T-McBee’s Top 10 2000’s Cartoon Intros

2000sCartoonIntros copy

I’ve talked about my favourite animated intros from both the 80s and 90s. So how about I leap over the millennium and mention my favourite cartoon openings in the decade of the 2000s?  This decade is where I was getting into high school and entering my first few years of college later on, and to be honest, didn’t find many animated intros that were consider to be pretty memorable.

Perhaps being a late 80s child and not watching too much TV in the 2000s didn’t make me appreciate too many animated intros during those years. The one good thing that I can talk about these cartoon intros in this decade that it had a ton of variety to appeal to a wider audience. From animated sitcoms, kids programming, comic book series to even anime, these were the years that brought animated shows to get any age invested in. And even though these animated programs didn’t had very memorable intros, but there were at least some decent ones out there.

T-McBee is here once again, but this time I’ll be counting down my Top 10 2000’s Cartoon Intros. If you have checked my previous lists of favourite animated intros from the 80s and 90s, this list goes by the same rules, except I’ll be looking at animated openings that were made from 2000-20009. There! That was easy to say.

Well, sit back and relax like Samurai Jack, as I count down this list starting with an honourable mention.

Honourable Mention – Card Captors (Nelvana’s Version)

The original Japanese Anime Card Captors Sakura came out in 1998, but when Nelvana Studios released the English dub of the show in the early 2000, they changed a few things up for the series, including the intro sequence. Personally, I kinda liked Nelvana’s version.

I am aware that some of the edits went a little too quick and the whole whispering voices that are chanting the elements out sounded quite dumb to be honest. Although, the woman singing in the intro sang so passionately to the lyrics that you basically forget about the dumb things that were added to the English opening. Always give me a shivering vibe every time I hear her sing.

Despite the silly things that were added to the English intro of Card Captors, I have a bit of a sweet spot for this animated intro in the 2000s.

10. Escaflowne (Fox Kids version)

In the same ropes as the English Card Captors opening, Fox Kids took the licence of Escaflowne and change a lot of things up for the show, including its opening sequence. And would you know it, Fox Kids made an intro for an Anime that’s more upbeat and cool than the original Japanese version… if you want to see more action pack scenes in a cartoon opening.

Watching the Fox Kids intro of Escaflowne always gives me a satisfying shiver down my spine and behind my legs for how upbeat the music tempo sounds. While the clashing sound effects and scenes going at a fast duration can be a little too overwhelming, theres something about this direction of the intro’s presentation that makes it quite suiting.

This may shock some anime fans out there, but I find Fox Kids intro of Escaflowne way better than its original version.*GASP* Shocker!

“I can see the love that fans admire for the original intro, but the English version was the one that got me to know about Vision of Escaflowne better.”  

9. X-Men Evolution

The intro sequence to X-Men Evolution wasn’t highly memorable as the X-Men series from the 90s, but there is still an appealing factor while watching this X-Men opening theme.

X-Men Evolution’s intro had a compilation of scenes from the show and a few animations just for the opening. Just like the X-Men 90’s intro, this opening sequence displays each X-Men characters using their special mutant abilities. Some may find this one not that great due to the lack of memorable characters like Gambit or Jubilee, but this TV series of X-Men was heading more towards the direction of the X-Men films, so this intro I didn’t mind once I got used to the show.

The intro had a visually good edit pace, pretty good animations in some scenes (especially on some of the female characters) and overall one killer tune, though the overall presentation kinda felt like an intro that’s from a live-action drama show like Buffy the Vampire for example. It felt more drama oriented than comic bookish.

Though X-Men Evolution’s intro wasn’t as superior as the X-Men 90s opening, but I’ll say its a runner up and one X-Men animated opening that was decent to see.

8. Danny Phantom

Yeah, yeah! Hearing rap in a cartoon intro isn’t something I go crazy about. But for some very odd reason, I was okay with the use of rap in the lyrics in the cartoon opening of Danny Phantom. I guess the subtlety of the tone really got me into the tune. Plus it’ was quite easy to sing a long to.

Butch Hartman’s underrated show Danny Phantom had a pretty cool intro to make his cartooning style have an upbeat action hero vibe to fit the style of the show. Plus I thought the pacing of the shots and the timing of the animation was nicely synced with the song, despite some sound effects that kinda interfered with the lyrics, but not too much.

The neon vibe and colour palette looked great in the Danny Phantom intro and I’m surprised that this show had lesser seasons than Fairly OddParents, but that’s a whole different story.

    

“I get it! You’re still airing. I’ve seen the intro so many times on TV now. Now leave me be and let me watch that cooler intro with Hartman’s cartooning style in it.”

7. Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex

I promise! This will be the last anime intro on this list. While I did not watch Ghost in the Shell: SAC when YTV used to air it late at night, I sometimes would have the chance to see a bit of the show and its intro. In results, I immediately fell in love with the song from the opening sequence.

While I didn’t care for the CGI visuals that were used in the intro at the time, seeing them now looks pretty good, especially how the environments and mech robots were fully  rendered. The only complaint I have with the intro is the character model of the main protagonist Motoko Kusanagi and her animations. She just looks too plastic looking and moves quite weird every time I see her on screen. Sure, there were some scenes that she looked great in, but the most part she looked like a creepy barbie doll.

Though I really adore the song for the opening of Stand Alone Complex, I think the full version had a better flow than its TV edited version.

“At least there are a few more English words to the lyrics.” 

6. Archer

(Check the link beside to see the actual video version of the intro – Archer Intro)

I’m putting an intro from an animated show that’s still running on TV today, but I will still count it on this list since Archer came out in 2009, and I thought the show came out after that year.

But moving on, Archer has a really appealing intro sequence that takes a homage of spy films and TV shows. It has a great art direction of the main cast drawn like silhouettes over vibrate coloured panels. Plus the transitions looks pretty cool with this intro sequence, like the bullet ball coming out of Archer’s gun and then Archer kicking the bullet towards the audience. Now that is pretty cool.

Archer’s opening sequence contained bad ass music and comical touches in the overall presentation and I can definitely see why people adore this TV animated intro so much. Some may take the debate whether Archer’s intro is a homage or  a total rip off of Cowboy Bebop’s intro. But personally, I see it a tribute to a spy theme series like James Bond for example and I’m just leaving it as that for that little debate there.

“Okay! I get it! They both have some similarities to them. Now let me continue on with this list!”

5. Clone High

Oh! I had to add a cartoon opening to one of my favourite animated shows that was made in Canada. Clone High (or Clone High U.S.A. in America) had a homage of a high school drama show for its intro sequence. There were two versions of the intro at different time durations, which are both great to check out.

The intro that you just saw above was at a 65 second run, which added more scenes from the episodes, but somehow had a better edit pace and a nice TV edit version of Abandoned Pools’ theme song of Clone High for the opening sequence. This intro version can be seen in the Clone High complete season DVD set.

The 35 second run of the intro is the shorter version and has way lesser scenes from the episodes. It’s also good too and I remember seeing this one a lot on TV, but I wasn’t a fan of the song fading out so quickly in the end.

I’ve always liked the direction of Clone High’s opening containing this teen show parody about high school but with a weird combination of science to the mix. It was kinda cool to see some of the sequences go from one transition to another, like Joan shedding a tear in one panel and then the tear drops onto another panel when Abe catches it and licks it up.

Clone High’s intro is a great one to watch, though there are four other intros that I had to put higher over this one. And since I’ve watched this show so many times back then, I find myself to go “meh” with its theme song, though Abandoned Pools is still a great band to listen to.

4. Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends

One of the most original and unique cartoon intros that I have seen in 2000s had to be Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends. It is one of the few shows that I enjoyed watching when I was in high school.

The opening sequence to Foster’s Home looks really neat by starting off with the main mansion from the show being drawn out with lines, turning into shapes and being filled in with colours. It just felt like I was learning art again whenever I took a glimpse of that moment in the intro.

I also appreciate the quirky tone of Foster’s intro with some cooky instruments playing so joyfully whenever you see Mac and the other imaginary friends walking up the stairs and passing through the hallways to get to the room that Bloo is in. It moves in a really nice pace and I appreciate the creativity, layout design and overall presentation that the intro to Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends had displayed. Sometimes a jolly tune and simple designs is all you need in a cartoon theme.

3. Spiderman the New Animated Series

MTV’s Spiderman the New Animated Series is possibly one of the most underrated Spider-Man cartoons that has ever come out on television in the 2000s and it surprisingly had one cool looking, heart pumping intro in results.

I kinda had mixed feeling for this specific Spider-man animated series with its cel-shaded visuals, but I didn’t care too much about it whenever I see the energetic intro that it had to offer, despite using many scenes that were shown from the episodes and going at fast edits in some parts of the intro.

But what really made me placed the opening to Spider-Man the New Animated Series in 3rd place on this list was that awesome trance music that was used in the intro. It sounds incredibly intense every time I hear this tune. Too bad the intro is only 30 seconds long.

Now I am sure some of you guys are probably wondering why I didn’t add the opening theme to Spectacular Spiderman in the list of my favourite cartoon intros from the 2000s.

“Quit shooting your web at me! I have a reason why I didn’t pick your intro!” 

Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great and catchy Spider-Man intro with great design and animations overall. I was in my college years when this show was out and to be honest, I didn’t really watch a lot of TV when this show first aired. So I guess I will place it as a runner up of favourite Spider-Man cartoon intros, but the one from the New Animated Series will always be my favourite Spider-Man cartoon intro of all time.

2. Dave the Barbarian

I almost forgot about the show Dave the Barbarian while writing this list down and when I checked the shows intro online not too long ago, I immediately realized how much I liked this show back when it aired on TV.

So what’s the intro to Dave the Barbarian like you might ask?  Though the simple design may throw some people off, but its the comedy that is provided in the opening is what makes it so memorable. And personally, it’s one of the funniest cartoon intros I have ever seen for a kids show. The chanting of “Ba! Babarian!”, Dave’s catch phrase “Bajabbers!” and Fang’s famous quote “Not a Monkey!” are great highlights to the opening sequence of this cartoon.

Disney cartoons in the 80s and 90s always made their opening have animations mostly from the episodes and combine them together with a memorable tune. But with Disney intros in the 2000s and so on, the production of their many cartoon intros are higher and a little more innovating compare to the ones that were on air 10 or 20 years ago.

Dave the Barbarian had one innovating and unique intro that was done by Disney. Oh, I almost forgot that the intro does change up all the time whenever the castle collapses near the end.

“Oooo…Stacks of ham. Let me have some!”

Anyway, now its time to announce my favourite cartoon intro from the 2000s, which is….

1. Duck Dodgers

Any cartoon intro from the 2000s would have made it to my number 1 spot, but the intro sequence to Duck Dodgers personally had the most well present cartoon opening I have ever watched from the 2000s. And come on! the show is a spin off to the classic Daffy Duck cartoon Duck Dodgers and the 241/2 Century.Why avoid this intro sequence?

The Duck Dodgers intro quite had that same vibe as the intros done by Warner Bros in the 90s like Animaniacs, Tiny Toons Adventures and Batman the Animated Series. It had some really strong elements in the intro like the  introduction of the main characters, animations that were nicely produced and drawn out and a song that sounds both seductive and heroic at the same time.

Interesting fact: Did you know that Tom Jones sang the theme song to Duck Dodgers?

   

“It’s not unusual for him to sing a cartoon intro”

The Duck Dodgers intro is in my opinion the best cartoon intro from the 2000s. It definitely has all the elements that I love when it comes to animation and cartooning, including bringing a vibe that feels like a blast from the past. It’s a cartoon opening that I will never forget that was released after the year of the millennium.

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