United Media Productions

From Audiovisual Identity Database

Credits
Descriptions by
Eddie Hawkins

Editions by
mr3urious

1st Logo (1980-1985)

Logo: On a white background, we see a half red, half blue square with a lowercase "u" cut-out of it. "United Media Productions" in red, is displayed below, along with the byline "A Scripps-Howard Company" below it in blue.

Technique: None.

Music/Sounds: Just the end theme of the show.

Availability: Seen on Garfield on the Town and Garfield in the Rough. The DVD of the former, however, may not keep the logo.

2nd Logo (October 30, 1985-May 8, 1987)

Logo: On a blue background, we see a large white line draw itself across the screen at the bottom. As the line ends, we start to zoom out as lines go upward to form something that resembles the Washington Monument. As we zoom out, we see that the blue background is a square on a silver, blue, or black background with the words "SCRIPPS HOWARD" (in a embossed effect) in the company's then-corporate typeface Glypha, repeating over and over again. The top of the lighthouse then fills in and sends lines out in three directions (top diagonal, middle horizontal, downward diagonal) on both sides and make it resemble a stylized drawing of a lighthouse shining it's light. As a matter of fact, it's the famous Scripps-Howard lighthouse, the logo of Scripps-Howard, who owned United Media at the time. The finished logo finishes zooming out to show the words "UNITED MEDIA PRODUCTIONS", in all caps and the same typeface as the Scripps Howard logo, underneath.

Variant: There is a variant in which the logo is filmed and tinted. It's tinted red on Garfield in Paradise and blue on Garfield Goes Hollywood.

Technique: The lighthouse forming and the zoom-out.

Music/Sounds: Silence or the end theme. Garfield's Halloween Adventure has a quaint 4-note synth tune (in which was done on the Roland JX-8P synthesizer), later airings in the late '90s on CBS used a generic theme due to split screen credits.

Availability: Seen on Garfield's Halloween Adventure (a.k.a. Garfield in Disguise), and on Garfield Goes Hollywood and some other Garfield specials. It is retained on Pluto TV and on all VHS and DVD releases. Also seen in the 1985 TV movie Robotman & Friends.

Legacy: A clever utilization of the parent company's logo, simple but effective animation. Since the synth theme was only used on Garfield's Halloween Adventure, it may be an intentionally scary logo. Also, notice that the "A" in "MEDIA" is in CGI.

3rd Logo (January 25, 1999-July 25, 2000)

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Logo: On a white background, we see the then-current logo for United Media. It consists of a black half-moon shape, the outline of which continues going counter-clockwise until stopping halfway through, forming a symmetrical white half-moon shape mirroring it to form a circle. "United" and "Media" are respectively put over the white and black halves. Below is the url "WWW.DILBERT.COM"

Technique: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Can be seen on the short-lived Dilbert TV show, which is on Crackle with the logo intact.

Legacy: A mediocre bordering on bad logo, and not a good one to end the company on. Not only is it little more than their actual logo still, but the logo comes and goes VERY fast, not helped by the fact its in-between two different ones (as well as the bombastic fanfare of the Columbia TriStar Television boxes). It can barely be taken in upon first viewing.

Final Note

In 2011, United Media and its most prominent subsidiary United Features Syndicate was brought wholesale by their rival Universal Uclick (now Andrews McMeel Syndication), shortly following the latter company's purchase of Peanuts from them a few months prior. The TV/film adaptions of their properties since (The Garfield Show, season 4 of The Boondocks, and The Peanuts Movie) have little more than an in-credit notice.

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