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March 11 2011

Ten great pop music moments in sci-fi and fantasy television. Buffy gets a shoutout for Sarah MacLachlan's 'Full of Grace' being played over the final scenes of 'Becoming, Part Two'. The list does contain spoilers for last Sunday's episode of Being Human (UK).

Well-earned. That's one of my favourite musical interludes from the show, along with "La Boheme" in Passion and "Goodbye to You" in Tabula Rasa (not counting Once More, With Feeling).
The Sound Of Drums should never be on any "top ten great" list. Ever. There must be consequences for Last of the Time Lords.

Yep, still mad.
I love that scene from Buffy, so i'm glad it was placed on the list, and it's also great to see Supernatural on there too, as they're both my favourite shows.
Good to see the Twin Peaks nod...one of my favorite scenes from one of my favorite series! While we're on Buffy music though, my favorite will always be "Blue" from Conversations With Dead People, but I'm a Frente! fan and thusly biased ;-)

Oh, and what are you mad about, Kaan? I thought that arc on Dr. Who was great...actually, that SEASON was awesome, start to finish.
Yes! To number two. "AATWT" probably had more to do with the actual plot of a show than any other song in TV history. Bear McCreary's version is so mysterious and just spectacular. Goosebumps were had during that vid of Katee Sackhoff playing with the orchestra.
Haven't ever seen a couple the UK shows and don't watch Dr. Who because I can't tolerate it, but I love that Bear McCreary's All Along the Watchtower on BSG got the number 2 spot. I would have put it at #1, with Full of Grace at #2. (although I really dislike the description of this gorgeous song itself).

Buffy deserves a second mention as well .... Micheal Branch's Goodbye to You at the end of Tabula Rasa was brilliantly chosen for that sob-worthy breakup scene.
I'd also give a nod to Amee Mann's music in Sleeper, especially the perfectly calibrated to the plot This is How it Goes.
Love the number one pick .... Life on Mars is one of my favorite TV shows ever, and this makes me want to rewatch the whole thing and analyze the use of the song as a framing device, and the ways its meaning changes over the course of the show.

(It would be a hell of a lot more fun than analyzing Marian symbolism in Renaissance music, which is what I've been doing for homework lately.)
I haven't seen that Twin Peaks scene in 20 years, so it's been a while. Though surely episode 7 of season 2? I actually think Sam Tyler waking up in 1972 with Life on Mars playing is more powerful but either way, it's a fab tune. What SFX neglects to mention is that there a scene after Sam on the roof (one which I think John Simn's wasn't too happy about).

I quite liked the Voodoo Child tune in that Doctor Who scene though the Scissor Sisters song was top notch too. Whedonverse wise - Lissie's "Everywhere I Go" played at the end of Epitaph 2 is probably my favourite, it's a very good scene and the music complements it perfectly.
A couple of my other long-time favorites:

"She Moves In Mysterious Ways" as the theme to the first "Witchblade" episode. Unfortunately, the show wasn't very good (although Yancy Butler was surprisingly well cast).

"Faith of the Heart" from "Star Trek: Enterprise". A lot of Trekkies didn't think it was "dramatic" enough, but to me, those lyrics playing over the historical images was a reminder of what "pioneering" was all about - for everyone except the financiers.
The slow build-up of the live version of "Goodbye to You" worked beautifully; I disagree, as always, about "Full of Grace." If it'd held off just a little - a few beats, even, - all would have been well. Alas, each time I watch, I flinch as the song lunges in just. too. quickly (and loudly), giving me no time to absorb or mourn Buffy's loss in my own way but, instead, dictating to me how I'm supposed to be feeling. It's one of the few moments of the series that I wholeheartedly *dislike*.

And I loved Season Three of Doctor Who too.
Shey--right there with you (even on the Who-love incomprehension), though I would leave BSG at #2 and put Full of Grace at #1. It's my favorite musical moment of any tv show/movie ever.

Rowan--was that the name of the theme song to Enterprise? Cause I hated that song. Not only as a Star Trek theme, but as a song. H-A-T-E-D. But, of course, to each his own. ;)
The original title, yeah. The theme to "Enterprise" was actually a cover version called "Where My Heart Will Take Me". Basically the same song, though, just like the theme to "Crime Story" was just Del Shannon's "Runaway" with the lyrics tweaked.
Kaan - that was from "The Sound of Drums" rather than "Last of the Time Lords". Personally I thought the song used in "Last of the Time Lords" itself, "I Can't Decide" by Scissor Sisters, was a far more appropriate choice of song... the lyrics and tune fit the Master's insanity like a glove. Why the dramatically and musically inferior Voodoo Child song makes the list instead is beyond me...
I thought about this just before looking at it. The two songs I would put at the absolute top would be:

"The Man Comes Around" by Johnny Cash in the Season One finale of TERMINATOR: SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES

"All Along the Watchtower" by Bear McCreary from BSG

Not surprised the BSG song got in, but I'm surprised the TSCC didn't. When I have friends over who haven't seen Blu-ray on a wide screen TV that is often what I play (along with the start of Pushing Daisies, the very first episode). All the bodies of the FBI agents catapulting into the swimming pool is really stunning.

Where was "Mandy" from ANGEL?
The man comes around is my #1 tv musical use ever.
Just reading the description of the world spins scene almost brought a tear to my eye. Donna crying and the old man's I'm sorry just break my heart.
Both uses of Watchtower on BSG are kick ass.
If we're going for Buffy usage (non musical ep) then its Pavlov's Bell by Aimee Mann for me. Great song, great scene and Aimee even gets a great one liner.
Best Angel song is probably a Place Called Home, another one that chokes me up just thinking about it.
Sorry best Angel is Its Not Easy Being Green. Silly me.

[ edited by theMidnighter on 2011-03-12 05:38 ]
Oh, and what are you mad about, Kaan?

I enjoyed Series 3. Martha was a very welcomed relief from Rose (until she fell in love with the Doctor as well.) The Sound Of Drums was fine, as it were, being Part 1 of the finale. But then we got Dobby locked in a cage, the Doctor turned into an angel by the power of human thought and the revelation of who the Face of Boe was. Urgh. It was just woeful.
Oh, yes, thanks Njal, for reminding me of that great T:TSCC moment.

I also loved Pavlov' Bell from Sleeper, I just loved This is How it Goes even more.

Not much music from Angel that I find memorable, but A Place Called Home is definitely right up there for evocative usage.

I'd forgotten about Everywhere I Go from E2, another perfect fit of music and the moment.
Little disappointed that "Blue" by Angie Hart from the episode "Converations with Dead People" didn't make the cut.

I find it haunting and familiar.
"The Man Comes Around" by Johnny Cash in the Season One finale of TERMINATOR: SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES

This. This, this, this, this, this. So this in fact that the list is borderline fail without it IMO.

'Full of Grace' is a beautiful song which fits nigh perfectly with what we see, maybe slightly overmixed but only very slightly. 'A Place Called Home', also excellent. With Buffy though (and Who for that matter), it's more about the score itself for me ('The Gift' wouldn't be the sobfest it is without Beck's 'Sacrifice' theme, nor 'Chosen' such a rousing finale without Rob Duncan's contribution and the list goes on).

And how great was last Sunday's 'Being Human' BTW (including the tune - though I do agree about 'Hungry Like the Wolf', bit on the nose) ? Wasn't sure about the show at first but it's really grown on me.

(also liked that they list 'Life on Mars' as by "Duncan Jones's Dad", seems appropriate for a sci-fi magazine ;)
Oh, I love most Buffy score more than any song accompaniment. My particular favorite being the Passion theme. Its lovely, spare piano is among the most gorgeous melodies I've ever heard. And both the 'Sacrifice' theme and Chosen's finale are definitely right up there.

My most hated? Some of the music from season 1. Especially in Prophecy Girl when Buffy goes looking for the Master. God. Awful. A near-perfect episode momentarily ruined.

ETA: me giving one more vote to "The Man Comes Around" sequence. Don't have that on DVD yet, so it slipped my mind. 'Tis wonderful.

[ edited by guidedby on 2011-03-13 05:32 ]
Especially in Prophecy Girl when Buffy goes looking for the Master. God. Awful. A near-perfect episode momentarily ruined.

Pretty sure that's the only moment in 144 episodes of Buffy that I literally can't watch (if it's on TV i'll flip over, on DVD i'll fast-forward or at least mute the sound). Just cringe-inducingly bad (and I enjoy stuff like 'The Office' UK so normally I cringe for fun ;).

And yep, 'Passion', 'nother good one.
I have to admit that at first glance of the description, I thought this article was recognizing that other Sarah McLachlan season ender, Grave's "Prayer of St. Francis" - which I would have no problem with as I love that musical moment a lot.

Also concurring on the "Goodbye to You" appreciation - well-described, SNT; confessing that I remember the referenced scene in Twin Peaks but have no clear recollection of the song (and I just rewatched the series... hm, well, I guess it has been over a year already); and thanking Rowan Hawthorn for confirming that Crime Story's version of "Runaway" did have altered lyrics! And now I'm curious if that show ever came out on DVD (though I don't know if I'd still like it enough today for a purchase)....

And I was also interested to learn of this appearance of Johhny Cash's "The Man Comes Around" (the title track of the album on which his famous version of "Hurt", as mentioned in this article, first appeared). I really do have to get around to watching T:TSCC, it seems....

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