The Top Ten Theme Tunes You In...

Muireann O'Connell

The Top Ten Theme Tunes You Instantly Recognise

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The best TV theme songs and intros of all time will take you back to some of the greatest moments on the box.

Television theme songs set the tone for the entire series, and for the beginning of each episode. We all have a special connection to which ones we think are the best. They get stuck in our head, we sing them without noticing, and we remember them fondly after a series has ended.

Muireann asked Today FM listeners for their all time favourites and we compiled a list of the top 10 ultimate TV theme tunes that we instantly recognise.

10.  The Sunday Game

Sunday evenings, still bright out, the smell of the bar-b-que wafting through the air and the infamous "BA BA BA ba ba ba baaaaa" kicks off The Sunday Game.

9. The Crystal Maze

We ALWAYS wanted to be on this show wearing a shell suit and crawling through tunnels with Richard O'Brien. The theme song was definitively nineties sounding, perfectly matching those tragic tracksuits the contestants wore!

8. Malcom In The Middle

"The Malcolm in the Middle theme song was essentially a piece of a song that was deemed 'unfinishable' because the 30 seconds that is the theme was the beginning of something we couldn’t take any further. Then when the idea of doing a TV theme came around, we decided to use that because we couldn’t figure out how to make it a full-length tune."
- John Flansburgh of They Might Be Giants

7. The Addams Family

We defy anyone to listen to this and not click along when they hear it! The original series aired in the 1960's and was made famous once again the 90's. The remake starrted Angelia Huston as Morticia, Wednesday was played by Cristina Ricci and Christopher Lloyd was comically haunting as Uncle Fester.

6. Breaking Bad

This is a show that owes much to its setting, which lends itself to one instrument in particular featuring prominently in the show’s opening theme: the dobro. It’s essentially a guitar made out of metal, and they’re very loud by design.  Perfect for creating this eerie opening theme.

5. The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air

You know you're a true '90s kid if you know all of the words to this theme tune off by heart. It's the show that catapulted Will Smith to fame and introduced us to Carlton's signature dance move to the Tom Jones classic 'It's Not Unusual'.

4. Golden Girls

You can't help but sing along to this classic. Four mature women live together in Miami and experience the joys and angst of their golden years. Strong-willed Dorothy, spacey Rose, lusty Southern belle Blanche and matriarch Sophia, Dorothy's mom, occasionally clash but are there for one another in the end. After all, when the show's theme song is titled `Thank You for Being a Friend', the ladies have to remain friendly with one another.

3. Knightrider

Michael Knight is a man on a mission. Reborn, so to speak, after getting shot in the face, Knight decides to dedicate his life to fighting for justice. He drives around in  KITT (Knight Industries Two Thousand), a superpowered, intelligent souped-up Pontiac Trans-Am. KITT can drive 300 miles an hour, is bulletproof, fireproof, can talk and helps Michael fight injustices in the world. The theme tune is an 80's masterpiece of synth.

2. The Sopranos

"Woke Up This Morning" is a song by English band Alabama 3 from their 1997 album. The song has been cited as a paradigmatic example of a "great theme song", which "generates anticipation, immediately puts the viewer in a focused frame of mind, and creates the kind of sonic familiarity that breeds audience loyalty."

1. Cheers

From 1982 to 1993, Cheers was the TV equivalent of the corner bar where everybody knows your name. And everyone knows the words. "Making your way in the world today. Takes everything you've got; Taking a break from all your worries, sure would help a lot. Wouldn't you like to get away?...." Urban myth was that Woody Harrelson was the voice behind the song, but it was in fact Gary Portnoy, the song writer.

 


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