Monday, October 8, 2012

20 Best '80s Sitcom Theme Songs

When I think of 80s television, a few fond memories come to mind: wishing that Tony and Angela would finally get together, admiring Uncle Jesse's hair, continuously repeating "What'chu talkin' 'bout, Willis?," imitating Vicki the robot and swooning over George Clooney in The Facts of Life.

I also remember the incredibly catchy sitcom theme songs. Just like the pop music of the 80s, these theme songs blended synthesizers and saxophones with cheesy lyrics to make you feel good inside. You would often find yourself singing along to the lyrics and snapping your fingers, totally unaware of the worried looks on your parents' faces.

The decade premiered many memorable sitcoms with catchy theme songs, but if I had to pick the 20 best, here's what they would be:

1. Who's the Boss?

Who would've ever thought that a widowed Italian housekeeper and a divorced advertising executive would hit it off so well? 

Best lyrics: "There were times when I lost a dream or two. Found the trail, and at the end was you."

2.  Silver Spoons

Ricky Schroder basically played a live version of Richie Rich in this 80s sitcom, which featured a young Alfonso Ribeiro before he became Carlton on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

Best lyrics: "Together, we’re going to find our way. Together, taking the time each day. To learn all about those things you just can’t buy."

3. Diff'rent Strokes

The show that made cute Gary Coleman a superstar was also one of the first sitcoms to introduce serious issues like racism and drug abuse.

Best lyrics: "Everybody's got a special kind of story, Everybody finds a way to shine. It don't matter that you got not alot, So what, They'll have theirs, and you'll have yours, and I'll have mine."

4. The Facts of Life

This spinoff of Diff'rent Strokes featured a character that every girl could relate to, whether it was the snobby Blair, the young Tootie, the tough Jo or the impressionable Natalie.

Best lyrics: "You take the good, you take the bad, you take them both and there you have The Facts of Life."

5.  Charles in Charge

Seriously, who would not want a cute college-aged Scott Baio in charge of them?

Best lyrics: "Charles in Charge of our days and our nights. Charles in Charge of our wrongs and our rights."

6.  A Different World 

A spinoff of The Cosby Show that followed Denise Huxtable to college, the show also introduced Whitley, the uptight Southern belle, and Dwayne Wayne, a funky whiz kid.

Best lyrics: "Here's a chance to make it, If we focus on our goals. If you dish it we can take it, Just remember you've been told. It's a different world from where you come from."

7. Full House

Danny Tanner, uncle Jesse and uncle Joey were about as opposite as three guys could be, yet they brought laughter and life lessons to us every Friday night at 8 p.m. on the TGIF lineup.

Best lyrics: "When you're lost out there and you're all alone, A light is waiting to carry you home, Everywhere you look."

8.  My Two Dads

Another hilarious sitcom that paired completely opposite men as the prominent parents of little girls.

Best lyrics: "I'm standing by your side. I'll be right behind. No one loves you more than I do, Put your hand in mine."

9. Just the Ten of Us

A spinoff of Growing Pains that featured a Catholic gym teacher, his wife and their eight children, one of which was teenager Heather Langenkamp (who played Nancy in A Nightmare on Elm Street).

Best lyrics: "Life is a race and I know I can win it, Cause I'm learnin' the rules of the game. If I could stay on the ball, Take it minute, by minute, I just might make the hall of fame."

10. Small Wonder

There haven't been any other characters in television history as cool as Vicki the robot, who was cute, smart, super strong and lived in a cabinet.

Best lyrics: "She's fantastic, made of plastic, Microchips here and there. She's a small wonder, brings love and laughter everywhere"

11. The Golden Girls

Golden Girls, thank you for being our friends, and for showing us that women of all ages can be sassy, classy and crassy.

Best lyrics: "Thank you for being a friend, Traveled down the road and back again. Your heart is true your a pal and a confidant."

12.  Growing Pains

The heartwarming show that introduced Leonardo DiCaprio to the world and made Kirk Cameron a teenage heartthrob.

Best lyrics: "As long as we got each other, We got the world spinnin right in our hands. Baby you and me, we gotta be, The luckiest dreamers who never quit dreamin’."

13. Family Ties

This was an amazing show that showed the hilarious relationship between former liberal hippie parents and their Reaganomic-influenced children, most notably, Alex P. Keaton (Michael J. Fox).

Best lyrics: "What would we do baby, Without Us?"

14.  Married...with Children

The Bundy's were one of the most dysfunctional families on television, but we all had a soft spot in our hearts for Al, the shoe salesman, his annoying wife Peggy, his dim-witted daughter Kelly and his girl-crazy son Bud.

Best lyrics: "Love and Marriage, Love and Marriage, Go together like a horse and carriage, This I tell ya brother, you can't have one without the other."

15.  The Love Boat 

This was the coolest cruise ship in history, and we all wanted to hop on board and feel part of the love.

Best lyrics: "Love, exciting and new. Come Aboard. We're expecting you."

16.  Perfect Strangers

Balki was one of the most difficult sitcom characters to understand, but the crazy antics with his cousin Larry made us laugh regardless.

Best lyrics: "Standing tall, on the wings of my dream."

17.  Gimme a Break!

This sitcom featured Nell Carter. who also sang the theme song, and Joey Lawrence, who would go on to play Joey in the '90s sitcom Blossom.

Best lyrics: "Gimme a break the game is survival, Gimme a break and plan my arrival, Gimme a break for heaven's sake, to my piece of the cake."

18.  Webster 

Similar to Diff'rent Strokes, the sitcom featured cute Emmanuel Lewis, an African-American orphan, being raised by a white couple (Alex Karras and Susan Clark, who were married in real life).

Best lyrics: "It was you, Then came you. You made me leap without taking a look. It was you,
Then came you. You reeled me right in line, sinker, and hook."

19. Cheers

Everybody wanted to hang out at this bar with Ted Danson, Kirstie Alley, Kelsey Grammar and Rhea Perlman.

Best lyrics: "Sometimes you want to go, Where everybody knows your name, and they're always glad you came."

20.  Night Court

There was something magical about the comedic interactions of Harry Anderson, John Larroquette and Richard Moll that made this one of the funniest shows of the '80s.

Best lyrics: No lyrics. Just a great saxophone.

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