A Whole Bunch of Nostalgic Intros and Openings

(NOTE: This was originally written on August 12th, 2018. One part of it is outdated already but I think it’s a fun article. Check it out!)

Introductions. Introductions are there to get you, the viewer/reader, prepared for the thing you’re about to watch/read. Take this introduction for example. You’re reading this now, and you’re thinking “this is a terrible introduction but why is he talking about introductions? And how many times can he use the word ‘introduction’?”

I was feeling nostalgic and went down a rabbit hole of introductions to various things from my childhood. It made me realize how creative they were and how they sucked you into whatever you were gonna watch. As you can tell, I’m not great at them so let’s just move on, shall we?

First up, HBO.

This really takes me back. When my parents were together, we had cable and my parents use to watch HBO every night. When they broke up, my mom got custody of me and we couldn’t afford cable until I was a teenager. But upon watching this, this makes me think of when I was a little kid, sitting on the living room floor, watching this intro to a movie that I’m sure I wasn’t suppose to watch.

It’s fun watching it now cause you notice some small things, like this family living in an apartment downtown and the fact they pass over a movie theater, which was a big competitor for HBO. And for some reason, this makes me think of E.T.

For those of you younger than I, they use to play this before their “big featured” movie. Like when a movie that was in theaters first aired on HBO, they’d play this. Sadly, they wouldn’t play this before EVERY movie. I know now all HBO has for an opening is just that static thing and a choir going “AHH!” which in comparison is a shitty way to begin anything.

Next up:

(Note from 2021 Jason, this next entry didn’t age well. This was before the Netflix reboot but I’m keeping it up because I called this shit, even though the new show doesn’t have a host, which is annoying. )

I miss this show. This needs to come back. There’s still SO MANY unsolved mysteries! That Rob Dyke guy can’t cover it all. (Hm, I just now wondering if maybe he should just host the damn thing…even though I was totally gunning for this job. There’s only room from one stocky guy with a beard, Dyke! Ugh, I shouldn’t have just used this last name, that sounded like a slur. This aside has gone on too long.)

ANYWAY!

This intro would creep me the fuck out. To the point where I would mute it. Today, it doesn’t sound so scary but I willfully watch movies where Germans fuck skeletons so who am I to judge what’s scary or not anymore? And I wasn’t the only one. Back before Facebook became the annoying place it is now, there were these fun little groups that ANYBODY can make titled any weird thing, like “Hey, That Painting of Dogs Playing Pokers Totally Reminds Me of My Aunt Judy. Anyone Else?” Well, there was one that was literally called “The Unsolved Mysteries Theme Scared The Crap Out of Me When I Was A Kid” and I joined that group and it didn’t do anything except have one video of the intro, which reminded us that it scared the crap out of us when we were kids.

I miss Robert Stack.

OH! Everyone remind me to tell you the story about how Unsolved Mysteries filmed an episode ACROSS THE FUCKING STREET FROM WHERE I LIVED! And that the actual Unsolved Mystery happened ACROSS THE FUCKING STREET FROM WHERE I LIVED! It’s a long story, it’ll make for a good blog post. Maybe in October.

Ok, what’s next?

Oh, yes. Sightings. It was Unsolved Mysteries weird uncle who swore he was kidnapped by aliens when he was a teenager. Unsolved Mysteries would sometimes dive into the paranormal or the occasional UFO sighting but Sightings was 100% about these things. They would just report on things like dudes who swear they’re werewolves, old women who swore they are the reincarnation of a woman from the Civil War named Honey, and haunted houses. The intro wasn’t as great or pants crappingly spooky as Unsolved Mysteries but it has a certain charm to it. And yes, I loved this show when I was a kid, hence why I’m even mentioning it now.

OH MY FUCKING GOD! This scared the shit out of me when I was a kid! Like why?! Why is this so god damn creepy?! Fuck that Unsolved Mysteries opening, THIS! This right here was creepy AF! I do have the first season on DVD, I should get around to checking it out. But even if the show isn’t as good as I might remember it, this fucking opening right there, man. Jesus.

I love Quantum Leap. I have the voiceover part practically memorized and I just say it randomly at times, much to the confusion of people around me. Did I mention I don’t have many friends? Anyway, watching this opening, I have to wonder what the pitch meeting for this show was like.

Donald Bellisario (the creator, I told you I’m a nerd for this show): I have an idea for a TV show.
NBC (yes, I even know what channel it was on): Well, you created Magnum P.I for us so surely your idea will be awesome. (I know too much about this guy who created Quantum Leap)
D.B: It’s about a guy who time travels. But he time travels into PEOPLE! So one episode he’s a vet, next he’s a 13-year-old kid, next he’s a female secretary, and next he’s a monkey!
NBC: …
D.B: And in the fifth season when we run low on ideas, he’ll be Lee Harvey Oswald, who I was in the military with! (True story!) And then I’ll create the worst TV finale ever, so bad that some nerd in the future will mention it 25 years later!
NBC:…SOLD!

Anyway, I love Quantum Leap.

Ugh, I wanted to share the Ren and Stimpy opening cause I have such fond memories of watching that show every Saturday night but it seems like it can’t be uploaded to YouTube so we’ll go with another cartoon from the 90’s I fucking LOVE!

While watching this clip, I was singing along with it. That’s how much I watched this show. I would even tape episodes and watch them throughout the week until the next one aired. I had at least 2 full tapes. I wonder where those are…

I could do a whole thing about cartoons (maybe in the future!) so let’s go back to something completely random.

There was exactly one General Cinema where I grew up and I saw a lot of movies there. So I saw this one and-

That one a lot. I don’t know which one I prefer but both bring back such awesome memories. The first intro was so iconic that it was mimic’d on Mystery Science Theater 3000.

I remember watching this episode for the first time and watching that and going “OH MY GOD THEY KNOW ABOUT THAT INTRO!!” I have to wonder if people who didn’t have General Cinemas in their hometown wondered what the hell that was about.

For those who don’t know, Bevis and Butt-head was a cartoon on MTV about 2 stupid teenagers who did stupid things and were really, really stupid. They would destroy property, set things on fire, and watch music videos. So it goes without saying that the show is amazing. But it got to a point where people started imitating them and hurting themselves badly so they had to tack on a warning before the show. As for the actual opening, it’s so simple. Just them two laughing while a guitar riff plays but it somehow works. I know I said I wasn’t going to do cartoons anymore but I had to include this one because I needed something cool to close this out.

So in conclusion, I’m just as terrible at closing things as I am at opening so…goodnight! Or morning! Whenever you’re reading this! Yeah.
-Jason

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