I said before how theme songs are important because it helps make a connection to the show. We remember the cool song or music. In my day, before the internet, themes were one way for people to share their love for programs. You hear someone singing The Brady Bunch theme, and suddenly everyone in the room start singing. In fact, an early episode of Friends acknowledged this very thing in one episode which begins with the six singing to a theme song (Sanford and Son I think).
My point is that as true as this is for adults, it’s even more so for kids. Theme’s to childrenâ€™s shows and cartoons have to draw you in and get you excited. Even today they still do, when I first heard the SpongeBob theme I admit, I liked it. Not enough to watch it or anything, but I can see why little kids are drawn to it. I still remember that moment when a certain show would start with the kick ass theme, and suddenly we were paying attention.
Ok, enough rambling here my ten favorite theme songs from children’s programs and cartoons. Of course I was an 80’s kid so most of these are going to be from that era though a few 90â€™s stuff is here. The only 70â€™s show I really remember was The Brady Kids and I hated that show. And as always just my opinion.
I give my baby sister credit because if not for her I never would have been exposed to The Disney Afternoon. Rescue Rangers was awesome, and Tail Spin was pretty good. The best show of course was DuckTales, and had that theme that you will never get out of your head. I think what is so cool about this is that it’s an original song, not some rip off or pointless music. #11 because I didn’t exactly grow up with it, but I have to acknowledge how awesome it is. By the way, my baby sister now has a baby who is one years old. How scary is that?
#10. Mr.Rogers Neighborhood
Sure this was a corny show, but it was a really good one. I actually think I liked this more than Sesame Street (a little more) anyway. Fred Rogers was just an honest adult, and that really came off. My favorite part of the show was the land of make believe. I loved that, even wishing I had a trolley all my own. The theme is very warm and soft, making you feel very welcome. To this day when I put on a sweater I think of this opening. Yeah this show gets made fun of, but really wouldn’t it be nice if they had a show like this today?
#9. Tiny Tunes
This show was on after just as I was too old to watch cartoons, and I really never watched the show. Why is it on this list? Because the theme music was amazing. Talk about an opening which grabs you and gets your full attention. I mean seriously, this almost made me want to watch the show. I have seen some episodes, including the “It’s a Wonderful Life” parody and freely admit it was decent enough. The theme has got to be something special to make a teenager interested in watching it!
#8.Alvin & The Chipmunks
For me when I think Saturday Morning as a kid, some shows just stand out. One we will get to in a minute. Another was a Baseball show starring Johnny Bench I used to get up at 6:30 to watch (anyone remember that?). You had stuff like Shirt Tales, Pac-Man, and even Mr T. But one the one show that always reminds me of that time is Alvin and The Chipmunks. It was a cute show, but the theme song is really what I remember. Just a very good intro, probably why the show lasted so long.
This cartoon was one of the last cartoon’s I intentonally watched. In other words, I was technically to old for cartoons but still hung onto this as part of my afternoon. One reason was because of Lady Jaye. I really loved her. But seriously this show was awesome. It had action, excitement, and they really did a decent a job of making the characters and stories interesting. Untill that movie where they makde Cobra Commander a snake, what was that about? Anyway, the theme song was just awesome and while Tranformers was great this was the show I really loved and always watched. Now you know, and knowing is half the battle!
#6.Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends
Hearing this theme instantly takes me back to Saturday morning’s as a kid. I loved this show. I watched it until they finally stopped airing it, even if I was to old by then. This show introduced me to Spider-Man and The x-Men, and while I am a serious DC fan this show was still cool. In fact teh reason I knew who Sandman was in Spider-Man 3 was because of this series. This is the coolest intro ever (and yeah I know about the X-Men theme in the 90’s but I was kind of in college then). Just the first few cords are enough to make you sit and pay attention! This theme is awesome!
Ok, in the interest of fairness here is the kickass X-Men theme. While I did not watch the show, what I have heard of it seems amazing and I have to admit this theme rocks!
#5.The Flintstones & The Jetsons
I liked The Flintstones, they were funny and all that. Ok to be fair I never really got into them. Of course I’ve seen the show but I think I’ve seen the fruity pebbles ads more. And why did they ad that little green guy in the later years? However the show has lasted and everyone knows the characters, and a big part of the reason for that is the theme. Remember those rules I outlined in first article? These cover most of them. They are catchy and introduce us the characters at the same time. Gotta like that. I actially liked The Jetsons even less, and yet I also love the theme song.
#4.The Electric Company
True story, I had forgotten this entrirely. This show was not one which stayed with me, except for recognzing the actors in other programs I even forgot Spider-Man was in it (Ok I do remember on sketch on not pointing which was memorable). Then one day I came across the opening on YouTube, and instant nostalgia rush! I love this theme song, it just really gets you excited. The opening of the later years shows the characters on the show morphing into the actors who played them. This is cheesy now, but as a kid this was amazing! Silly I know, but things are different when your young. Oh, and before I forget: HEY YOU GUYS!!!! came from here, not The Goonies. By the way, 3-2-1 Contact was great but I never watched the show. I did have the magazine (how lame is that?).
#3.Challenge of the Superfriends
Actually, I liked all the Superfriends themes. I loved this show, watched it mostly in syndicated re-runs every single day. I never even knew Challenge was an hour long show originally. Superfriends was my introdyction to these awesome characters, and eventually led to me falling in love with comic books. True the show is corny, in fact the first season with Wendy and Marvin is just stupid. Wonder Dog?? The Wonder Twins were better but kind of lame, and the stories got downright silly. But hey, it was freaking Superman! and Batman! and Wonder Woman! and Aqua….well, alright Aquaman was lame on this show. He is the on DC comcis I never liked and I think this show is to blame for that. I did love Green Lantern on this show (when he was on it). By the way I did watch the newer JLA show but never stayed with it.
#2. The Muppet Show
Hell yeah! I mean what can I say about this? If you want a theme that’s going to make you really excited for the show, there aren’t many which do it better than this one. There’s a reason why the latest movie went out of its way to recreate this opening. It’s amazinG! “It’s time to start the music. It’s time to light the lights….” I was just the perfect age when this show was on, and loved watching it. Not much else to say, there was nothing else like this show before and I fear there will never anything like it again. Oh, and if you’re wondering, I never watched Fraggle Rock but man did it have a cathy theme.
#1. You Can’t Do That on Television
Ah, Nichelodeon in the 80’s! I don’t think there is anything else that brings me back to my childhood in the 80’s as fast as this one. It brings an instand smile to my face. It’s short, it’s memorbale, and it’s clearly inspired by Monty Python. That being said, I loved this opening. In fact I loved everything about this show, from the silly locker jokes to the green slime. The one Nostalgia Critic review I hate was what he said about this show. I think you really had to be there to appreciate it, it was just so different from the other stuff we had to watch on Tv. I loved this show, and would watch it today if I could. What else can I say?
A few shows you may wonder why are missing.
He-Man was my favorite show, but I hesitated putting its theme on here. Why? Because while the theme is good we only really hear it when Adam transforms into He-Man. It’s more of an action theme than true theme music. The opening for the show was, to be honest, lame. Did we need Adam talking to the camera every episode? True the theme played in full over the closing, but what kid watches the closing credits?
Why no Sesame Street? I mean, it was a catchy as hell theme song and every kid knows it. Well, that’s kind of the reason I left it off. I wanted this to be my favorites, and putting Sesame Street on here is almost a given. By the way, how the heck do you get to Sesame Street anyway?
The Smurfs-Yeah, how can I call myself an 80â€™s kid and leave this one off? Just didnâ€™t have the room for it. By the way, I saw the movie a couple weeks ago and it was lame.
Reading Rainbow, Square One Tv, and Power Rangers were all after my time. I did watch Square One and Power Rangers a bit, but not enough.
Batman-The Animated Series. Again, after my time. Simple as that. Besides I hear that theme I think the movies not the animated series.
Thundercats & Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles-I think I did see these shows, but the theme is not my favorite. Not that it’s bad, just not my favorite,
Animaniacs and Pinky & The Brain-I gave Tiny Tunes a chance but these… I just never watched them.
Muppet Babies-It kills me to leave this off. I did for two reasons. I have The Muppet Show, and I wanted to include a few 90â€™s stuff. This was a great opening, and I love it so much I will include a link to it even though it is not on the list. One of the best openings to any cartoon in my opinion.
Sure I missed your favorites, and if I did please let me know. Cartoons and Children’s programs are an important part of our childhood, and hearing these themes brings back all kinds of memories.