First episodes deserve titles too
You can file this under stray thoughts and observations: Why is it that many producers don’t give the pilots of their television shows titles? Every episode of a TV show has a title. Some shows, like for example the Star Trek series, would even put the title of the episode on-screen at the beginning during the credits — although that’s a practice that’s not much seen. Usually you have to look at the info box on your on-screen display or TV guide (or on your DVD set) to actually see the title of a TV episode.
But why is it that the first episode of a series often gets no title? They inevitably end up on a DVD set with the prosaic title of “Pilot.” I recently started watching all of Lost on DVD, and the two hours for the pilot were named “Pilot, Part 1” and “Pilot, Part 2.”
The way I see it, every television pilot should be given its own unique title, even if it’s made up well after the original script is filmed. I understand that a “pilot” is a sample show often made on spec, upon which other shows follow. But once a series has been ordered and produced, by the time the first episode airs, it should have its own title. Why not? Hey, all five Star Trek pilots had titles: “The Cage,” “Encounter at Farpoint,” “Emissary,” “Caretaker” and “Broken Bow.” (Although you could argue that some of those first episodes were not actually pilots since a series had already been ordered.)
Regardless. If a network is airing a new show, by the time episode No. 1 airs to the public, it should have its own title. What would you name the unnamed pilots of recent shows like The Sopranos, Lost, or The Shield? Please discuss.