Sunday, May 28, 2017

THE TOP TEN WORST TELEVISION THEME SONGS! Two TOP TEN LISTS for the REQUEST of ONE!

Yeah! You guys finally picked one right! Proud of you, audience, readers, and others.

So, I decided to do another Top Ten List by request, 'cause, god fucking damn, we need to just have a little fun for once, or else it's just all Trump all the time, or new reboots or remakes, or eh-, whatever the hell's going on at Cannes right now. (Seriously, Cannes, are you gonna be that obnoxious that I'm gonna have to pay attention o you guys? It's just Netflix, what's the problem. Good lord.)

Anyway, I took a poll as usual asking for suggestions for Top Ten Lists that you haven't or rarely seen, and after getting, my usual quota of two responses with only one of them I deemed decent enough to actually poll for, I came up with a couple suggestions of my own, and put the poll out there on the Twitter and Facebook pages, as well as in a couple of the my popular Facebook groups.

Here are the results:
TOP TEN WORST TV SHOW THEME SONGS  18
TOP TEN MOST ENIGMATIC FILM CHARACTERS 7
TOP TEN ISLAND ADVENTURES 2

And yes, in a runaway, TOP TEN WORST TV SHOW THEME SONGS won by a landslide!. And I'm happy about that, that was one of my suggestions to the list and the one I most wanted to see win.

And this is an interesting, fun topic, that I think everybody's like to think about. Hell, I know I do. And most of the time, my thoughts on it are positive. There's a lot of great, great theme songs out there. And, many different kinds of theme songs as well. If I were ever to have to do a Top 100 Best Theme Songs List, I would have extreme difficulty in narrowing this down. In fact, I'd probably have to make multiple lists, one for ones with lyrics and one for one's without. And possibly a third list for great theme songs that were originally theme songs. I mean, hell, there's a good long list of great TV shows that aren't even apart of good television shows; they're shows that are mostly remembered for and stick in the popular consciousness because their theme songs were so good.

Hell, that can be an interesting Top Ten List itself, but it does give me to a constant thought I have that makes me wonder about the quality of TV theme songs. I mean, are they actually as good as they seem, or is it that they're good because we connect them to the show so much that they might not necessarily be as good as we think. And then I wonder if that's a bad thing at all. Shouldn't the theme song represent or compliment the show more than be a good piece of music in of itself? You have to think about things like that, I imagine.

Now, just by logic standards, there has to be some bad theme songs out there, which is why I wanted to do this particular list. There's a lot of television to sort through, and you know, let's be honest, I think the opposite is also a bit true when it comes to theme songs. A good theme song can a save a show, but a bad one can probably destroy a show, or in some cases, just be another sign of just how bad the show actually is. If you don't remember a show's theme song, there's probably a reason (and conversely you probably don't remember the show too well, and there's probably a reason for that too) Or maybe it's the opposite, maybe a theme song is, just fine, as a piece of music, but maybe it's use as a TV theme song is somewhat questionable.

So, this is a challenge, I have to do a little research and think about this one. So, I'm gonna take a day and just seek out as much television I can find that purportedly has some really bad or questionable theme songs to them. Can't be too hard. Sure, sixty years of television to sort through, and let's see, sitcoms, dramas, eh, I know most of the game show ones. Old children's television, that's gonna be annoying. And, I'm sure it's not that many, and hopefully I'm sure I'll find enough to fill the list, but what's the worst that can happen.

(72 HOURS LATERS)

(Cut to me throwing up in a shower, breathing heavy with a frightened tone of voice!)

(TEN MINUTES LATER)

I've made a huge mistake.

Okay, yes, there are so, so, so, sooooooooo, many bad TV show themes! Like, oh my God, how did this ever get made, bad songs. Okay, I'm gonna have to rethink this a bit. Well, unsurprisingly, not too many people have made lists of them, because, well, they're sane, although the ones that I have, I have serious, serious criticism about some of them. (Seriously, "The L Word", kept showing up on Worst Lists, that's one of the fucking best theme songs of all-time; they're out of their mind! That might've made a Top Ten List that amazing song.) Still though, there's no reasonable way I can do a complete, assured Top Ten, knowing that I have so, so, so,many TV shows that I'd have to sit through to check, And now, double-check to see how I'm gonna rank them.

Look, I'm gonna try to analyze all these theme songs and a few more as they pop-up, 'cause I'm still doing research as I write this, and-eh, yeah, it's very possible something much more horrible is gonna come around, but I'm not gonna lie, to some degree, this is just gonna come down to the songs that piss me off the most.   I mean, I'm gonna be trying to figure out why they make me so annoyed and come up with, in most cases some perfectly valid reasons, for many, if not most of these selections, but, yeah, listening to this much truly shitty music at once, not good. Not, something that I would ever recommend, to anybody, especially when you really want to seek out television theme songs. Basically, I'm not looking for just bad songs in general, a lot of time a theme song might be bad or annoying on purpose, so I don't want to count those. I'm looking for the things that fundamentally don't work. They don't help with the show or improve the show, in some cases they might bring a show down, even. A lot of this, will be thinking hard on, what they could've done, as opposed to what they did. That's where I suspect the really, really bad theme songs are gonna come in,

That said, I tried to get to as much as possible, there's a lot I probably missed. I mean, I didn't even get to comment on, all these dishonorable mentions:

"Young Dan'l Boone"
"Dusty's Trail"
"Rafferty"
"Logan's Run"
"The Waltons"
"The New Dick Van Dyke Show"
"Three's a Crowd"
"Dreams"
"E/R"
"Highway to Heaven"
"Finder of Lost Lovers"
"Paper Dolls"
"Call to Glory"
"Cover Up"
"7th Heaven"
"Bionic Woman"
"Hart to Hart"
"Knight Rider"
"Mann and Machine"
"Earth 2"
"Touched by an Angel"
"Who's Watching the Kids"
"Seven Brides for Seven Brothers"
"Nanny and the Professor"
"Me and the Chimp"
"BJ and the Bear"
"Lottery"
"The Search for the Nile"
"The Cavanaughs"
"Fathers and Sons"
"St. Elsewhere"
"Family Man"
"I'm a Big Girl, Now"
"Raising Miranda"
"Better Days"
"Have Faith"
"Family Feud (2002)"
"Pyramid(02)"
"The Donny & Marie Variety Show"
"Big Love" (Season 4)
"Robbery Homicide Division"
"UC: Undercover"
"The Good Guys"
"Here Come the Brides"
"Maggie"
"Ladies Man"
"The People Next Door"

And, frankly, there's dozens more than all these, so if you don't think you're, um, "favorite" (Shrugs) worst theme song is on my list, I might've missed it, so let me know, comment. If I agree and think it's really bad, you might be right, but I-, I can't. I can't go on. No mas, no mas, too much, too much. Just comment and I'll look it up later, and agree or disagree with you.

Anyway, I didn't think I'd end up doing multiple lists, but we're doing multiple lists. So, we'll start with the Instrumental theme songs, Top Ten and then, a Top Ten with Lyrics, partly because I don't think it's fair to compare them, and partly 'cause I need to. I really need to. Oh, boy do I need to. (Intense deep breath) Yeah, ten's not enough this week. (

(Long intense pause/sigh)

Okay, we're ready. Top Ten List #1! We're counting down!


THE TOP TEN WORST TV THEME SONGS (INSTRUMENTALS)


Number ten!

10. Nurses (Third Season) (NBC, 1991-'94)



"Nurses" kinda gets forgotten nowadays, and to be fair, it was never exactly the greatest show or anything, but I never thought it was that bad, and it had quite a bit of potential. But, they never could quite figure out what to do with it, entirely, so it never did find a really consistent and solid rhythm and the network kept trying to make subtle changes to it. One of the changes they kept making was the theme songs. Now, the original first season theme, actually is one of my favorites, it's a highly underrated theme song that both conveys the struggles and travails of the profession, especially with the nice touch of a heartbeat as the intro and outro of the song. They switched it in the second season, to a more outwardly sitcomish comedic, piano and horns theme to it, but one that still sorta fit the show and still related a lot of the hospital motifs. This third theme song though,- well, first of all, the fact that they added Loni Anderson to the cast was an absolutely terrible idea. Just terrible, destroyed what little chance the show had, but besides that, does this theme song sound like anything, much less a hospital-themed sitcom? This pan-flute whatever thing, could've been the theme song to anything. Not even just television series, anything. If I heard it in a Wendy's commercial, I doubt that I would even think anything was weird. Or that this ever was a TV show theme. Nowadays, "Nurses" is only ever brought up because it's apart of the same universe as "The Golden Girls" and "Empty Nest", and I definitely think this was apart of why that is.


NUMBER NINE!

9. Mr. T. & Tina (ABC-1978)



Yeah, I went digging for some of these. "Mr. T & Tina", first of all, has nothing to do with the Mr. T. you're definitely thinking of. It's actually the show that Pat Morita left "Happy Days" to do, although for some strange reason, it's actually technically a spinoff of "Welcome Back, Kotter", (Shrugs) and lasted five episodes. The theme song, oh boy. There's a couple other themes I can think of as being fairly racist, but this one's just strange. It's a bizarre mix of Oriental Riff, and eh, "Chicago (That Toddlin' Town)", apparently. (Scratches head) I don't even think the idea of taking a song like "Chicago" and then adding Oriental influences, even some disturbing cliche ones at that is that bad, but this combination is just weird. It's not so much an alternate version or a new remix, it's just a randomly awkward mixed combination of the songs. It's almost strange enough to give it some slack and dismiss it as some warped existential avant-garde piece of music, but I don't think so. I think this was a show put together in a hurry that they didn't fully have fledged out, so they ended up trying to combine what they had. It's Pat Morita, so something Asian, and it takes place in Chicago, so, hey "Chicago"! Well, use that song. I find it more perplexing than bad to some degree, but it's bad, and I think it could've been good, which is why I'm putting it on this list.


Number Eight!

8. Dads (ABC, 1986-'87)




Do you remember this show from the '80s? No, of course you don't. Do you remember this theme song? No, you don't. If I played it to again right this second, would you recognize it as the theme song from "Dads"? No, you would not. That's why it's on this list. There's actually been a few different sitcoms over the years called "Dads" and none of them had a decent theme song, btw, but this wouldn't even pass as elevator music. Much less a TV theme song. A sitcom theme at that.


NUMBER SEVEN!

7. Too Close for Comfort (aka The Ted Knight Show) (ABC,1980-'83; Syndication, 1984-'86) 



Oh God, I always start developing a twitch when I hear this theme song. So, Ted Knight had a couple post-"The Mary Tyler Moore Show" attempts, he finally had a successful one with "Too Close for Comfort" eventually, which is unfortunate 'cause this is really a bad show. But the worst thing about the show, and keep in mind, this is a show that the best thing it had going for it was Jm. J. Bullock, is the theme song. God, this song's so boring and forgettable, and yet, so distinctly bad that it's almost impossible to conceive of it. It's like, it knows it bad, but doesn't know how to convey it. Like, it's trying really hard to not be the "Who's the Boss" theme, but it doesn't know the kind of theme it wants to be, so it kinda doesn't pick anything. Come to think of it, that also describes the show, so maybe it is appropriate for the show, but honestly it doesn't help in this case. It only exemplifies how, pathetically below average the show is. Hell, most people couldn't remember the name of this show when asked, in general, even when you describe it, and a fairly memorable theme song would've helped that, but, no chance of that ever happening.


NUMBER SIX!

6. The Ropers (ABC, 1979-'80)



Oh, dear God, this is bad! Wow, this show never had a chance! Why is there a tuba farting all over the theme song? Why this theme song? Why these opening credits? A lead tuba! I'm at a lost for words. I mean, the "Three's Company" theme song is cheesy, but it's fun and it fits the show. This theme song, it doesn't fit anything, much less "The Ropers". Oh god, this is awful. The opening credits don't help, but no, this would be bad no matter what it had. It's almost like they didn't write the theme song, but they shot the credits and this was just the placeholder until they found the real theme, but never did. Man, this is just a disaster; there's not much more to add to this, I'm gonna move on.


NUMBER FIVE!

5. The Brian Keith Show (oka The Little People) (2nd Season) (NBC, 1972-'74)



Okay, ignoring the bizarre "Legends of the Hidden Temple" tiki-mask note at the beginning, which, I'm not, but if you do, you'll eventually fall asleep listening to this. I know, I keep doing it. Originally titled, "The Little People" before being renamed "The Brian Keith Show", this is one of Garry Marshall's more forgettable series. I couldn't find the original theme song of the series, so I'm not sure what they had before, but how do you create a TV show that takes place in Hawaii, and have such a duldrom boring theme song. I seriously think of all the shows that take place in Hawaii, "Hawaii Five-0", "Magnum, P.I.", hell, even "The Diamond Head Game" knew enough to have a decent theme song, and considering how little that show knew, that's saying something. Oh and Brian Keith, is one of those actor who seemed to be in like a thousand different pilots over the years. He's most famous for starring on "Family Affair", most of his shows aren't remembered too much now, and from what I can tell, most of them don't have good theme songs. (Well, except for "Hardcastle and McCormick") That's unfortunate, he was a pretty good actor though. "The Parent Trap", "The Russians and Coming, The Russians are Coming", etc. He committed suicide in '97, after suffering from lung cancer and the death of his daughter, also a suicide, a couple months before. He got a Star on the Walk of Fame eleven years after his death, but yeah, it's unfortunate that his name got shoved onto this project. Garry Marshall of course created some much more memorable shows over the years, but yeah, he's had as many failures as he had successes. This one's a forgotten one that's somewhere in-between his worst failures and biggest successes, but still, it's Hawaii, come up with something better.


NUMBER FOUR!

You may have noticed that so far, I've listed several spinoff series, "Nurses", is a spinoff of "The Golden Girls", "Mr. T & Tina" is a spinoff of "Welcome Back, Kotter", and of course, "The Ropers" a spinoff of "Three's Company". I didn't intend that, but it really is hard to separate some of these shows. We so associate a lot of these with the original theme song, that it becomes natural to compare them which makes their faults more obvious. I'd rather not do that, but unfortunately we're gonna be in a run here where the next three shows on the list run the gambit of just being shows being associated with previous hit shows, that, might not necessarily have great theme songs to begin with, but they, let's just say, they fail in comparisons to their originals, for many reasons, and while that's really not fair, I think I'm safe in saying that, even if they weren't associated with the other shows, they would still be atrociously bad and would be justified in making this list. I don't know why these shows have such a hard time coming up with, in these cases even competent theme songs, but... (Sigh) Anyway, let's start with the most, "What the fuck" one of the bunch.

4. Still the Beaver/The New Leave It to Beaver (All Seasons)-(Disney Channel, 1984-'85; Superstation WTBS 1986-'87, Superstation TBS-1988-'89)



I was only gonna put Season One of this on here, 'cause of just, how, warped this is, but, after I looked at the rest of the theme songs this series had, I had to include them all here. Okay, this is one of the very few examples out there of a successful, "Sequel Series" Not a spinoff, a sequel series that would be a continuation of a previous series, and if this doesn't tell you just how fucked up the '80s were, nothing will. As to the theme songs, they're all bad, and their all re-versioned editions of the original "Leave It to Beaver" theme, which was already a theme song that I think is more memorable than it is good, but they're all weird and bad in different ways. The first, is this totally mismatched double-sided theme song, that sounds, at first, more like a funeral than the "Leave It to Beaver" theme but then there's this demented jovial tonal switch to it, that you got hear to believe. They got rid of that for the second and third season, for I guess, a better, more smooth jazz interpretation of the opening. Kind of reminds me of that "Jeopardy!" theme song with the horns in it, but it's still not exactly great. (And certainly no where near as good a song as the jazzy "Jeopardy!" theme.) I mean, it's slightly elevated from elevator music but not much, still sounds more like a bad talk show's theme song. But then the last season of the show has a doo-wop/scat interpretation of it. It's really bad, but it's also nonsensical. I mean, that would've made sense for a re-imagining of the original series, but this wasn't a reboot, this was a revival sequel series, some thirty years after the original series. It took place in the modern-day eighties, so it doesn't actually sound right, here either. I mean, I guess it's better than the first season's, but, really, they're all bad reworkings of an already iconic theme song.


NUMBER THREE

You know how one of my criteria for this list is that, for these shows, you have to think about what else they could've done, instead of what they did? I mean, sometimes the best idea, like this next show, would be to have never done it all, but if they were going to do it, then, you might as well do as well as you can, right? (Sigh)

3. The Brady Bunch Variety Hour (ABC, 1976-'77)



It's the theme to "The Brady Bunch" played on a kazoo.

Maybe, you didn't read that right, I'll repeat it. "The Brady Bunch" theme song, (Lewis Black-like pause) played, on a goddamn fucking kazoo! I am dead serious. Yeah, there's a bit of a Broadway musical opening, but it's goddamn Brady Bunch theme played by a KAZOO!

I don't think I have to explain myself anymore on this one, so, moving on.....


NUMBER TWO!

2. Sanford Arms (NBC, 1977)



This was a spinoff of "Sanford & Son", that had no Sanford and had no Son. That's already an amazing pile of holy fucking shit,-, I mean, this is first reported time I can think of where basically the TV show's Set Design got a spinoff of it's own. And it lasted four episodes, one less than "Mr. T & Tina", but really, "Sanford & Son". That show makes nearly every list of the greatest and most iconic theme songs ever made. I love it, and I'm not even a particular big fan of the show to be honest, I do love Redd Foxx, but I can usually take or leave the series, but everybody loves the theme song. So, for a spinoff, it better be something, at the very minimum. And what do we get? Ugh, nothing. Like-, it doesn't remotely sound like the original theme song. Hell, even "The Ropers" play a couple notes of "Come and Knock on our Door" in their theme, but not only does it have nothing to do with "Sanford & Son", it's so bland and lifeless. "Alley Cat" seems more jovial as bouncy than this. I mean, I hear a piano, horns and bass, but how do you go from, "Buh-bum-bom-bom, buh-bum-BAH-bam-BAH-bam-bom...", this funky song that seems like it's from a juke band with junkyard made instrument, to something so lifeless it barely exists! In terms of a spinoff series theme song, truly being an insult to the greatness of the original, I think this has to be way the fuck up there. I get trying to be different, but this would be bland and forgettable for any show, much less as a spinoff for a show as memorable as "Sanford & Son".

Alright, before I got to number, let's go to a few dishonorable mentions that you'll all have to look up on Youtube yourself

DISHONORABLE MENTIONS

"Super Password"-Ugh, I didn't have room for "Super Password"! Oh man, I thought this would be near the top of my list, even before I decided to separate this to two lists. I know some would like to look at say, the Donnie Osmond "Pyramid" for worst game show themes, but "Super Password"'s theme is awful. This doesn't sound like a game show, at least not one for adults. If this was the theme to "I'm Telling!" or something, I probably wouldn't have noticed, but as much as I love "Password" as a game, this song is just too cheery and demented. It sound like it's played on the piano from the toy store in "Big". I mean, listen to the theme from "Password Plus" and how much better that is compared to this one. This has my vote for worst game show theme song.

"Sanchez of Bel-Air"-What the hell was this? Is Bobby Sherman Hispanic? Believe it or not, and no I couldn't believe it 'til I looked it up, this is an important show, not just for the almost entirely Latino cast, but it was also the first basic cable show to have a SAG and a studio, in this case Paramount, agreement for reruns residuals. This is where the very insider Union term "Sanchez Formula" comes from. Oh yeah, it was a series about Latinos written by White people, so yeah, it didn't last long enough for meaningful rerun residuals and the theme song's terrible. Think every other boring cliche '80s sitcom theme, only with a couple Mexican instruments added.

"Flying High"-Well, this is clearly some bad long-forgotten early bad version of "The Love Boat" theme.  Except it came out before "The Love Boat". And stranger than that, this was a sitcom?

"Free Country"-"Yeah, this song that sounds like it's a cutting room floor track for "Fiddler on the Roof" won't get annoying," is apparently what somebody thought. No wonder this only lasted five episodes.

"Merv Griffin's Crosswords"-Oh god, another game show theme that sounds like a children't song. I guess they throw some hints at the "Jeapordy!" theme in there too, but this is bad.

"Hazel"-There's nothing necessarily wrong with this theme song, it's just so boring and forgettable though. It seems like the in-between music between scenes more than the actual theme song.

"Bring 'Em Back Alive"-This is quite possibly not only the most blatant ripoff of John Williams score for "Raiders of the Lost Ark" ever, but it could very well be the earliest known blatant ripoff of it.

"Whiz Kids"-Man this show, so wishes it had the "Doogie Howser, M.D." theme. I know, product of the time a bit, but I don't know, they could've added more conventional elements mixed in, like some better strings to make this theme a little less alien.

"Harry O"-There's something wrong with every version of the theme to "Harry O", which, yeah, stupid title, I know, but I can't quite explain what it is, with either song. It just all sounds off, like somebody was trying to create the the next theme to "Quincy" or "Mannix" and somebody else was trying to create "Roundabout". I don't know, it just doesn't go together.

"Cagney & Lacey"-Oh, I'm gonna get some shit for this one. Look, "Cagney & Lacey" is a great show, underrated even, but I hate this theme song. Seriously, tell me that this song, in any way, sounds like a cop show? It doesn't even sound like a drama series. I think I can imagine this song played at the end credit of a game show watching the host talking to the other contestants.

"Boy Meets World" (Season 4, 2nd Theme)-After the "Full House" era of TGIF ended, I like to pretend the theme songs for many of those shows got better over time, "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch" is a good example of one where it did, and that's true of "Boy Meets World" too, for the most part, although, I actually think this is worst than their first year theme. I can see the argument elsewise, 'cause the first season's annoying too, and has that weird ragtime bridge for no reason, but I don't think this generic three-note rock song with no lyrics that barely lasts thirty second was any better. It's half a song at best.

"Trauma Center"-I guess technically this isn't a terrible theme song, but it really doesn't fit the show. Especially with the intense opening about how traumatic, a "Trauma Center" and then, I don't know it might as well be the "Buffalo Bill" theme, only without the irony.

"Viva Valdez"-I'm fairly certain this is just the theme song to "Three's Company" without lyrics and in a different key.

"Airwolf"-Oh, another one I'm gonna get shit for. That said, even as a kid, something always bugged me about this theme song. I feel like, it's a beat that I've heard before, like a children's song beat that's hidden inside this bizarre combination of strings and synthesizers that somehow makes it seem menacing. I can't figure out what song it is, but, this song never worked for me, but then this is a show that I thought as a kid, "What the fuck is this?" .

"Buffy the Vampire Slayer"-Actually, this is one that popped up on a few other peoples' Worst Theme Songs  lists I found. Honestly there's so many things that I personally that I cannot stand about this show, that made me pissed off and angry that honestly, the theme just skipped right by me, so I never quite gave it a real listen. Now, that I have, I guess I get it, this is kind of an oxymoronic theme choice considering the show, but eh, honestly it's not up high enough on the annoyance scale to really bother me. It might be questionable for the show, but even me, who loves to take an opportunity to beat up on this show, eh, even I'm passing on this one.

"The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan"-I should be angrier, but I'm gonna give this one a pass for at least being more musically interesting than "Mr. T and Tina"

"Quantum Leap"-Boy, this show's so lucky it was actually good, 'cause if this was bad; we wouldn't be looking nostalgically at the theme song, we'd be laughing at it. And you all know it too! Admit it, this is not a good theme song!


Alright, the number one WORST TELEVISION THEME SONG-INSTRUMENTAL goes too...

(Drumroll)

1. Clutch Cargo (Syndication, 1959-'60)



What the fuck is this Native American drumming thing? Is that the theme song? I'm not even sure this even counts as a theme song but...., if it does then it needs to be up here. Look, "Clutch Cargo" is an atrocity of a show. This show is just an insult to animation, television, and moving pictures in general, but, the fact that this barely counts as a theme song, this twelve-to-fourteen seconds of Native Americans, I presume Native Americans drums, although I wouldn't be surprised if this was some beatnik's old bongos they decided to pawn, is the theme song, kinda just represents  how lazy this is. I mean, it kinda fits the theme of the show, the hero character traveling and adventure, but they couldn't find any other instrument to use? A flute and drums, basically enough to hear every beat and note, and nothing else. This show used the infamous Synchro-Vox printing system, where they would put a static picture on the frame, and cut out the mouth and replace that with a human mouth talking. There's literally no animation in this animated show. I mean, yeah, it's cheap, apparently made for $18,000 a weekly episode, but at the same time, Rocky and Bullwinkle were reinventing what we could do with animation. The rest of these songs are bad, but at least the songs don't seem like they were made up or could've easily been recorded during a six-year-old's third music session. When you look at where animation is now, including shows that have shorter than half-hour time slots, like "Clutch Cargo" did, you can see how far we've come, but my God, when you look back and see shit like this, you realize how some people can still have trouble taking animation seriously as an art form. And a decent or halfway decent or worked-on theme song, could've improved that a little. For those reasons, I have to throw "Clutch Cargo" off the plane here, as the worst instrumental television theme song.

Okay, that was only the appetizer, Everyone; now, to the main course.... We got two Top Tens for the price of One today, so, let's take a breath. (Deep breath) Bleed just to know I'm alive. (Slice back of wrist with pocketknife) Eh, close enough, and let's get to. We're counting down...!



THE TOP TEN WORST TV THEME SONGS (WITH LYRICS)


NUMBER TEN!

Alright, I know this is a cheap shot, but I can't help it.

10. Cass Malloy (CBS, 1982) 



Never heard of it? Good, me neither. (Sigh) This was, believe it or not, and I really can't believe I have to talk about this thing, is a pilot episode that did not get picked from '82, that, five years later would get rebooted in first-run syndication as "She's the Sheriff". No, that wasn't a show that "South Park" made-up on their own, that was an actual series. I know it sounds like a joke, Suzanne Somers in "She's the Sheriff, but that actually was real, and it's baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad. Really bad, even by Suzanne Somers standards. But, at least they improved the theme song five years later. You know, I'm usually one of the more lenient people when it comes to uses of da's and la's for lyrics, but, I can't defend it here. This is atrociously bad. I should give this a break 'cause it's a pilot that only aired once and wasn't picked up, but it did technically air, so unfortunately I have to count it. (Hey, I looked for a loophole, but I couldn't find it). And besides there's a list of hundreds of series good and bad that had great theme songs from the pilot onward, and while it's not unusual for a TV show to have a pilot episode with a theme song that's incomplete, hell, there's a-, well, speaking of Suzanne Somers, there's actually and early unaired pilot of "Three's Company" where they're doing the same thing over the theme song to that show on Youtube. Just, Da-da-ing it, but that pilot never aired on television and this did. Maybe it shouldn't have, but I gotta put it on here.


NUMBER NINE!

9. My Two Dads (NBC, 1987-'90)



 If this was a Top Ten Worst Opening Credits Sequences, this might've easily been on the list as well, and I appreciate that Greg Evigan tried to not simply create a theme song that describe the show, a la, "Mister Ed" or some other shows I'll probably mention, but boy this doesn't age well. This is like the hackiest George Michael impression ever. And "You Can Count on Me", that's such a bland, generic statement to be sung so enthusiastically after such a ridiculous show premise as this is. I mean, this, oldest sister on "Step By Step", just lost her mother and now is living with two strange men, one of whom is the father she never met, the other is the other person her mother was also sleeping with at the time...- maybe some more, "let's struggle to come together and go against the odds," themes would've been more appropriate here? Plus, the way this thing, just blasts at how loud it is doesn't help. This is a really typical example of what it means, to "Try too hard".


NUMBER EIGHT!

8. Joanie Loves Chachi (ABC, 1982-'83)



(Sigh) You know, while this is a pretty deservedly derided theme song,  I can't really tell what the real problem is with this theme song. I mean, it's not good sure, but why? Maybe it's the bad lip-syncing, maybe it's that whoever's lip-syncing them aren't good singers either. Maybe it's the fact that this is clearly an early '80s/late '70s song and this is supposed to be like, 1965. Maybe it's that, it's just a love song about looking at each other, that's totally creepy. Not loving, just looking. If it wasn't a duet, this would sound as creepy as The Police's "Every Breath You Take", only, sucking. It's just a bad love song, by supposedly talented singers that doesn't sound sung well, and doesn't really convey the love they supposedly have for each other. It doesn't look like either of them are good at selling it either, especially Scott Baio. You know, the weirder thing is, when you look up the first time they perform the song on "Happy Days", it doesn't sound that good there either, and it's the long version. You know, maybe it's that love songs don't make good sitcom themes. I mean, think about it, how many can you think of off-hand, and true love songs, at that. There's a lot of sitcoms about two people and how in love they are, but they don't usually have love song themes, unless maybe, "As Time Goes By", which just used a classic old song. You don't see this with new songs. The closest I can really think of is "Mad About You", and that song's about two people in love, not a song about how much they love each other. This really isn't a good formula, which is probably why, while otherwise benign, just hits everybody the wrong way in hindsight. It's a weird title too, now that I think about it. Why couldn't it just be, "Joanie and Chachi"?


NUMBER SEVEN!

7. David Cassidy-Man Undercover (NBC, 1978-'79)



What the hell is this....! (Befuddled look, bursts into laughter.) Oh-kay, oh that's just-, oh God. Okay, so what's worst than love song for a sitcom, apparently, a disco love song for a cop show, starring an old teen idol? This is-, okay, this needs some explanation. So, at some point, David Cassidy got a Guest Acting spot on "Police Story", that everybody claims to be really good, surprisingly good, in fact, and he even got an Emmy nomination for it. So, they made a spinoff series for him, where David Cassidy plays, an undercover cop, and they called the show, "David Cassidy: Man Undercover", hahahah, I shouldn't be laughing. Anyway, actually, the show, is terrible, but it's not a bad series idea. In fact, it's basically what became "21 Jump Street" a few years later, but you gotta remember, David Cassidy was trying to shed his teen idol image. "The Partridge Family" was off the air, like four or five years at that point, and hypothetically, this move made sense. If it was just a regular cop show, that happened to star David Cassidy, and it wasn't treated like a big thing, I think it could've worked. (I write that, knowing that I've seen an episode of this, and no, it wouldn't have, 'cause this was not a well-written show but, supposing it didn't completely suck...) But, you don't then slap a romantic, ballad as the theme! I mean, "Police Story" didn't have much of a theme song; it was like the "Dragnet" of it's day, a by-the-book procedural.... This just makes so little sense. I mean, out of context, this is probably not a bad song, but for this, at a time, when cop shows had good theme songs. "Simon & Simon", "Starsky & Hutch", there was a coolness to the shows at the time, and this just doesn't fit in. It's one of those amazingly bad television screw-ups that makes you seriously wonder if there's an alternate universe where everything good could've possibly happened for Cassidy here and whether he could've made a pretty long-lasting and quality television acting career out of this, instead of just being the "I Think I Love You" guy. I mean, he is the son of a talented actor, and his stepmom was Shirley Jones, in real life and she was an Oscar winner too. But, even in that era, why this theme and approach to the show? (Sigh) Oh well, next.


NUMBER SIX!

Some of you might be a little surprised that I haven't included more kids shows so far. Yeah, I had "Clutch Cargo" number one on the Instrumental list, but that's to kids show what Jessica Simpson is to an IQ test, but still, I can definitely think of a few pretty bad kids themes. Not as many as you'd think, especially modern shows I'm not as up on, but there's a few out there. I tried to listen to as many of the ones that I ran across, I'm probably missing a few. Mostly though, I don't think they're too bad overall. I mean, the one thing that you can probably count on is that a children's kids theme song will be appropriate for the show, Even the bad ones will at least, fit the series kinda decently. That doesn't make them good, but it gives them some leeway on this list. (Sigh) That said, there's a line, and we're crossing it here, and we gotta go back to the well for this one, 'cause oh Jesus, sometimes, the very thing you're aiming for kids, is really for no one.

6. The Banana Splits Adventure Hour (oka The Banana Splits and Friends) (NBC, 1968-'70)



(BANGS HEAD AGAINST WALL REPEATEDLY AND IN RHYTHM TO THE SONG)

You know, when Geekcast Radio Network did their Top 100 Cartoon Characters Countdown that I participated in, I got some slack from some of the gang there, 'cause I'm one of those people who doesn't think much of, most anything Hanna & Barbera did after Tom & Jerry, even the more critically-acclaimed stuff I'm not that crazy about, they thought I was being a little mean. Maybe I am, but then again, (GRINNING TEETH) "THE BANANA SPLITS ADVENTURE HOUR!!!!!!!!" God, I hate this. This, this is just evil. (Sigh) Excuse me a minute.

(Stands up, walks over to wall, bangs head against wall, repeatedly, continuously and in rhythm to the song)
Tra, la, la, tra, la-la, tra, la-la, la, tra-la-la, Oh my fucking God, make it STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
(Sam Kinison-esque yells)
OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! OHHHHHHHHHH! OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!-

(Elevator music plays)
TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES
PLEASE STAND BY

(27 minutes later)

Okay, I think I'm fine now. (Deep breath, rubs head) For the most part.  Like, I know what they were trying to do and what they were doing. This was late '60s, every show had a band or tried to have a band associated with it, and that especially included kids show in America. This is the era of Josie and the Pussycats and The Archies, but oh dear God. This is what being surrounded by evil kindergartners on sugar rushes sounds like in the head. It's not even just that, there isn't anything to this song, it's just, "We're here!" One banana, two banana...-, it's basically half-way inventing the Name Game Song. There had to be better lyric choices to put on the four-chord monstrosity than this, something that says something about the Bananas. I mean, think of the Monkees theme, it doesn't say much else or anything than literally, "Hey, hey, we're the Monkees," but there's personality there. They're introducing themselves to us, how they're all different, and they didn't beat it into your head either. We're here, we're fun, we're gonna entertain you. I don't know anything about The Banana Splits other than there's four of them. (And from the looks of it, I just realized, they look more like dogs instead of bananas?) Ugh. Oh, and those costumes were created by Sid & Marty Kroft, that was their big break and if you know anything about '70s Kids TV, then you who they are, and you know, that to some extent, it gets way more fucked up from here. But, no, I'll take all those theme songs over getting beaten over the head with this. (Sigh) This song broke the Top 100 on the pop charts by the way. Oh, and Sid & Marty Kroft were the producers on "The Brady Bunch Variety Hour" also, so they're probably the ones responsible fot the fucking KAZOOS, so throw that atrocity onto them too. Anybody ever tell you that kids shows are, I don't know, too educational or too much mass marketing or, whatever, just not as good or the same as kids shows in their day, punch them in the fucking face. Multiple time, in rhythm to this. Sing it if you can at them, (GRINNING TEETH) "tra-la, la, la, la-la, la..." (GROWLS) NEXT ONE PLEASE!


NUMBER FIVE!

What the hell do I have worst than that? (Checks list, starts chuckling) Ha, oh shit. That's a memory.

5. Thunder in Paradise (Syndicated, 1994)



LOL, oh fuck, I forget this existed. What the hell happened here? I don't know what the hell this theme song is? There's like almost a minute of buildup, that leads to, nothing, and then that nothing lasts like, a minute and a half, and it's all, what-, ugh I-, (Chuckles again) I don't know, there's clearly words being sung, and instruments being played, and there's coherentness to it, but still, I think this would be difficult to justify as a "Song". For those, who didn't live through this, this is "Thunder in Paradise" this started, originally as a made-for-VHS movie, that got picked up and turned into a series, that, also included within the episodes, two, two-parters that themselves were rebranded as straight-to-VHS movies, that are titled, "Thunder in Paradise II" and "Thunder in Paradise 3", (And no, I didn't change from roman numerals to arabic numbers, they did.) and yes, as you can plainly see, this show starred, master thespian, Hulk Hogan as an ex-Navy Seal who's a tropical resort mercenary, God, I can barely type this with a straight face. Now, there are alternate versions of this theme, one that's really fucking hilarious at the beginning of the first Pilot movie, where it's not a sudden shift to, acoustic guitar, but it's just as bad as it's just a droning and forgettable power ballad with no meaningful lyrics. Think Mr. Mister's "Broken Wings", only without the catchy parts.  Part of me wants to let this get away with it considering it was so bad, but there had to have been something better than this. Say what you want about any of the themes of "Baywatch", at least they were trying. I mean, sure, it doesn't help that "Thunder in Paradise" was a lousy show that was part-"Baywatch", part, um, "Commando", I guess (Sorry, I'm surprising weak on '80s action films), I don't fucking know. This show was a doomed nonsensical vanity project to begin with, but this theme song really didn't help. This is what the cocaine-fueled remnants of the hair metal era we're spilling out while the rest of the world was at the dying days of grunge. This is the show that made "Pacific Blue" seem like a thought-provoking alternative. (Hell, that show had a good theme song) Okay, next one.


NUMBER FOUR!

(Sigh) Part of me, wants to not count this one, I probably shouldn't to be honest, but, this is just, so lazy, I can't believe they actually did this. I mean, seriously, this is the best you could think of?

4. Mama's Boy (NBC, 1987-'88)



Oh boy, we're getting up there on this one. Look, I really didn't want to bash theme songs that weren't originally intended to be theme songs of TV shows, but, c'mon!. You get a show called "Mama's Boy", with Bruce Weitz in the lead no less, right off of "Hill Street Blues" and teamed with Nancy Walker too, and all you can come up with is an a capella doo-wop version of Eddy Arnold's "Mother". A bad, 40-year-old country song, at the time...-  That was weak sauce, even back then. No wonder NBC didn't know what the hell to do with it and somehow ended up airing it's six aired episodes over a twelve-month span! I mean, what do you do, put that on after "ALF" and see what happens? I know, I did some choices before that were reversioned of original theme songs, and I'm not a crazy about a cover song being on the list. If you want to pretend something else is here, then bump the rest of the shows up one and put the 3rd Season theme to "Felicity" at number ten, but yeah, you have to try a little harder than that.


NUMBER THREE!

3. Lamb Chop's Play Along (PBS, 1992-'95)

LOLOL, okay, that's funny. Now, seriously, what's the real number three on the list?

(Long pause)

Go ahead, put the real one-, What do you mean, that's the actual-? What the hell, that's-, No! NO! That's-, hold on, stop the list for a second, where's my Editor? HEY! What the hell?!

(Looks towards offscreen Editor, who's voice is heard but not audible)

 We already did a kids' show with The Banana Splits, why is this on here. Besides,"Lamb Chop's Play Along", that had a good theme song!!!! YES IT WAS! Yes, I'm talkin-, I'm  not talking about the "Song That Doesn't End", I'm talking about the theme song. "Hey, it's Lamb Chop's Play Along! Where to come, to play along, and fun things, and all we have to... (Singing voice trails out)," that was a good theme song. I mean, it's not the greatest or anything but c'mon! It's Shari Lewis and Lamb Chop, they were great. I stole a lot of jokes from this show-, I mean, they've-um, they influence quite a bit of my sense of humor over the years. The theme song wasn't that bad. (Annoyed sigh) Fine, I'll prove it to you, put the Youtube clip up, and I'll show you that it's a perfectly fine theme song. Doesn't belong on this list.  Play it!



What the-, oh fuck, they rapped the beginning! Oh, my god. Okay, yeah, that's-, oh-, okay, I forgot that rapping part to open it. Alright, yeah, that was unfortunate, Shari Lewis and Lamb Chop shouldn't be rapping, but the chorus is oh-okay-  OH JESUS FUCK, I FORGOT ABOUT THIS PART! Oh, no! No! No! No!, Okay, you win, I tap. I tap. Oh god, what the hell was Shari Lewis thinking?! Okay, okay. Oh God, Oh dear. Well, there's a memory I had apparently repressed. I love Shari Lewis, I mean, I was genuinely sad as a kid when I heard she suddenly passed away of complications from her second bought with breast cancer, and I think she's very underrated in terms of television history, as well as puppetry, and she was an accomplished musician too, and she won six Emmys for this show, but-, oh man, I can't defend her for this. "Bounce your bottom in the air!"I-eh, oh my God. I'm gonna need another moment. (Sigh)


Alright, I'm fine now, let's go. NUMBER TWO!

2. America's Next Top Model (All Seasons) (UPN, 2003-'06; The CW, 2006-'15; VH-1, 2016-Present)



I wasn't even gonna put this on the list at first; I mean, I saw a few other people list it as one of the worst themes songs, so I listened to the first couple seasons themes, and it was bad, and yeah, probably the worst reality show theme I could think of, and that seemed to be the general consensus elsewhere, (Reality shows, strangely, tend to be pretty decent theme song wise) but you know, worst of the worst, of all of television, eh, probably not. (Sigh) But then I thought about it for a second and I realized that, "Oh shit, they've done like 20 seasons of this thing..., and so, I took a listen to some of the later seasons theme an, oh, dear god they're awful. There's some shows who's theme songs get worst and worst over time, but oh boy, this one really got worst and worst over time. At some point, it doesn't even resemble music anymore, it's just random noises just layered and layered on top of each other. There's no beat or rhythm, or anything. It literally sounds like a catfight. I'm not talking two VH-1 reality stars, I mean, two cats fighting in another room ,knocking shit of the fall and scratching the curtains and screeching, meows 'til the end of the time. I mean, Season-, I mean, Cycle 23, the one with Rita Ora, eh, I guess marks the first time they actually improved the theme, because at least there, I can make out the remnants of an actual song, but barely, and it's still terrible. I mean, I don't need reality shows to have a great theme song, and I get how a show that's been on this long, has to change a bit, but there's a way to do it. I mean look at the revolution of "Project Runway" or "Top Chef"'s theme songs over time, they still reminisce back to the original, but they also carefully add and take away sometimes, little touches as they go. "America's Next Top Model", which, I repeat, didn't have a good theme song to begin with, but was at least, tolerable and passable, but they just kept adding more and more and more and more. Static, autotune, some Li'l Jon wannabe, who may actually be Li'l John yelling. I'm all for avant-garde sounds in music, I mean, hell I listen to Sasha Grey's music unironically, but this isn't trying to be different or avant-garde, it's trying to be cool and keep up with the times, and it's failing miserably by cherry-picking aspects that might in some context be popular or hip, but failing complete understanding how they work. Either that or Tyra Banks just has shitty taste in music, which I'm not exactly putting outside the possibility either, but either way, this is literally unlistenable music.

Alright, let's build the tension up a bit; we've got a lot of Dishonorable Mentions for the Lyrical themes as well, so let's get through them:

DISHONORABLE MENTIONS

"Felicity" (3rd Season Theme)-Wow, talk about a bad theme song change for a show. This came pretty damn close to making the list. I never liked "Felicity" to begin with, but wow, they went from a really dark and hauntingly beautiful Stevie Nicks meets Tori Amos-esque theme for the first two seasons, to this really moronic one for the rest of the series. "Can you become a new version of you?" What does the hell does that mean? I want, you, to be somebody, completely different entirely, but still you? What the fuck?!

"Walker, Texas Ranger" (2nd Theme)-I have never understood the appeal of Chuck Norris, at all, not then, certainly not now, so I never watched "Walker, Texas Ranger" growing up. Looking back, I still don't see the appeal, and I'm wondering who the hell decided to let Chuck Norris sing his own theme song?

"Growing Pains"-This was gonna make the list and pretty high until I decided to give it a little leniency, 'cause it does fit the show really well, but when it comes to the ultimate in just, generic, average, boring, meaningless, vaporous theme songs that mean absolutely nothing, to a show that's all of those things and more, I don't think you can actually top "Growing Pains". I know it's easier to pick on something, like a "Full House" or something, but God, "Growing Pains" is really much worst when you think about it. "Show Me That Smile...", well, what if I don't want to smile. Fuck you, "Growing Pains" theme!

"Star Trek: Enterprise"-Since leaving this one off the list is gonna cause some debate and controversy, let me it get out the way; I actually don't think it's that bad. I mean, yes, it's bad, and not a great choice for "Star Trek' of all things, but, to be honest, I kinda get it. If the chorus was something else, I bet others would too. "Faith in the Heart" is stupid, But, you know, it's a prequel series, it's about the first Enterprise ship and the beginning of space travel, all the other classical themes were more advanced, why not have something a little more earth-bound and modern-ish. I mean, it's got a nice little "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing" going on there, not that good a song, but hell, that was a cheesy rock song that didn't go with it's sci-fi movie either, so... (Shrugs) It's bad, but not bad enough to make this list.

"13 Queens Blvd"-Oh my God, this theme song makes Carole King's "You've Got a Friend" sound like X's "Johnnie Hit and Run Pauline". Who the hell thought this was a good idea!?

"Gloria"-Ugh, this really ill-conceived "All in the Family" spinoff doesn't have as bad a group of La-di-das as "Cass Malloy", but it's up there. If there's one thing I learned doing this, don't be a spinoff to a show with a really great and memorable theme song, you're just doomed to fail.

"Batgirl"-Say what you want about the original Adam West theme song, but some themes songs should not have lyrics.(Head slap)

"Sweet Valley High"-What the hell was this? Okay, this is the other, other, other '90s series about teenage twin girls,- God, why was that a thing? We had a weird thing about twin girls for some reason, but yeah, this is the one that's not "Sister, Sister", and,  apparently the theme song is what happens when The Babysitter Club tries to make the "Beverly Hills, 90210" theme. I-, (Shrugs) Your guess is as good as mine; it's another one of those "Saved By the Bell" ripoffs that nobody wants to admit happened. God, and I get crap for liking "California Dreams", but seriously, give me "The Patty Duke Show's theme song any day over this faux Cranberries ripoff. (Hell, and the "California Dreams" theme song is better. I don't care, I like that theme song.)

"Getting Together"-And this was a show about songwriters? What the hell is this? This sounds like a children's song from elementary school music class that your taught and you have to learn on the xylophone or something. I keep waiting for them to go into, "Oops, there goes another rubber-tree plant." Between this and the David Cassidy one, how is it so hard for a show, with a professional singer in the cast to have a good theme song?

"Small Wonder"-Normally I'd say that shows like this, you should give a little pass to, 'cause what the hell else would you do? Um, in this case, I think something else could've been done. Not much, but something.

"Silver Spoons"-You know the same guys who created "Married... with Children" also created "Silver Spoons"? I don't get it either. There's not much to say about the song, it's just bland, boring, cheesy, forgettable, very eighties.

"Joe's World"-What the hell's with that low, Joooooooooooooooooo....? Good lord, there must been something better than that, who came up with this?

(Clicks "Joe's World", closing credits)
Joe's World Theme Song by
ALAN THICKE

(Mouth wide open, shock, long, long, pause, delayed recall)
Ohhhh, that's right! He did have a career doing that. Wow, did I shove that fact out of my head. I wish I can blame for him the "Growing Pains" theme song, but ironically, he didn't do that one, so, go figure.

"Veronica's Closer (Season 3 Theme)"-I was a little confused when I kept seeing "Veronica's Closet" show up on some other worst theme lists I can find; I mean, the original isn't great or anything but I didn't hate it or think it was that awful. Although, they got rid of it in Season 2, but this was a show that constantly struggled and they made severe changes every year to the series, so, you know, okay. Then, I remember they brought a theme song back for Season Three. Oh god, I-, (Sigh) I don't know what they were going for with that one.

"Firefly"-Oh, come at me on this one; this song sucks! Really, you guys get pissed at "Enterprise" for trying a non-conventional theme song, but this dreary faux-inspirational cowboy ballad that sounds like Raffi might've written it, gets a pass 'cause it's Joss Whedon? Yeah, no thanks. Oh, and this show wasn't any good either.

"My Mother the Car"-Okay, this is shit, but what exactly would you come up with for this ridiculous show?

"The Ugliest Girl in Town"-Again, shit, but, like I don't know what they could've done. At least this show was smart enough at some point to drop the lyrics in it's opening.

"Valerie"/"Valerie's Family"/"The Hogans"/"The Hogan Family"-I dare you to remember anything about this show, other than the facts that Jason Bateman was on it, and that it's the show that Valerie Harper got fired from in that whole contract debacle. Seriously, I grew up watching it, and I don't remember anything else about it. Oh, except for the fact that the theme song might be the most generic and forgettable thing Miller-Boyett ever produced, and that's saying something. Even Roberta Flack couldn't save this sweet insanity although she almost does. (No, serious, that's Roberta Flack singing this theme, bet you didn't know that. I sure didn't)

"Archie"-Yeah, "Archie"'s here too. He's an easy punching bag, but there's so much worst.

"Eight is Enough (Third Season)"-"Eight is Enough" had two themes over it's run, neither are great, but the lyrical one that started in the third season is particularly awkward. It's not a bad song, in of itself, necessarily, but it just doesn't work as a theme song, even for something as saccharin and lousy as "Eight is Enough" was. I mean, this theme started in 1979,  and the song sounds like I'm hearing it at some really bad Joan Baez-wannabe folk concert from 1966.

"Gung Ho"-I'm as confused by the fact that they made this into a TV series too. Much less this song that seems so out-of-place. I never saw the movie, so maybe it relates to the film, but still,  that '80s power ballad thing has to be used sparingly for best effect. That's why "Perfect Strangers" can get away with it.

"A Fine Romance"-Oh God, what the hell is this? Okay, this is actually an old Ella Fitzgerald song, that was also covered by Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers at some point, but this isn't either version. God, thank Christ, Judi Bench ended up with a good TV show that's titled after a classic song about a romance.

"Good Time Harry"-This is another one where I have to look at the date the show aired and tilt my head. I mean, "Wild About Harry", is a fine classic song, although this version sucks, beyond this, why is it this Cotton Club era jazz doo-wop version? This show was in 1980, you can update this a little bit?

"Big John, Little John"-(Sigh) Look, I'm giving it a pass, 'cause what the hell would you do for a concept this hare-brained.

"Jennifer Slept Here"-Another one in the bad show concept pass category, although this one kinda makes me giggle.

"My Secret Identity"-Another in the "premise so dumb you just have to laugh" category. So, apparently Jerry O'Connell wasn't even fat as a kid. Huh, he's a pretty devoted actor, ain't he.

"Dawson's Creek (Alternative Theme)"-Okay, I never liked "Dawson's Creek", but goddamn this has one of my all-time favorite theme songs. If you don't know, the original theme song is "I Don't Want to Wait" by Paula Cole, which is just an amazing song in general. It was a big hit at the time and won more than a few Grammys, and deservedly so, it's just this gorgeous epic song about getting older and reflecting on the past. It's one of the best songs of the '90s and it's absolutely perfect for "Dawson's Creek". Unfortunately it's such a big song that they apparently can't afford the rights to keep using it for DVDs and reruns, so there's this alternative theme song out there, that's, really not good at all. This is such a cliche-ridden bore sung by some Nathalie Merchant wannabe, I just feel sorry. I know that's a risk you take when you use modern pop songs for themes now, but that's just sad.

"Happy Tree Friends"-LOL, okay, sure, but you know what, it fits the show.

"Tammy"-I don't know what this show was, but boy this theme song sure doesn't help.

"Domestic Life"-There's a certain kind of sitcom out there, where you can tell they, don't really have an idea on what the sitcom is, there's a few of those that I'm bringing up, but yeah, when your gimmick, is, we're a sitcom? "Domestic Life", man, poor Martin Mull.

"Fanboy and Chum-Chum"-Okay, no. I know it's fits the show but that's stupid. That's trying to be too different for the sake of it. You know, if you want to be a "Ren & Stimpy" knock-off fine, but they actually had a pretty normal theme song, 'cause you know, they were funny and didn't need to be obnoxious with the seem song to make up for it.

"Full House"-You know what's actually wrong with the "Full House" theme? It took me a minute or two to realize it, but, the longer the show went on, the less of the theme song they played. It you watch the early seasons, with the full version, it doesn't sound as bad or out-of-place, but then, as they went along, more and more of it kept getting cut. (Which is weird considering how the regular cast kept on growing, come to think of it) But by the end, when it's chopped to shit and blasted over the cheesy credits, it stops seeming like a real song and it just feels like a warning. "Everywhere you look, there's a heart a hand to hold on to,"  it actually seems almost threatening by the end. Hell, that's kinda why the new spinoff's theme song doesn't sound that bad, when it's a fuller song, it's okay.

"77 Sunset Strip"-What the hell's with the snapping!? What is that instrument, the two pieces of wood being slammed together?  I vastly prefer it's spinoff series, "Surfside 6"'s theme song.

"Nick and Hillary"-So there was a drama series called "Tattingers" that, for some reason was turned into a sitcom called "Nick and Hillary" at some point. I've looked at both themes, the "Tattingers" one is better 'cause it at least evokes, a mood, this one, doesn't evoke anything. I have no idea if either show is any good, this one's news to me, but I can't imagine it was.

"Webster"-There's been a lot of TV shows about characters suddenly coming into a home environment over the years, and are about how they've changed their lives. I'm not gonna say all of them are bad, but the ones that are, usually have something to do with the idea that, "Then came you..." and everything's good and everything's better now with you vibe to it. Those songs aren't generally great.

"Together We Stand/Nothing is Easy"-Both of these theme songs were terrible. This show, which was, believe it or not originally planned as a spinoff of "The Brady Bunch", didn't make the air 'til 1986, and then went through a name change, and a complete revamp. I can't blame the songs too much though, they were clearly rushed and it doesn't help that this show has not one, but two of the worst and most generic sitcom-titles, ever! Seriously, I can think of a 100 sitcoms off the top of my head that these would've been an alternative titles for. And why are so many of these sitcom theme songs, sung like it's a lullaby. You're supposed to be setting us up for laughter. Not that this generic song from a forgotten sitcom would've been bad no matter how it was played, but still, what are they thinking?

"Get Christie Love (All themes)"-You know, none of the themes to "Get Christie Love" were bad in of themselves, but none of them seem completely right for the show either.

"The Facts of Life"-Eh, this was a weird show to begin with so I'm giving it a pass on it's theme song. And hell, they greatly approved the arrangement in the second season, so... (Shrugs).

"Barney & Friends"-You know, after The Banana Splits, this doesn't sound that awful, really.

Man, that was a lot of Dishonorable Mentions, and I swear I cut back, 'cause there's a lot more out there. That said, let's get to the main event.


And the NUMBER ONE, WORST TELEVISION THEME SONG-WITH LYRICS is....

1. Charles in Charge (CBS, 1984-'85; Syndication, 1987-'90) 



Ugh, (Sigh) Okay, I truly didn't intend to bash Scott Baio shows twice here, but, really think about this. Okay, this is a bad show, it's a premise-based theme song, but you know, I can see some, obnoxious asshole person, but a person, saying, "Show me that smile..." who the hell, would ever think, "I want Charles in Charge of me?" Like, really think about this, can you imagine, what I presume, is a kid's perspective, considering the show, a young girl's perspective at that, saying anything remotely like that? A theme song, about him in charge, could work, if it was a slightly different perspective, like if she's resigning to it, or was about how he ended up with this family, but the way it's done here? He's just the new boy in the neighborhood who lived downstairs. I mean, he was on "Happy Days", Fonzi, was a new boy in the neighborhood who lived downstairs, he wasn't suddenly of the family, either. How did this show last six seasons?! Imagine, if this was the theme song to "Charlie's Angels", how many people would truly be pissed off at the insinuations that it would have, and that was a show was literally about a guy named Charles who was in charge of a group of women! I mean, that was a terrible, terrible show too, but at least it knew not to have a theme song like that! (Hell, it knew enough to actually have a good theme song.) That's why, "Charles in Charge" has to be ranked a little higher than most, 'cause this is the kind of thing that takes something that would have just been cheesy bad, but passable, in a fairly saccharin era where there was an over-abundance of bad family sitcom and turns it into, just, disturbing. I mean, this song makes me want to throw up when I hear it. Thank God Michael Jacobs, would go on to create "Boy Meets World" among shows that aren't that bad, and were actually and hopefully people have forgotten that he was responsible for this show, and it's theme song, but my God, this has gotta go to the top of the list. For being a theme song that seems like it's better suited for a sitcom based on "Fifty Shades of Grey" than this, "Charles is Charge" is the worst theme song of all-time.

Alright, that'st the list. If you can think of some that were even worst than these, let me know. Comment with your recommendations. I won't be surprised, 'cause I wish I had a little more time to sort through, but I'm fairly certain that this is a solid list, and there won't be too much worst than that.

And I think I'll end this with some theme songs I actually like.

















Yeah, that makes me feel better. (Pleasant sigh)
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