DEBORAH CROMBIE: Last week I was re-watching the first season of Endeavor on Masterpiece Mystery, in anticipation of Season 2 beginning on Sunday night, and as I listened to the opening bars of Barrington Pheloung's gorgeous, evocative score, it occurred to me that I could not imagine Morse, Inspector Lewis, or Endeavor without that signature music. (If you are Masterpiece Mystery fans, you're hearing it in your head right now.)
And then I started to think about all the movies and television shows that are inseparable from their soundtracks. Just start with John Williams: Can you imagine Jaws, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Star Wars, Raiders of the Lost Ark, or Harry Potter (just to pick a few plums from the Williams catalog) without the music? What about Star Trek without Michael Giacchino's score? The X-Files without Mark Snow's eerie whistled opening?
I loved Gabriel Yared's score for The English Patient so much that I tried to learn to play the piano. (And inflicted the same on poor Gemma, who has, at least, had marginally better results.)
Or if you're old enough (and will admit to being old enough,) just think of Rawhide, or the Andy Griffith Show. (I dare you to get that one out of your head...)
As writers, we try to convey all the senses because those cues pull the reader into the story, but I think music is the hardest thing to describe in words. Most of the time we settle for trying to portray the feelings that music invokes, and perhaps we forget just how effectively music gives us mood and emotion.
So, REDS and readers, what springs to your minds when you think of movies or television shows that just wouldn't be the same without their theme music? (No musicals allowed! That's a different challenge altogether!)
(Oh, and by the way, isn't Shaun Evans, who plays the young Morse in Endeavor, fab???)
And just in case you've never heard the theme from Morse, here it is.