Title Sequence

24 03 2009

I thought long and hard about what kind of title sequences I like, but the ones that came to mind were mostly animation like The Incredibles, Juno or Sweeney Todd (gruesome, yet fascinating to watch blood). However, I wanted to write about an opening sequence that was not animation, yet was masterfully photographed with powerful imagery. Hence, I chose the opening title of the TV show Six Feet Under

With the title of the show, it is pretty obvious what its about. The sequence matches in both music and the shots of the last rites of a person as he/she is prepared for the funeral and subsequent burial. The close-up of washing hands and the wheel of the stretcher as it takes the dead body away are especially picturesque. There is no grimy, ugly-ness to the whole process. It is shown with bright lights and blue skies. They could have used darker motifs and a dreary color palette to demonstrate death, but they chose not to.

This, we learn as the show starts, is because the concentration is not death itself, but a dysfunctional family who owns a funeral home. As the show’s website states: “”When death is your business, what is your life? For the Fisher family, the world outside of their family-owned funeral home continues to be at least as challenging as–and far less predictable than–the one inside. From Oscar(R)-winning screenwriter Alan Ball comes this breakout series that takes a darkly comic look at members of a dysfunctional L.A. family that runs a funeral business.”