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Bravo first launched as a commercial-free 24-hour premium channel devoted to films and arts programming on December 1, 1980, owned by Rainbow Media (at the time, a division of Cablevision, until it was spun off into AMC Networks in 2011).
In 1994, Bravo introduced a new Compacta typeface logo, and the new slogan "The Film And Arts Network". Around this time, Bravo (by that point, now a basic cable channel) began adding PBS-style underwriter sponsorships, before becoming an advertiser-supported channel in 1998. In 2002, Bravo was acquired by NBCUniversal.
In January 2005, Bravo was rebranded with a new logo and a slightly rearranged Compacta font, and the tagline "Watch What Happens", reflecting its shift towards pop culture and reality programming and to compete with Travel Channel, TruTV, E!, and Food Network.
On February 6, 2017, Bravo updated its logo with a more simpler speech bubble, abandoning the Compacta font for the first time in 22 years, with the case in the letter "B" changed from uppercase to lowercase. The change coincided a day later with the premiere of the new drama series Imposters. The new logo was accompanied by a new on-air presentation designed by Loyalkaspar.