Film and TV

Top 5 TV Theme Tunes of the 80s

by on 14/08/2014

I was but a small child in the 80s, naturally very influenced by the shows I watched; back in those days there was very limited choice, we had four channels, seriously, just four. It was  a time when computers were coming into the home, one person on the street and a VHS and that pirated copy of E.T; the future was coming and I was ready to take it all in. It’s not surprising that I credit much of my geek foundations to the shows I grew up watching during this era. But with so many great shows with great themes, how could I make such an important decision all on my own? I didn’t I called upon my fellow writers and we had a good old fashioned vote. Here are the results.


The first on the list that involves the character origins, this little story is layered on top a conventional military drumming and then BAM! the theme kicks off to be one of fast paced action with explosions and car chases and…well it is just the right kind of tune for a young kid to run around the garden wielding a toy gun coming up with a plan and taking down the bad guys. It still rouses a sense of pride within me, these guys may be viewed as criminals but who cares, the A-Team are heroes.


Red Dwarf

A theme that initially tricks you by implying you are about to tune into a grand space opera and quickly flips into a catchy quintessentially British song that you can’t help but sing along too. It beautifully reflects the mad cap comedy genius that is Red Dwarf, a show that began me on the path of sci-fi. That is why I get warm fuzzy feels and an accompanying smile of nostalgia every time I hear it.


Knight Rider

This show was awesome, a talking, artificially intelligent car named KITT with a bucket full of gadgets, tricks and a little attitude partnered with the crime fighting, tech assisted, field agent Michael Knight. It was a reflection of changes in technology during time taking, it a step a few steps into the future. As such it required an awesome theme tune that would reflect the premise; that is what we got, such an appealing tune steeped in futuristic electro and mystery.



This theme was nominated for an Emmy back in 1983 and in 2011, Rolling Stone magazine readers voted it the best theme song of all time. Why do we love it so? Well it highlights the difficulty of living life, it is hard when you are a grown up working a job, taking care of the kids and everything else us stupid adults have to do. It’s easy to forget that our soul needs feeding and what better way then of doing that then catching up with your friends and getting pissed. A theme tune that reminds us of the need for companionship, comfort in those we know and that gently encourages alcoholism.

Quantum Leap

It’s safe to say that these days if an opening theme tune is longer than a few seconds I’m picking up my phone, it is the sorry state of my attention span. However, this next theme tune always began the same way, with Dr. Sam Beckett’s origin story and if there is one thing I love, it’s an origin story. Every week we got reminded that he stepped into the Quantum Leap accelerator to put right things that once went wrong. The show contained a lot of humour and so the music for the theme reflects the light hearted side of the show, it also meant that the true dramatic and emotional moments (of which there are a few) were somehow more unexpected and harder hitting.