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TV''s Greatest Opening Themes?

What are some of TV's greatest opening themes -- music, credits?

by Anonymousreply 15705/23/2013

Soap had the most creative ones.

by Anonymousreply 105/20/2011

*opens door*

by Anonymousreply 205/20/2011

The opening theme for "Tombstone Territory."%0D %0D Whistle me up a memory...

by Anonymousreply 305/20/2011


by Anonymousreply 405/20/2011

Mary Tyler Moore, The Golden Girls (long version), The Brady Bunch (use of windows), Hawaii 5-0 (the original), Magnum P.I., Designing Women, Family Matters, Step by Step, Laverne & Shirley, Bewitched.

by Anonymousreply 505/20/2011

Claire Yarlett. Now there's a blast from the past.

by Anonymousreply 605/20/2011

True Blood- Bad Things by Jace Everett

by Anonymousreply 705/20/2011

There was a thread about this very theme with an amazing 100+ response so it should be in the running

by Anonymousreply 805/20/2011

Cheers, Mary Tyler Moore, Bob Newhart (with Suzanne Pleshette), The Greatest American Hero.

by Anonymousreply 1005/20/2011

Bewitched (especially now that it's a commercial), The Twilight Zone, and The Addams Family are themes that most people of any age can identify.

by Anonymousreply 1105/20/2011

One of the best themes of all times, "Doctor Who"

by Anonymousreply 1205/20/2011

The Doctor Who Themes 1963 - 2010 (Every Doctor Who Theme)

by Anonymousreply 1305/20/2011

"Are You Being Served"

by Anonymousreply 1405/20/2011

If I had to vote ...


Twilight Zone

All four Treks, especially Voyager.

And the one that always made me get excited...

by Anonymousreply 1505/20/2011

Hill Street Blues%0D %0D St. Elsewhere

by Anonymousreply 1605/20/2011

"Twin Peaks"

by Anonymousreply 1705/20/2011

"It's a Living"

by Anonymousreply 1805/20/2011

The Sopranos opening always reminded me of some 80's Goth two-hit wonder I could never remember the name of

by Anonymousreply 1905/20/2011

I loved the theme to "The Wire" but have to say I fast forwarded through Tom Waits' version in Season 2. I love Tom Waits but something about the way he sang this song made me want to vomit. Maybe that was what he was going for.

I don't know the artist who sang the version in Season 1 was it was perfect

by Anonymousreply 2005/20/2011

The Rockford Files

by Anonymousreply 2105/20/2011

Hill Street Blues

by Anonymousreply 2205/20/2011

Star Wars (TV Series) opening theme.

by Anonymousreply 2305/20/2011

I guess we should also mention the worst -

by Anonymousreply 2405/20/2011

Sanford & Son

There are a lot of 70's shows mentioned here, is it that the music was better or is it just nostalgia?

by Anonymousreply 2505/20/2011

The alternative national anthem, the opening theme to any Peanuts special:

by Anonymousreply 2605/20/2011


by Anonymousreply 2705/20/2011


by Anonymousreply 2805/20/2011

The theme to the Wild, Wild West.

by Anonymousreply 2905/20/2011

%0D John Williams is responsible for some of the best:%0D LOST IN SPACE (first version)%0D LAND OF THE GIANTS (both versions)%0D THE TIME TUNNEL%0D %0D Also:%0D PEYTON PLACE (based on the Waxman theme from the movie)%0D FAMILY%0D SCARECROW AND MRS. KING%0D 12 O'CLOCK HIGH%0D THE GHOST AND MRS. MUIR (love that hornpipe and the counter-line)%0D LIGHTS OUT%0D %0D More as I think of them....

by Anonymousreply 3005/20/2011

No, the worst has got to be the idiotic non-theme of SOUTHLAND, a show I love but what an awful, moronic theme!

by Anonymousreply 3105/20/2011

*M*A*S*H particularly for its lyrics, not present in R28's link. And interesting denial in the comments about how the theme is "better without the lyrics"

It's fucking bleak!

by Anonymousreply 3205/20/2011

Wasn't "Suicide is Painless" written by Altman's son?

by Anonymousreply 3305/20/2011

Big Love (final season)

Rescue Me



The Amazing Race

30 Rock

That Girl (1st and 2nd season)

by Anonymousreply 3405/20/2011

It's a Living, but I can't seem to find the alternate of Making a Living which they changed it to for some unknown reason. And this theme song is edited a bit, because the ending used to be, 'with no misgivings, it's a living....' They were SO brassy!

by Anonymousreply 3505/21/2011

Jonny Quest

by Anonymousreply 3605/21/2011

Though I prefer "The Addams Family" over "The Munsters", I like the "Munsters" theme song better:

by Anonymousreply 3705/21/2011

Scratching and Surviving

by Anonymousreply 3805/21/2011

My favorite TV show, Miami Vice.

by Anonymousreply 3905/21/2011

All In The Family

by Anonymousreply 4005/21/2011

R28 here, I personally think "Suicide is Painless" is much better with lyrics. Those people comment on the youtube video that its better without the lyrics have obviously never really listened to the words. If they had they would know its a very well written song lyrically.

by Anonymousreply 4105/21/2011

I think "It's a Living" was from when it was on network TV and "Making A Living" was from it's syndication run

by Anonymousreply 4205/21/2011


by Anonymousreply 4305/21/2011

A hot dog makes her loose control

by Anonymousreply 4405/21/2011

The Jeffersons Theme - Jeff Barry

by Anonymousreply 4505/21/2011

GET SMART - Irving SzathMARY!

by Anonymousreply 4605/21/2011


by Anonymousreply 4705/21/2011

The really sad thing is that they don't do opening themes at all anymore. It pissed me off big time when I watched the pilot of Law&Order LA and didn't find an opening theme. Made me hate the show right from the start. A TV show needs to have an opening theme. It's like business card where they quickly introduce the styling and atmosphere of the show. In this regard I think Dallas did a great job. Not just the theme music. Visually the title was great too.

by Anonymousreply 4805/21/2011

The Doris Day Show%0D %0D and another vote for True Blood although some of those pictures used creep me out. Like the lettering though for the credits.

by Anonymousreply 4905/21/2011

I like the opening for LAW & ORDER UK.

by Anonymousreply 5005/21/2011

Pardon me, but what about "Maude"

by Anonymousreply 5105/21/2011

Brideshead Reviisited, Jeeves & Wooster & That Girl

by Anonymousreply 5205/21/2011

What, are none of you gay? It's Wonder Woman of course!

by Anonymousreply 5305/21/2011


The clear winner:

by Anonymousreply 5405/21/2011


by Anonymousreply 5505/21/2011

Bow down bitches!

by Anonymousreply 5605/21/2011

This one. By far.

by Anonymousreply 5705/21/2011

Law & Order

by Anonymousreply 5805/21/2011

I always loved the faux hornpipe of THE GHOST AND MRS. MUIR.

I also thought Edward Mulhare was gorgeous!

by Anonymousreply 5905/21/2011

Six Million Dollar Man!

by Anonymousreply 6005/21/2011

Room 222. Love the music.

by Anonymousreply 6105/21/2011

The Courtship of Eddies' Father

by Anonymousreply 6205/21/2011

Agree that Twin Peaks and I Claudius were the best. For me, this one is hands down the worst. I hated everything about this show-- from Linda Lavin and Polly Holliday's hammy over-emoting to Philip McKeon's face. Gah!

by Anonymousreply 6305/21/2011

[quote]I loved the theme to "The Wire" but have to say I fast forwarded through Tom Waits' version in Season 2. I love Tom Waits but something about the way he sang this song made me want to vomit. Maybe that was what he was going for.

I felt the exact same way. I used to mute it until the title sequence was over. Great song, though.

by Anonymousreply 6405/21/2011

True Blood has an excellent opening credits.

by Anonymousreply 6505/21/2011

I agree, R65.

by Anonymousreply 6605/21/2011

THe first season of THAT GIRL---love them pizzicato strings! And New York never looked more exciting! %0D %0D %0D %0D It starts at :55....

by Anonymousreply 6705/21/2011

Reminds me of the credits for HBO's now defunct "Carnivale" which I also liked.

by Anonymousreply 6805/21/2011

Does anyone remember the theme to "Beacon Hill" -- the American version of "Upstairs Downstairs"> It was, I believe, the most expensive American television series ever made at that time and it only lasted one season.

Marvin Hamlisch, who I generally can't abide, wrote a brilliant theme song ... which I've spent a long time trying to find.

by Anonymousreply 6905/21/2011

I can NOT believe that no one has listed "The Patty Duke Show". Now that was great!

by Anonymousreply 7005/21/2011

Flamingo road

by Anonymousreply 7105/21/2011

agree r70. The theme song was great.

by Anonymousreply 7205/21/2011

Gilligan's Island%0D %0D Batman%0D %0D Mary Tyler Moore Show%0D %0D Dick Van Dyke Show%0D %0D All In The Family%0D %0D Hill Street Blues%0D %0D The Brady Bunch%0D %0D The Partridge Family%0D %0D The Simpsons%0D %0D The Flintstones%0D %0D Bugs Bunny Show%0D %0D The Jeffersons%0D %0D Good Times%0D %0D Maude%0D %0D Soap%0D %0D Laverne and Shirley

by Anonymousreply 7305/21/2011

Hell-o! Did nobody mention Golden Girls?

by Anonymousreply 7405/21/2011

This thread should have been closed after R8.

by Anonymousreply 7505/21/2011

How quickly you doofuses forget.

by Anonymousreply 7605/21/2011

This thread isn't complete without...

by Anonymousreply 7705/21/2011

Clifford, The Big Red Dog

Ok, I admit it's because a friend made up dirty lyrics to the song.

by Anonymousreply 7805/21/2011

I love the theme for the British soap [italic]Emmerdale.[/italic]

by Anonymousreply 7905/21/2011

The Odd Couple

by Anonymousreply 8005/22/2011

I loved the theme song from seasons three and four of Star Trek Enterprise. It was a faster tempo version of the same song used in seasons one and two.

by Anonymousreply 8105/22/2011

The Love Boat. Most Aaron Spelling shows had great credits.

by Anonymousreply 8205/22/2011

I win:

by Anonymousreply 8305/22/2011

Oh, Mia -- those brown-haired brown-eyed girls of my youth (Diana Rigg, Marlo Thomas, Mary Tyler Moore, etc.) influenced my taste in women for the rest of my life... sigh...

I, however, have picked the very best theme song of the sixties. After you hear this once, you'll never get it out of your head.

by Anonymousreply 8405/22/2011

Six Feet Under.

by Anonymousreply 8505/22/2011

Coronation Street. Original theme. The Brits among us will remember mum and gran shushing us after tea when this came on.

by Anonymousreply 8605/22/2011

Brideshead Revisited. The ITV version, not that shite film of a few years ago.

by Anonymousreply 8705/22/2011

[italic]Star Trek: Voyager[/italic]

by Anonymousreply 8805/22/2011

What I love about the What's Happening theme is that the music sounds like it could emanate from the actors and actresses. That 'BAUM' sound is definitely Rerun or Mama sitting down or getting up off the toilet and that clarinet/saxophone sounding car alarm thing sort of sounds like what Shirley Hemphill's privates would scream, if she were still alive, and if they could.

by Anonymousreply 8905/23/2011

Game of Thrones -- my favorite opening theme.

by Anonymousreply 9005/23/2011

New Battlestar Galactica (the Main Title theme used for S2 onwards in the US).

by Anonymousreply 9105/23/2011

The theme from MISSION IMPOSSIBLE is memorable for being in 5/4 time. %0D %0D Can it be that no one has mentioned Phyllis Diller in THE PRUITTS OF SOUTHHAMPTON yet?

by Anonymousreply 9205/23/2011


by Anonymousreply 9305/23/2011

The best, most grand and musical opening ever was for Battleship Yamato or Starblazers. Absolutely fantastic.

As far as current TV shows go, I think Game of Thrones has inovative graphics but the theme itself isn't particularly amazing. Same with Dexter, frankly.

by Anonymousreply 9405/23/2011


by Anonymousreply 9505/23/2011

Ooohhh... I forgot about the Mission Impossible theme. Very iconic.

Aaron Spelling's shows had many iconic titles too. Dynasty, Charlie's Angels etc. I thought they were pretty good, but never too clever. Considering the purpose of a title sequence and the show I thought that the one for Hart to Hart was well done too. Although, does a show need a basic introduction every week? Still I think it was well done.

by Anonymousreply 9605/23/2011


All the talk of the theme to "It's/Making A Living" on the Ann Jillian and Barrie Youngfellow(!) threads got me thinking about the best TV theme songs. But it looks like we already covered Jillian and crew earlier in this thread.

Laverna and Shirley was always one of my favorites growing up.

by Anonymousreply 9712/23/2012

The theme to Gloria is an earworm that has stayed in my head for 30 years, even though the show was only on for one season.

Poor Sally, though. It ranked 18th in it's premiere season, and scored an 18.7 rating, and the suits still pulled the plug. Shows today would kill for an 18.7.

by Anonymousreply 9812/23/2012

Game of Thrones - I don't even fast forward through that one. Same with True Blood.

by Anonymousreply 9912/23/2012

An oldie but goodie...Hawaii Five O. A young Jack Lord yuuuuummmmm.

by Anonymousreply 10012/23/2012

I also thought it was interesting that many shows used closing themes that were different from the opening themes. For instance, WKRP and The Jeffersons.

Others just did a closing theme that was a variation on the opening. I'm 90% certain that Gimme A Break's closing theme was Nell Carter sitting at a Casio keyboard trying to recreate the opening theme. (You can hear it at 13:20 of the clip.)

by Anonymousreply 10112/23/2012

I would say the all-time greatest were:

Hawaii Five-O (the most exciting)

Phyllis (the best final payoff gag)

Maude (the best sung song)

But there are some forgotten ones I just love. I loved the theme for the all-too-brief series "Pasadena" with this credit sequence--the music perfectly captures the sense of hidden secrets.

by Anonymousreply 10212/23/2012

Route 66

by Anonymousreply 10312/23/2012

Wonder Woman, bitches!

by Anonymousreply 10412/23/2012

Ripley's Believe it Or Not with Jack Palance (early 80's)

by Anonymousreply 10512/23/2012

Beverly Hillbillies single-handedly saved the 5 string banjo from extinction.

Whether that's a good thing is open to debate.

by Anonymousreply 10612/23/2012

It's hard to argue against themes that became number one hits like 'Theme from SWAT' and 'Miami Vice Theme'.

by Anonymousreply 10712/23/2012

Lucy Show

by Anonymousreply 10812/23/2012

Re: MASH theme. Altman's son, as a teen, co-wrote it. He received more money from residuals than his father did for directing the movie.

by Anonymousreply 10912/23/2012

The Littlest Hobo

by Anonymousreply 11012/23/2012

ABC Wide World of Sports. The Agony of Defeat Guy seems kind of mild now, in our current state of Extreme Everything.

by Anonymousreply 11112/23/2012

Amen! Love Sherman's little dance after coming out of the jump rope.

by Anonymousreply 11212/23/2012


by Anonymousreply 11312/23/2012

The West Wing.

by Anonymousreply 11412/23/2012

A Year in the Life. Im on a phone so maybe someone could grab the youtube video for me?

by Anonymousreply 11512/24/2012

A year in the life? Seriously?

by Anonymousreply 11612/27/2012

LOST IN SPACE (3rd Season)



by Anonymousreply 11712/27/2012

Mama Dyke here. I always loved "The Facts of Life" theme. Both the original first season theme and the one used in the second and third. I had them both recorded onto a cassette tape and played that song everywhere I went. It was the only song I played for at least five years. It still makes me feel warm and fussy.

by Anonymousreply 11812/27/2012

None of these songs were even chart hits. If a song is truly a great theme it would have charted on some level. Songs you find personally tuneful would be a better title for this thread.

by Anonymousreply 11912/27/2012


by Anonymousreply 12012/27/2012

The Farmer's Daughter, I loved the theme when I was a kid.

by Anonymousreply 12112/28/2012

Nanny and the Professor

by Anonymousreply 12212/28/2012

Chico and The Man (I really love this one).

by Anonymousreply 12312/28/2012

Mad Men - there was an ad at the beginning appropriately enough.

by Anonymousreply 12412/28/2012

Rubicon on AMC didn't last long, but the theme was great.

by Anonymousreply 12512/28/2012

When a young man looks at Madame

She just throws herself right at him

She's as flames more than gay parades

And at Madame's Place she's the perfect host

She fucks the boys and fucks Donny Most

Her amazing charm

Brings the boys much harm

Cause she's full of the AIDS...

by Anonymousreply 12612/28/2012

One of the most iconic themes (at least the opening notes): DRAGNET! Perhaps second only to THE TWILIGHT ZONE.

by Anonymousreply 12712/28/2012

I always loved the Xena opening credits and theme as a kid.

At the end when they cut to her on the cliffside, it was just do awesome.

Also the best theme ever was X-FILES.

by Anonymousreply 12812/28/2012


by Anonymousreply 12912/28/2012

Peter Gunn and Perry Mason.

by Anonymousreply 13012/28/2012

Wonder Woman fucking owns this thread!

by Anonymousreply 13112/28/2012

The Pruitts of Southampton

by Anonymousreply 13212/28/2012

Even this Wonder Woman theme kicks ass!

by Anonymousreply 13312/28/2012

Always liked the snappy theme song from "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir"

by Anonymousreply 13412/28/2012

What's wrong with A Year in the Life? It's very nice.

by Anonymousreply 13512/28/2012

Mission: Impossible

by Anonymousreply 13612/28/2012

Cheers! (Where everybody knows your name!) And the dandy in the last shot made me smile.


The Young and the Restless.

by Anonymousreply 13712/28/2012

Fun Food Factory

by Anonymousreply 13812/28/2012

I can't believe no one's mentioned The Muppet Show.

by Anonymousreply 13912/28/2012



Mission Impossible



Law and Order

Oprah - ten years come and gone so fast, by Paul Simon

by Anonymousreply 14012/29/2012

R121 Was there another FD opening? I vaguely remember a theme song with lyrics that began, "Katy, the farmer's daughter ..."

by Anonymousreply 14112/29/2012

I have many favorites, but one I heard today was the Young & The Restless theme. So beautiful and dreamy. It's so good it might be part of why Y&R is one of the few soaps still on.

by Anonymousreply 14212/29/2012

r98, I didn't even remember Sally Struthers tried to spin off her Gloria character. Poor, pathetic Sally. And I'm sorry, but that song is terrible too. It'd be like remembering some muzak you heard in an elevator 30 yrs ago.

by Anonymousreply 14312/29/2012

Is the theme from Bonanza too eldergay to mention?

by Anonymousreply 14412/29/2012

"Magnum, P.I." That opening had it all--- Tom Selleck shirtless, a great energetic song, Roger T. Mosely and Larry Manetti. I'm getting warm all over just thinking about it. Did I mention that it featured Tom Selleck, shirtless?

by Anonymousreply 14512/29/2012

Even if you have never heard of the show you will probably recognize the theme from Peter Gun, composed by four time Oscar winner Henry Mancini. You know, the guy who wrote "Moon River."

by Anonymousreply 14612/29/2012

First season of Andromeda with Kevin Sorbo. It was a really intense guitar riff that sounded like bagpipes. It was from the guitarist from Rush and I think it was called March of the Highguard.

Also the music from Earth Final Conflict.

by Anonymousreply 14712/29/2012

Favorite theme music would be Rockford Files

by Anonymousreply 14812/29/2012

R141, I could only find Seasons 2-3 on YouTube, Season 2's theme was another instrumental, but those lyrics you mentioned seem familiar to me too for some reason, maybe Season 1.

by Anonymousreply 14912/29/2012

Mostly for the video portion, but I liked Quincy's theme:

by Anonymousreply 15012/29/2012

Can someone explain to me how the theme song from Barnaby Jones got into my head all day? I remember watching it once in a while, but I don't think I've seen it since it went off the air when I was 10 years old.

Tonight's episode: Nest of Scorpions...

by Anonymousreply 15105/18/2013

Opening song for Friends.

by Anonymousreply 15205/19/2013

UFO and SPACE 1999. I don't know that I can objectively say they're musically brilliant or anything, but they fill me with buzzy, kitschy happiness.

by Anonymousreply 15305/19/2013

No, it was [italic]Love Boat[/italic]

by Anonymousreply 15405/19/2013

R141, yes there are lyrics to "The Farmer's Daughter" theme, but they were infrequently used. From memory, it was something like...

"Katy's the farmer's can't resist that gal. She's country style, but city designed, got a smile that's sprinkled with sunshine.

Look at the farmer's daughter..she'll pick up your morale...her brand of charm is so disarming, frowns turn upside-down....Katy's the girl from Sweden, she's just what we've been needin' glad the farmer's daughter came to town!

by Anonymousreply 15505/20/2013


by Anonymousreply 15605/23/2013

All In The Family Soap Hill Street Blues LA Law thirtysomething NYPD Blue A Different World Twin Peaks Gilmore Girls Dallas Dynasty Colbys Falcon Crest Love Boat Touched By An Angel

by Anonymousreply 15705/23/2013
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