I’m going to spare all of you from me getting on my soapbox about the monstrosity that is the cancellation of this show, and instead look at the brighter side – it never jumped the shark. Aside from being a well-written, well-acted, nostalgic masterpiece that launched the career of many-a-funny-person, the show had an outstanding soundtrack.
For those of you who have never seen the show, it focuses in on 1980 Michigan where brother and sister, Sam and Lindsey Weir, are navigating the trials and tribulations of high school. While both being geeks, Lindsey is starting to make her way into the freak territory. When both crowds are introduced, two perfect songs are used to set the mood. First, we meet the freaks loitering around underneath the bleachers as “Running With the Devil” by Van Halen cues up in the background. The camera then shifts over to the geeks discussing the hilarity of Caddyshack, as “I’m Alright” by Kenny Loggins, naturally, swells over Halen. And that’s just the first five minutes.
The theme song, “Bad Reputation” by Joan Jett, is the perfect fit for the series, as a montage of the characters getting their yearbook photos is shown. The montage includes characters that are nerdy, stoned, and unprepared – all introducing what their respective reputations are.
The series finale features Lindsey falling in love with the Grateful Dead, showing a scene of her transforming into a Dead Head as “Box of Rain” plays on her turntable. Other notable tunes include:
- Squeeze Box – The Who
- Jesus Is Just Alright – The Doobie Brothers
- You’ll Accomp’ny Me – Bob Seger
- Come Sail Away – Styx
- Sunshine of Your Love – Cream
- Rosalinda’s Eyes – Billy Joel
- 25 or 6 to 4 – Chicago
- The Devil Went Down to Georgia – The Charlie Daniels Band
- Baby, Don’t Get Hooked on Me – Mac Davis
- Summer Breeze – Seals & Crofts
- The Groove Line – Heatwave
Be sure to follow The Tidbit’s soundtrack playlist below to hear the aforementioned songs.