Wednesday, December 17, 2008

ARTSO: Live Action Sitcoms

30 Rock
Watch This Opening

Visual: Interesting. The static shots of the city behind shots of the characters. I think they could have come up with better character shots, though, except for Alec Baldwin. His was perfect. 11/15

Audio: It was fun. A little pop-like. Not exactly memorable, though, but I can deal. 9/15

Mood: It's a fun comedy. I think I can understand that. 4/5

Information: So it's a Tina Fey comedy vehicle with other comedians and Alec Baldwin. That's probably all you need to know, though I would like a little bit more. I can see that it's set in New York and is probably a Work Com, but I'm not sure what kind of job they have, or what role they play in the office. Also, maybe we could have a little more personality. 7/10

Want to Watch: I'm not really sure. 3/5

Overall: 33/50

3rd Rock from the Sun

8 Simple Rules for Dating My Daughter
Watch This Opening

Visual: Nice. A view from the perspective of a dating hopeful, who is humiliated by the entire family in order. It works very well. 12/15

Audio: Kind of a generic sitcom song. I'm not sure I'd be able to separate this one from all the other sitcom themes out there. 5/15

Mood: I'd say it sets the mood pretty well. 4/5

Information: You get to see all members of the family as well as a little bit of their personality and how they interact. The first daughter comes and she's obviously not the one the guy was waiting for, so she's gently led away by the mother, who seems more level-headed than the father, who pulls his other daughter away and closes the door on the guest after giving him a contemptuous look. To add insult to injury, the son, who seems like the kind who gets in trouble a lot, snaps a Polaroid of the guest. 8/10

Want to Watch: I'd have to give this a strong maybe. 4/5

Overall: 33/50

According to Jim
Watch This Opening (Click on "Watch free episodes" (on the left side of the screen) jump through all the hoops ABC forces you through, sit through a commercial, wait for video to load, watch credits (along with the rest of the episode you loaded (though you don't have to watch that if you don't want to(video is poor quality)))).

Visual: Orange backgrounds and black and white images of the characters. It's unique, but it doesn't really stick with you that much. 9/15

Audio: Generic jazz riffs. 6/15

Mood: Eh. It's okay. 3/5

Information: I mostly just know who the actors are. I don't really get much of their personality from the shots. 6/10

Want to Watch: I think I'll pass. 1/5

Overall: 25/50

The Addams Family
Watch This Opening

Visuals: The visuals of the credits are rather straightforward, showing scenes that you might see in the show. There are a few shots that provide interest. The shot of the family all together snapping their fingers is iconic. Overall, though, the visuals are average. 6/15

Audio: That song will get stuck in your head. It connects with the show perfectly, and has lyrics that you want to memorize, especially the first verse. Most people remember the theme song more than the actual show. 12/15

Mood: The show is cheesy and so are the opening credits from the theme song to the visuals provided. 4/5

Information: First there's a shot of the entire family. It's obvious from the credits that there's something a little off about them, but they don't seem like bad people. They're just weird. They only say who two of the actors are. Are they the most important people? There's almost no indication of the childrens' personalities either. You kind of get a view of the house, but don't really get told much about each character. Does that matter? It seems like it might a bit. However, the overall theme of the show is established. 7/10

Want to Watch: It seems interesting. I think it would be worth a view just based off the credits, although there isn't a strong "must watch show!" pull. 3/5

Overall: 32/50

Watch This Intro (Sorry about the commercial at the end)

Visual: I like the idea behind this. Alf picks up a camera and runs around filming the family, ending with a group shot of everyone. It really does look like home video footage and the family's reactions are nice. 12/15

Audio: Kind of light jazz. I don't think I could hum the melody to this unless I listened to it a few times. It doesn't seem too distinctive, but it works. 7/15

Mood: It works well enough. It's a light-hearted show about an alien. I think I get it. 4/5

Information: They show the main characters as well as the dynamic between them and the puppet. He probably doesn't quite understand human customs, since he snuck up on the wife in the shower and interrupted the daughter's telephone call, but the son seems to have a good relationship with him. Actually, it seems that the family has accepted him pretty well. He probably likes to chase after the cat to, since that was the only time in the credits he dropped the camera (yes, I know he wants to eat the cat). 10/10

Want to Watch: Could be fun, although there isn't a huge pull. 4/5

Overall: 37/50

Watch This Opening (again, sorry about the commercial)

Visual: This time the idea behind the opening is seeing the family together watching home movies. Basically it's used to show clips from the show. I don't think this is quite as interesting as the first opening, though. So it takes a hit there. 7/15

Audio: The song is the same, but it was rearanged so the melody sticks out a little bit more. It's not too distinctive, but at least it's hummable now. 9/15

Mood: It still feel like a family show with an alien. 4/5

Information: Showing clips from the show does let you see the characters. It also shows that the family has accepted the puppet guy as one of their own. They are laughing along with him. He does get in trouble at times, but he is part of the family. You also see a quick shot of him trying to bite the cat. 9/10

Want to Watch: Maybe? 3/5

Overall: 32/50

All in the Family
Watch This Opening

Visuals: The view of the two characters behind the piano was cool. Besides that it was all city shots. I would have liked it to have a bit more, or maybe just stick with the piano. 4/15

Audio: Having the actors sing despite being bad singers was a nice touch. The melody doesn't really stick in your head that much, though. 6/15

Mood: It seems very light hearted and fun, which I suppose is the overall mood of All in the Family. the social commentary kind of takes a back seat to this. 4/5

Information: Well, I know the two main characters can't sing, but don't know anything about them. I also think I saw their house. Other than that, not much. What's the premise of the show? What makes it unique? 2/10

Want to Watch: Based entirely off the opening, I wouldn't be that interested. The premise behind it makes me want to watch, though. 2/5

Overall: 18/50.

The Andy Griffith Show
Watch This Opening

Visual: The image of Andy and Opie walking toward that lake is iconic. 9/15

Audio: That whistling tune is easy to remember and connect with the show. 12/15

Mood: It's a quiet show about good living. 4/5

Information: Not much. Don Knotts is only mentioned as an actor. You don't get to hear about Andy's job at all. However, it may really give all the information you need. The show is about living a good life, and it can still be fulfilling then. There are some nice father/son interactions during the credits as well. 4/10

Want to Watch: It's hard to be objective here, but I'll say "yes". 4/5

Overall: 33/50

Arrested Development


Beverly Hillbillies
Watch This Opening

Visual: It's very simply shot, but it has quite a bit of information. I like the shot of the family riding together in the car. 9/15

Audio: Sort of in a bluegrass style, which fits. The song's been sung a lot. I think that has more to do with the lyrics than the actual melody, but the singer's voice is quite distinct. 8/15

Mood: This is a fish out of water story. 4/5

Information: We get the back story and see a little bit of the family. The old woman is riding in a rocking chair, which seems kind of odd. The fact that these country folk are living in Beverly Hills now is really all you need to know. 8/10

Want to Watch: Strong maybe. It might be fun. 4/5

Overall: 33/50

Watch This Opening

Visual: A fun little cartoon style opening. Nothing too fancy, but it gets the job done. 8/15

Audio: The song has probably been ingrained in the consciousness of people who watched this show. 11/15

Mood: It's a fun light-hearted show, so it works. 4/5

Information: So the main character is a witch, but she's working as a house-wife. Her husband knows she's a witch. Whether he is one himself is not that clear. 7/10

Want to Watch: Sure. 4/5

Overall: 34/50

The Big Bang Theory
Watch This Opening

Visual: Nice. A zoom through either the history of the world, or a bunch of things which have to do with science. Either way, it makes a very good visual point. 11/15

Audio: They Might Be Giants, right? This could have been written for the show or just laying around somewhere. Either way, it works really well. 10/15

Mood: A humorous and geeky take on the world. 4/5

Information: Well, there's a shot of the cast right near the end. Not enough time to really fall in love with the characters, though. You can tell the kind of people they are by the title, though. 5/10

Want to Watch: Could be fun. 4/5

Overall: 34/50

The Bob Newhart Show

Boy Meets World
Watch This Opening

Visual: We get to see the cast hanging out. Not much happens, but it feels like a fun group. 7/15

Audio: There's a small hook, but it doesn't seem to stick that much. The style's kind of fun, though. 7/15

Mood: Hanging out and having fun with friends. 4/5

Information: Watching the characters interact with each other tells a lot about who they are and what their relationships are. You can see the character in the shots. 6/10

Want to Watch: I'll say maybe. 3/5

Overall: 27/50

The Brady Bunch
Watch This Opening

Visual: Headshots of the family looking around at each other while the song plays. Well, really they can't see each other at all, but let's pretend here. This opening has been parodied many times. It doesn't take amazing technology or flashy visuals to make a unique and lasting image. 12/15

Audio: The kids sing it in later seasons, I know. Still I'm not sure whether it's in connection with the show or on its own merits, but the song is very recognizable, and since it's a song about the show, very easy to connect to the show itself. 11/15

Mood: It was one of those upbeat, almost too perfect families from the seventies. Yeah, it fits. 4/5

Information: You get the premise of the show and are introduced to the entire family, as well as Alice, who seems separate somehow. There's a little personality there, but mostly they spend the entire time smiling. I suppose that says something about the show too. 7/10

Want to Watch: You know those credits pulled you in. Don't lie. 5/5

Overall: 39/50

Brothers and Sisters
Watch This Opening

Visual: Clips from the show. Seems incredibly bland. 4/15

Audio: I got bored after the third time they said "All we can do is keep breathing." There's hooks, and then there's being repetive too the point of annoyance. 5/15

Mood: Maybe this show is supposed to be touching, but I thought it was supposed to be funny as well. 3/5

Information: We're introduced to all the characters. There are a lot of characters. I'm not sure if I get the personality of any of them from looking at the credits. Also, Sally Field. 5/10

Want to Watch: Not if I have to watch that every episode. 1/5

Overall: 18/50

Charles in Charge
Watch This Opening

Visual: Clips from the show. At least this time they had some personality. 5/15

Audio: That song is so 80's. There's a hook there with the "Charles in Charge" stuff, and naturally it's easy to connect to the show. 8/15

Mood: I can tell it's a sitcom. 4/5

Information: We are introduced to all the actors. You can get a bit of personality from the clips. Nothing that really tells much about the premise, unless there was something in the lyrics that I missed. 6/10

Want to Watch: I don't know. 2/5

Overall: 25/50

Watch This Opening

Visual: A bunch of old pictures with people drinking. Kind of like a double nostalgia hit nowadays. The photograph that they end on is a nice touch. 8/15

Audio: Probably anybody who has seen Cheers remembers this song. It's a nice tune which helps with the feel the credits are going for. 12/15

Mood: So it's a sitcom, but the credits try to make the show seem sweet. 3/5

Information: The show takes place in a bar. 3/10

Want to Watch: It's a nice song, but I need to know a bit more. 3/5

Overall: 29/50

Watch This Opening

Visual: They ride on motorcycles, ride on motorcycles, ride on motorcycles, then we see closeups of their motorcycles while they're riding on motorcycles. 5/15

Audio: It's loud and boisterous. Not a classic, but okay. 7/15


Information: California Highway Patrol. Rides on motorcycles. 4/10

Want to Watch: I don't really like motorcycles that much. 2/5

Overall: 21/50

Clarissa Explains It All
Watch This Opening

Visual: The characters are introduced on a white background. However, the interest here is that the people on screen are interacting with the words that appear. They are aware that they are in the middle of a credit sequence here. That makes this a little more fun. 12/15

Audio: A light pop song. The melody sticks pretty well and it sounds fun. Also the lyrics are easy to remember. 10/15

Mood: The show's just random fun in the vein of old Nickelodeon. 5/5

Information: Clarissa is the main character. She doens't get along that well with her younger brother, and her parents might be a little bit embarrassing. She also has a friend who likes to ride on skateboards. All in all, she's just a normal kid, but she's the star of this show. 8/10

Want to Watch: I think I'll give it a chance. 5/5

Overall: 40/50

Cory in the House
Watch This Opening

Visual: They tried to make it look interesting, but the effect was for me wishing that they made it more subtle. The camera was hyperactive, going into quick zooms and such. It seemed to be unable to make small movements. 6/15

Audio: There's a little hook with the singers in the background. It's about average, I'd say. 7/15

Mood: Sitcom, sitcom. 4/5

Information: Cory is in the white house for some reason. Also Randall Sheridan is a cook. 6/10

Want to Watch: No. 1/5

Overall: 24/50

The Cosby Show
Watch This Opening (Just pick your favorite)

Visual: The first season is mostly still images. However after the second season, the Cosby Show became known for dancing in the credits. They may not be the world's best dancers, but it did serve to separate The Cosby Show from other sitcoms out there. 8/15

Audio: Every season is a rearrangement of the same melody. Someone behind the scenes was having fun. 9/15

Mood: It's a normal sitcom. The credits are fun. 4/5

Information: I think we're introduced to the actors a little bit more than we are introduced to the characters, but at least you get to see who's in this show. 5/10

Want to Watch: Maybe. 3/5

Overall: 29/50

Curb Your Enthusiasm

Dharma and Greg
Watch This Opening

Visual: Dharma acts like Dharma and Greg acts like Greg in front of a psychedelic background. Really, not much to say about it. It doesn't pop out, but there is an attempt to be different and show what the show's about. 8/15

Audio: Interesting. Not too great, but interesting. 8/15

Mood: It's okay. 3/5

Information: Dharma dances and blows bubbles while Greg reads a newspaper. They love each other, but they are an odd couple. Can they live together without driving each other insane? 6/10

Want to Watch: Maybe. 3/5

Overall: 28/50

The Dick Van Dyke Show
Watch This Opening

Visual: It's a small family meeting, but there's something a little touching about it. It doesn't really stand out, but it doesn't need to. The real saving grace of this opening and what everyone remembers is the Couch Gag. Dick Van Dyke will either fall completely over the ottoman, sidestep it (like he does here) or trip over the rug. It kind of makes it interesting wondering what he will do any given episode. 9/15

Audio: The song is upbeat and memorable. I could probably recognize it in two notes. 14/15

Mood: Fun. 4/5

Information: We are told the actors and see them interact. Not much is said about who these people are, but it's a family show. 6/10

Want to Watch: Yes. 5/5

Overall: 38/50

Different Strokes
Watch This Opening

Visual: Nothing really strong, but it tells a story and shows the characters interacting. 8/15

Audio: This song is a strong source of nostalgia, or possibly great embarrassment if you're Gary Coleman. It's catchy. 12/15

Mood: It fits. 4/5

Information: A rich old white guy takes two black kids under his wing, but he seems to like them, treat them well, and let them be themselves. 7/10

Want to Watch: Maybe. 3/5

Overall: 34/50

Watch This Opening

Visual: It's great. Really. The misleading shots at the beginning leading into the clips from the show are what really makes the opening stick in the mind. The clips are just clips. I admit that, but the shots as Earl makes his way home are enough to give this a good score. 10/15

Audio: The first theme is appropriately scary, then the main theme is upbeat and memorable. It's very possible that this will stick in your mind, and it's fun. 12/15

Mood: This series wants you to laugh. 5/5

Information: They are dinosaurs, but they are living like humans do, except they lay eggs rather than give birth like humans do, but what's to be expected. They're dinosaurs. The husband is a little bit bumbling, the son is in high school, and the baby is the baby. There's also a wife and daughter. I'm not sure how much is revealed about their personality. It looks like the husband is in some kind of construction work. 8/10

Want to Watch: Yes. 5/5

Overall: 40/50

Doogie Houser

Drake and Josh

The Drew Carey Show
Watch This Opening

Visual: The cast gets together and has a dance party. They aren't very good dancers. Then again I don't think they are supposed to be. 8/15

Audio: The song is catchy. It fits the show very well and in my mind is inseparable from The Drew Carey Show. 11/15

Mood: Quite different, actually, but it's a sitcom opening, that's for sure. 3/5

Information: Dance parties give you actors, but not necessarily characters. I guess they live in Cleveland. 6/10

Want to Watch: Yes, actually. 5/5

Overall: 33/50

Everybody Loves Raymond
Watch This Opening

Visual: It's an interesting concept. Ray talks about his life while the people who he's talking about are passing by in the background. A simple idea. 8/15

Audio: The song is just kind of there. I'd use it as background music. The monologue is so-so. 5/15

Mood: Sitcom. Yeah. 4/5

Information: We know who everyone is. It's not about the kids, though. 7/10

Want to Watch: Not especially. 2/5

Overall: 26/50

Watch This Opening

Visual: Yeah, the gag is old and overdone to the extreme, but the hand through the mailbox slot was classic. 8/15

Audio: Ode to Joy. This will never be connected to the show, but I guess they were trying to fit it with the overdone nature of the opening. I still think they could have found a better song. 6/15

Mood: Hey, look at us. We try too hard to be funny. 4/5

Information: Ray does not like his parents coming over all the time, but they do anyway. 7/10

Want to Watch: I might give it a chance, but I'd be wary of it. 4/5

Overall: 29/50

Facts of Life
Watch This Opening

Visual: Clips from the show, and rather boring clips at that. They're simple credits to put together, but they aren't fun to watch. 3/15

Audio: The song is bad. It tries to have a catchy melody and fails horribly. This isn't a song that will stick, nor is it a song that I want to stick. 2/15

Mood: Sitcom. Yay. 4/5

Information: There are these people doing things. One of them's black. (Yay tokenism) 6/10

Want to Watch: Take a guess. 1/5

Overall: 16/50

Family Affair

Family Matters
Watch This Opening

Visual: Clips from the show and character shots. Some had fun things to do. Some just stood there. 6/15

Audio: This reminds me so much of the Full House theme song. I'm having trouble separating the two now. Were they made by the same artist? 6/15

Mood: Sitcoms have had heartfelt openings forever. Whatever works, I guess. 3/5

Information: Urkel is not liked by the family. The father's a cop and Shawn Harrison's character is a little bit of an idiot. This is either a really large family, or they have a lot of people they interact with. I think it's the first five are family, then everyone else is a friend or acquaintance of one of the kids. 7/10

Want to Watch: Not especially. 2/5

Overall: 24/50

Family Ties
Watch This Opening

Visual: Still images mostly, but it does tell a story, a story of love, family and hippies. 7/15

Audio: The song's nice. It has a memorable melody and is easy to listen to. Not sure what it has to do with the show, though. 8/15

Mood: One of the main points of the series is even though they have opposing viewpoints, they're still a family and they act like one. 4/5

Information: The parents used to be hippies and they have three kids. 5/10

Want to Watch: It doesn't draw. It doesn't turn me away either. 3/5

Overall: 27/50

Father Knows Best
Watch This Opening

Visual: Yeah the fifties aren't really known for their great openings, so I guess I shouldn't give it too much of a hard time. At least there was something to watch in this one. 5/15

Audio: Nothing drew me. There's no catch in the theme tune. 4/15

Mood; Super happy family. 4/5

Information: Super happy family. 6/10

Want to Watch. Not really. 1/5

Overall: 20/50

Watch This Opening

Visual: Still black and white images. There are a few interesting photographs. Everything else just shows normal life, and some have people obviously looking at the camera. That's not spontaneous, people. 8/15

Audio: Interesting theme they chose here. It's quite different, which will help the show to stand out. 9/15

Mood: Slice of life, I guess. 4/5

Information: Felicity is a.. Well, I don't know what she is. She does stuff, and there are other people in her life who.. Well, I don't know what they do, but they are in the credits, so they are important, or maybe not. I'm not making any judgements here. 6/10

Want to Watch: Well, I don't know what this show is. 3/5

Overall: 30/50


Freaks and Geeks

The Fresh Prince of Bel Air
Watch This Opening

Visual: Bright colors as well as a cartoony style of showing the story. Will Smith's favorite early character was the charming delinquent, which is what this show is about. Oddly enough, his mom in the credits is not his mom on the show. 12/15

Audio: The song is catchy and fun. There are quite a few people who can quote the entire thing or sing along with it. Will Smith has an easy style of rapping, being a humorous rapper who needs to be understood. 11/15

Mood: The show is wacky hi jinks and fourth wall breakage with a little bit of heart. 4/5

Information: Will, who was living in Philadelphia has a problem with bullies, so his mom sends him to live with his rich uncle. This show is about Will Smith. Any other characters are secondary. 7/10

Want to Watch: Looks like fun. 5/5

Overall: 39/50

Watch This Opening

Visual: Dancing in a fountain is interspersed with clips from the show. Earlier seasons didn't have the clips. The question is, though, why are they dancing in a fountain? What does that have to do with the series? A question for the ages, my friend. 8/15

Audio: The song is catchy and fun and it doomed the Rembrants to becoming a one hit wonder. Sorry about that, guys. 12/15

Mood: Why are they dancing in a fountain? 4/5

Information: A show about people who dance in fountains. We get clips from the show which do a decent job of showing what each character is like and how they act. Since the show is about the characters, it's important that they do that. 7/10

Want to Watch: Why are they dancing in a fountain? 3/5

Overall: 34/50

Full House
Watch This Opening

Visual: Clips from the show. They aren't really good clips either, they're just clips. Really, these credits aren't remembered much for the visuals. 6/15

Audio: The song is catchy and it sticks in your head. In fact this is from an era where almost every sitcom theme sounded like this. It's amazing that they can still be differentiated. 11/15

Mood: The show is about family togetherness. 4/5

Information: We see the characters and a few interactions. Personality is kind of lacking. It doesn't seem like it would be too hard to find clips where we can see the essence of the characters. 6/10

Want to Watch: I'll file this under "whatever." 3/5

Overall: 30/50

The George Lopez Show
Watch This Opening

Visual: Jumping on trampolines. I suppose it's a bit different. The fact that George Lopez can go into splits is a little scary. 9/15

Audio: "Low Rider." Fine. The song has survived this long and is still in the public conscious. However, I associate more with Cheech and Chong than with this show. 7/15

Mood: Something seems off here. 3/5

Information: We see the actors, but not the characters, really, unless the actors are playing themselves. 5/10

Want to Watch: I'm not sure if this opening would keep me around. 2/5

Overall: 26/50

Gilligans's Island

Gilmore Girls

The Golden Girls

Growing Pains

Hannah Montana

Happy Days

Herman's Head

Home Improvements

The Honeymooners

How I Met Your Mother

I Carly

I Dream of Jeannie

I Love Lucy

The Jeffersons

Just Shoot Me!

Kenan and Kel

The King of Queens

The Love Boat

Mad About You

Malcolm in the Middle

Married With Children

The Mary Tyler Moore Show

The Monkees

Mork and Mindy

The Munsters

Murphy Brown

My Three Sons

Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide


News Radio

The Norm Show

the Office

The Partridge Family

Perfect Strangers

Punky Brewster


Sabrina the Teenage Witch

Saved by the Bell



Small Wonder

So Weird

Sports Night

The Steve Harvey Show

Strangers with Candy

The Suite Life of Zack and Cody


That 70s Show

That's My Bush

Three's Company


Two and a Half Men

Ugly Betty

Veronica Mars

Will and Grace

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