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8 Best TV Show Theme Songs For Binge-Watching TV

Friday Night Lights - TV Show Theme Songs

We’ve all wasted a rainy Saturday afternoon by binge-watching TV shows on Netflix or Amazon Prime — or even on-demand TV. I’ve found that there are several theme songs that I’ll fast-forward right through, but there are also a couple handfuls of TV show theme songs that deserve to be listened to between every episode.

For some reason, these TV show theme songs reset the mood from the previous episode, and prepare your mind for the coming story. A lot of times, they separate the show’s cold open from the rest of the show, and they work as a part of a punchline, if you will.

So I thought it would be a good idea to list the ones I considered to be the best TV show theme songs for while you watch a string of shows in a row.

Basically, these are the nine TV show theme songs I refuse to skip.

8 TV Show Theme Songs You Shouldn’t Fast Forward Through

There’s just something about each of these theme songs that perfectly prepare you for the episodes ahead.

Cheers

It’s impossible to listen to this TV theme song and not sing along with it. It makes me want to reach for nice cold mug full of beer. It also serves as the perfect punchline follow-up from their cold open. “Norm!”

The Sopranos

Is there a better opening line to prepare you for the episode ahead than, “Well, you woke up this morning, got yourself a gun”? I like to think this was Tony’s ringtone in the mid-2000s — because I know it was mine for a long time.

Taxi

A sitcom based in New York City during the late ‘70s, when Manhattan might have been its dirtiest. This was one of those demure TV show theme songs that underplayed the show’s content. It was relaxing and nice — and then you got Louie de Palma yelling from his cage. It’s also one of the best filmed scenes for a theme song, with an overhead shot of a taxi coming over a bridge into the city. It’s nearly impossible to not whistle through this show’s opening — much like “The Andy Griffith Show.”

Friday Night Lights

This show is so underrated — and their theme song is equally unrecognized. While the song is credited on the Internet as being one from instrumental band Explosions in the Sky, it’s apparently just inspired from their song, “Your Hand in Mine.” The score was composed by W.B. Snuffy Walden and it’s haunting sound is definitely inspired. This TV show was so good, and you realize just how much you want to see more of Kyle Chandler, Connie Britton and Taylor Kitsch. “Breaking Bad” fans will also like to see a young Jesse Plemons in a great role as the nerd sidekick.

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

This theme song sets up the whole story all over again, and reminds you why Kimmy is just so weird. “Unnnnnnnnbreakable — they alive, dammit!”

I always thought that this is such a brilliant idea for a sitcom, but that it could also be just an amazing TV drama for Showtime. Maybe instead of a religious cult, it could be a story similar to what happened to the three girls/women in Ohio.

Hill Street Blues

Honestly, I haven’t streamed this show — and I’m not real sure it’s available to stream — but it’s such a great theme song and show, that I know I’d have to listen to it all the way through.

M*A*S*H

Great TV show, great theme song — and that song is derived from the movie, and it’s called, “Suicide is Painless.” Watching the choppers come in with the casualties of the Korean War, along with the semi-haunting theme song and uplifting end, sets up the scene for a “situational comedy” set in a war-torn area surrounded by blood and death.

This video is as close as I could find for the real TV theme song intro.

The Simpsons

You have to listen to the theme song in order to watch the opening just to see what Bart Simpson writes and what happens at the end when they all meet at the couch, which is different in every episode.

Below is a video of the early version of the opening and the version from about a dozen years later, with the same music, but different visuals.

Are there some songs or shows that you consider the absolute best TV show theme songs to listen through while you binge watch on a rainy weekend? Let us know — tweet us @5thPeriodLunch and let us know!

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2 Comments on “8 Best TV Show Theme Songs For Binge-Watching TV

  1. Gonos
    September 25, 2015

    People have tweeted me some good ones, including the theme songs from “Louie” and “Terriers.”

    But they reminded me of one of my other all-time favorites — “Come On, Come On,” by the Von Bondies on the show, “Rescue Me.”

    [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIUMLWyB9U8&w=420&h=315%5D

  2. Pedro
    October 22, 2015

    These are good ones. I would also cite the themes of “Viking”, “Gravity Falls” and “The Pacific”

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