BBC Two Idents - Dreamlike Surrealism for Terrestrial TV

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Dayvan Cowboy
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Wikipedia wrote:An ident—also known as station ID—is a short-form for an identifier. Idents can be anything between 10 to 30 seconds long and are considered short ads used to brand a network or channel. Idents usually culminates with the channel's name or logo.

I've always been utterly fascinated by television Idents. I don't exactly know why, maybe perhaps a strange yearning for the 00s? :?

So here's the story.
Around the early 90s, BBC Two gave their channel a new lease of life and rebranded with a very distinctive and recognisable ident set.
Best remembered for their haunting ambient music and slightly surreal relaxing visuals that focused on the number "2"
The introduction of these nocturnal textures became a staple of UK television, until 2018's equally brilliant curve idents took over.

If your a brit, most of these in the video below will be very familiar and nostalgic. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated as this niche interest of mine is a bit of an underrated art-form.
If you're interested, check out "The Ident Gallery" for a *huuuge* back catalogue of archived idents from past era's, a fun rabbit hole website to ogle at. :wink: https://theident.gallery/

And now. Sit back, relax, and let this compilation of BBC Two's 1990's dreamscapes whisk you away! :D
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Friendly Stranger
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Fellow ident fan reporting in, and I'm a UK millennial so I grew up with these 90s/00s BBC ones. It's mesmerising watching them back to back in the compilation you posted and really emphasises the weird and not exactly inviting atmosphere a lot of them have.

I think it's a sort of yearning-based interest for me too. I like watching idents from before I was born as well as the ones I remember and I think a big part of the appeal is that they're part of the day-to-day texture of an era.

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Dayvan Cowboy
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Kend_Wire wrote:Fellow ident fan reporting in, and I'm a UK millennial so I grew up with these 90s/00s BBC ones. It's mesmerising watching them back to back in the compilation you posted and really emphasises the weird and not exactly inviting atmosphere a lot of them have.

I think it's a sort of yearning-based interest for me too. I like watching idents from before I was born as well as the ones I remember and I think a big part of the appeal is that they're part of the day-to-day texture of an era.


Glad to know there ARE ident fans around! :D
I remember the complete sense of wonder I got from seeing this one while on a weekend holiday by the coast some 8 years ago. It's been deeply embedded in my memory ever since.
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And you are right, day-to-day textures of an era is a spot on summary.
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