The cold open as been used by numerous TV series over the years, both dramas and comedies. Having a scene before the opening title sequence drops the audience into the show before the plot of the episode has been established.
First popping up in the late 1950s, the practice wasn't in wide use, yet, but there were some that had cold opens. Primarily, it was dramas but by the mid 1960s many TV shows in a variety of genres were widely using the technique. It went worldwide when Lew Grade's work in American TV forced him to use cold opens before returning to the UK with them in the 1970s.
One modern day TV producer who really seems to love cold opens is Michael Schur who has incorporated them into almost every series he's worked on. While The Office and Parks and Recreation have some incredibly epic cold opens, Brooklyn Nine-Nine seems to have perfected the art form.
The story of a group of detectives in the fictional 99th Precinct in Brooklyn has often taken absurdity to new levels. But some of the craziest things that happen in the series go down in the cold opens, and there have been some ridiculous ones.
Ian Goodwillie is a freelance writer based out of Saskatoon, SK, Canada. He has a BA in English Literature from the University of Saskatchewan and completed the Writing Program at Vancouver Film School. More importantly, Ian is also a wrestling fan, comic book reader, video game player and photographer. He loves to write and writes about what he loves. Ian's also an unrepentant, unapologetic Cougar Town fan, a show he will defend until the day he dies.