Friday, December 29, 2006

Crime TV Themes: PETER GUNN

Spotlighting the great themes from mystery/crime TV shows ...

PETER GUNN
One of the most ubiquitous melodies of all time -- and most-requested since we began this series -- the cool jazz theme for Peter Gunn (1958-61) was written by the great Henry Mancini (1924-1994), award-winning American composer, conductor and arranger. Among his television themes was the haunting theme to The NBC Mystery Movie, and his film scores included the suspense classic Charade and the Pink Panther series.

Created by Blake Edwards, Peter Gunn starred Craig Stevens as the title private eye. As described by Thrilling Detective: A highly-innovative and influential show, it also boasted Mancini's hit theme song, as well as witty dialogue, snazzy clothing and elaborate (for television) camerawork. A sort of Miami Vice for its time, but with far more substance and very good, sometimes excellent, writing.

Episode guide at epguides.com/PeterGunn

OPENING TITLES


More themes:
STARSKY & HUTCH
MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE
BONES
THE ROCKFORD FILES
ALIAS

Monday, December 11, 2006

Mystery TV Themes: STARSKY & HUTCH

Spotlighting the great opening titles and themes from mystery/crime TV shows ...

STARSKY & HUTCH
This buddy-cop show (1975-79), produced by Aaron Spelling, starred Paul Michael Glaser as the brash Detective Dave Starsky and David Soul as the thoughtful Detective Ken Hutchinson, chasing bad guys in Starsky's iconic red Gran Torino. The original theme (1975-76 arrangement), which highlighted the grittier side of the series, was written by Lalo Schifrin (Mission: Impossible). The second theme (1976-78 arrangement), highlighting the more playful aspects of the series, was written by jazzman Tom Scott. The third theme, credited to Mark Snow (Hart to Hart, T.J. Hooker), sported a more dramatic edge.

MAIN TITLES SEASON ONE (Lalo Schifrin)


MAIN TITLES SEASON TWO (Tom Scott)


MAIN TITLES SEASON THREE (Mark Snow)


Starsky & Hutch themes courtesy Mark Little's MyThemes.TV
Official Sony Starsky & Hutch site
Episode guide and more at TV.com

Watch episodes free online at Hulu




More themes:
MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE
BONES
THE ROCKFORD FILES
ALIAS
NBC MYSTERY MOVIE

Monday, December 4, 2006

Mystery TV Themes: MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE

Spotlighting the great opening themes from mystery/crime TV shows ...

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE
In this influential spy series (1966-73, 1988-90) a super-secret government agency called the "Impossible Missions Force" is given secret anonymous covert missions, often relying on high-tech equipment and elaborate deceptions. The original series won several awards, with a rotating cast that included Steven Hill, Peter Graves, Martin Landau, Barbara Bain, Greg Morris, Peter Lupus, Leonard Nimoy, and more. Fifteen years after the original, Jim Phelps (Graves) was pulled out of retirement to assemble a new team of agents.

One of the most copied tunes of all time, the familiar theme to Mission: Impossible was created by composer and conductor Lalo Schifren. Best known for his music for film and television—ranging from Dirty Harry, Enter the Dragon and Rush Hour to Mannix, Medical Center, Starsky & Hutch and Planet of The Apes—the composer and pianist has also had historic impact in the jazz and classical worlds. See his bio here.

Mission: Impossible theme at Mark Little's MyThemes.tv
Episode guide(s) at TV.com.
History of the series at the Museum of Broadcast Communications
Mission: Impossible DVD news at TVShowsOnDVD.com

MAIN TITLES (Original Pilot)


MAIN TITLES (Season Five)


MAIN TITLES (1980s Revival)





More opening credits:
DRAGNET
EQUALIZER (w/ CALLAN)
GET SMART
HARDY BOYS / NANCY DREW MYSTERIES
HART TO HART

Crime TV on DVD