Wednesday 12 January 2011

TV Theme Retrospective: Keep Watching The Skies!

Science fiction has long been a staple of TV, initially featuring the US everyman (apart from ‘Dr Who’, of course!) striding boldly forth to conquer new worlds and dally with alien princesses. Very few entertained the thought that the aliens might want to repay the complement, despite the success of ‘War of the Worlds’.

Yet ‘alien invasion of Earth’ stories became unaccountably popular in the late Seventies and Eighties (who could forget 'UFO', with that grocer's apostrophe in the opening credits?), and have continued to be popular to this day, with a ‘V’ remake on US TV and Steven Spielberg aiming to keep everyone glued to the small screen this summer.

Gene Roddenberry is best known (of course) for ‘Star Trek’, which fitted the former category, but his work lived on after his death, resulting in ‘Earth: Final Conflict’, a very creditable entry in the ‘aliens are here, and they aren’t what they seem!’ stakes.

And it had a fantastic theme tune (by Maribeth Solomon and Micky Erbe) and opening credit sequence:

It ran for five series, and sadly the final series took a radical departure from the first four, which many fans believe lead to its eventual cancellation.

The script never quite lived up to the promise of those opening credits and stirring music, somehow.

Next month's theme: Man and Machine.


Dr Evil said...

Assuming carbon based aqueous life as on Earth and complex cells and Darwinian evolution, any intelligent species will probably be a lot like us, but with more advanced technology (if they come calling) and more advanced weapons. there is no reason for them to be benevolent philosophers rather than violent conquerors. We had better watch out.

Pavlov's Cat said...

I guessed it would be aliens.

But I completly wrong in your choice of show. I thought it would be The X-Files

personal favourites of mine include Captain Scarlet and Alien Nation.

But surely the top has to be.....

All together now 'It's been a long road, getting from there to here .....

jd said...

When it comes to alien invasion opening titles, Captain Scarlet would have to be up there, but another personal favourite would be...

JuliaM said...

"... there is no reason for them to be benevolent philosophers rather than violent conquerors."

It seems they always want our women. Or our water. :)

"But surely the top has to be....."

Ah, if the theme had just been aliens, rather than alien invasion of Earth, then yes. But I'd have had an agonising decision to make between that and this one.

"...but another personal favourite would be..."

Aha! Yes!

Dr Evil said...

The greatest ever Sci Fi show on TV has to have been Babylon 5.

a real epic!

jd said...


Have to agree completely, though not an alien invasion of Earth series as such. Maybe it'll feature in a later Julia TV Theme!

Though the greatest TV series ever would be PMcG's The Prisoner (and I'll be very disillusioned if that cracking theme doesn't appear at some point :-))