Theme Songs with Forgotten Lyrics

Classic television themes are instantly recognizable. If a theme words, you can sing them. If it doesn’t, you can hum it. However, some classic themes have words that only hardcore fans are aware exist. Others theme songs have words that I swear exist solely to be put on lists like this one. Either way, the lyrics do not actually enhance most of the songs and are better off as answers to obscure trivia questions.

8. Hogan’s Heroes

The “Hogan’s Heroes March” never needed lyrics. The song perfectly fits Hogan’s Heroes without it. While the lyrics don’t totally kill the song, since they are sung by Robert Clary (Lebeau), Richard Dawson (Newkirk), Larry Hovis (Carter), and Ivan Dixon (Kinchloe), they don’t exactly add anything to the song and are quite ridiculous even by Hogan’s Heroes standards. Seriously, this song starts with “heroes, heroes, husky men of war”, goes on to use the word “ear-o’s”, and then has the singers praise themselves for being heroes. If the premise of Hogan’s Heroes didn’t doom the show from the start, these lyrics certainly would have. Thankfully, they were never intended for use on the show.

Heroes, heroes, husky men of war,
Sons of all the heroes, of the war before.
We’re all heroes up to our ear-o’s
You ask questions
We make suggestions
That’s what we’re heroes for.

All good heroes love a good, big fight
Open up the bomb bays and brighten up the night.
We applaud the people who laud us,
You pull the roses,
We punch the noses,
That’s what we’re heroes for.

What’s a hero do?
Well, we’re not gonna tell ya
Cause we wish we knew.
That’s why we heroes are so few.
We’ve got a slogan
From Colonel Hogan
And Colonel Hogan’s a hero too.

Never flinch, boys, never be afraid,
Heroes are not born, boys, heroes are made.
Ask not why, boys, never say die, boys,
Answer the call, remember we’ll all be heroes forever more.

(source: http://www.lyricsondemand.com/tvthemes/hogansheroeslyrics.html)

7. Star Trek

I want to hate the lyrics to the Star Trek theme because they were composed by Gene Roddenberry for the sole purpose of getting royalties, but I can’t because in hindsight the show and the lyrics to its theme song are equally campy. Obviously, it wouldn’t have made sense to have the lyrics included in the final version. They would have drowned out Captain Kirk’s iconic opening monologue that I think we can all agree is much more powerful and memorable.

Beyond the rim of the starlight
My love he wanders in star flight.
I know he’ll find
In star clustered reaches
Love, strange love
A starwoman teaches.
I know his journey ends never.
His Star Trek will go on forever.
But tell him while
He wanders his starry sea,
Remember.
Remember me.
(source: http://www.lyricsondemand.com/tvthemes/startreklyrics.html)

6. Bewitched

The Bewitched theme’s lyrics don’t even fit the show. For some reason, the lyricist decided that Darrin Stephens knew all along and loved that Samantha was a witch. He clearly did not understand that the entire show revolves around the fact that Darrin loves Samantha in spite of the fact that she was a witch. In no way did Darrin love that Samantha did “that crazy voodoo”, he actually forbid her to use magic most of the time, which she promptly ignored. There is no way the lyrics could ever be used on the show because they miss the point. However, they aren’t half bad if you ignore that fact.

Bewitched, bewitched, you’ve got me in your spell.
Bewitched, bewitched, you know your craft so well.

Before I knew what you were doing I looked in your eyes.
That brand of woo that you’ve been brew-in’ took me by surprise.

You witch, you witch, one thing that’s for sure,
That stuff you pitch – just hasn’t got a cure.

My heart was under lock and key, but somehow it got unhitched.
I never thought my heart could be had.
But now I’m caught and I’m kind of glad to be Bewitched.
Bewitched-witched.

My heart was under lock and key — but somehow it got unhitched.
I never thought my heart could be had.
But now I’m caught and I’m kinda glad that you —
You do that crazy voodoo.
And I’m bewitched by you.
(source: http://sfwriter.com/2008/05/bewitched-theme-song-lyrics.html)

5. I Dream of Jeannie

At first glance, the lyrics to I Dream of Jeannie‘s theme song are horribly sexist. After all, the second line is “just love how she obeys me.” However, these lyrics do fit in with the style of the show. As often as Major Nelson gets annoyed with Jeannie, he does love her and eventually marries her. Yet, like all the others mentioned so far, I am glad the lyrics were not used because they do come off as an afterthought.

Jeannie, fresh as a daisy.
Just love how she obeys me,
Does things that just amaze me so.

She smiles, Presto the rain goes.
She blinks, up come the rainbows.
Cars stop, even the train goes slow.

When she goes by
She paints sunshine on every rafter,
Sprinkles the air with laughter,
We’re close as a quarter after three.

There’s no one like Jeannie.

I’ll introduce her,
To you, but it’s no use, sir,
Cause my Jeannie’s in love with me.

She’s in love with me.

(source: http://www.lyricsondemand.com/tvthemes/idreamofjeannielyrics.html)

4. Bonanza

The Bonanza theme song is sung by Lorne Greene, who played Ben Cartwright. These aren’t the worst lyrics ever. If they were actually used on the show, no one would have said the lyrics are terrible. It may just be the fact that I’m used to hearing the song without the lyrics, but they seem superfluous because the music makes it perfectly clear that Bonanza is a western. The first image the music conjures is a cowboy riding on a galloping horse, but then again that may also be because I’ve seen the opening sequence of Bonanza so many times.

We chased lady luck, ’til we finally struck Bonanza.
With a gun and a rope and a hot full of hope, planted a family tree. We got hold of a pot of gold, Bonanza.
With a horse and a saddle, and a range full of cattle, how rich can a fellow be?

On this land we put our brand, Cartwright is the name, fortune smiled, the day we filed the Ponderosa claim.
Here in the West, we’re livin’ the best, Bonanza, if anyone fights any one of us, he’s go a fight with me, Bonanza.

Hoss and Joe and Adam know every rock and pine, no one works, fights, or eats, like those boys of mine.  Here we stand in the middle of a grand Bonanza.
With a gun and a rope and a hatful of hope, we planted our family tree, we got hold of a potful of gold, Bonanza.

With a houseful of friends where the rainbow ends, how rich can a fellow be?
On this land we put our brand, Cartwright is the name, fortune smiled, the day we filed the Ponderosa claim.  Here in the west we’re livin’ the best Bonanza.

With the friendliest, fightingist, loving band, that ever set foot in the promised land, and we’re happier than them all.
That’s why we call it Bonanza…Bonanza…Bonanza…
(source: http://ponderosascenery.homestead.com/lyrics.html)

3. The Dick van Dyke Show

You might have already heard The Dick van Dyke Show theme’s lyrics, which were written by Morey Amsterdam, because nowadays Dick van Dyke loves singing them on every talk show he goes on. Despite being fun, these lyrics don’t add anything at all because they have nothing to do with the show.

So you think that you’ve got troubles?
Well, trouble’s a bubble,
So tell old Mr. Trouble to “Get lost!”
Why not hold your head up high and,
Stop cryin’, start tryin’,
And don’t forget to keep your fingers crossed.
When you find the joy of livin’ Is lovin’ and givin’
You’ll be there when the winning dice are tossed.
A smile is just a frown that’s turned upside down,
So smile, and that frown will defrost.
And don’t forget to keep your fingers crossed!

(source: http://lyricsplayground.com/alpha/songs/t/thedickvandykeshowthemesong.shtml)

2. I Love Lucy

I Love Lucy could have actually used its theme’s lyrics. They fit perfectly, but are significantly longer than the iconic opening credits that usually appear in syndication. At least, they didn’t go to waste. Ricky did sing the song to Lucy during on episode, so you might have heard the lyrics without realizing that they went to the them song are the very show you were watching.

There’s a certain couple that I know.
They’re strictly lovebirds,
A pair of turtle dove birds.
He’s a guy who wants the world to know.
So ev’ry day
You’ll hear him say.

I Love Lucy and she loves me,
We’re as happy as two can be,
sometimes we quarrel but then again
How we love making up again.

Lucy kisses like no one can,
She’s my missus and I’m her man;
And life is heaven you see
Cause I Love Lucy
Yes I Love Lucy
and Lucy loves me.
(source: http://www.lyricsondemand.com/tvthemes/ilovelucylyrics.html)

1. The Andy Griffith Show

The Andy Griffith Show theme is another show that could have used its lyrics. If it had, everyone would now sing the song instead of whistle it. The theme’s catchy and fits Mayberry perfectly. I’ll let it speak for itself.

Well, now, take down your fishin’ pole and meet me at The Fishin’ Hole,
We may not get a bite all day, but don’t you rush away.
What a great place to rest your bones and mighty fine for skippin’ stones,
You’ll feel fresh as a lemonade, a-settin’ in the shade.
Whether it’s hot, whether it’s cool, oh what a spot for whistlin’ like a fool.
What a fine day to take a stroll and wander by The Fishin’ Hole,
I can’t think of a better way to pass the time o’ day.We’ll have no need to call the roll when we get to The Fishin’ Hole,
There’ll be you, me, and Old Dog Trey, to doodle time away.
If we don’t hook a perch or bass, we’ll cool our toes in dewy grass,
Or else pull up a weed to chaw, and maybe set and jaw.
Hangin’ around, takin’ our ease, watchin’ that hound a-scratchin’ at his fleas.
Come on, take down your fishin’ pole and meet me at The Fishin’ Hole,
I can’t think of a better way to pass the time o’ day.
(source: http://www.lyricsondemand.com/tvthemes/theandygriffithshowlyrics.html)

Honorable Mention

M*A*S*H

“Suicide is Painless” from M*A*S*H receives an honorable mention because the lyrics aren’t so much forgotten as much as they were simply never used on the TV show. Fans of the TV show may not realize that the song has lyrics, which were used in the MASH movie. I haven’t seen the movie, so I can’t comment on the use of the song in it. However, “Suicide is Painless” is powerful with or without the lyrics, so they weren’t really necessary for the opening of the show. It is surprising that Robert Altman’s son came up with they lyrics when he was only 14.

Through early morning fog I see
Visions of the things to be
The pains that are withheld for me
I realize and I can see.

That suicide is painless.
It brings on many changes.
I can take or leave it if I please.

That game of life is hard to play.
I’m gonna lose it anyway.
The losing card I’ll some day lay,
So this is all I have to say.

That suicide is painless.
It brings on many changes.
I can take or leave it if I please.

The sword of time will pierce our skin.
It doesn’t hurt when it begins,
But as it works its way on in
The pain grows stronger, watch it grin.

That suicide is painless.
It brings on many changes.
And I can take or leave it if I please.

A brave man once requested me
To answer questions that are key
Is it to be or not to be
And I replied oh why ask me.

That suicide is painless.
It brings on many changes.
And I can take or leave it if I…

That suicide is painless.
It brings on many changes.
I can take or leave it if I please.

That suicide is painless.
It brings on many changes.
And you can do the same thing if you please.
(source: http://www.lyricsbox.com/mash-lyrics-suicide-is-painless-kdv9zd1.html)

 

About Allison Lips

I am the Toastmasters District 83 Public Relations manager and President of Freehold Phrasers.

Posted on July 5, 2012, in Classic Television, Theme Songs and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Andy Griffith and MASH is one of my favorite theme songs. Thanks for post.

  1. Pingback: I dream of Jeannie « Family Bugs Blogging

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