The 10 peppiest TV theme songs of the last 25 years

by - September 01, 2014

Of all the new shows that debuted in 2014, the one show that really stood out for me with respect to the creative title credits and theme tune was definitely True Detective. With Woody Harrelson and Mathew McConaughey at arguably the peak of their careers, the title credits just added an extra edge to the dark sombre mood that the show aimed to provide.

I loved it. But that got me thinking of all the shows whose theme tunes were truly memorable over the years. There used to be so many of them back in the 80's and early 90's as compared to today. I thought it would be fun to make a list of some of the more light-hearted peppier TV show tunes of the last 25 years, starting all the way back from the 90's.
Because of the specific 'feel good' criteria I'm looking for, shows like the X-Files, Dexter, the Wonder Years and the Sopranos will thus have to take a backseat to some of the more groovier competitors in the game. Similarly, shows like the Knight Rider miss out as they were pre-90s.

tv show tunes best


Here are my choices:


10. Beverly Hills 90210
One of the original 'teens finding their way in life' shows, this was a huge hit in the 90s.
     




09. Veronica Mars
Highly underrated show. Seriously. If you haven't seen it, you really have to give it a shot.




08. COPS
I'm not a big fan of the show myself but Inner Circle's "Bad Boys" tune is pretty bad ass with its reggae vibes. Still a classic even today, you can't stop yourself from walking like a gangsta' when it is playing in the background. 




07. Full House
I wonder if anyone realizes how awesome this show was for its time. For a clean comedy, you really had to look no further than this one. And it had a theme song that always brought a smile on my face.




06. Golden Girls
If anyone tells you that 'Sex and the City' was the original show about women being super-cool and hip, please call them 'uninformed' on my behalf. For pure comic timing and unlicensed tongues, you could not beat these 4 women. And that theme song is one of the best odes to friendship you will ever find.
P.S. The lone living member of the Golden Girls, Betty White, appears once more in this list. Any guesses?




05. FRIENDS
Lynched if I do. Lynched if I don't. There was no way this iconic show tune would not feature in this list!




04. Psych
The title lyrics are innovative and catchy by themselves but best of all? They perfectly embody this light-hearted show of a maverick pretending to be a detective with psychic powers. Think of it as a fun version of the Mentalist. To their credit, they have done various versions of the title track based on the episode including a version sung by the group Boyz 2 Men and also a hilarious Hindi version ( Click here ) when the episode revolved a murder during a Bollywood film shooting.




03. Boston Legal
And Betty White is back! A show that had James Spader and William Shatner at the peaks of their careers  could have really run even without a title, if you ask me. It helps that this had such a head-boppingly awesome tune that made you 'get jiggy with it' even if you tried to resist the beat.




02. Hawai Five 0
If it is not broken, don't fix it. The original Hawaii Five 0 of the 70's had an awesome theme song. So when news of a 're-interpretation' started coming in, people were a bit apprehensive about how they would alter the title tune (if not the entire show). Well, they did a pretty darn good job of it, I would say.




01. Star Trek: The Next Generation
It is nearly 25 years since I first heard this tune... and I still feel it is one of the most awesome TV show based tunes. The slow build up with Patrick Stewart's authoritative voice as he talks of the 'final frontier' that mankind seeks to explore just adds to the overall effect for me once the tune kicks in.




That is my list. I can see quite a few good ones already that would perhaps make the list in many other people's list ( Grey's Anatomy, The O.C., 30 Rock, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air etc etc )
What are your choices? Which TV show theme tune always makes you feel happy and brings a smile to your face/ a shake to those hips? Do tell.

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25 comments

  1. I like Bad Boys meself but the Bob Marley original and friends of course :)

    Here is a post you will definetely like

    PhenoMenon
    http://phenomenal-cuisines.throodalookingglass.com/2014/09/roasting-a-whole-chicken-using-microwave-convection-oven/

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    1. Haha... have heard this tune for so long... the show has been on since we were kids, hasnt it?

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  2. Roshan, such a delightful post! I adored The Wonder Years and am currently enjoying watching Friends again! The Golden Girls was fab too. I wish they'd bring them back on Comedy Central.

    I enjoy all the tunes you listed!

    One tune I loved was "Anything But Love" starring Jamie Lee Curtis and Richard Lewis. It was great!

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    1. Big fan of the Wonder Years, Golden Girls and all...those were some of the few shows I watched as a kid in Dubai. They were frankly much better and poignant than so many of the shows today.
      And wow! I had not thought of that show "Anything But love" in over a decade... I too used to enjoy it a lot.

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  3. I like Full House, Friends, Psych... ah, what memories you brought back. Of school and weeknights watching this with the family! Such fun!!

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    1. Full House and Friends were the starting phase of 'dish channels' in India, weren't they? :) Really fun times they used to be...

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  4. Full House, Wonder Years, of course Friends and Grey's Anatomy..I think when you enjoy a show the theme song brings such a feeling of anticipation you start liking it anyway. Nice list there.

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    1. Wonder Years is an all time fav of mine :) And I agree, liking the show does make a difference!

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    2. Wonder Years is an all time fav of mine :) And I agree, liking the show does make a difference!

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  5. Full House and The Cops theme are my favourites! Now I'm off to look for old shows on YouTube! You are distracting! :)

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    1. Hehe.. I aim to be distracting. :)
      Let me see how many more such lists I can make up in the coming 30 days!

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  6. I want to add Big Bang to that list. It is one of those only shows that has a song for opening credits. Otherwise most of the sitcoms have just music now.

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    1. I will totally accept that into the list :)
      And yes, most of the new ones just skip past the theme song bit - Supernatural and Blacklist come to mind.

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  7. Great post and you started with a bang :) I love the 5 to 1 choices and yes, I would've put Grey's Anatomy also in my list :) It was my ringtone for quite some time!!!

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    1. Surprisingly, for a doctor, I hardly ever watched Grey's Anatomy!
      But I know the tune is a good one and will be in many lists :)

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  8. Great list!! After friends my favourites would be Sherlock and scrubs. .

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    1. Thanks Rohan.. I truly forgot about Sherlock or it would have definitely made the list. Scrubs was in my shortlist :)

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  9. FRIENDS used to play in my house everyday when I was growing up. Thanks for the lovely flashback :)

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    1. haha... that holds true for all of us as we grew up :)

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  10. My ring tone is that of FRIENDS for years. By the way, thanks for the post; it could def be of use:):)

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    1. I plan on adding a lot more such posts in coming days... lets see what all crazy lists I can make :)

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  11. This is too good a list ! And FRIENDS song ! And also how it featured in 'We're the Millers!' :D Well FRIENDS dint need any catchy song to get anybody's attention ...but still good job with that song :D

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    1. exactly.. FRIENDS did more than enough by itself... but the catchy song still reminds us of the show even today decades later :)

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  12. I remember being a huge fan of Beverly Hills back then and need to check the rest. Btw, love ur story in Railonama..review will come up soon:)

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Let me know what you think.