-the-shoulder zoom behind Radar's shoulder? If you are one of those insane people then, boy, have I got a site for you!
Bob Gassel has compiled all of the opening credits to M*A*S*H and put them onto one website.
One of the saddest changes in the television landscape has been the disappearance of the theme song. They're really not that important to the people who create TV shows now (or the networks who want to get more commercials in). Lost has just a single note as their theme song, ER has changed and shortened their theme song, Jericho has static, and Heroes doesn't have a theme song or credits either.
Luckily, the shows that still have theme songs also have opening credits. Shows like The Office and Dexter all have theme songs and opening credits. They're classic TV openings. Of course, it's nothing like years gone by, where almost all shows had theme song and opening credits. The Onion has picked 22 that they feel fit their shows perfectly. I don't know if that is the same as "best opening sequences," but the choices are interesting, quirky, a little maddening, and they left out a few, as I'm sure you'll agree.
Image from Wikipedia.
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