Special Edition Title

Supernatural's normal season 4 title card and "Monster Movie"'s throwback title card.

A variation on a show's usual Title Sequence for a special event. Does not cover the regular evolution of a title sequence from season to season. Likely to occur in conjunction with Something Completely Different. Can also be applied to the ending sequence, if the show has one (e.g. Anime).

Also done in movies with company logos — especially Warner Bros. See Logo Joke for that.

Compare to Couch Gag and Evolving Credits, which can often evolve the entire title sequence and thus fulfilling aspects of this trope as well. Not to be confused with Special Editions of works; the trope for that is Limited Special Collector's Ultimate Edition.


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  • Done in Soul Eater for episode where Maka befriends Crona. It shows the two characters walking together hand in hand during the end credits, as opposed to Maka walking alone.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist, a Lower-Deck Episode focused on the military recurring characters changes the intro animation and narration; the usual changing pictures of Ed and Al are changed to a photo of the unit, and the title is given as Flame Alchemist, referencing the unit's commanding officer.
    • Two episodes of the series also have special ending sequences, replacing the normal upbeat ending with somber ones fitting the events of the episodes in question.
  • In the episode of Nana when Nana "Oh" first sings her hit song "Rose" over the phone to a friend, the ending credits are replaced with a shot of the friend's cell phone and computer, and the second verse of the song.
  • GUN×SWORD liked to change its closing credits sequence to reflect major events. At the end of Carmen 99's focus episode, "Paradiso" replaces the usual closing theme ("A Rising Tide") and plays over a picture of her instead of the usual montage. "Paradiso" plays over a still shot of fallen roses after another episode. And at the end of Episode 24, "Calling You" plays over the quiet beach scene that Ray fantasizes as he dies.
  • Macross Frontier had an episode based on the filming of a movie telling the plot of Macross Zero. The closing credits were done in the style as the end credits of the movie - even having a scene afterwards set during the premiere.
    • Various other episodes of Macross Frontier had special end credits, usually continuing whatever song is being sung by Ranka or Sheryl at the time.
  • Inukami!'s ED is normally a cute little number about friendship among girls. In an episode where the perverts of the town save the day, the ED suddenly changes itself to be about friendship between manly men. Completely new graphics and lyrics, same tune. Ridiculous and yet, it works so well.
  • The opening for some episodes of Yes! Pretty Cure 5 GoGo featured some clips from that season's movie. Similar for Fresh Pretty Cure!, which previewed the Bat Family Crossover movie (and later, the season's actual movie) on its opening.
  • The seventh episode of the originoal Tenchi Muyo! OVA completely dropped the opening title sequence for a simple, low key, dark opening, as a reflection of the end of episode six.
  • The Title sequence for Tenchi Muyo! GXP usually features silhouettes of regular series stars Ryoko, Ayeka, and Tenchi. During the episode "Seina and Tenchi", which featured the original cast, they showed them completely.
  • The first ending theme of Axis Powers Hetalia changed from time to time depending on who the episode mainly focused on and whether or not their version of the theme was already made.
  • Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex: The first Season Finale is a Cold Open which completely omits the opening credits and theme music.
  • For the Grand Finale of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, The shot of the spiral galaxies during the ending sequence speed away until you can't see then anymore.
  • A minor example from Transformers: Micron Legend - In 51 episodes, the title is superimposed on a picture of Optimus Prime. The one exception was the episode "Cramp", where the Episode Title Card was omitted and the episode title was projected directly on top of Starscream's face.
  • One episode of Naruto had an ending celebrating the beginning of the Year of the Dog that replaced the regular imagery with Naruto in a dog costume, Pakkun and Akamaru all hopping around.
  • There's an episode of Hidamari Sketch where Miyako draws a sketch of Yuno in the preparations for the school festival. The finished work is shown at the very end of the closing credits.
  • In Episode 303 of One Piece, the opening theme's singers, Tackey and Tsubasa, are animated in alongside the Straw Hat crew.
  • Episode 5 of Kotoura-san uses Theme of the ESP Society as the ending and Episode 6 uses Flat as a Board, for the two episodes being a bit of a breather compared to the others. The other episodes use the solemn yet heartwarming Flower of Hope.
  • Ojamajo Doremi had one of these for the opening to its second Movie.
  • In episode 14 of Space Dandy, when Dandy accidentally pulls in several versions of the Aloha Oe crew in from other universes, his attempt to return them to their own universes results in everyone being destroyed except for a Dandy that's been driven to suicidal depression because his Meow is an unintelligible Stepford Smiler and his QT is a surly middle-aged man who insists he's a robot. The narrator jokes that the show will use that version of the crew from now on, then they appear in the opening introduction.
  • Normally, the opening theme of Jojos Bizarre Adventure (Part 3) ends with a sequence where DIO's Stand The World appears, then DIO seemingly teleports behind Jotaro, and finally the two engage in a Pummel Duel while the three singers yell Jotaro's trademark Kiai "ORA ORA ORA ORA!"
    • In the episode of the final battle, we get to see these events play out in real time: When The World appears, DIO uses its power to freeze time (and the theme song), then walks behind Jotaro (who still has the Director's credit hovering in front of his face) and gets into position, at which point time and the song start back up. Finally, during the Pummel Duel, we hear them shouting rather than the singers.
    • Previously, for the first two story arcs and the first half of Part 3, a variation of their openings played near the end of their respective parts with sound effects added.
    • This tradition was repeated with the final episode of the second half of Part 3: this time, in addition to the afformentioned Time Stopping and Pummel Duel, brief flashes of DIO and The World can be seen in key parts of the opening tricking Polnareff as he tries to climb a flight of stairs, breaking through Kakyoin's 20-meter radial trap, and siphoning Joseph's blood.
  • In the anime of No Game No Life, the ending credits of episode 8 are almost normal, except that Sora is missing and there are some playback errors like sound scratches and discolourations, which makes it a whole lot creepier.

    Fan Works 
  • Audio example: Fobbies Are Borange has had several opening song changes; from a sophisticated theme for the two episodes with a british narrator, to the a cappella theme for the Moonside episode, to the epic song for the final episode.
  • Script Fic Calvin and Hobbes: The Series has one for season 3 premiere "Dr. Brain Chill"; the credits are overlaid on various shots of space.
    • Same with "Tracer Bullet in Color!", taking after film noir opening credits.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Doctor Who:
    • The opening credits of Doctor Who generally only change whenever there's a new Doctor or new production team - otherwise, they remain fairly consistent (theme tune, a version of the Vortex, Doctor's face (or not), logo, episode title, writer's name, episode number). In the 1960's, however, several stories had specially designed opening credits. Some of these included "The War Machines", which included the story's episode title and number done in the same font as the story's Big Bad, WOTAN; "The Tenth Planet", which included "computer graphics" that formed the story's name and episode number; "The Ice Warriors", which featured a haunting soprano solo over footage of an windswept tundra; and "The War Games", which featured footage of explosions and sounds of gunfire interspersed with the story's title and episode number. (This is by no means an exhaustive list, either.) The practice continued briefly into the 1970s, as the Third Doctor story "Inferno" featured the name of the story and the episode number over footage of lava flows. In the first half of the 2012 season, each episode's opening credits were done in progressively darker colors, with flashes of...well, something in the Vortex itself attacking the TARDIS, and the logo for the series itself had some design element relating to the particular episode's story (for "The Angels Take Manhattan", for instance, the logo was redone to look like The Statue of Liberty). This had led many to speculate that the titles are suggesting something big and bad just around the corner for the Doctor... although the switch to a new title sequence for Series 7B thoroughly Jossed this.
    • The 50th Anniversary Special goes back to the original 1963 opening. Its closing credits are also unique to this special.
    • An unintentional example of this trope was "Carnival of Monsters", which accidentally aired in Australia with a new arrangement of the theme tune. Executive Meddling had rejected the new theme due to disliking it and it was edited out of the UK broadcast, but copies of the tapes had already been sent to Australia.
    • "The Ark in Space", Tom Baker's second serial, had the normally blue title sequence coloured orange for some reason.
    • Special Edition Cliffhangers appear in some 60s and 70s episodes, like a background of licking flames in the end credits after the first cliffhanger of "The Reign of Terror", in which the Doctor was trapped in a burning building.
    • "The Web of Fear" had footage of the web effect playing over the end credits.
    • The last part of "Meglos" had the ending theme pitched down by about a tone. Possibly this is because the episode was underrunning and so the end titles were stretched out manually.
    • The last part of Earthshock had no ending theme tune at all: the credits scrolled past in silence over a still of the broken remains of Adric's star badge on the floor, given that he had just died.
    • The opening for "Death in Heaven" listed Jenna Coleman's name before Peter Capaldi's and replaced the Doctor's eyes with Clara's, to tie in with her lie to a Cyberman immediately beforehand of being the Doctor herself.
    • Snowflakes appear in the opening for both "Last Christmas" and "The Husbands of River Song".
    • "Before the Flood" features a unique version of the theme music featuring none other than Peter Capaldi accompanying the melody on electric guitar (to tie in with the fourth wall-breaking pre-titles sequence).
  • Jonathan, a minor recurring character, took over the credit sequence of the "Superstar" episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, in which a wish he made turned him into a Black Hole Sue.
    • The musical episode "Once More With Feeling" had a mellowed version of the theme song playing over a shot of the night sky, with each actor's face appearing on the moon as he or she was listed in standard credits order.
    • Similarly, a few episodes changed the Vanity Plate at the end: "Becoming, Part II" features the little monster lamenting, "I need a hug..." in place of his normal "Grr, argh!", there was a Christmas episode in which he wore a Santa hat, "Graduation Day part 2" had him in a mortarboard and in "Hush" he was silent. The above-mentioned OMWF had him sing his grr-argh. Likewise, in the Season 7 documentary-style episode, he sing-songs "We are as GOODDDDSSSS", a Running Gag in the preceding episode. In the series finale episode, he looks directly at the viewer.
  • The Torchwood episode "Adam", in which a memory-altering entity infiltrated the usual team, added shots of the interloper to the usual opening sequence.
  • Star Trek: Enterprise replaced its usual titles, showing a history of exploration, with a version showing a history of conquest for the Mirror Universe episode "In A Mirror, Darkly". It even went far enough to change the music from a hopeful pop song to an ominous, militaristic theme.
  • Friends:
    • The "what if" episode featured a Title Montage of the "what if" versions of the characters. These clips were not seen in the ensuing episode.
    • The first episode after Courteney Cox married David Arquette appended "Arquette" after each cast member's name.
  • Supernatural has made special opening credit for several episodes:
    • 3.08, 'A Very Supernatural Christmas' Instead of the normal opening (which featured an exploding Devil's Trap), this christmas special had an exploding ornament and a Santa hat over the A.
    • 4.05 'Monster Movie' was a parody of classic black and white monster movies, with a black and white opening
    • 4.18 'The Monster At The End of This Book' showed cover art from the series of Supernatural books within a show written by Chuck Shurley as Carver Edlund.
    • 5.08 'Changing Channels' also contained parodies of several stock television shows, and replaced the opening titles with a sitcom-style montage, complete with appropriately-styled theme song and credits (in the Full House font, no less).
    • 6.09 'Clap Your Hands if You Believe' paid homage to The X-Files and redid the opening to play the X-Files theme and show footage of the brothers in the same sort of poses as the orginal X-Files opening did.
    • 6.18 'Frontierland' copied the burning map credits from Bonanza
    • 7.08 'Season Seven, Time for a Wedding!' had an exploding wedding cake with Richard Wagner's Bridal Chorus for music.
    • 7.14 'Plucky Pennywhistle's Magical Menagerie' added an explosion of rainbow sparkles.
    • 9.18 'Meta Fiction' start normally, before abruptly switching the show's name to that of the Big Bad which the episode focuses on.
  • During the "occupation" storyline, Battlestar Galactica replaced images of the fleet with those of New Caprica under Cylon occupation, and used a different title crawl.
  • The "X-Cops" episode of The X-Files used a modified version of the title sequence from Cops.
  • When The Drew Carey Show filmed an episode in China, the "Cleveland Rocks" sequence was replaced with a simple Title-Only Opening with the show's title in English and Chinese (accompanied with the drawing of Drew from the "Moon Over Parma" sequence).
  • Psych is fond of doing this in "theme" episodes, usually remixing or completely changing the theme tune as well. The Christmas special featured the same lyrics and melody as the normal song, but with sleighbells and over-the-top "Christmas-y" instrumentation, while in episode 213, "Lights, Camera...Homicidio", the credits are sung in Spanish.
    • Also, in Season 4's "Bollywood Homicide", the song picks up a distinctly Eastern sound; most of the theme song was sung in Hindi, and the actors' names appeared in Hindi text which then switched to English letters.
    • The sixth season episode "The Amazing Psych-Man & Tap Man, Issue #2" is done with the theme redone in a heroic orchestral style and the opening sequence in comic-book panels, specifically an homage to the opening sequence of The Cape.
  • Done in the two Something Completely Different episodes of NewsRadio. The one set in space had Standardized Space Views instead of the usual Establishing Shots of New York City. The Titanic parody had an Irish folk version of the theme over sepia-tone shots of people salvaging artifacts with the actor's pictures on them.
  • The Just Shoot Me! episode "My Dinner with Woody" had the titles done in the style of the credits of Woody Allen movies (plain white text over black).
  • The Babylon 5 episode "The Corps Is Mother, The Corps Is Father" used a credit sequence with Psi Corps insignia in place of the usual Babylon 5 shield.
  • Red Dwarf sometimes changed the end credit music, for instance the first appearance of Ace Rimmer had the normal Rimmer play out the theme on a hammond organ, whilst Gunmen of the Apocalypse had a wild-west version of the music, and "Waxworld" ended with an Elvis impersonator singing it.
  • The Stargate SG-1 Parody Episode "200" abandons the concept of a minute-long Title Montage used for most of the series' run. When discussing The Movie of the Show Within a Show Wormhole X-Treme!, Cameron Mitchell insists on a "strong opening title sequence", while Martin Lloyd says, "No one does that anymore. You just throw up the title and get on with it." This is immediately followed by a Title-Only Opening for Stargate SG-1.
    • Though this is only borderline "special"; during this part of the show's run, the shorter form was always used when the show was first aired, to leave more time for commercials. However, the full opening had been back for a few episodes.
      • If anything, it was more of a Take That at the Sci-Fi Channel's much-maligned decision to remove the full-length Title Sequence.
  • Jekyll did this for the finale — changing the title of the show itself.
  • One episode of Clarissa Explains It All has her Brother, Ferguson take over the role of Breaking the Fourth Wall. The credits change the name of the series to Ferguson Explains It All.
  • Episode 26 of Monty Python's Flying Circus has a Double Subversion of this: an announcer says the Queen might be watching, but the opening titles will proceed as usual; they don't.
    • Episode 22 replaced the title with a banner reading, "How to Identify Different Parts of the Body".
    • Episode 30 replaced the show's title with Tony M. Nyphot's Flying Risccu, an anagram of the show's title(the opening sketch involved a man who spoke only in anagrams).
    • In a What Could Have Been example, when Executive Meddling threatened to change the show's title, the Pythons threatened that every week they would rename the show to a different Word Salad Title.
  • The Young Ones did this two weeks on the trot with Nasty - done in the style of a Hammer-Horror film - and Time - the first five minites including the titles sequence parodies Dallas.
  • When the '80s to '90s revival of the Mickey Mouse Club did a reunion special with the original '50s version, they mixed footage of the old theme into the newer theme and added the "Donald Duck!" and "High, high, high!" bits that weren't in the later version. You can watch it here (it comes after the Mouseline segment).
  • In a Volume 3 episode of Heroes, the usual title is replaced with an evil-looking 'Villains'.
    • The episode is called "Villains".
  • The Kamen Rider franchise (starting in Kamen Rider Decade), being also a Toei production like Pretty Cure, also promotes its movies by replacing part of its opening sequences with movie scenes. The movie footage is never the same in any two episodes, though. Its sister show Super Sentai, on the other hand, only movie-ifies end titles.
    • Kamen Rider Double also did special openings in a story arc centering on an American Idol-style TV show, replacing half of the standard opening with footage of the theme song's performers (who play judges in those episodes) performing the theme on the "Idol" stage.
  • Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers had a miniseries, Mighty Morphin Alien Rangers, where the the entire world (Rangers included) was under a time-reversal of 10 years, leaving the Rangers as powerless kids (as they didn't have their powers yet back then), so aliens stood in for them until they managed to find the Reset Button (and new powers, since the bad guys managed to destroy the Power Coins while the rangers were unable to fight). It featured a Special Edition Title with a special edition theme song, "Go, Go, Alien Rangers!"
  • One of the later episodes in Season 5 of Lost had, rather than its normal opening sequence with the "LOST" logo flying at the camera, a similar sequence on a starfield, and then the Enterprise flew by to promote the 2009 Star Trek film, also released that year.
  • The final episode of The Prisoner has the same end credits, but the opening credits replace the famous normal opening with a long helicopter shot over the Village, accompanied by a different theme music (actually written as the second half of the theme and only broadcast once before, as part of the incidental music in "Do Not Forsake Me, Oh My Darling"). This was probably because it was the second half of the show's only two-part story. It was also the first time that it was publicly revealed that the show was filmed at Portmeirion, which had previously been kept secret to heighten the in-show mystery of the Village's location - although ironically the Portmeirion location was not used in the last four episodes.
    • The episode "Living In Harmony," a Western Elseworld, replaces the opening with an equivalent sequence in which the character rides into town and turns in his sheriff's badge.
  • Fringe uses this whenever there's a timeshift, flashback or major alteration in reality. As well as the style and images displayed, the list of cutting-edge "Fringe concepts" is often used to suggest the nature of the world.
    • The episodes "Peter" and "Subject 13" mostly take place in The '80s, and looks like as an eighties science program; the credits are revamped with a Synth Pop version of the opening theme, a more "computery" font (Amelia, more specifically), and namecheck 80s "cutting-edge-at-the-times" science (indcluding "personal computing" and "stealth technology")
    • In episodes set in the parallel universe starting with the season two finale "Over There Part 1 and 2", the usual blue background was now red and several of the sciences shown are different. In the eighth episode of Season 3, which is set in both universes, the title sequence goes back and forth between red and blue.
    • The final episode of Season 3, which takes place in a future that probably won't occur (it makes sense in context...mostly), has a gray background and yet again different "cutting-edge" sciences, such as cryptozoology, chaos structure, and (to underscore how terrible the "prime" universe has become in 15 years) hope and water.
    • The 4th season episode "Letter of Transit" takes place in a futuristic fascist dystopia. As well as images of barbed wire walls and faceless masses, the "Fringe concepts" include "Imagination", "Due Process" and "Freedom". This becomes the standard title for the 5th season, set entirely in the Bad Future.
  • The Office episode "The Michael Scott Paper Company", has all other characters removed except for Michael, Pam, and Ryan — the only employees of the Michael Scott Paper Company, filmed in their office only. The post-Super Bowl episode added specific shots of secondary characters in groups of two or three rather than the usual text only credit.
    • In the first episode after Michael Scott's departure, the last shot of the opening montage (Michael adjusting the Dundee Award on his desk) is replaced with a similar shot with his replacement, Deangelo, adjusting one of his kachina dolls.
  • One episode of The State began with David Wain explaining that all of the group's members have different specialties. His is editing, and though he gets less recognition for it, it is surprisingly good at letting you express yourself. Cut to a version of the opening titles in which Wain's credit is repeated over and over and the other cast members are only featured for a fraction of a second.
  • To celebrate its 50th anniversary, two 2006 episodes of As the World Turns used the original opening, with a remake of the original opening theme.
  • At the end of the opening credits for the NCIS episode "Power Down", the lights in DC all go off, and then the video cuts out.
  • For its final episode, Ashes to Ashes skips Alex's narration and the opening titles, instead just showing the words "Ashes To Ashes".
  • The season 4 premiere of Eureka, which involves Time Travel back to 1947, has sepia-toned visuals and replaces the whistling in the standard theme tune with a big band. The Christmas episode in the same season has everything covered in snow, with the whistling replaced by a chorus singing "fa la la".
  • For the two versions of 30 Rock's Live Episode, Jenna (east coast) and Danny (west coast) performed a version of the normally-instrumental Theme Tune With Lyrics at the Saturday Night LiveTGS studio, with the regular opening shown on an adjacent widescreen monitor.
  • Community does this fairly regularly:
  • Done in a minor way in the India-themed episodes of Sanctuary. While the normal title sequence remained unchanged, an Eastern-sounding song was added instead of the usual tune.
  • The Sex and the City movies have a re-orchestrated version of the theme music. Not the only thing that's overdone about the movies.
  • Variation: Mystery Science Theater 3000 sometimes had special commercial bumpers and/or ending credits, when prompted by the movie or one of the host segments. The typical version was to put different music over it, especially "the haunting Torgo theme", but other examples exist.
  • Noels House Party, a production by The BBC featuring Noel Edmonds, did this twice. First of all, on the 15 March 1997 for the Very Special Episode Noel's New York House Party - video here, with the crescendo of the music featuring a view of the Statue of Liberty, and, more bizarrely, the guests' names on-screen - Tyne Daly, William Shatner, David Hasselhoff, Joan Rivers and Barry Manilow. The words "New York" were in "Broadway" font, a font considered naff by some nowadays.

    The second time they did an Outside Broadcast was from Universal Studios in 1998, and the episode was called Noel's House Party at the Movies, with similar titles, an episode which is considered Fanon Discontinuity, if not Canon Discontinuity. However, Word of God is that the man himself would have preferred to have stayed in the UK to develop fresh ideas — mentioned on YouTube.
  • Warehouse 13
    • The first Christmas Episode makes numerous changes to the title sequence (the longer one from the first two seasons).
      • The titles open with a quick burst of "Joy to the World", before moving into the main theme, which now has a sleigh-bell refrain.
      • The crate in the Sphinx picture is giftwrapped.
      • The scarab sheds red-and-gold sparks
      • The next crate is labelled "Fruitcake".
      • The map is of the North Pole.
      • The Establishing Shot of the warehouse is a snow scene in a pop-up book.
      • Toys, cookies and candy canes are propped up on the Farnsworths the cast appears on.
      • The Tesla is replaced by the snowglobe from the episode "Breakdown".
      • It's snowing over the title.
    • The Noir Episode in Season 4 replaces the usual logo with a flickering neon one.
    • They also sometimes have fun with the Idiosyncratic Wipes to the commercials, which normally feature the scenes disappearing into slamming crates or flickering Farnsworths, the Warehouse airlock closing, or occasionally characters being bronzed. The episode "Endless Terror", for example, in which Paracleus goes back to the 15th century to Make Wrong What Once Went Right, featured one based on the high-tech doors of the alternate Warehouse 13 in the new timeline, and a slamming crate against the Renaissance Muslim background of Warehouse 9 when Pete and Myka went back to Set Right What Once Went Wrong.
    • "Savage Seduction", a Trapped in TV Land episode about a Telenovela, has a Spanish guitar version of the theme, and uses the Show Within a Show's Idiosyncratic Wipes (a burst of flame).
  • The Granada TV version of "The Final Problem" (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes) replaced the opening violin tune with a slower, sadder version.
  • The closing credits of the last episode of Blake's 7 were completely silent except for gunshots.
  • The opening to the Soap Opera series Loving had a different, haunting opening during its final major storyline, "The Loving Murders", asking viewers to piece together the clues and figure out who the murderer was.
  • While QI doesn't change its title graphics, it does occasionally alter its theme music. Their annual Christmas Episode incorporates "Jingle Bells" with its regular theme. Episodes 4.5 ("Death") and 7.13 ("Gothic") had moans and other morbid sounds in the background. And episode 6.5 ("France") had an accordion playing the theme tune.
  • The Muppet Show episode starring Loretta Lynn takes place at a railroad station because the usual theater is being fumigated, so the opening takes place at the station.
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.:
    • At the end of the episode "Turn, Turn, Turn" after Ward kills Victoria Hand and the guards to release the Clairvoyant, the HYDRA logo appears instead of the SHIELD logo before The Stinger.
    • "4,722 Hours," a Whole Episode Flashback to Gemma Simmons' marooning on an alien planet, forgoes the usual title sequence, instead showing "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." in a monochrome, "space-y" font over a wide shot of the alien landscape.
  • Occasionally done with the Glee title card, depending on episodes. More complex ones appeared in season four.
    • Those set on Valentine's day have the title colored pink, and the Halloween Episode colored it orange.
    • A Bat Signal version in the superhero-themed episode "Dynamic Duets".
    • Wrapped in blinking Christmas lights for "Glee, Actually".
    • Projected from an old super 8 camera in "Boys (and Girls) on Film", which was movie music themed.
    • Drawn in crayon and with an added "by Brittany" subtitle, referencing Brittany leaving New Directions for MIT, and consequently leaving the show.
    • The season five episode "The Quarterback" replaces the L in the title with a silhouette of Finn Hudson.
  • Person of Interest is fond of these, usually in conjunction with a Wham Episode. In order:
    • Season 2, episode 16, Relevance: Finch's opening narration crashes with a blue screen of death, and lands at a command line.
    • Season 2, episode 21, Zero Day: the opening narration crashes and reboots, then crashes again, complete with Ominous Visual Glitches and THREAT TO SYSTEM dialog box spam.
    • Season 3, episode 16, RAM: a whole flashback episode, it begins with the opening sequence from season 1, which freezes and rewinds to the beginning halfway through.
    • Season 3, episode 17, /: Root co-opts the opening narration from Harold, signifying that she is the character of focus in this episode.
    • Season 4, episode 12, "Control-Alt-Delete": It begins with Finch's usual introduction, but then the screen glitches and Control's voice takes over the narration, and the episode proceeds to follow her viewpoint.
  • Arrow
    • In the episodes "Draw Back Your Bow" and "Broken Hearts" the arrow behind the title is one of Cupid's heart-shaped ones.
    • In the episodes "The Brave and the Bold" and "Legends of Yesterday" (the crossovers with The Flash (2014)) the arrow is replaced by the lightning bolt from the Flash titles.
    • The episode "The Return" (in season 3) uses the distinctly less high-tech looking arrowhead from the season 1 titles.
    • The episodes "Al Sah-Him" and "This is Your Sword", when Oliver joins the League of Assassins have a different "My name is Oliver Queen..." monologue from the other season 3 episodes, beginning "My name was Oliver Queen..."
  • The Flash (2014)
    • In the episodes "Flash vs Arrow" and "Legends of Today" (the crossovers with Arrow) the lightning bolt running through the title is replaced by an arrow, and the one behind it is green instead of yellow.
    • In the first Season Finale, "Fast Enough", the lightning bolt is red and backwards, the symbol of Reverse Flash.
  • Around 1999-2000, when Sesame Street had a shot of Big Bird walking several girls in tutus across the street in its opening sequence, one episode had a chroma-keyed Zoe freeze the theme at that particular point to inform the kids watching that the following episode had ballerinas as its focus (Zoe is a ballerina herself). A bit of a weird example, but it still counts.
  • The second season premiere of Pee-Wee's Playhouse starts out normally, but when we actually get to the playhouse, it looks all messy. After the theme song suddenly stops (by Letting the Air Out of the Band), Pee-Wee then remembers something important:
    Pee-Wee: Oh, I totally forgot! We're redecorating the Playhouse!note  (gives wink; the show then goes to commercial)

  • Talk show host Herman Cain of The Herman Cain Show normally warns any audience members still driving at the start of his show that "there are some nuts on the road", on some holidays, he has warned that there are "even more" nuts on the road.
  • The episode of The Archers in which the long-serving and much-loved Phil Archer died didn't play the show's theme tune at the end, instead fading out to Elgar's "Dream of Gerontius", which Phil had been listening to as he passed away peacefully at home.

    Video Games 
  • Elite Beat Agents does this in a few levels for impact. In "You're the Inspiration" for example, they don't count down or wave their arms, and the title appears over a picture of their client, rather than the agents saying "Hey! Mission!" like always.
    • In "Jumping Jack Flash", they only have the countdown, due to it being a continuation of the last level.
    • The Japanese predecessor to Elite Beat Agents (Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan) has a few of these as well. In the original, "Over The Distance" had a much quieter call for help and had their target running down the stairs to Heaven instead of the more Hot-Blooded regaining of spirit and countdown. In the sequel, "Believe" and "Sekai wa Sore wo Ai to Yobun da ze" are similar to "You're The Inspiration" and "Jumping Jack Flash", respectively.

    Web Animation 

    Web Original 
  • The webseries Awesome Video Games once had their opening sequence taken over by R.O.B. Yes, that R.O.B.
  • On anniversaries or other milestone occasions, Atop the Fourth Wall does an extended opening or closing sequence with the full theme song and covers of each and every comic Linkara has reviewed up to that date.
  • I Rate the 80's becomes I Rate the 70's and adopts a St. Patrick's Day theme in the Uncle O'Grimacey episode.
  • When the Game Grumps interview Grant Kirkhope under the name "Guest Grumps", the intro is changed to match, along with the theme being replaced with an arrangement by Kirkhope and the "HEY I'M GRUMP!" "I'M NOT SO GRUMP!" exchange being altered as such:
    Arin: Heydoyouwanttodothatthingwherehecomesonourshow?
    Jon: NO!
    Both: And this is Guest Grumps!
    • Both it and its sister show Steam Train adopted Halloween-themed intros in the last week of October 2013.
    Arin: (dressed as Frankenstein's monster) Hey I'm ghoul!
    Danny: (dressed as a vampire) Bleeeeh!
    Both: And we're the Ghoul Grumps!
    (Backmasked quote that changes for every episode)
    Danny: (as a zombie) We bought too many brains!
    Ross: (unintelligibly, due to his dislocated jaw) Now we gotta eat them all...
    (lightning followed by a scream)
    • On the week of Christmas 2013, they both had Christmas-themed intros.
    Arin: (dressed as a elf) I wrap stuff!
    Danny: (dressed as Santa Claus) I deliver that stuff!
    Both: Naughty or nice, it's the Jingle Grumps!
    (In the tune of "Jingle Bells")
    Arin and Ross: (dressed as Rudolph and a snowman respectively) Playing lots of games
    With Christmas type names
    Instead of a train...
    We're on a Steam Sleigh! Choo! Choo! Choo!
    • On Valentine's Day 2014, they both had Valentine-themed intros.
    Arin: Hey I'm Grumps! (Suzy kisses him) I'm not so Grump...
    Arin and Suzy: And this is Date Grumps!
    Danny: We don't have any dames!
    Barry: Now it's another Friday...
    Danny: SO ALL ABOARD THE- (music and singing stops) Ugh, fuck it. We're single on Valentine's Day.
    • On St. Patrick's Day 2014, only Stream Train episodes were put up featuring Ross and Barry playing games while being drunk.
    Barry: (slured) We bought too many beerz!
    Ross: (also slured) Now I gotta drink them all!
    Both: SO ALL ABOARD THE STOUT TRAIN! (Ross burps)
    Barry: I love you, man.

  • In Episode 19B of Welcome to Night Vale the regular theme song is replaced by a pleasant guitar tune which is the theme song for the Desert Bluffs community radio channel. It returns in Episodes 47 and 48 when StrexCorp takes over Night Vale and assimilates it into the 'Greater Desert Bluffs Metropolitan Area'. All three shows are hosted by Kevin.
  • The Game Show Reviewer: In the Family Feud episode it's revealed that Cmd. Sara Stormer is a game show reviewer and is out to destroy the Game Show Reviewer to be the only Game Show Reviewer. This is complete with her own title sequence were she calls the Game Show Reviewer "a renegade."

    Western Animation 
  • The "international" episode of Animaniacs has the theme song and opening entirely in French. Most of the rest of the episode is in English (albeit with internationally-themed segments), except for the short "Les Boutons et le Ballon" (which is presented in French with English subtitles, which are unfortunately missing from the DVD release).
    • The "Christmas" episode of Animaniacs has the regular credits but with snow.
  • The "Pinky and the Brain and Larry" episode of Pinky and the Brain opened with Rob Paulsen squeezing in "And Larry" or similar after every line of the theme song, as in "One is a genius; the other's insane" "(The other one's Larry!)"
    • Also the Christmas Special had snow like the Animaniacs example above, but also changed the lyrics so that they were Christmas related.
    By the dawn of Christmas day, their plot shall be unfurled
    They'll control the Earth, and bring JOY TO THE WORLD!
  • Histeria! had a few episodes with unique opening sequences used just for that episode.
    • Histeria! probably had more opening sequences than any other show at the time.
  • The Christmas episode of Tiny Toon Adventures had bells in the background and some of the opening lyrics changed to fit the Christmas theme. They also had lyrics fitting the themes for the openings of their Halloween and Spring Break Episodes, and the same was for Tiny Toon Adventures: How I Spent My Vacation, including one at the end about summer vacation being over and school back in session.
  • "The Dabba Don", an episode of Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law wherein Fred Flintstone is accused of racketeering, has a title sequence that combines the famous The Flintstones title with a black and white montage and a theme song parody of The Sopranos opening.
  • The Simpsons replaces its title sequence for every "Treehouse of Horror" Halloween episode.
    • Also, they had Grampa rambling over the credits (until the logo at the end says "shh") and Homer moaning about being poor, complaining about the rich people in the credits as they went on (unfortunately, the latter is replaced with the standard credits audio in syndication).
    • The Simpsons Movie has Ralph Wiggum pop up on the 20th Century Fox logo and go "Da Da Da DAAA!" along with the music.
      • "He Loves to Fly and He D'ohs", the first episode that aired after the release of movie, featured the town still cleaning up after the various disasters from the movie.
    • The recent Christmas episodes had the entire opening Christmas-themed. The odd thing is, they removed Bleeding Gums Murphy in this version, but kept the equally-deceased Maude Flanders.
    • The episode "24 Minutes" had the opening parody that of 24.
    • The episode "You Kent Always Say What You Want" just ran a Simpsons short from the Tracy Ullman era in place of the opening.
    • The episode "To Surveil with Love" replaced the opening with a remix of part of Ke$ha's "TiK ToK".
  • Minor example: In the Cold Opening of a Kim Possible episode called "The Ron Factor", the Global Justice network tells Kim that they want to study her sidekick, Ron. Kim expresses extreme disbelief (as she strongly believes herself, as opposed to Ron, to be the main success of their missions), then interrupts the title sequence to express it again. "No seriously, you want Ron?" At the interruption, the Theme Tune is slightly faded down, and Kim actually pushes the normal montage out of the way to lodge her complaint.
  • A few episodes of Hey Arnold! do not play out their regular title sequence. Namely, "Arnold's Christmas", "Arnold's Thanksgiving", "Parents Day" and "Dino Checks Out".
  • Teen Titans uses a Japanese version of its theme songs as cue for its especially bizarre filler episodes. In Episode 24, "Fractured", the opening sequence is sung in Japanese by Larry, the tiny version of Robin from another dimension, and features Larry in the sequence. Later, in A Day in the Limelight episode for the Hive 5, Jinx interrupts the song to tag the screen with a honeycomb and say, "We're the Hive 5, and this is our show now!"
  • The Christmas Episodes of SpongeBob SquarePants had the normal theme, but sung in high, angelic voices with jingle bells, and the usual title logo replaced with a title card showing SpongeBob decorating a Christmas three.
    • The episode "What Ever Happened to SpongeBob?" replaced "SpongeBob SquarePants" in the theme with "WhoBob WhatPants".
    • "Truth or Square" has a special stop-motion opening, with the theme song performed by Cee-Lo Green.
  • Another show with a special title for Christmas was Codename: Kids Next Door's "Operation N.A.U.G.H.T.Y.", with the normally-white background turned green, snow falling over the titles, and the title decorated by Christmas lights (see here). That episode also had a teaser. Only "Operation E.N.D." and "Operation K.N.O.T." had a Cold Opening before this, and those were much shorter than the one in "N.A.U.G.H.T.Y.".
  • As a Mind Screw, the producers of The Venture Bros. did the opening to the season 2 premiere... without the titular brothers. Source.
    • The first episode of the third season was all about the villains, and thus the credits featured their silhouettes in place of the expected titular brothers.
  • The Backyardigans had these for both two-parters. For the first one, "International Super Spy" (parodying the James Bond movies), there was an opening in the style of the episode rather than the regular one. For the second, "Tale of the Mighty Knights", the theme song is done in the style of '70s hard rock.
  • The 1962 Looney Tunes short "Now Hear This" replaced the usual WB shield in concentric circles with abstract spinning lines and a jarring "modern" version of the theme song, a fittingly unnerving opening for a truly deranged cartoon. A couple of years later, when WB shut down their animation studio and started farming Looney Tunes out to other studios, this became the standard opening for what is generally acknowledged as WB's Dork Age.
    • These titles got their own Special Edition on 1968's "Norman Normal". Instead of using the then-standard theme music and Looney Tunes or Merrie Melodies branding, it was dubbed a "Cartoon Special" and had its own theme song playing over the opening and closing animation.
  • The original Rugrats Christmas episode used a Christmas-based remix of the title theme.
  • Not that noticeable, but the 10th anniversary special of The Powerpuff Girls had the entire intro remade in Flash animation (which was used to make the special).
    • Also, the Musical Episode didn't have any opening but the show's title and "Documentary" began with the title of said in-universe documentary.
  • A Recess two-parter has Lawson form his own group who manage to outsmart T.J.'s good deeds in every way possible, to the extent they end up being forgotten by the playground and are driven into obscurity. The second part opens with a cut-down version for the opening titles, only for Lawson to yell "Hold it!" A modified version of the titles then plays out, with Lawson's group replacing T.J,'s (plus, Miss Finster ends up standing without Randall and the clock numbers are all jumbled up for whatever reason).
  • Both Daria made-for-TV movies featured special titles.
    • And in the Musical Episode, the theme song was altered to sound more like it belonged in a musical production.
  • The Halloween Special of What's New, Scooby-Doo? cut the opening credits altogether and instead showed the words A Scooby Doo Halloween in large letters over the opening scene as a Title-Only Opening.
  • The early full-CGI series ReBoot had special titles for several episodes.
  • Phineas And Ferb Christmas Vacation had the Expository Theme Tune retooled to be about a different vacation, with Phineas and Ferb doing Christmassy or wintery things. And it was sung by Victorian carolers.
    Carolers: As you can see, there's a whole lot of stuff to do before school starts next year,
    So stick with us 'cause Phineas and Ferb are bringing you Christmas cheer!
    Candace: Mom! Phineas and Ferb are making a Christmas special!
    • "Terrifying Tri-State Trilogy of Terror", as a Halloween special, made a couple of replacements: "something that doesn't exist" -> goblin next to a tombstone, and the monkey that was receiving a shower was a skeleton.
  • The Futurama episodes "Mars University", "Bender Should Not Be Allowed on Television", and "Spanish Fry" all have different versions of the Theme Tune playing.
  • The Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "Joker: The Vile and The Villainous" has The Joker as the main character, and told about his team-up with another supervillain to fight Batman. Hence, the opening animation was changed to depict the Joker doing things that Batman usually does in the opening, with "HA HA HA" graffiti liberally applied to the usual text walls. The short stinger before the opening credits was about Joker helping another supervillain instead of Batman helping a superhero.
  • The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes!:
    • The intro to the episode "New Avengers" starts out like that used during the rest of the second season, until the time comes for all the Avengers to pose together. Instead, we see Captain America's shield fly across the screen, cutting to the New Avengers posing together.
    • "The Ballad of Beta Ray Bill" does not include any Avengers, except for Thor. When the time comes in this episode's title sequence for the team to gather, lightning strikes, revealing a scene of Thor by himself.
  • Adventure Time:
    • The Gender Flip AU episodes starring Fionna and Cake have every character who appears in the opening replaced by their gender-swapped counterpart. The singer of the theme song is also changed from a male to a female.
    • The guest-animator episodes "A Glitch Is a Glitch" and "Food Chain" have the opening redone by the guest animator.
    • For the "Stakes" series of episodes, the title sequence is redone with a focus on Marceline and Princess Bubblegum instead of Finn and Jake.
  • Family Guy was originally going to have one of these for every episode, but the plans fell through. However, there were some special openings.
    Peter: Hey, Stewie. (looks down) Who the hell is that?
    • "Whistle While Your Wife Works" had the theme song interrupted when Peter falls and crushes one of the dancers.
    • "Brian Griffin's House of Payne" opens with a Star Wars parody.
    • The three Star Wars parodies, "And Then There Were Fewer" and "Brian and Stewie" don't have any opening.
    • "Family Goy" opens with a parody of the opening to Super Friends.
    • "Livin' on a Prayer" has a parody of the opening to Little House on the Prairie.
    • "Lottery Fever" has one of the dancers coming to Peter announcing she's pregnant, but Peter orders security to throw her out.
    • "Space Cadet" has a parody of the opening to Monty Python's Flying Circus.
    • "Bigfat" parodies the opening to King of the Hill.
    • "Total Recall" parodies the opening to Modern Family.
    • "He's Bla-ack", which commemorated Cleveland's return to the show, had the opening titles interrupted by Cleveland showing up in the middle to take Mort's place in the chorus line.
  • American Dad!
    • "Office Spaceman" ends the opening sequence early to have Stan see a picture of Roger on the front page of the paper, followed by Stan going inside and scolding him.
    • "Bullocks to Stan", "Stan of Arabia", "Haylias", "Tearjerker", "100 A.D.", "Hot Water", "Hurricane!", "For Black Eyes Only" and "Blood Crieth Unto Heaven" don't have the standard opening.
    • "Flirting With Disaster" has the opening replaced by a parody of the opening to The Office.
    • "A Pinata Named Desire" and "Lost in Space" have the opening shortened.
  • The Fish Hooks episode "Pool Party Panic" features a special opening depicting the characters as humans, with the title changed to Friend Hooks.
  • South Park
    • "Goth Kids 3: Dawn of the Posers" has the standard opening replaced by a gloomier version starring the Goth Kids.
    • "Spookyfish" opens with an announcer saying the episode will be presented in "Spooky Vision", followed by a special Halloween version of the theme song.
    • "Starvin' Marvin in Space" and "Mr. Hankey's Christmas Classics" don't have the theme song.
    • "A Song of Ass and Fire" has the theme song replaced by an epic Game of Thrones-esque theme, with the kids dressed in their medieval outfits. The following episode "Titties and Dragons" has the same opening, but with the "wiener" song from the previous episode.
  • Three of the Paul Rudish Mickey Mouse shorts have the title read "Minnie Mouse" instead of "Mickey Mouse", as "Eau de Minnie", "Clogged", and "Doggone Biscuits". both have Minnie as the main character, with Mickey Demoted to Extra in the first and third and nowhere to be seen in the second.
    • "Down the Hatch" has the normal end credits theme replaced by Donald singing "Miracles from Molecules" from the old Disneyland attraction Adventure Thru Inner Space.
  • "Jail Break", the Season Finale for the first season of Steven Universe, replaces the normal laundry/piano riff title card with an eerie panorama of space, which makes sense since the episode starts with Steven imprisoned inside Peridot's hand-ship.
    • The following episode "Full Disclosure" has the title card featuring the remains of Peridot's hand-ship scattered along the beach background.
    • The title cards for "Steven the Sword Fighter:, "The Test" and "Story for Steven", while having the same calm piano riff, has it raining over the title card with no laundry hanging from the clothesline.
  • The Clarence episode "Goldfish Follies" has the theme song appear sepia-toned with a old-timey film effect, and has the theme song sung to a ragtime beat.
  • The Sanjay and Craig episode "A Tail of Two Slithers" features Craig and his long-lost brother Ronny lying in the pen in the pet store rather than just Craig alone.
  • The Transformers Rescue Bots Musical Episode "I Have Heard the Robots Singing" has Follow the Bouncing Ball lyrics below with Blades' head in place of the ball.
  • Batman: The Animated Series has title cards for all of its episodes except for three—"The Laughing Fish" and "The Demon's Quest" two-parter open with still-shots (or a pan) of the episode title and writer/director credits in the episode itself.
  • Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated
    • "Beware the Beasts from Below", "The Night the Clown Cried" and "The House of the Nightmare Witch" don't have the standard opening title.
    • The Series Finale "Come Undone" has the normal credits background replaced by a background based on the Mystery Machine's paint job.
  • The Jem episode "The Day the Music Died" starts out normally at first, but then Kimber interrupts accompanied by "film breaking" scenes before appearing and telling the viewers that "there won't be a story today", going on to explain that Jerrica/Jem has disappeared, after which the episode begins.
  • The first part of the Grand Finale of Gravity Falls, "Weirdmageddon", starts with Bill Cipher entering physical space and unleashing a "weirdmageddon" upon the town. This is complete with a warped, demented version of the theme song where Bill is inserted into many of the familiar scenes, and the roll call scenes of Dipper, Mabel, and Stan are replaced with parodies of them with his minions 8 Ball, Teeth, Keyhole and Hectorgon take the place of Dipper, Mabel and Stan. To make matters worse, the show is credited as being "Created by Bill Cipher". The Dipper, Mabel, and Stan scenes only return in the final part, when they've been reunited.
  • Bojack Horseman: When Bojack's old flame Charlotte tells him casually that she's married with a family, an 80's sitcom theme about it plays instead of the show's normal opening.

Alternative Title(s): Special Edition Theme Song