Why WAS there a watermelon there?

This is the greatest closing credits sequence in film history. And that's all.


The 100 greatest TV Themes: 10 - 1

10. Peter Gunn
"The Peter Gunn Theme"
by Henry Mancini

Have you ever heard of this show? Even if you haven't, I bet you've heard the theme song. It's the standard stock music that plays anytime a suave, smooth, sophisticated male character enters, or does something characteristic of suave, smooth sophisticated male characters. It's music whose reputation precedes itself, but here is its humble origin: a theme song to an otherwise forgotten private eye TV show. It's pure class, seeping in from every uncaulked opening. It's more cosmopolitan than Rock Hudson, to the power of single malt scotch, multiplied by Bentley. Rounded up, of course.

9. Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?
"Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?"
by Rockapella

A Capella is typically associated with all-male college choral groups, usually at the whitest of white-bred universities. The exception is Rockapella. Rockapella rescues the genre from complete obscurity with a unique energy and style, even though they're only famous for two songs. First, a memorable Folgers commercial. Second, the theme song to the PBS game show, 'Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?' (Fun fact: Rockapella performs both of these songs at live shows. Talk about giving the audience what it wants). While the beat and refrain are infectious like hepatitis, the true charm is the geography-related puns and genius wordplay. Ogden Nash and Shel Siverstein together couldn't come up with something this perfect. The only downside is the mention of Czechoslovakia, which dates the entire performance.

8. The Twilight Zone
"The Twilight Zone Main Title Theme"
by Bernard Herrmann and Marius Constant

I had no intention on flooding this list with horror anthology shows. I didn't even know so many horror anthology shows existed, and I especially didn't realize so many featured epic introductions. But sure enough, they appeared on this countdown at 65, 57, 50, 37, 23, and the king of them all at number 8.

Every week on The Twilight Zone, the creepy and surreal mind of Rod Serling presented stories of the unexplained, the mysterious and the paranoid. The theme assured us the show's content was not bound by the restraints of Earth, but by an ever-shifting set of rules. One week, Santa Claus was real, another week, toys were evil, sentient beings. Simply put, if Mr Serling's ominous warnings don't send chills down your spine, and the eerie music doesn't make you reach for a security blanket, you may already be in... The Twilight Zone.

7. Speed Racer
"Go Speed Racer Go"
by Danny Davis and the Nashville Brass.

I think about the long, harrowing journey anime has taken just to reach the fringe of cultural relevancy, and I wonder how it possibly could have began in the 1960s. There was Speed Racer, Astroboy, then nothing for 30 years, then suddenly, Boom! Everything! Imagine if there was a precursor to the Big Bang that made just scallops, then the Big Bang came and made the rest of the universe.

The Speed Racer theme is your typical hero song. It boasts the protagonist, outlines his abilities, and heralds the feats of derring-do displayed in every episode. But what makes the Speed Racer theme stand out amongst others? It just keeps amplifying. It starts out with a high-tempo synthesizer arpeggio, coupled with engine sounds, and just keeps bringing climax after climax. At the end, the vocalist is practically screaming in jubilation. Also, watch the video. Speed blatantly kills a man by ramming him off the road. His car explodes in a giant fireball, and Speed doesn't even blink. Not that Speed ever blinked, it was an anime after all.

6. Doctor Who
"Doctor Who Theme"
Composed by Rob Grainer and Delia Derbyshire

The word epic is thrown around too loosely. It used to be, "epic" was reserved for the truly awe-inspiring, intimidating and boundless things. Nowadays, everything is epic ("He said 'your' instead of 'you're!' Epic fail!") But howsabout the story of an intergalactic time traveler, the last of his species, jumping across planets, galaxies and generations in an attempt to maintain order and save civilizations, squaring off against intimidating foes, bound to immortality and eternally questioning his place in the universe and responsibility in life? That is epic.

And what better accompaniment to Doctor Who's epic sci-fi saga than an epic sci-fi theme? The 100% electronic theme instantly gives us the sensation of both futurism and retro-futurism. It evokes feelings of adventure, fantasy and thrills. It lets us know we'll be departing from the mundane, and begin darting around the cosmos in five seconds flat. It is a perfect piece of science fiction instrumentation. And here it is performed on a pair of Tesla Coils with a dancing Mythbuster.

5. Duck Tales
"Duck Tales Theme"
Composed by Mark Mueller
Vocals by Jeff Pescetto

I have nothing to say about Duck Tales. My opinions and have already been expressed perfectly by Doug "The Nostalgia Critic" Walker:

"This song will never leave your mind. You think you're trying to answer the questions on your math test, but nope! All you're thinking about is-Duck Tales (woo-ooh!)
You think you're playing basketball with your teammates, but nope! All you're thinking about is-Duck Tales (woo-ooh!)You think you're about to achieve enlightenment, the pearly gates of knowledge are opening up, and all the secrets of the universe are about to be revealed. BUT NO! ALL YOU'RE THINKING ABOUT IS-Duck Tales (woo-ooh!)It will never leave, IT WILL NEVER LEAVE, IT WILL NEVER LEAVE!!!"

4. Firefly
"The Ballad of Serenity"
Written by Joss Whedon
Performed by Sonny Rhodes

The concept of a Space Western is difficult to sell to audiences. Westerns are simplistic: rough and tumble action set against a natural backdrop. Science Fiction is grandiose and complicated, set against a backdrop as expansive as the human imagination. The two are complete opposites. But ask any Firefly fan, and they will tell you (in great, nerdy detail) just how well the two mesh. But if you detest the notion of talking to an obese, neckbeard-sporting geek in an Invader Zim shirt, at least check out the theme song (The real theme song, not these fanmade, fakie ones). The heartfelt country ballad accompanies a series of sepia-toned sci-fi scenes; The Ballad of Serenity makes space westerns seem not only feasible, but downright plausible.

3. The Sopranos
"Woke Up This Morning (Chosen One Mix)"
by Alabama 3

I've never been a fan of the mafia/gangster genre. I've seen films like Goodfellas and The Godfather, and I admit they're interesting and well-made, but they're just not what interests me. And I don't know why. Despite this, Woke Up This Morning earns its spot in the top three. The everyday, unglorified images of New York City and the New Jersey Turnpike, partnered with the a half-blues, half-dance hall song of violence and revenge, plus the intimidating presence of James Gandolfini enjoying a cigar? Immediately, the viewer's mind is placed in the glamorized world of organized crime and unflattering Italian-American stereotypes, all without resorting to gunplay, fancy suits or mentions of spaghetti sauce. It's all about the subtlety.

2. Mission: Impossible
"Mission: Impossible Theme"
by Lalo Schifrin

One of the all-time greatest spy franchises appropriately boasts the greatest espionage theme music, and the second greatest TV theme of all time. Listening to it, you feel the adrenaline pumping through your veins. It doesn't just make you excited for a televised spy caper, it makes you want to be a spy. It makes you want to stand up and dart behind furniture, holding your hand like a gun. It makes you want to slink around in shadows and use overly-complicated pieces of technology to interrogate your roommate. It's one thing for a TV theme to make us eager for a TV show to start, but Mission: Impossible has created an aural bridge into our very psyche. Or maybe that's just me. Either way, I stand by my decision.

1. Fraggle Rock
"Fraggle Rock Theme"
Written by Philip Balsam and Dennis Lee

Kids television. You gotta love it. Television seems to be targeted to adults, but if you look closely enough, you'll see children are the keystone of the industry. I could have filled this entire list with kids TV show themes. There's something so innate about television and childhood. When you're young, you want to explore the world, learn everything, make new friends, and most importantly, have fun all the time. This is why the Fraggle Rock theme is so perfect; not only does it represent the TV theme as a whole, it's catchy, singable, and a perfect anthem for the target audience. Hell, it even reached the Top 40 status in Britain in 1983. I can't think of a single theme song more enjoyable and precisely executed as Fraggle Rock. It is the perfect TV theme.



Well, that took longer than necessary. Let's sum up; A good TV theme needs four things: It needs to be catchy and memorable. It needs to draw you in, grab your attention and get you excited to watch the actual show. It needs to compliment and represent the series as a whole. Finally, the music and the visuals need to correspond in an appealing manner; neither are more important. Other than that, TV themes are an essential element of the television medium, which is unjustly being pared away. Take some time and enjoy your favorite TV themes because one day, they may be gone for good.

Before we go, here's one final countdown: things I've learned while amassing this list:

1) Viacom and WMG are dicks who hoard their intellectual property like Gollum.
2) There is a special place in Hell for people who point their cameras at TV screens.
3) Horror Anthology shows are the illuminati of television: Everywhere, and with more power than you realize.
4) I do not fully understand how Blogger works concerning hotlinked images.
5) I can be nostalgic for things I don't actually like.
6) You can prepare and prepare and prepare for weeks and even months, still forget The X-Files, and have to slip it in last minute hoping nobody noticed otherwise.
7) Sound equalizing is apparently really really hard.
8) It can take upwards of three weeks to find the right words to describe something nobody cares about.
9) Slideshows of images taken from Google are not movies, and should not be uploaded to Youtube, you assholes.
10) Don't watermark a video if you don't own it. Hell, just don't watermark anything. The internet is a global village; creative commons and all that. Just because you uploaded something doesn't mean you get to taint it with free advertising for your crappy website full of other watermarked videos.