The Best and Worst Credit Sequences of the 2012-2013 TV Season: Sunday Shows

We end our week-long review of this season's new opening credits sequences on Sunday, arguably the best night of television of the week. But does that translate to the night of best opening credit sequences? No, silly. But at least there's a photobombing dog!



666 Park Avenue

Did we even ever figure out what was beneath that tile mural in the basement of the haunted apartment building, the first image of this intro, before this show got canceled? I actually don't think there's anything wrong with this sequence, given that the show was about as scary as the Haunted House at Disneyland. But that doesn't mean there's anything right. If the art department turned this in as a first draft, I'd be all like, "Well, it's a good start..." And then I'd have my secretary fire them two days before Christmas. Grade: C



Political Animals

This is another one of those intros where someone goes overboard on the layers in Adobe After Effects. As simply something to look at, it's fine. But where's the artistic touch? Where's the thematic subtext? This collection of video-editing presets could also be the opening to 1600 Penn or a fan-created tribute video if it wanted to be. I'm not going to say anything about the music choice, The Kills, but if I did, it would be something like, "I don't care for The Kills." But again, I'm not saying anything about it. Grade: D



The Walking Dead (Season 3)

Between Seasons 2 and 3, The Walking Dead decided to switch up its opening credits to better reflect the current state of the show. If you'll recall, episodes in Seasons 1 and 2 were introduced with footage of a lifeless urban landscape, but Season 3 moved out to the country with creepy crawlies and one very disturbing close-up shot of a zombie eye. Did the show need new opening credits? No. Is it better for having them? Sure, why not. And this theme, from Bear McCreary, has become one of TV's best. Grade: B+



The Newsroom

I hate this and love it at the same time. At first I'm like, "Awww." Then I'm like "Ughhhh." It really reflects how divisive the show is; it's self important and more pretentious than a French hipster barista, yet it also has a message of truth that I like to believe in. At 90 seconds, it's way too long, yet it's also mesmerizing! And does anyone else feel like they're about to watch a Spielberg movie? Mixed feelings all over the place. Grade: A/F



Dog With a Blog

Before you deem this sequence as The Most Annoying Thing Ever, consider the audience of Dog With a Blog: children and immature stoners. And there is nothing greater to those two demographics than a dog that photobombs family pictures. Do yourself a favor and look at each family member's face as the camera snaps, and I think you'll agree that together they're a lock for the Emmy for Best Ensemble Cast in an Opening Credit Sequence. This is the Taj Mahal of credit sequences. Grade: A-


Which new Sunday-night credit sequences do you like best? Of all the intros we've looked at this week, which one do you think is the best overall?



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I was really torn about which Sunday credits is best between the Walking Dead and 666 Park Avenue. I feel like the Walking Dead's credits have very ominous music, which reflects the show. And 666 Park Avenue's credits reflect the mystery the show is supposed to have. Also, no Once Upon a Time credits? They are not anything fancy, but are still quite good!
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Hey what happen to teen wolf and game of thrones?? really!!! i watched every day of the week and they are not there! and you said yourself on totally tubular you liked Teen Wolf's opening credits...I'm waiting!! maybe do one with the best of the best, but the there would have to be Elementary so... where are those other twos??
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I don't watch The Walking Dead, so that was my first exposure to its opening credits. Were it not for the title, I wouldn't have a single solitary clue as to what that show's about thanks to those titles, and if weren't for the music I wouldn't even have a clue as to the show's tone. Grade: C+

The Newsroom's music comes off super schmaltzy and self-important, and it does take too long, and the imagery is a tad... cloying. It reminds me of Sports Night when Jeremy is given his first chance to cut a baseball highlight segment and he turns in an 8-minute segment, unable to cut out any more moments despite it needing to be around 17 seconds long.

Dog with a Blog has far too much bad-looking special effects for what it's supposed to be. Otherwise it does have that chimp-like Disney Channel/ABC Family appeal.

As for my vote, I actually got an idea of The Newsroom from its opening credits, so it gets my vote, but I nearly called it a wash and didn't vote at all.
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Showtime's "Shameless"
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Newsroom gets a lot of hate.
As for the opening sequences: you can look at it as one of two (or many) ways.
A) it's pretentious... THIS IS US, WE'RE ABOVE "ALL THAT,"
B) This is what the News HAS been in the past... it wasn't always about whether Celeb X showed her privates getting out of a limo or what Honey BooBoo is up to this week. It used to show substantial stuff.

I tend to side with "B" News used to be more important, especially print and TV. Sure, it still pandered to the lowest common denominator in the past... but since it was THE ONLY way to get the message out it also played it straight. And that's one of the main themes/plots of the show: how a station is trying to get back to "that" and show substantial stuff and educate the populace.

Now, CNN has 1/4th of their front page devoted to YouTube videos and "iReporters" Wars have a theme song. People take Bloggers to be newsmen... and while they do sometimes give decent info... you also have people "reporting" rubbish and fail to fact-check and claim they're better than actual news. Part of the block of the news is focused on what Snookie and Honey BooBoo is up to instead of actually focusing on important stuff.

How sad is it, that to get TV news to "tell it straight" and focus on political stuff that actually affects me AND explain what is going on... I have to watch a comedy show "The Daily Show" with John Stewart?
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Where's Downton Abbey?
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My vote is for Newsroom, and thats not because its the only show I watch from the group.
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Definitely The Walking Dead. They have one of the best opening sequences when compared to other shows.
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I honestly love the Newsroom credits. Ya, its somewhat pretentious, but its also just well done. Also, gotta agree about the lack of mention of GoT credits, which are easily some of the most impressive and creative credits I've ever seen. Also relevant: http://youtu.be/jnKxlncdZoM
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I have to say The Walking Dead has the best lead ins to credit sequences ever. The opening scene starts off and builds with tension, and then BAM, it goes straight into McCreary's score and it's like the tension releases. Next to Fringe, it's the only credit sequence I don't mind repeatedly watching.
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WHERE IS GAME OF THRONES?????? They EASILY have the best opening sequence on TV now or ever. It's freaking BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!
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Wheres the Game of Thrones credits?
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At first I thought it was disqualified due to being not new. But that's not the case due to Fringe and others making the list due to a few minor tweaks.

The Game of Thrones sequence one of the best.The gorgeous clockwork diorama locations aren't just there to present the world but shows where each episode takes place. With so many characters, story lines, and settings, it is different each time. And as the expansive ensemble cast grows and journeys further in this wide fastasy world new models are painstakingly constructed and animated by the artists between every season. It does countless jobs, gives credit, sets the mood, explores an alien world. It is also stuffed full of detail. The names of the actors are placed next to their House Sigils. The Astrolabe Sun depicts through its elaborate etchings an abstract history of Westeros. The major cities show out what faction controls it and much more.
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THANK YOU. This made me SO sad.
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I know the GoT credits are by far the most unique, way better than The Newsroom.
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GOT has the best credit sequence I have ever heard. Great show, but I would watch it just for the credit sequence.
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I can't help but really like The Newsroom opening credits. I hate long credit sequences yet I never use that one for a bathroom break.
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what do you mean by immature stoners?
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best guess would be that he meant stoners who are still young enough to actually want to zone on a Disney channel offering
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I really don't understand why does the press is so harsh with The Newsroom. Everybody I know that has watched the series finds the premise really interesting and relevant. The media however feels like the show is pretentious and self important, which really really disappoints me... It's so unbecoming that they bash a show which the whole point is to give dignity to journalism... anyway....
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why bother voting...where's californication, or shameless, true blood, dexter, mad men or revenge????
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I can't speak for mad men or revenge since I don't bother to watch them, but the intros for shameless, true blood & dexter have remained totally unchanged since their beginnings & don't warrant a mention because of that. Californication I think may have changed a little, but I'm not sure enough to be positive about it at just a glance.
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None of them are new this season.
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I think that is her point! Fringe and TWD aren't exactly new either.
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or walking dead for that matter...
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But they have new credit sequences ;)
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AHS had a new credit sequence though and where was that?
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The Newsroom one is horrible with the music and everything else. Sorkin makes Spielberg and Cameron feel intellectual and understated in comparison.
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I love AHS it's so creepy I want to look away but I just can't. Also Shameless, come on, it just sums up the entire show, it's really cool
I hate Californication's, ugh.
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The only dog photobomb in a credit sequence worth talking about is Dog Butt on Downton Abbey. That fuzzy yellow bum just cheers me right up, even when I know SOMEONE VERY IMPORTANT AND DEAR TO ME is about to die in childbirth.

Oh yeah, and The Walking Dead, duh, no contest ever.
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TWD just because. Plus, I've always loved it. It's short enough that I don't even skip through it unless I'm feeling particularly impatient.
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What about Shameless?
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New shows' credit sequences = Meh.

So, uh. despite not wanting to vote for a non-new show, I guess I'll vote for TWD.
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Tim, your talents are being wasted writing these little throw-away articles and the daily news. Please come back to reviewing shows where we need your humor, especially now that we no longer have Price.
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Newsroom credits are great.
Maybe too long, but I don't even notice first 30 sec. I'm watching all the news legends. And Thomas Newman music has energy... It gives the credits flare.
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Downton Abbey.
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If you start playing favourites,then it is pointless to run this. I was under impression,that this is only for new shows. Then you put in Fringe,Walking Dead,...
Supernatural changes it's opening every season and it is awsome.Why not include that then? Either do only new shows or don't do it at all.
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None of them look good. None of them.
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I'm having to use process of elimination for these. I won't vote for Walking Dead out of protest that American Horror Story wasn't included, I haven't seen any of DwaB and only watched the pilot of 666 & Political Animals, so that leaves The Newsroom. It's not great but I really like the first half, then when it switches from nostalgia to the Sorkin-esque people walking around looking busy it ironically looks dated. I think it would have been much better to stick to the historical stuff.
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voted for the walking dead but WTF--AHS should be included if Fringe and TWD are included. At least AHS's seasons act as separate SERIES. Last time I replied with this comments some got snippy with me. I'm with you on this--why Fringe and TWD and not other shows with new opening credits (yes, AHS).
Why the bias Tim? Yes, Fringe and TWD are great shows but AHS should be on this article series if you include Fringe and TWD. If you did it to upset people to generate more posts then kudos--good business sense if posts boost the sites ratings/popularity or whatever is beneficial to websites. I can understand that even if I don't like it but why diss AHS:-(
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Yeah, each season of AHS is a new story, with a new intro, basically a new show, even if the actors from previous seasons show up again, because they play different characters each time. It should have been included. The rules of these reviews are confusing, perhaps intentionally so. I'm sure the writers get bonuses for article views.
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I kept my mouth shut when AHS wasn't included but the inclusion of first Fringe and now TWD just shouts either bias or hypocrisy. Dogs always get my vote though :-)
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"Why is this so serious? Wait... so he's from space? Did he get fired from the news and started his own blog? I have got to see this show! OH Wait a minute, it's The Newsroom! Oh......" - Me in a brief moment of confusion. Good morning, everyone!
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