Just As I Thought

Theme Geek

Remember all those years ago, when local news programs actually had opening titles? Cheesy footage of camera men out in the streets, fuzzy film animation of the station logo chroma-keyed in, perhaps using state of the art Scanimate animation? Still photos of the news team? Those days are over. Now a news opening is only a few seconds, cut down to the bare minimum to squeeze in more “fork in the eye” stories and commercials.
For some bizarre reason, I have TV news themes littering my hard disk, so let’s take a look at one particular station and how its theme has changed over a decade.
In what may be a standing record, Washington’s WRC-TV 11pm news theme was a whopping 35 seconds long (inclusive of the station ID) in 1982.
The cheesy disco-era themes gave way to more orchestrated versions in the late 80s and early 90s, then made a swift turn toward, well, stock music crap in the mid 90s.
By 1994, the theme music for WRC news broadcasts was down to a pointless five seconds. It’s been there ever since.

WRC News Themes Retrospective 1981-1994 [3:50]
(You can listen to more WRC news themes over on my weird audio site, Cacophony.)

1 comment

  • My favorite WRC theme is the smooth sounding one with the vibraphones they sometimes close the 6pm show on Fridays when they have time to roll credits. I believe it is called “The Reporter”. I was searching for that track and found your website.

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