A good TV theme tune has the power to live on in our hearts and minds for years to come and can even outlast the popularity of the show itself.
So, yeah, I finally paid attention when someone kindly took the time to point out some nostalgic details lurking in some marketing research. Currys surveyed the UK to find out which TV shows have the most memorable theme songs and their impact on the nation.
What are the most memorable TV theme tunes of all time?
To find out which theme tunes are the most memorable, Currys created the ultimate theme tune campaign. And it turns out that Sci-Fi and fantasy fans are well represented, with 30% of the most memorable theme tunes coming from the Sci-Fi/Fantasy genre.
But which ones make the top ten list? Well, Doctor Who, which has been running for 26 years, unsurprisingly has the most recognisable theme tune, as it came in sixth on the list. In eighth place, and the only show on the list to be made in the 2000s is the long title sequence and theme tune of the hit show Game of Thrones. So, the upcoming prequel House of the Dragon hitting our screens this August has big shoes to fill. And just behind Game of Thrones is the beloved Star Trek theme tune, which first debuted in 1966 and comes in ninth on the list today.
The recognisability of Sci-Fi theme tunes for the British public
When it comes to recognisability, the Sci-Fi/Fantasy genres arguably have some of the most unique and iconic theme tunes that even non-watchers or fans may know through general pop culture references. So much so, the survey discovered that the Sci-Fi genre came in sixth place for theme tune recognisability, with 18% of Brits stating it’s the most distinguishable genre. And who’s most likely to recognise the classic tunes of shows like Star Trek and Doctor Who? Millennials. And as for the gender divide, almost twice as many men (24%) as women (13%) recognise a theme tune from the Sci-Fi genre.
Which Sci-Fi theme tunes remind us of our childhoods the most?
Music has the power to transport you to a particular time in your life, and a great theme tune can have the same effect. Hearing the tune can conjure up nostalgia, transporting you back to those days when you’d watch your favourite show after school or with your friends on a Friday night. This is true for nearly half of the UK (42%) who say that there is a theme tune that reminds them of their childhood or of a different period in their life. But which theme tune evokes memories of childhood the most? Well, that would be the utterly unforgettable Doctor Who title sequence. Even though the signature electronic tune has changed and evolved over the years, it is still iconic enough to recognise years later.
Sci-Fi and other fantasy theme tunes have had a lasting impression on us, from the nostalgia it holds to their recognisability long after the show has aired. Proving that a good theme tune plays a significant role in the overall memorability of the show.
Photograph credit: Nicolas J Leclercq.
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