TV Theme Songs: ThunderCats
"Just sit right back and you'll hear a tale" of a time when television shows began with awesome TV Theme Songs. "Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name" and sometimes you want to go back to when TV Theme songs were special. "Here's a story... of a lovely" time when TV Theme Songs served to identify, distinguish and set the stage for the television program that followed. "You take the good, take the bad, take them both and there you have" what unfortunately has become a lost artform. "Believe it or not", sadly it seems no effort or pride is taken in the TV Theme Song ever since Seinfeld proved a short synth-bass riff could be used instead. “Schlemiel! Schlimazel! Hasenpfeffer Incorporated!” This regular feature may not "make all our dreams come true", but it will remember some of the best TV Theme Songs from years past (with a focus on the '80s decade). "Come aboard, we're expecting you."
This time we will cover the theme song for ThunderCats. "Thunder, thunder, thunder. ThunderCats, ho!" The ThunderCats animated series debuted in September of 1985 and ran for four seasons and 130 episodes in syndication as well as a 1986 television movie titled ThunderCats - Ho! The series had an accompanying successful toyline by LJN which first launched in 1984 in anticipation of the cartoon (which would be delayed until 1985).
The series was originally distributed by Rankin/Bass' then-parent company Telepictures Corporation, which would later merge with Lorimar Productions in 1986 and then later be purchased by and folded into Warner Bros. in 1989. Arthur Rankin and Jules Bass (yep, the same guys behind classic specials like Frosty and Rudolph) were Executive Producers on the series. They brought in Bernard Hoffer to compose music for ThunderCats including the theme song. Hoffer had ab extensive career as a jingle writer before he worked with Rankin/Bass on some lesser known animated specials like The Last Dinosaur (1977) and The Life & Adventure of Santa Claus (1985). In addition to composing the music for the show's theme song, Hoffer also composed unique theme music (leitmotifs) for each of the characters and locations. He would later compose the theme song for Silverhawks which was produced by the same group and debuted a year later in 1986, but only ran for one season. Though there are minimal lyrics, those were actually written by Jules Bass himself. Bass has written the memorable lyrics to such Christmas classics as "The Heat Miser Song", "The Snow Miser Song", "Put One Foot in Front of the Other" and "Even a Miracle Needs a Hand" among others.
Here is the action-packed opening for ThunderCats featuring the theme song...
I will admit that I was not hugely into ThunderCats myself as a kid, but I will also say that I was quite familiar with the theme song and there aren't many who grew up during the '80s that are not familiar with it. Many consider it to be one of the more memorable cartoon theme songs of the decade. "ThunderCats are on the move. ThunderCats are loose. Feel the magic. Hear the roar. ThunderCats are loose. Thunder, thunder, thunder, ThunderCats!"
Hope you enjoyed tuning in for another "episode" of TV Theme Songs!