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Television Theme Songs…a Lost Art

When I was a kid in the 1970’s I didn’t have any favorite bands or musicians I listen to. I had television. I’m not talking about MTV or VH1 because that was still one hundred years into the future.

The television music I loved as a kid was at the beginning of my favorite TV shows. Namely, “Wonder Woman” and “The SuperFriends.” When I say favorite, I mean when these songs played their one time a week I jumped up and rocked out like I was at an outdoor stadium. In fact, without cable television, I centered much of my life around this music.

I imagined that I could change into a Wonder Woman outfit just like she did if I spun around fast enough to create a flash of light. I also choreographed a synchronized swimming routine to “The SuperFriends” theme song. Some might say “fanatic.” I prefer “fan.” Serious fan.

Sadly, I can only say I broke too many necklaces trying to quickly change out of my outfit in a flash. In further heartbreak, my much-hyped synchronized swimming routine set to “The SuperFriends” theme song ended up a being a dull routine to the ho hum “Palisades Park,” a song selected by our swim coach.

The 1970’s was an era where money was actually invested in the beginning of a show to create a memorable mood for the series. Today this music is cut short to create more commercial airtime. But the 1970’s concept worked. I still have many of these songs in my head. Don’t even get me going on the theme to “The Love Boat.” And I don’t want to even get into the hundreds of commercial jingles that I keep in there for a rainy day. Perhaps another time. For now, enjoy this classic song. And I’ll leave you with my favorite line from the “Wonder Woman” TV theme song, “In your satin tights, fighting for your rights….and the Old Red, White and Blue!” Ahh….memories.

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About Fortyteen Candles

oh, let's see...distinguished Gen-X'er, frustrated writer, suffocating in the confines of a small town that thinks it's a big deal. A few years ago we were home to the second largest Walmart in our state, don-cha-know. Oh, and I was voted "Most New Wave" in my senior high school year book. Actually, that last sentence alone is really everything you need to know about me.

11 responses »

  1. You are so right — the songs didn’t make the shows, but they did make them stick in our heads. And that made the shows stick too. Today’s shows are for the most part reality shows or inanity. I don’t want them to stick!

    Reply
  2. Teresa Cleveland Wendel

    Strange that Kurt and I were recently remembering all the commercial jingles of our youth, and realized that we remember them better even than the ones aired for the Super Bowl.

    Reply
  3. I miss the art of the TV theme song too. However, maybe it’s for the best. I’m very susceptible to “ear worms” (not the dog kind but the kind where a song gets stuck in your head for outrageously long periods of time). Commercial jingles are gone too. It seems everyone is satisfied with just buying the rights to old 80s songs.

    One of the free papers here did an article on theme songs and inspired me to post about Children’s educational TV theme songs. Which ones do you remember? What are your favorites? http://cranialgunk.com/blog/2011/03/19/to-am-new-york-my-top-5-tv-theme-songs/

    Reply
  4. I am also a child of the 70s, and have fond memories of the theme songs for Wonder Woman, the Dukes of Hazzard, the Jeffersons, Jonny Quest, the Bugs Bunny Road Runner Show, and many others. Also the opening narration of The Incredible Hulk, as well as that show’s very sad closing piano music.

    Reply

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