Intros may not make a world of difference when it comes to how good a series truly is but they damn sure are nice to have and have an unquestionable impact prima facie. A deftly pieced together intro can knock you into the right mood; by the same token, a poor one louses it up. You can't judge a book by its cover but boy, are beautiful covers sexy!
Having said that, you might well skip them and plunge in medias res straight off. But why sit out the prelude again?
(Incidentally, I feel like stressing that there are a good many intros out there which did not make the cut. The hard part, need I say, is deciding which one to take in and which one to leave out. The fight goes right down to the wire and swinging the balance in favor of one at the expense of the other are most often than not sheer niceties. There's also, of course, the subjectivity factor. The Walking Dead, Vikings, True Detective are only some pertinent examples. )
So here they are: the top 5 series intros:
5. Prison Break
Brevity is the middle name of this one. Prison Break cuts through all the fluff, going for a short, no-nonsense intro featuring key scenes from the series and accompanied by an intriguing piece of soundtrack. What's there more to ask?
4. Breaking Bad
What Breaking Bad resolved to do is keep it short and sweet. This is an ingenious way to sidestep the quicksands of lengthy, dry-as-dust intros. The protagonist is a chemistry ace, right? Chemistry itself is an indissociable motif of the series. So guess what? The intro is an eighteen-second video featuring the periodic table, highlighting BR(om) and Ba(rium)- which is to say Breaking Bad, naturally.
Everybody at least once dreamed of being a gangster. Ok, maybe not so much as Ray Liotta's Henry Hill in Goodfellas, but you get the picture. Well, for six seasons (that translates into 86 episodes) The Sopranos makes your vicious, crime- ridden fantasies come true. But time rolls by and the series draws to a close. You are reduced to depression, having to face your two-bit, all-too-boring, kitchen-sink life again. Having said that, you are one lucky individual because this is one hell of an opening. Or so I find it. The intro doesn't make any haste though. It takes its time and gives you plenty as well - time to make yourself comfortable on the sofa, plant the food you are to shovel into your mouth during the episode close at hand, And pick your nose. Now, it may get a little hum-drum having to watch and listen to this over and over. But once you've finished the series,mark my words, you'll want something to bring it all back time and again. And this ought to do the trick.
2. Mad Men
In contrast to The Sopranos, this one does make haste. No question of waste, nevertheless. Mad Men went for a more off-the-wall intro heavy on symbolism and what have you, and surprise, surprise they pulled it off. Definitely one of the best and imaginative intros out there.
Rodrigo Amarante's Tuyo and Narcos are a pair made in heaven. Not only is the song addictive up the wazoo and kicks ass but the video is simply gorgeous, showcasing the theme of the series (if it wasn't already evident from the name) by employing images of drugs, weapons, sexy women and whatnot. The intro exhibits a couple of images showing Pablo Escobar himself as a matter of fact, and a scene with the infamous siege of the Palace of Justice ( la toma del Palacio del Justicia) in Bogota, the capital of Colombia, when Pablo paid the communist guerilla to assault the building.