Sunday, July 26, 2015

Whatever happened to...Opening "Teaser" Trailers?

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century - "Space Vampire"
From the mid-70's towards the end of the '80's, most one-hour dramas on U.S. television opened with a "teaser" trailer showing a quick succession of highlights from the upcoming episode.  Stand-alone shows (non-serial dramas) and even prime-time soaps like Dallas opened with "teasers".  These "teasers" usually ranged in length from 30 seconds to 1 minute.  When a show made it to syndication, it was always a bit of a letdown to see that the "teaser" had been removed, no doubt to make room for commercials.  When television shows began being released on DVD in the early 2000's, it was great to see many long-gone "teasers" restored - often being seen again for the first time in decades.  Also - sometimes inexplicably - shows that HAD "teasers" originally but they were not included on the subsequent DVD releases - I'm looking at you Greatest American Hero and Max Headroom - where did the "teaser" trailers for these great shows disappear to?

One of the better aspects of Ron Moore's "re-imagined" Battlestar Galactica (2004 - 2009) was the use of a "teaser" trailer at the **end** of the opening credits - a fast clip of upcoming scenes were shown without dialogue - very similar to the eclectric !This Episode! trailers that appeared during the opening title sequence of the first Season of Space: 1999.

Would it be too much of a throwback if a new sci-fi show premiered in the 21st Century - and each episode opened with a "teaser"?  What do you think - too retro?  Maybe so, but I would love it if opening "teaser" trailers made a comeback.

Below are 3 all-time great opening "teasers" that are well-worth viewing -
1)  Buck Rogers in the 25th Century - "Space Vampire"
2)  Battlestar Galactica - "Fire in Space"
3)  Voyagers! - "Jack's Back"
All 3 of these great classic TV shows were produced by Universal Studios - either by coincidence or design, the most memorable opening "teasers" were produced by Universal!  :-)


Buck Rogers in the 25th Century
- "Space Vampire"

 Battlestar Galactica - "Fire in Space"

Voyagers! - "Jack's Back"

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, Battlestar Galactica and Voyagers! are copyright (c) and trademark NBC / Universal.