‘Jessica Jones’ Opening Sequence Gets Into Our Heads

The much anticipated premiere of the first season of ‘Jessica Jones’ is about to make it’s Netflix debut. While we wait, the gracious people behind the show have released the opening credits for our viewing pleasure.

A debut of the Jessica Jones trailer is the perfect way to prepare us for our binge watching appetites. And while it’s sure to be an up and down thirteen hour sprint to the end, a show always starts with the opening credits.

I am the person that the opening credit sequence was made for. I love when they tell a story or explain the reasons behind a change. The first two seasons of The Walking Dead’s opening is a little more heavy handed than in future seasons. And the credits really show how far the characters have come.

In its second season The Leftovers has gone from the eerie opening that was full of sadness and grief to something more upbeat complete with colors and a song that uses the opportunity to literally ‘Let the Mystery Be’. And these credits show in the tone of Season 2. The grief over the departures is still palpable, but life is moving forward.

Supernatural keeps the opening short but intense. The title card flashes across the screen, taking on whatever the major theme of that particular season is.

Orphan Black‘s opening perfectly encapsulates the most important aspects of the show including its underlying discussion about female autonomy while also paying perfect homage to the lead, Tatiana Maslany.

And then of course there are the iconic opening credits like Doctor Who and Game of Thrones. You don’t just recognize them when you hear them, you actively participate by singing along to the music. In fact I’m so sure that you’re hearing those themes right now that to include a video would completely detract from the very personal excitement we all experience when those particular shows start up and we prepare for whatever a new episode may have in store.

Daredevil was Netflix’s foray into Marvel and those opening credits gave an excellent look at the origin tale of Matt Murdoch from Hell’s Kitchen vigilante to masked Avenger using vague images with the consistency of dripping blood and red cloth, showing us that circumstances created the need for a superhero.

So I expected the same perfectionism with the opening credits for Jessica Jones. Instead, I was rewarded with so much more. A jazzy tune, the kind you’d hear in a dark whiskey bar, plays as shades of purple fade onto the screen.

As much as I’m tempted to take a play by play focus on the trailer, the clip’s strongest feature is not in the visuals but in the way it gets into your head. Viewers see the figure of Jessica walking down the street alone from the point of view of the driver’s seat of a car. For one minute and eight seconds you don’t even realize what you’re feeling until it ends, and you click the replay button.

The trailer offers multiple perspectives in exactly the way we perceive the show – from the outside. This perspective is gorgeous because as an audience we’re taking in the experience, but then there’s also the obvious point that someone is watching Jessica. Something is seeing what we’re seeing and the camera angle skews the perspective in an absolutely magical way. Who you trust when everyone exists in the shadows? Who is controlling us? It manipulates you just enough that you want it to end so you see what comes after.  However, as the music takes a higher more urgent turn we learn that we have been seeing what Jessica sees. We’ve been inside her mind. And that pushes so many more questions that will only be answered when the episodes finally become available on Netflix

Lucky for us, the wait is almost over! And while I’m sure that by the end we’ll have an entirely different understanding of that opening sequence (and maybe even be sick of seeing it by episode 13), it’s also too late to turn back now. We’ve already been told to watch it all.

David Tennant as Kilgrave in Jessica Jones Photo: Netflix Gif: superjessicajones via Tumblr

Jessica Jones starts streaming on Netflix on Nov 20th