We've come a long way from the cheesy music and cheesier montages of past episodes and moved into an era of opening credits that feature songs we'd actually listen to and visuals that would impress even the most ardent TV hater. Gone are the days of frustration over having to sit through the opening credits, now the credits might be the best part of the show (*cough* Boardwalk Empire). I definitely want a mix tape of all this music (hint, hint)..
Weeds -- The first season's credits were great, with Malvina Reynolds singing her hit, "Little Boxes". But, then in the second and third seasons, other artists were brought in to sing, Elvis Costello, Kate and Anna McGarrigle, Man Man and Joan Baez among them, with Reynolds' version bookending each season. Yep, Elvis Costello, Kate and Anna McGarrigle, Man Man and Joan Baez.
True Blood -- This might be my favourite; the song is awesome, the visuals are super awesome. Fills me with a desire to read some V.C. Andrews.
Treme -- I get this song stuck in my head five times a day. Like True Blood, the images and video clips used in combination with the music is brilliant.
The Sopranos -- I feel like this was the first time I saw credits that didn't revolve around cheesy montages of previous episodes and featured a song that I would actually listen to. Gods bless HBO.
The Wire -- Um, Tom Waits sings the credits song for the second season. Enough said.
Arrested Development -- I'm including this one based on just how excited I get when I hear it. BSA (Blanket Statement Alert): Greatest comedy of all time.
Boardwalk Empire -- Terrible show. Fucking terrible, yet every time I see the wicked opening, I get fooled into thinking that maybe it's not so terrible. But alas, once the credits end, that feeling of optimism is quickly transformed into a feeling of betrayal and anger that once again I've been tricked.
Dexter -- I know a lot of people are pretty grossed out by the egg part but the all the non-threatening imagery combined with the jaunty music really sums up the black-humour of the show.
Freaks and Geeks -- Just perfect. How is it that in the three seconds each character is featured, they manage to convey their personality so perfectly? Hot damn, I love this show.
The Simpsons -- Holy crap guys, The Simpsons is twenty-two years old! Do I need to explain why this is included? Since the beginning is so ubiquitous, I've embedded a montage of most of the couch gags. Which is your favourite? I love the Monty Python one.
Six Feet Under -- Oh man, this show! I love, love, love the shots and colours and orchestral music. They break my heart a little every time I see them.
United States of Tara -- Everyone (EVERYONE) keeps bugging me to watch this show and I will, especially now after watching the opening credits.
Carnivale -- Haven't watched Carnivale either but geez, judging by the credits and the magic of HBO I'd be so into it. Fingers crossed it's not another Boredwalk Empire.
Deadwood -- My well-documented obsession with Deadwood extends to the opening sequence. They tell more of the old west than the 400 John Wayne movies ever could.
Twin Peaks -- This has to be the most perfect pairing of opening and show ever. So eerie and spooky and weirdly melodramatic. Right now I'm listening to it while also listening to the Rebekah Brooks Parliamentary committee. Kind of amazing.
Photo from Wikipedia.
Alex Snider is a writer by night, student by day, who is currently melting in Toronto. This post originally appeared on her terrific blog, Once Again, to Zelda.