Season premiere

Season premiere

In television, a season première refers to the first episode of a new television season for a series that has been renewed.

In North America, a given show's season première often airs in September or October, after several months of reruns.


A season première usually has one or more of the following characteristics:

* Resolutions to cliffhangers and other plots left unresolved in the previous season's season finale.
* Introductions of new story lines. Some stock examples might include a character having a new job (or losing one), a character gets a new love interest (or an existing relationship either ends or enters a new phase), children entering a new school, the core group of characters move to a new home (or hangout, etc.) ... and the list goes on.:Often, one or more of these stories will introduce a fundamental change to a particular show. An example is "Archie Bunker's Place", where Archie's wife, Edith, died and the characters deal with her death. Subsequent episodes had Archie adjusting to life as a widower and re-entering the dating scene.
* One-up episodes with plots or special guest stars meant to entice viewers. Some shows feature a special guest star (e.g., Don Drysdale on a season première episode of "The Brady Bunch" or Jerry Seinfeld on a season premiere of "30 Rock"); others might have multi-part "adventures," such as the Bradys' family vacations to Grand Canyon and Hawaii.
* A change in central setting or, to a lesser extent, remodeling of the setting.
* Introductions of new characters, frequently to boost the ratings of a veteran show.
* In the case of game shows, the introduction of new (or revised) rules, new bonus games, rules concerning prizes (such as what can be won), and/or new models.
* The show airing at a new day and/or timeslot, either to improve sagging ratings or - if the ratings are high - to anchor a line-up of new and veteran programs.

New title sequence

Very frequently the title sequence will be changed in some way for the season première (and subsequently, be used for all episodes airing in that particular season). Often, this is done to give the show a fresh appearance, such as the use of new clips or images, a new logo and possibly a rescored theme.

The opening sequence also will change to delete references to departed characters and include new ones.

When a long-running series enters syndication, the opening sequence can help fans - and even less sophisticated viewers - distinguish one season from another.

Evaluating the changes

A season première often allows viewers an opportunity to evaluate the changes to a given show and determine if he/she wants to continue to watch the show.

The outcome is often mixed. Sometimes, fans like what they see and a show may gain new fans. However, other loyal viewers may see these actions as changing for the worse what made them fans of the show in the first place (or, at the very least, changing the original premise of the show) and thus opine the show has "jumped the shark."

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