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1st Logo (1974-1977)
Nicknames: "Cheesy Word Circle", "Mismatched Circle"
Logo: We see the words "AN ABC TELEVISION STUDIOS PRODUCTION" in an outlined pink Peignot font (similar to the one used on Viacom's first production logo around this time) over a black background. Then, the words become curved, and begin to rotate in a circular motion, as though they are about to circle around the screen's middle. However, the exact same phrase in the exact same font, outlined, is seen going across the screen in an outward curve, as if it was the other half of the circle. Meanwhile, the phrase is seen going back to its original position, and when the logo stops, it is exactly in the same position.
Variant: From 1975-1977, it's only a still shot.
FX/SFX: The words "circling"; all 2D Scanimation effects.
Cheesy Factor: The logo itself is just text, the final result also looks like something out of a silent movie, why not have something more creative? Not only that, the effects are ugly.
- A Christmas-like orchestral tune, complete with bells.
- The still version uses a similar, yet different tune.
Availability: Extremely rare.
Scare Factor: Low to medium, due to the in-your-face animation of the words circling. None for the still version.
2nd Logo (1977-1978)
Nicknames: "Constellation", "ABC in Space"
Logo: On a space background, we see a 3D transparent ABC logo, at an angle. The logo then turns to face us and comes closer to the camera, ending up with "abc" in neon blue, and the circle in neon pink. Below, the neon-red text "television studios" in the same font as the "abc" letters, pans from the right.
FX/SFX: The ABC logo flying and rotating, the "television studios" panning. The space background and panning effects. This was another early example of combining cel animation and motion-control camera tricks, which is usually impressive (and even looks good on the screenshot)...
Cheesy Factor: ...but most surviving prints are in such bad shape that it looks more like two 2D ABC logos merging together, ruining the 3D effect.
Music/Sounds: Originally silent. However, there was also a version in early 1978 with a disco-like tune (the tune was actually a snippet of ABC's promo tune from the late '70s, "Still the One!", which came from an actual song).
Availability: Ultra rare.
Scare Factor: Low to medium, due to the overly cheesy FX and dramatic music. None without any music.
3rd Logo (1978-1982)
Nickname: "Multicolored Circles"
Logo: Against a black background, six multicolored circles scroll into the near-top of the screen while five multicolored circles scroll into the screen below them. Once the two are aligned in the middle, they become the orange letters "TELEVISION STUDIOS", in a font reminiscent of the Terminator film title. The ABC logo then drops from the top of the screen and lands on the first "I" in "TELEVISION".
FX/SFX: The circles moving, and forming of the letters. It's all cel animation...
Cheesy Factor: ...which is cheap for 1978. It looks (and sounds) as though it was made in the 1960s.
Music/Sounds: A dramatic fanfare with an ending similar to Paramount Television's 1969 "Closet Killer" music.
Availability: Ultra rare.
Scare Factor: Low to medium. The dramatic music, usually after a dramatic theme, may unnerve some people.
4th Logo (1982)
Nicknames: "The Shining", "ABC Shining"
Logo: On a blue background, we see the stacked words:
in the same crystal lettering as used in "ABC Motion Pictures" logo, zoom-in upward from the bottom of the screen. The logo "shines".
FX/SFX: The words zooming, and the logo "shining".
Cheesy Factor: Simple animation.
Scare Factor: Low.
5th Logo (1982-1987)
Nicknames: "The Crystals", "ABC: The Crystal Shards"
Logo: On a black background, we see some moving shots of sparkling transparent crystals. Then a crystal "VI" slowly zooms backwards, and more letters are revealed. Finally, when the words...
all appear in sparkling crystal, the logo stops in the middle of the screen.
Trivia: The logo was designed by Universal Hartland Visual Effects in North Hollywood, which also created special effects work for the original Battlestar Galactica series. According to studio employee Kenneth A. Larson:"The letters were made from highly polished faceted jewel like glass crystal. They were glued to a plate of glass. No one know how to attach them without bubbles showing. A fellow employee came up with a solution and this logo was shot on a Hartland stage".
FX/SFX: The sparkling crystals and company name zooming backward are very nice live-action shots.
Music/Sounds: A lush synthesized orchestral fanfare with twinkles. From 1982-1983, it was silent.
Scare Factor: Depending on the logo variant:
- Minimal. The music is quite soothing.
- None for the silent variant.
6th Logo (1987-2000)
Nicknames: "ABC Sunburst", "ABC Sunrise"
Logo: On a very dark brown background, we see a bright light with the words "television studios" in the ABC "tube" font zooming out. The ABC logo, cut in half, rises from the light and shines brighter, zooming out with "television studios" below.
Variant: Starting in 1996, the ABC copyright stamp "(C) [YEAR] American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved" fades-in below in white shadow lettering.
FX/SFX: The "ABC television studios" zooming.
- Originally, an ethereal synth choir fanfare.
- From 1995 until 2000, a cheerful synth piano tune is used.
Scare Factor: Depends on the logo variant:
- 1987-1995: Low. The music may scare you.
- 1995-2000: None, being less scary than before.
7th Logo (2000-2002)
Nicknames: "The ABC Circle", "Yellow ABC", "Modern ABC"
Logo: Over a black background, we see several yellow circles and shapes zooming forth, eventually segueing into a yellow ABC logo zooming in. The text "Television Studios" appears below, along with a copyright stamp.
Trivia: This was based off the on-air bumpers that ABC had at the time.
Variant: From 2001-2002, the "Television Studios" text was replaced with "Studios".
FX/SFX: The yellow circles zooming.
Music/Sounds: A cycle of 2 record scratches, followed by a hip-hop version of the 4-note ABC jingle.
Scare Factor: None.
8th Logo (2002-2003)
Nickname: "Color Ripples"
Logo: It's a shortened version of a 2002 ABC bumper, only it cuts to when the text "ABC" appears on a yellow background, and "Studios" and a copyright stamp appears below the ABC logo as the background turns green.
FX/SFX: Same as the 2002 ABC bumper.
Music/Sounds: A 4-note dramatic orchestral tune based on the ABC jingle. In 2002, it's the last 3 notes of the ABC bumper this was adapted from.
Scare Factor: Low to medium. The theme can throw some off guard.