Top 11 TV Show Intros – Nostalgia Critic

Did your favorite show make the list? Find out as the Nostalgia Critic counts down the Top 11 TV Show Intros!

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About Doug Walker

Creator of 5 Second Movies, Nostalgia Critic, Bum Reviews and more.

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337 Comments on "Top 11 TV Show Intros – Nostalgia Critic"

RockmanX3
Guest

First!

mr grump
Guest

RockmanX3
Guest

Snooze, you lose. 8)

RockmanX3
Guest
Excellent list, Doug and a lot of these are on my list as well. I had literally forgotten about Bucky O Hare until this video came along. Damn, that was a cool show even though I didn’t see much of it. I’m nearly pushing 40 and can still sing The Fresh Prince of Bell Air song word for word. XD Funny thing about #1, I actually saw the cartoon first far before the movie and surprisingly enjoyed the cartoon more for some reason. Great list and it brought back memories to the days of my generation (late 70’s-80’s) and the… Read more »
Heart-Lightning
Guest

And yet none of them will compare to an average anime opening. Just saying. =P

RockmanX3
Guest

Hey now, the X-Men opening is quite awesome!

*looks at Japanese version*

Ok, fuck it, you’re right. XD

lordsathien
Guest

You might also want to compare the German intro of the Ruby-Spears Mega Man to its American version. The German one is more simplistic but so much better in my opinion.

NeonWave
Guest

Not true. There are some anime openings which aren’t very good. You have to think of the what he said: Audio, effort, visuals and atmosphere play a role. If an opening can’t get you interested, it’s a failure. It’s a law that both the west and the east follow. I know you said ‘average’, but when something is average, it’s not good nor bad. It’s in the middle; so not much thought will be drawn to it.

Three Degrees of Bacon
Guest
Three Degrees of Bacon

Point of order: Heart-Lightning was comparing average anime opening to average Western opening. It is possible to compare the average of two different sets and claim one is superior.

Three Degrees of Bacon
Guest
Three Degrees of Bacon
Are you going to do a top 11 anime openings then? Because you set up for it? And I tried thinking up my own list, and I was like, “No, that’s anime. That’s anime too.” The first ones that came to my mind? Zoids: Chaotic Century. This one is just clips from the show, so you would have discounted it anyway. (At least, the American release does that. The Japanese does a completely different opening). But let me paint a picture for you. A computer screen lights up with one word: ALERT. Then we see a military base blow up,… Read more »
ShadowsTwilight
Guest

Which is probably why he said “average anime opening” as opposed to “any anime opening”.

Cirra
Guest

Question: Do all these “good” anime openings use the same idea as Thundercats? Are they ever different?

All I ever see of anime are the light shows, ‘splosions, and lines indicating fast movement. I get bored seeing the same thing over and over.

qtip1992
Guest

sure compare death note to dragon ball to cowboy bebop.

Keyhound
Guest

there is this anime, i always tell people to go watch when they say anime is for children, called:

Paranoia Agent

its opening, is not only insane, but, it has alot of secrets of the series, there, for when you finish watching, and start noticing…

besides this one, i would say, FMA has some very good ones,
Naruto’s second opening is probably one of the most loved openings(but im not that fan of it to be honest), and Baccano!
is also very fun.

WompWomp
Guest
I’d say many can compete with anime openings. While there’s a lot of cool intros for anime, the majority of them are usually just commercialized music videos for some J-Pop singer/band’s song that doesn’t have much relevance to what’s actually going on-screen. They’re mostly songs made completely disconnected from the franchise they’re used for, which is a bit of a cheat. I’m also not too big on how some of them are presented these days. Back then, they actually tried to sell what the story and tone of the show is, but these days every anime intro is storyboarded by… Read more »
RockmanX3
Guest

You definitely nailed this one right on the bat. The reason why Naruto has a gajillion openings and endings is because the animation company strikes deals with bands to use their music every 15 episodes or so.

I know it’s ok Doug’s list, but the Thundercats opening can easily rival a lot of anime openings even in today’s era.

Rynjin
Guest

…And then there’s JoJo.

Though to be fair it gets honorary 80’s cred.

Chaos15
Guest

You know. I haven’t seen the “shedding sparkly tears” thing in a while.

wordforger
Guest

Unless they got Yoko Kanno to do the music. Then it’s generally awesome.

anyan_p
Guest
Well, “average anime openings” are too fucking same. Like yeah, they look pretty cool and song are mostly awesome, but when you see same cliches again, againg and again… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ibPCLMH1NM4 Yeah, not that original. Yes, we have a lot of animes with some unique intros with teir own unique style, like Samoorai Champloo opening, or third Blood+ opening, or weird SHAFT’s anime openings like Ef~ and Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei (some SZS openings is just TOO ARTSY) or… well more and more. But most of anime openings are “goodlooking but repititive”. Also, japanese openings sometimes contains a lot of spoilers (worst… Read more »
thatchickwithlonghair
Guest
thatchickwithlonghair

It doesn’t matter that they’re repetitive; they just need to be good at what they do….and so many of them are brilliant at what they do: make you want to watch the series.

anyan_p
Guest

I agree. They aren’t bad, most of anime intros are wery good. But I just don’t think they are that better then non-japanede TV-shows intros. “Average anime opening” isn’t way better then most of intros in this NC Top. Hell, Thundercat’s intro look like kind of generic shounen anime’s opening.

wordforger
Guest

Most anime openings pretty much look the same, with only a couple of exceptions.

GBD
Guest

This is just terrible. Why is the quality of the video and audio constantly changing? And it keeps jumping to random part of the video while I watch it. It was like that with the JW review too, the hell is going on?

GBD
Guest

Seriously, I can barely get through the video, is it going to be like that all the time now?

Vaggos
Guest

You can lock the quality at 720p if you hover the HD button and click the 720p.

Artista-AF
Guest

Screenwave does that way too much, but you can lock the video quality to stop it from doing that

mduncan50
Guest

Everyone else is doing fine mate, may want to look for the issue on your pc.

slashmaster28
Guest

Didn’t do any of that stuff for me. If anything, it was just too quiet. Seriously, had to raise my volume to 100% and it sounded like any other video would if my volume was at 10.

Lightice
Guest

Try out Blip. Like the page says, if you’ve got trouble with the new player (as I do, for example), the old option is still available through the link.

wordforger
Guest

Yeah… It made it sound like Doug was talking through a tin can. Not exactly the best player for those of us on satellite net because it’s too variable. That’s why youtube has recently annoyed me too, though they at least seem to have gotten better about allowing you to pause and allow buffering so you can load the whole video before watching it instead of only loading a tiny piece at a time and forcing you to move through it to be able to load the next part.

jordan1650
Guest

Great list! But I would’ve included The Magic School Bus intro in it. It’s so catchy, takes you on the best field trip ever and makes school and learning totally awesome.

Victoria Heckman
Guest

Oh, my God, yes. That was a fun intro and a fun show.
In retrospect I think what I like most about it is that it focused on science lessons, but the episodes themselves were very character-driven, so they also had lessons about compromising, not jumping to conclusions about others, acceptance, and all that good stuff.

the1koolkitty
Guest

It is really awesome! I always loved feel so much nostalgia whenever I hear the song and/or see the intro. 😀

sophronia_chaos
Guest

Oh HELL yes! Surfin’ on the sound waves, swingin’ through the stars! Also, you know who sang the theme song? Little Richard. Little fucking Richard. How can that not make the cut? Maybe it’s too recent for Doug, since he’s in his 30s. Same with the intro to Bill Nye the Science Guy, which to this day makes me sing “BILL BILL BILL BILL BILL” out loud.

NCFan2001
Guest

Maybe he wasn’t nostalgic about this show. If he was, he would reference the show on his reviews already.

Beck Demetri
Guest

one day i think Steven Universe will be nostaglic enough to be on this list, cause that opening is definitely great and catchy! Especially the season 2 one.
I really hope you’ll do a review of Escape from Tomorrowland soon!

Victoria Heckman
Guest
Excellent list. I was a little disappointed the “Heathcliff” opening didn’t make the list, but looking at the other competitors I can see why. I really like the “Heathcliff” intro more so because it just puts me in a really good mood; it’s probably not as adrenaline-inducing for others as it is for me. That said, I was expecting/hoping the “Beetlejuice” opening would make it to the #6 spot, but, Hallelujah to all things spooky and awesome, I’m glad it made it to #1. (I was also glad the “Tales from the Crypt” intro made it high on the list… Read more »
P Busch
Guest

This may be Anime but I don’t care!

the ROBOTECH INTRO!

Artista-AF
Guest

technically Robotech’s intro should count as cartoon, that iintro was made for the west

NeonWave
Guest

But it’s based off of something from the east :/ It’s a debatable subject.

SailorRustyBacon
Guest

The Robotech intro was just a compilation of openings of their original Japanese series: Macross, Southern Cross and Mospaeda, and dubbed over with a new score. Seriously: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=P-r4wx5ZYHI, https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=f7UUQd7lLbA, https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=f7UUQd7lLbA WOW the singing in all of those! XD

SailorRustyBacon
Guest

The Robotech intro was just a compilation of openings of their original Japanese series: Macross, Southern Cross and Mospaeda, and dubbed over with an entirely new score from Harmony Gold.

(My comment has direct links so it may or may not be shown)

Andru77
Guest

While the shows that it’s composited from may be anime, after the end of the Macross Saga, Robotech is entirely it’s own thing. And the opening reflects that. While Macross remains one of my all time favorite anime, it still doesn’t feel right without the Robotech theme attached (especially now that they have Remastered with the original anime openings with the Robotech theme)

Kadmon
Guest

Wow, talk about Nostalgia. I remember watching most of these shows, But the No. 1 completely forgot about. Odd, considering how memorable it looks.

Critic From The Future
Guest
Critic From The Future

I honestly think that the animation in that Beetlejuice intro probably outranks 90% of animated shows today (certainly in terms of effort). I mean, just look at an episode of Family Guy, which is basically just still images with a mouth tacked on, and look at this. Kinda makes me sad.

Chaos15
Guest

But Family Guy has no need to be well animated when most of the time is about characters talking to each other. Do you really need good animation for 2 characters standing and talking?

pickledsuicune
Guest
Not really sure why you’re comparing anything to Family Guy when it represents the current low-point of animation quality, with South Park being the only thing with worse animation. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against these shows, but the animation is horrible. Like the previous person said, though, it really doesn’t need to be great animation when most of its content is told through dialogue. Pretty much any cartoon that’s NOT “for adults” has pretty epic animation. Gravity Falls, Steven Universe, MLP (though, honestly, the intro has worse animation than the show itself in that example)…. Maybe you… Read more »
Lordsjaak
Guest

hm…weird no A-Team intro i did like it or airwolf or Transformers G1? but heck prince of bell-air is in it and also johhny quest i accept it 😛

thatgirlinthewheelchair
Guest
thatgirlinthewheelchair

Ummm…Doug this is great, as always, but didn’t you already do this? I remember watching a Top 11 Catchiest Theme Songs video a few years ago. Some of your choices are even the same? I mean, it’s still a great video but I just got the worst case of deja vu!

NCFan2001
Guest

No, those were the top 11 songs played I the beginnings of shows. This is the top 11 beginning SEQUENCES. There is a difference.
Now that I’m typing this down, I’m seeing how similar these two top 11 lists are the same.

AngryPete
Guest

Does Doug not remember The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest? The opening shows Questworld, a virtual reality the Quests created from terrible mid-90s TV CGI.

Questworld was only in a handful of episodes, but ALL of the marketing for the show was based around it.

stcerberusengel
Guest

Going back looking at The Real Adventures of Johnny Quest, I cringe every time they go into Questworld. I know that the show had budgetary problems, but when compared to something like Transformers: Beast Wars or Reboot, it just looks terrible. Hell, as much as I love the movie, even The Lawnmower Man had better CGI!

lordsathien
Guest

It wasn’t just budgetary issues. One show-runner wanted to focus on the utilization of Questworld while the other just wanted to tell stories.

the1koolkitty
Guest
Oh, Doug, you made me SO happy when you included not only Jonny Quest (I swear, I don’t remember anything of that show, but as a kid I always had good memories of it just because of that theme song and intro), but Bucky O’Hare. When I was a kid, I didn’t watch a lot of TV, but instead VHS’s of certain shows over and over, like The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Talespin, Ducktales, Pee Wee’s Playhouse, and Bucky O’Hare. As someone who grew up watching three VHS’s of the show over and over and watched other episodes later, I will… Read more »
Emperor.Hampton
Guest

I haven’t heard of a good half of these shows. Perhaps I’m just too young. My childhood shows were Avatar: The Last Airbender, Teen Titans (the original Cartoon Network show, not that… thing they have now), and Code Lyoko. So, a very well-told backstory and set-up for the series, an awesome but simple opening, and… wires and clips from the show. Yeah.

the1koolkitty
Guest

I will definitely give a shout-out to both Code Lyoko and Teen Titans (Teen Titans Go! can burn in hell) — their intros/theme songs were friggin’ awesome. And of course Avatar is a masterpiece. 🙂

sophronia_chaos
Guest

The Code Lyoko theme was so delightfully over-the-top cheesy. And I also loved the Teen Titans theme, especially how Puffy AmiYumi sang the Japanese version before a screwball episode.

Emperor.Hampton
Guest

I never see anyone else talk about Code Lyoko! Then they made it live action for some reason, and, no, just no. Its also the best thing to come out of France since French bread (Insert Les Mis review reference here).

Also, I just read IGN’s top 100 Animated Shows, and not only did they put Avatar at 38, below f*cking BEVIS AND BUTTHEAD at 5, this is a direct quote from A:TLA’s entry. “The Avatar phenomenon is sure to grow even more with the upcoming release of three live-action movies directed and written by M. Night Shyamalan.”

KurvosVicky
Guest

Game of Thrones, Batman: The Animated Series, Batman Beyond, Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, Goosebumps – I’m honestly surprised you didn’t include nor even mention ANY of those. They have among the most amazing intros I have ever seen. Instead, you chose Pee-Wee’s Playhouse… and, some other forgettable shows as well. I only agreed with half of your list, barely.

NeonWave
Guest

The list is base on his personal taste and what he saw. He probably hasn’t watched those shows or even seen them, so that’s why they aren’t on the list.

Lightice
Guest

He’s definitely watched Batman: The Animated Series and loves it. He probably had a hard time picking the choices that weren’t instantly obvious.

smjaiteh
Guest

Also, no Twin Peaks?

Darth_Biomech
Guest

Wait a second… Yeah! Where the hell is Batman: TAS intro?!

Carewolf
Guest

Game of Thrones, True Blood, M.A.S.H, Friends, Duck Tales, Gummy Bears, Mission Impossible, Airwolf, The A Team….
Yeah it is like there is a second set of criteria he didn’t mention, like targeted age, or that they have to animated or puppets (except for Fresh Prince). He should probably just have removed Fresh Prince and said this was only for animated or puppet shows. Or perhaps even have dropped the puppets, because where is Fraggle Rock or Muppet show?

AngryPete
Guest

Not ONE DC Animated Universe show?

1/10

Daith
Guest

Well Superman is knocked out for the clip show part of it. As is The Adventures of Batman & Robin.

But the rest of the DCAU is golden. Even though the New Batman/ Superman Adventures opening has clips in it, I’d still put it worthy of the list since the majority was paired with great animation over it only for the intro. Heck listening to the commentary for the Batman Beyond DVD’s, the shot near the end of the Beyond intro with Batman surrounded by all the thugs is actually a statuette and kind of a panoramic shot of it

Krono King XIII
Guest

Justice League or Unlimited shoulda been on the list SOMEWHERE

Stormtalon
Guest
Anticipating the obvious question: What about B:TAS? Providing obvious answer: Batman has been mentioned and praised plenty. This is my first brush with anticipointment. Jack of All Trades: Good show. Definitely full of the campy and humor you’d expect from the dynamic duo of Raimi and Campbell. I think it Spiderman killed it. Raimi went to direct and took most of the good people with him. Bucky O’Hare: The intro was the best part of the show. Like other TMNT clones, anthro-animals fight other anthro-animals who are goons. Danny Elfman: Sorry I know DW loves him. He just isn’t my… Read more »
Davanthall
Guest
I’m kinda of surprised he didn’t put the intros to Animaniacs and Tiny Toons, on here, I was really expecting him to. however I do agree with #1, that intro was AMAZING!!! it’s one of the very VERY few early 90s cartoon I remember watching that wasn’t a Nickelodeon show. and…I’m sorry but I can’t be the only one who actually thinks the animation of those mid 90s Marvel comic shows was actuality kind of atrocious, can I? it was a little better in the intros, but the show itself the animation looks so choppy and rushed and very poorly… Read more »
Engineer Who
Guest

Huh. I’ve never seen any of these shows. Not one.
I’m kind of surprised Batman: The Animated Series or Avatar: The Last Airbender didn’t make the list.

sophronia_chaos
Guest

Possibly because neither really has much of a theme song? But both those intros are excellent, especially AtLA.

Marthia
Guest

I don’t think the A:tLA opening is that good. Everything else in the show is gold, but the opening becomes boring really quick. It’s basically just backstory narration, and while it does a good job at explaining the backstory at the beginning, when you see it for the fourth time, it’s not interesting anymore.

Unlike Batman:TAS…I’m really surprised that’s not on the list, especially seeing how much Doug praises the show usually. Probably that’s the reason why he left it out.

SailorRustyBacon
Guest

I think Fresh Prince still airs on Nick at Night. You should give that a chance, at least. James Avery, the original voice of The Shredder, plays Will Smith’s uncle. That’s where us old fogies coined the nickname, “Uncle Shredder.”

22neptun
Guest

No “Game Of Thrones”-Intro? Seems like Doug has never seen GoT befor.

mduncan50
Guest

It’s hardly nostalgic.

TheFourLights
Guest

He reviewed a movie what is still in the cinema. So ‘nostalgic’ isn’t really a factor in this.

NeonWave
Guest

He has seen it.

NCFan2001
Guest

It’s too recent for it to be on a NOSTALGIA critic list.

Patch
Guest

X-Men is only seven? Okay… Also review Sonic Underground

NeonWave
Guest

He’s mentioned countless times that he will never do it, mainly because he didn’t grow up with it or has seen it. However, with WTR, there might be a chance, though doubtful because it’s well known.

NCFan2001
Guest

Yeah. Doug already has a list in the reviews he won’t do and one of them was anything Sonic the Hedgehog related.

ThisIsScorpio
Guest

But… Sonic SAT AM! Adventures of Sonic The Hedgehog!

NCFan2001
Guest

Doug, you have been doing a lot of show related stuff in between your reviews. Not that I’m complaining.

NCFan2001
Guest

Also, I had a feeling that The Twilight Zone and Beetlejuice would be on this top 11 list.

NeonWave
Guest

I’ve got to agree with Mr. Walker here: How did I never hear about Jack of All Trades?!!?

RockmanX3
Guest

Same here…. and it has Bruce Campbell!

El Mariachi_47
Guest

I remember it vaguely. I only saw a few episodes, but I was only about 7 or 8 when it was on. When it comes to Bruce Campbell in a live action TV show, my mind usually goes to Xena and Hercules.

SailorRustyBacon
Guest

It was syndicated. Jack of Trades was just 1/2 of a show that ran with a cheesy sci-fi action title called Cleopatra 2525, with Gina Torres. It aired around 1999-2000ish. Man, they were bad!

HMorris73
Guest

As I recall Jack was pretty decent.

Chaos Marine
Guest

I can’t believe he didn’t put Batman: The Animated series on this. I seriously expecting it to be number one. And Freekazoid! How could those two not be on the list if not given some honorary mentions.

taykel
Guest

The Pee-Wee’s Playhouse opening was really wacky.

NCFan2001
Guest

Am I the only one here who can’t really stand Pee-Wee’s Playhouse?

sophronia_chaos
Guest

Nope! I’m with you there.

NCFan2001
Guest

Good. I’m sorry, but every time I hear Pee Wee’s voice, I cringe

Jeremy4122
Guest

I guess it’s only mosty animated TV shows, because otherwise the Friends song would def make. Talk about a that everyone sings along too and does the tripe clap as well (sounds dirty).

As fas as anime, DBZ, Gundam Wing, and Attack of the Titans.

The Mysterious M
Guest

Uh…didn’t he already do this? And if not, then what’s the difference between an Intro and a theme song?

Maarons
Guest

The song itself is just a catchy earworm. But this is about how the whole damn intro (regardless how well the song accompanying it is) is just one big overwhelming spectacle of WOAH!!!

Artista-AF
Guest

i am surprised at the lack of Animaniacs & Batman: TAS in the list, granted they got more than enough praise but is still surprising

An opening i would add there is the Thunderbirds/Thunderbirds are Go! openings, There’s problem & International Rescue is there to save the day, and the opening shows that with a catchy tune & a preview of the episode, also The Secret Saturdays: a good upgrade of Johnny Quest’s opening, & If you need help and you can locate them, maybe you can call the A-Team

Match25
Guest

Think you should have done Goosebumps instead of Tales from the Crypt

Please do a top 11 Anime Opening

Todd
Guest

Wow very good top 11 but was truly let down with the top spot.

WHY WASN’T SUPER CHICKEN NUMBER ONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKss2pBYQ6Y

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