On Re-theming

October 24, 2009 at 2:04 PM | Posted in Music | Leave a comment

I’m sure 0.253 people would notice this, but I deleted my Fringe video. It had over 10,000 views. I just didn’t care enough to keep it. It seems unlikely to me that anyone who watched it was in the market for a new Fringe theme, so I don’t know why they bothered. And I am 98.72% sure none of those people watched my other videos or subscribed. So… it was useless. 94.619% of the comments had some kind of disclaimer as to why they liked it. “It’s good, but…” the original is better, it would be better with real instruments, my brain is damaged, I listen to Paris Hilton’s album over and over, etc.

Originally I said I didn’t like the theme song and wrote this as a replacement, and so all the comments compared it to the original. And that was true. I thought the theme was early 90s fluff. It’s a little bit ominous towards the end, but it had nothing to do with the show. J.J. Abrams wrote it in the middle of the night, not inspired by Fringe at all. So it’s not by Michael Giacchino. It’s not inspired by the show. And IMO it’s devoid of emotion. So I wrote a theme inspired by the show and… somebody said it sounded very early 90s. *headdesk*

So I changed it, pretending it was a theme inspired by the show, not a replacement. Which was a lie. Because I don’t care who likes the original better. I wrote the theme for me, and for only anyone who doesn’t like the original theme at all. So if you like the original theme, you’re not the target audience.

See, most people don’t think about this, but music and film compliment each other in sublime ways. A terrible theme song played once a week, every week, during a show you really like, will become associated with the show in your mind, and eventually you will like it. Unless it’s the theme to Dollhouse, because that is freaking awful. But naturally, you can imagine I am hesistant to post a new Dollhouse theme, even though mine kicks all kinds of ass. And subsequently, people watching the video will hear and judge the song once, as I did the original when I wrote this. But by the time I made the video, people already had the original ingrained in their heads. And they would only watch this video once. Not enough time to like it. So it was ultimately pointless, because it couldn’t even reach the point of being heard every week. Except by me, in my head, when I watch the show.

And for the record, I feel the same way about the Hulk theme. But, that video doesn’t get many hits, because the Hulk does not have a weekly TV show. Elfman’s theme has been criticized by many as little more than a descending scale. And it’s really an okay theme… for Bruce Banner. But it’s completely unHulklike, and in fact there is no “Hulk Theme” in the movie. It works perfectly for an intellectual, psychological drama. So it suffers the same flaw as the movie. And the other Hulk movie has this arbitrary Eastern music theme, expressing nothing of the plot or the emotion of the characters or the story. It’s not even original, as there were elements of Eastern music in the first movie. So again, we didn’t get a HULK THEME. So I was watching the old TV series, and half-inspired by the DUN DUN DUN DUNNNNN briefly played during Hulk scenes, as opposed to the tinkly sad David Banner piano theme song, I wrote a freaking HULK SMASH theme. And I threw in a little bit of the heartbeat motif from the movie. Okay, the guitars sound a bit 90s Saturday morning cartoon, but face it, those things had better theme songs than most comic book movies.

And also for the record, I like the Spider-Man theme and the original Batman theme. The new Batman theme is percussive incidental dreck. And the only TV show theme I like is 24, and that’s only five notes long. So I guess the point is, rather than just complain, I write better theme songs. But since no one else can properly judge them, it’s a thankless task.

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