TO SEE THE ORIGINAL 1957 Peacock animation, click on player below:
Produced through Elektra films in New York, the 12 second animated open began with a dramatic cymbal crash. As announcer Ben Grauer intoned, "The following program is brought to you in living color on NBC," the Peacock unfolds his monochrome feathers, which transform into vibrant, shifting hues before finally settling on the familiar colors Graham had chosen for the original design. This animated Peacock premiered on "Your Hit Parade" in September, 1957, and remained basically unchanged for the next five years.
The Peacock was a great marketing tool. Local television dealers held Peacock promotions to publicize the color schedule on NBC. NBC affiliates used the Peacock as promotional giveaways on ashtrays, playing cards, puzzles, and coffee mugs.
NBC Playing cards
For the well-dressed executive look...NBC Peacock cufflinks!
The Peacock even got its own board game in the mid 1960's.
The NBC Peacock Game from 1966
Meanwhile, Graham designed the equally famous NBC 'snake' animation in 1959, which usually appeared at the end of NBC-produced programming. So called because it forged the letters 'NBC' out of one continuous line, the snake also became an animated logo, adorned letterheads and company memos, and appeared on the sides of NBC studio and field cameras until the mid 70's.
CLICK ON THE PLAYER BELOW TO SEE THE 1959 NBC SNAKE