In no specific order, here are a few of my favorite TV intros of all time. Be sure to share some of your favorites in the comment section below!
Freaks and Geeks
If you haven’t seen Freaks and Geeks yet, I advise you do so, because it’s a spectacularly fun show. How the hell did it only last one season? Anyways, this intro is great because it succinctly introduces each of the main characters to the audience, and shares a little bit about them based on how they react to the experience. The music is awesome, the premise is great, and above all, James Franco’s moment is magical.
No TV show intro makes me happier than Portlandia‘s. Prior to watching Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein’s series I had been a fan of Washed Out for a while, so when I first watched the show and heard “Feel it All Around” as the featured theme, I was ecstatic. I’ve only spent a couple of days in Portland, but from what I remember, Portlandia‘s intro captures the essence of the city perfectly.
House of Cards
I dig the House of Cards intro visually, but the main reason I get excited at the beginning of every episode is that the score is terrific. I heard on NPR that the series’ composer, Jeff Beal, records the entire theme and soundtrack in his living room (meaning he invites over an entire orchestra) which is both badass and remarkable.
Bill Nye the Science Guy
BILL! BILL! BILL! BILL! The intro to Bill Nye the Science Guy has not aged well, but that’s mainly why it’s still so charming. It does, however, make me feel extremely old.
Especially now that the decade I grew up in is becoming cool like 80’s used to be, nostalgia is an extra powerful force. I watched Sister, Sister pretty diligently when I was growing up, so I still know every single word to the theme. Sister, SISTER!
Transparent is another show that you should watch immediately if you haven’t yet! The intro’s use of home video footage evokes a sense of reflection and nostalgia, which ties into the show’s theme of finding and embracing one’s identity at any age. The result? I found myself teary eyed at the beginning of almost every episode. What can I say? I’m an emotional gal.
Do I even need to explain why this song is on my list?
What I love about the Arthur theme is that it’s basically a gateway to friendship and bonding if you’re in your twenties. If you’re at a party alone and want to make friends, just start singing the Arthur theme and you’re set to make a few new pals.
If there were a class called “How To Make The Best TV Intro Possible,” the intro to True Detective would be the course’s prime example. I honestly just watch the intro sometimes when I’m in the mood for something dark and beautiful.
Boy Meets World
Boy Meets World was a huge part of my adolescence, so each and every version of the show’s intro had to make it onto this list. I sound like a cranky old lady when I say this, but I don’t think they make shows as good as Boy Meets World for the teen set anymore.
Comedy Bang! Bang!
Reggie Watts is too cool. The Comedy Bang! Bang! intro is so much fun that I have to say, I was disappointed when they started saying the guest’s names in the introduction after season one. It takes away from the show’s catchy theme! It’s also one of those songs (like the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt theme) that I find myself singing from time to time, no matter how obnoxious it may get.
It’s gotten to the point where I’ll admit that I’m a little obsessed with David Lynch and Mark Frosts’ masterpiece of a show, Twin Peaks. Like most Lynch scores, the music was done by composer Angelo Badalamenti. Supposedly Lynch and Badalamenti wrote the show’s theme within 30 minutes, which is impressive to say the least. The series’ theme pulls the drama, horror, romance, mystery, and campiness of the series together in such a strange and magical way.