My Top 5 Nostalgic Cartoon Theme Songs

This post is a bit of a departure from my usual fare, but I couldn’t help but write about my top five favourite cartoon theme songs from childhood after reading an excellent post on the five greatest TV theme songs by the lovely Emma of emmakwall (explains it all). After reading her post, the Ducktales theme immediately popped into my head, and from there on out I couldn’t stop thinking about all the cartoons I loved as a kid and how amazing their theme songs were.

Here, without further ado, are five of my absolute favourites that cause a massive wave of nostalgia for me.

Ducktales, a-woo-hooo! This theme is amazing. I occasionally get it stuck in my head for no reason whatsoever. It’s just so funky and upbeat and somehow very motivating. My only concern with this theme is the “might solve a mystery, or rewrite history” lyric. Is Uncle Scrooge some kind of historical revisionist? I mean, that can’t be good, he’s clearly a fiscal conservative, who knows what other kinds of aggressive right-wing views he holds. Other than that, top notch theme.

I remember absolutely loving theย Count Duckula theme as a child. I had some episodes that my mum had taped off the television onto a good old VHS tape and I always used to rewind the theme and listen to it several times before actually watching the episode. Such a good tune, with a killer bass line.

Ship To Shoreย is one of those shows that most Australian children who grew up in the early 90s remember. It was a serial live-action show that had a prime after-school timeslot and an engaging enough story to stick along with over time. I can’t really remember the exact story but it had some great elements – fun adventure, seaside shenanigans, foolish villains. And what Australian child of the 90s could ever forget the jaunty synthesiser panflute of the theme tune. I don’t think I’ll ever forget it, because it’s too catchy for its own good.

Lift Off is another one for Australian children of the 90s only I’m afraid, and it’s another strangely catchy tune with no lyrics. What I love about this theme and intro is its frankly creepy surrealist imagery, and if you ever get a chance to actually watch an episode of it (which I did recently, thanks to Youtube), you’ll see how downright strange and disturbing the show really was. There was a plant with a magical eyeball, a frill-necked lizard that was informing on the human characters to an army of reptiles, a sentient lift in an apartment building that took children to strange places without their consent, and a nightmarish doll that had no face but was able to communicate and interact with the children. Seriously the weirdest children’s show possibly ever, and the intro conveys that very well indeed.

I remember not really enjoying watching the contents of the episodes of The Trap Door because they were kind of boring and repetitive, but the theme is absolutely, undeniably amazing. It’s short and sweet and packs a huge punch for a quick theme. Such great synths and vocals.

Honourable mentions:

What were your favourite cartoons as a kid? Were their theme songs flawless as well? Please share!

28 comments

  1. You’re younger than me and not American and not a boy but “Ducktales, a-woo-hooo!” is the first thing I thought of when I saw your headline. I also loved the themes to Inspector Gadget, Hong Kong Phooey, and Muppet Babies.

    1. I think whenever anyone mentions Ducktales, the response should always be “a-woo-hooo!”. And neglecting to put Inspector Gadget on this list was a massive oversight, now it’s stuck in my head!

  2. Amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : )

    Thanks for name dropping me, that was so kind!

    I love your list!! And honourable mentions. “hey football head!” and “have you ever…ever felt like this……when strange things happen…are you going round the twist!”

    In fact the more you say, the more I think “I should have written that!!!”

    Art Attack had a brilliant theme, I can still hear the Pen ‘n’ Pencil alert haha! And Goosebumps!!! AND Count Duckula!!! And Chip and Dale rescue rangers….Anna you absolutely nailed it!!!

    ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Thanks heaps Emma, glad you enjoy! And thank you for inspiring this post! ๐Ÿ˜€ I can’t have been the only kid who almost broke their toe when running to get pencils and paper when the Art Attack alert came on.

      1. I’m honoured!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

        Haha yes!!! You can’t be the only one ๐Ÿ™‚ remember the big art attacks too when Neil Buchanen (spelling?!) made a big picture and we saw it from the bird’s eye view!!

  3. I’m so old I’ve never heard of any of these……………………….. : (

    #oldsies

    1. not even Hey Arnold?!!!! You’re not old anyway, you’re mature and vintage – like all the best things in life – wine and more importantly, CHEESE! #pens

      1. Vintage!!! That’s me!!!!

        #pens

        1. Yay!!!! O _ o o _ O

          #vintagepens

    2. I agree with Emma, vintage is the operative word here! hรทรฆnbhhhhรทรฆรฆรฆ <– the cat jumped on my keyboard and typed that so I think he agrees.

      #coopies

      1. WOO HOO!!!!!

        #vintagies
        #coopsies

  4. 3/5 ain’t too bad.

    1. Nice work Alex! ๐Ÿ˜€

  5. Brittani · · Reply

    Oh man, Duck Tales. I loved that show.

    1. It’s such a classic!

  6. This is a great post!

    Hmm… A Cartoon Blogathon wouldn’t be such a bad idea, no?

    1. Thanks! ๐Ÿ˜€ And I think that would be an amazing blogathon!

  7. Duck Tales!!! I love it!
    Fraggle Rock was another of my faves. I was in high school when Arthur was a thing but that was pretty fun as well ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Now that Fraggle Rock theme is extremely catchy!

  8. I only know Duck Tales out of those but I can hear it in my head right now.

    1. Now enjoy having it stuck in your head for a very long time!

  9. DUCKULA!!!

    I’m glad Chip & Dale got an honourable mention, it was my first thought when I read the title, but Duckula definitely beats it. YUSS.

    1. Duckula’s theme tune is so great, I had it stuck in my head for such a long time the other day and I didn’t even mind!

    2. Ch-ch-ch-chip and Dale, rescue rangers!

  10. Great choices Anna.

    1. Thanks! ๐Ÿ˜€ Good memories!

  11. When I read the title, I immediately thought “Don’t you open that trap door…because there’s something down there!”

    1. Such a catchy tune! Love it!

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