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1st logo 1971-1976
On May 3, 1971, Viacom was created. This logo has the sylables of "viacom" (in the Peignot font) slining in from the right on at a time while the screen changes colour, from violet to green and then red. After it is completed the camera pans outwark and the words "A" and "PRESENTATiON" are seen to the left and right of "viacom" over a blue background. One version of the logo would replace the red background with black. The music was 4 ascending synthesized pinball-like chimes.
2nd logo 1976-1986
Of all its production logos, Viacom is best known for its fancy-cut V, which was used from 1976-1990.
The logo had the phrase "A Viacom Presentation" zooming in at a very fast pace from the centre of the screen, then the V comes from the centre and moves gradually closer and closer to the screen, eventually taking up nearly the entire screen. The music is a 5-note synthesized tune with a kettledrum crescending throughout, even after the logo faded to black the kettledrum echo can still be heard.
A network television version usually had the V and Viacom zoom in together. There are videotaped and filmed versions of this logo, with the latter usually appearing in black and white programs and had a film-like appearence to it. There is also an uncommon "Warp Speed" version of this logo.
There actually IS a version of this logo with the pinball music from the 1st Viacom logo.
The music and V jar on the screen has been a source of bad dreams and nightmares for many, making this one of the scariest logos ever created.
Programs that had this logo include The Honeymooners, I Love Lucy, The Andy Griffith Show, Gomer Pyle USMC, My Three Sons, Cannon, and many other old shows that have aired on CBS. It has also been reported to have showed up on All in the Family and The Jeffersons.
3rd Logo 1986-1990
There has been a revamped version of the V logo from 1986-1990, known as the "V of Steel".
First there is a screen split half purple, half silver. The silver half rotates anti-clockwise and zooms out to reveal a silver 3d version of the V logo. The word "Viacom" flies in from the top-left corner and positions under the V. The entire logo shines. The music is similar to that of THX's Deep Note theme.
There have been rare variants of this logo, including a 3-shine variant and a super rare 4-shine variant. Alongside those, there have been warp speed versions, one a sped-up, redone version of the logo and music and the other an ultra warp speed version with a higher pitched jingle.
In the latter years of the logo, there was a rare sped up variant with an abridged version of the normal V of steel music.
Programs including this logo were Easy Street, Roseanne, the Perry Mason TV movies, syndicated prints of Gunsmoke, Rawhide, Perry Mason, The Beverly Hillbillies, and Have Gun Will Travel. Also seen on the Adventures of the Little Koala and Nickelodeon gameshows including Double Dare and Finders Keepers even on Charles in Charge with Turner Entertainment logo 1987.
Matlock also had this logo for seasons 1-4, but recent airings have plastered this logo with the 4th Viacom logo.
4th Logo 1990-2000
This logo was the one with the most common appearances, known as the Viacom "Wigga-Wigga".
On a blue background, a silver V letter forms a zig zag pattern. The zig zag splits up to form the word "Viacom" in a new stylized font. The voice over calls the company name as the logo shines. The music is a rock guitar tune.
There were variants of this logo, including a variant where the voiceover comes in earlier, a short version with shortened music and voiceover, a version minus the voice over on Matlock, and a latter version with the word Productions under the Viacom logo from 1998-2000. There was also a variant for Viacom International with the rock theme changed into a flute music piece with added choir. Diagnosis of Murder continued using the "Productions" variant until 2000.
Programs using this logo include Diagnosis Murder, Matlock, Roseanne, The Cosby Show, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, syndicated prints of The Beverly Hillbillies, The Twilight Zone, The Andy Griffith Show, Perry Mason, Gunsmoke, and Rawhide.
- 1990-1998: "Viacom" without productions stamp.
- 1996-1998: Very similar to the 1998 variant, except that it doesn't have "Productions" on the bottom. This variant is very rare.
- 1998-2000: "Productions" variant. This variant is uncommon.
5th Logo 1999-2004
This logo is also pretty common, but not as common as the 1990 logo. This logo was also the time when it planned to merge with CBS Corporation, but it wasn't approved until 2000. It has a dark blue background with the word "Viacom" floating in the logo. It also says "Productions" on the bottom like the 1998 variant, except that it also says "A Paramount Company" on the bottom of the word "Productions". It could be seen on Diagnosis of Murder, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, etc.
- 1999-2003: Normal logo.
- 2003-2004: Words appeared bolder.