The Worst TV Opening Titles

Ever fall in love with a TV show but can’t stand the opening credits – whether it be because of the song, or the actual theme as a whole? I have. Here’s my (current) top four series with opening titles that I just despise:

o4. Suits

Okay, okay. It’s not the worst opening in the world. It really isn’t. The music is fantastic, and most of the shots from the series that they use are fine. But that boxed grid transition? What, what, what are you doing?! Sure, some can easily say that I’m being picky because it really isn’t a bad transition but having a background in post production I’m not sold. To me, it looks like one of the default transitions that come included with editing software and therefore just cheapens the show. For a series this good – they can do better.

o3. Haven

I actually really like what’s going on here. Warping some shots, bringing in old news clippings, bringing in some shots of the town… it works. But then it goes all wrong with shots that (thus far) don’t really make much sense. Why are their sped up shots of gears or the view out of a window on a boat? Some of the artwork used is random and just seems thrown in there for time, not effect. Plus, there are a lot of dissolves which move too rapidly and, like Suits, end up making the series as a whole look like a first attempt at using the editing software. The music, for me, doesn’t really scream science-fiction/police-procedural/mystery to me either.

o2. Kyle XY

As much as I love television there are some shows I end up thinking I’ll hate but really get into once they’ve been off the air for a few years (Veronica Mars was one of them – and look how that turned out). I’m about halfway through season two of Kyle XY so please don’t go spoiling anything for me (even though I heard that there is a new theme for season three). This opening is okay. The music is mysterious enough that it pumps you up for what’s going to be shown in the episode and the digital-numerical mashup background works enough once you’ve learned more about Kyle as a character. Honestly, for a opening sequence this short it would have worked for me. Maybe make the letters and numbers come forward to form the title or just show some interaction between what we’ve been seeing and the title would have been better. But no, they decided to go with some ugly beveled-type digital-enough looking font. It’s the title of the show… make an impact! It’s probably what kept me from watching for almost seven years. Okay, I kid. But other shows have done the “short sequence” much better (LOST, Teen Wolf).

o1. Bones

This is almost as bad as the theme for The X-Files for me. I mean, really? Nothing works. The music definitely makes it come across as one of those procedural shows, but it doesn’t work at all for THIS show. Why not? Bones is really funny, it’s an intelligent show which has dramatic anxious scenes and touching heartfelt scenes. I used to hate this show but in recent years started watching again and it’s one I end up looking forward to each week. But the opening makes me cringe each week with its layered shots, quick dissolves and strange flashy transitions. There are so many added effects which just make it look like it was done by an amateur. Even the transition on the text just adds to the horror.

What do you think – Am I crazy and nit-picking or have these titles been driving you mad too? Or, better yet: what TV shows do you tune in to every week only to be disappointed by the opening theme?

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