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Officially Shortened Title
A newly premiered work has a long and/or elaborate title. If the show survives to become popular, however, a certain phenomenon is known to occur: This long and elaborate title is shortened to just half its original size, if that, and advertised as such.

While this is obviously done often among fandom, especially on the internet, this trope is specific to when the show is officially advertised with its shortened name in promotional material. The former can sometimes cause the latter, if the shortened name becomes much more well known than the full title. Other legitimate causes include events within the show or in real life necessitating a change.

Other reasons could be that perhaps the long title served to attract attention to the series and, mission accomplished, can go to a shorter title. Or perhaps network executives thought Viewers Are Morons and wouldn't pay attention to or be able to read a long title. This has a mundane application as well: Advertising time is extremely expensive, so the less time they have to spend saying the name of the recognizable title the better.

Portmanteau Series Nickname is a related trope, mostly applying to Japanese-language works.

Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 

    Fan Fiction 
  • Lothíriel by JunoMagic had a longer title, Lothíriel - The Tenth Walker! Novel, but the author shortened it.
  • Paper Mario X is usually referred to in Child's end-of-chapter notes simply as PMX.
  • Due to character limitations on titles on DeviantArt, Better Living Through Science And Ponies is referred to simply as Better Living there. The thumbnail uses the full title, though.
    • Pen Stroke's interview in regards to Past Sins also refers to the story as Better Living.

    Film 

    Literature 

    Live Action TV 
  • 3rd Rock from the Sun eventually became Third Rock.
  • 8 Simple Rules was originally Eight Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter. Though this case was justified a bit by the death of John Ritter, who played the father on the show.
  • America's Funniest Home Videos is now known as AFV
  • Live with Kelly and Michael and its variants are sometimes simply called Live!
  • It is now customary to refer to Good Morning America as GMA in all but the most formal circumstances.
  • Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place became Two Guys and a Girl. In fact, the Two Guys and a Girl trope page even mentions the series because of the likelihood of people looking for the show finding it. Like Eight Simple Rules, though, this was justified because there was Character Development and the Guys no longer worked at the titled Pizza Place.
  • Emmerdale Farm became Emmerdale. This was because the focus of the series had moved from the farm itself to the nearby village (which was originally called Beckindale, but was renamed shortly before the title change).
  • Zoey, Duncan, Jack and Jane became Zoe.... The commercials called it "Zoe dot dot dot".
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer's name was never officially changed, but network promos shortened it after a while to just Buffy.
  • Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip was likewise shortened in promos to Studio 60.
  • Most of the "Late Show with..." become known by their host.
  • The now-forgotten Brit Com Lollipop Loves Mr. Mole was renamed Lollipop for its second (and last) short season.
  • Absolutely Fabulous = Ab Fab
  • Lock Stock, The short-lived series of the film Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels.
  • Monty Python's Flying Circus became merely Monty Python in its final season without John Cleese.
  • Degrassi The Next Generation became just Degrassi starting in season 10, because all of that particular generation had moved on from the titular High School.
  • Inverted with Hannah Montana, which was adapted for and marketed to Japanese audiences as Secret Idol Hannah Montana.
    • Also inverted with the fourth and final season, billed in the US as "Hannah Montana Forever."
  • Before NCIS aired, it was branded as Navy CIS. Then CBS decided to change it to Navy NCIS for all of season one. CBS's reasoning for it, despite Donald P. Bellisario's protests, wanted to attract new viewers who didn't know the acroynm and not have it be related to CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. You read that right, NCIS was called Navy Naval Criminal Invesigative Service for an entire season. Needless to say, the title was eventually shortened because of how successful the first season was.
  • Hiroshi Sekiguchi's Tokyo Friend Park II was often referred to as Tokyo Friend Park II (although Hiroshi Sekiguchi remained host for the show's entire run from 1994 to 2011), and the show got a new logo at the start of its 5th season (April 1998) which read merely "TFP2", albeit often accompanied by the show's full title in smaller lettering underneath.
  • Misshitsu Nazotoki Variety Dasshutsu Game DERO! (roughly "Solve a Variety of Puzzles Behind Closed Doors: Escape Game DERO!") had a simpler version of its logo which simply read "Dasshutsu Game DERO!"; this version of the logo had been in use since the pilot episode. Meanwhile, the show would often get referred to as simply "DERO!".
    • Likewise, its Spiritual Successor Takara Sagashi Adventure Nazotoki Battle TORE! (roughly "Treasure Hunt Adventure: Puzzle Battle TORE!") also has a version of its logo which reads just "TORE!", and the show is often referred to as just "TORE!" as well.
  • Parks and Recreation is advertised as Parks and Rec.
  • In-Universe example; 30 Rock's Show Within a Show was originally called The Girlie Show, nicknamed TGS. When Executive Meddling added Tracy Jordan to the roster, it was officially renamed TGS with Tracy Jordan, though it's still generally referred to as just TGS.

    Music 
  • Oingo Boingo was originally The Mystic Knights of the Oingo Boingo, and later became just Boingo.
  • The Justified Ancients of MuMu shortened their name to J.A.M, but then had to change their name to The KLF because there was already a (rather well known) band called The Jam
  • For legal reasons, The Jackson Five had to become The Jacksons when most of them left Motown and Jermaine stayed on.
  • Tyrannosaurus Rex became T. Rex when they went electric.
  • MGMT used to be "The Management".
  • Havalina Rail Co. went both ways with this. They started off just as Havalina, then slapped Rail Co on the end to avoid confusion with another band named The Havalinas. (This all happened before they recorded their first album, so most fans outside their hometown were introduced to them by the extended title.) Years later, they shortened the name back to just Havalina in response to several band members leaving.
  • Chicago was originally called Chicago Transit Authority, but the real Chicago Transit Authority was not amused and threatened to sue, so they shortened it.
  • The Grateful Dead later changed their name to The Dead when they had reunited without the late Jerry Garcia.
  • Jefferson Starship (originated from Jefferson Airplane) became Starship.
  • Revelation Theory shortened their name to Rev Theory because it sounded cooler.
  • Savatage's first Rock Opera is formally known by the band as Streets, as they were unhappy that Executive Meddling forced the official title to be Streets: A Rock Opera.
  • Big Audio Dynamite II (formerly Big Audio Dynamite before some members left) became Big Audio for an album.
  • Wire became Wir for one album out of respect of drummer Robert Gotobed, who fired himself when he came to the realization that a drum machine could do his job better than he could.
  • The 21st-century revived Dexys Midnight Runners is just Dexys.
  • The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion became simply Blues Explosion for their 2004 album Damage, stating the need to emphasize that they were a democratic band, not a solo artist with a backing group. The name change didn't stick - 2012's Meat + Bone was again credited to The Jon Spencer Blue Explosion.
  • Revolting Cocks are occasionally billed as Revco on soundtrack appearances and even on their own album covers. The former seems to be an issue of censorship, but the latter is apparently just for aesthetic purposes.
  • After partially reuniting in 2007, Halo Of Flies officially became H*O*F.
  • KMFDM was billed as Kein Mehrheit fuer die Mitleid at their first show. Supposedly it was changed when Englishman Raymond Watts joined the band and couldn't pronounce the name. The original name still shows up every so often in song lyrics or packaging, but it's obscure enough that many people still think it stands for Kill Mother Fucking Depeche Mode.
  • The Unicorns' Who Will Cut Our Hair When We're Gone? has sort of a Long Title, which couldn't fit on the side of the CD packaging (especially because the album comes in a slim cardboard case) - accordingly, the title is rendered as W.W.C.O.H.W.W.G there, although the rest of the artwork always uses the full title.
  • Sultans Of Ping F.C. became Sultans of Ping, and eventually just The Sultans. The latter change reflected a Growing the Beard moment as they moved away from the cartoonish feel of their earlier (and more popular) material.
  • The Cult were another case of a band name gradually getting shorter over time: Southern Death Cult, then Death Cult, and finally The Cult.
  • King Missile (Dog Fly Religion) became simply King Missile starting with their 1990 album Mystical Shit: The parenthetical part of their name was the idea of co-founding member Dogbowl, so when he amicably left the group to pursue his own music, they shortened the name out of respect.
  • The ska band Run For Your Life decided that was a bit too long to comfortably fit on a poster, so they shortened it to Runforyerlife. That was the name they used for their only album.
  • Afro Celt Sound System shortened their name to Afro Celts for the album Seed. Partly because fans were already calling them the Afro Celts anyway, and partly because they wanted to emphasize their status as a band, not a DJ with backing musicians. (In the past, Simon Emmerson had performed some shows as a solo DJ, still billing himself as Afro Celt Sound System, but by the time Seed came out, ACSS exclusively performed as a full band.) However, this just confused people about whether they were the same band or not. They went back to using the full name quickly, and even reissued Seed with their old name.

    Theatre 
  • Karel Capek's R.U.R.. The "long" title, Rossum's Universal Robots, was only the subtitle in the first edition.

    Video Games 
  • Of the Bemani games, Guitar Freaks and Drum Mania are often collectively referred to as "GitaDora" (taking the first two katakana of each title) even on Konami's official site.
  • Persona games are often referred to by their acronym.
  • Some directories of the Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune official websites refer to the game as "Wanganmaxi."
  • When Game Boy RPG Pocket Monsters got to be quite popular, it started going by its Portmanteau Series Nickname, Pokémon. The rest is history.
    • Possible trademark complications in the US with Monster In My Pocket may also have had something to do with it...
    • Also, the shortened form appeared in-game even in the first Japanese release due to character limitations.
  • The Call of Duty spinoff series Modern Warfare began with Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, but the sequel is generally referred to simply as Modern Warfare 2 in the game and advertising, with Call of Duty only remaining on the box for brand recognition.
  • The Contra series was briefly shortened to just "C" when Konami was trying to distance the games from the Iran-Contra affair that occurred shortly before the first Arcade Game's release. As a result, the NES version of Super Contra was retitled to Super C, while the later Game Boy version of Contra was renamed Operation C.
  • The Japanese version of the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) is officially called the Family Computer, but is better known as the Famicom. However, its successor is officially named the Super Famicom and not the "Super Family Computer". Averted with its western counterpart, which is officially named the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and commonly abbreviated as the Super NES or the SNES.
  • King of Fighters is shortened to "KOF" on the Maximum Impact games.
  • Namco's Family Stadium series of baseball games officially became known as Famista beginning with its fourth Famicom installment (Famista '89).
  • The full title of SD Snatcher is Super Deform Snatcher, but this is displayed less prominently.
  • Super Mario World was originally known as Super Mario Bros. 4: Super Mario World in Japan.
    • And Yoshi's Island was originally known as Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island.
    • And Wario Land was originally known as Super Mario Land 3: Wario Land.
  • Advanced Variable Geo is "Advanced V.G." on the games' covers and title screens.
  • The sequel to Defense Of The Ancients is officially known as DotA 2 for the sake of Writing Around Trademarks.
  • The Madden NFL series was originally known as John Madden Football until the '94 edition.

    Web Animation 
  • Battle for Dream Island Again is very often referred to as its abbreviated version: BFDIA. Even the titles of the videos use this abbreviation.
  • Similarly, Inanimate Insanity is very often referred to—even by the author and some of the characters in the show—simply as II. Which makes season 2, which is named Inanimate Insanity II, have a possibly intentionally hilarious abbreviation.

    Web Original 

    Webcomics 

    Western Animation 

    Truth In Television 

    Other 
  • Nickelodeon is sometimes called "Nick", The Kids' Choice Awards are "KCA's", and Cartoon Network has switched to an abbrieviated logo.
  • G4 and Tech TV merged into G4Tech but later shortened it to G4 again.
  • Game Show Network was shortened to GSN.
  • The Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) officially shortened it's name to "The Y".
    • Technically that's not actually shorter- matter of fact, it's longer if you count the space!
    • Since they don't limit the use of their facilities based on age, gender, or religion, it's probably a case of trying to do away with an ArtifactTitle.
  • Sunny Delight is now formally called Sunny D.
  • Nearly all of The Firesign Theatre's albums have bizarre, long titles, so everyone just refers to "Two Places", "Dwarf", "Immortality", etc., most of the time, including the members of the Firesign Theatre.
  • This is very common in North American railroading. Freight cars have "reporting marks", which are usually the initials or an abbreviated version of the owner's name. The Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway (there are many similar examples) lettered all of its equipment "Santa Fe", and the railroad was officially known both ways. Later, it merged with Burlington Northern to form the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway, which has been officially shortened to BNSF Railway.
  • MTV: Music Television. They did away with the "Music Television" part of their name, so now they're just "MTV", which stands for "MTV".

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