Theme Song Graveyard #2: “Different Worlds” from Angie – Maureen McGovern, Charles Fox and Norman Gimbel (ABC 1979)

Fresh off her success in Saturday Night Fever and long before her turn as Evie’s mom on the syndicated Out of this World, Donna Pescow took on the title role opposite a pre-Airplane! Robert Hays in the ABC sitcom Angie.


Pescow was a working-class coffee shop waitress from an Italian family who falls in love with Hays, a blue-blooded pediatrician from the other side of the Philly tracks. Rounding out the cast of culture-clashers were Sharon Spelman as Brad’s uppity sister Joyce, Debralee Scott as Angie’s daffy, accident-prone sister Marie, and a pre-Everybody Loves Raymond Doris Roberts playing pretty much the exact same mother character she went on to win three Emmys for, but with red hair instead of gray, and no Peter Boyle sitting in a chair taking pot shots at her.

The theme song for Angie, Entitled “Different Worlds” is probably better remembered than the series itself.  It was written by Charles Fox and Norman Gimbel who, individually and together, were responsbile for the themes to Wide World of Sports, Monday Night Football, Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, The Paper Chase, and Wonder Woman as well as Roberta Flack’s 1973 Grammy-winning song “Killing Me Softly with His Song.”  Sung by Maureen McGovern, the radio release of “Different Worlds” cracked the Top 40 on the Pop chart and spent two weeks at #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart, whatever the hell that is.

After a very successful first season, Angie was shifted from following Mork & Mindy on Thursday nights to following Happy Days on Tuesday nights, and failed to live up to network expectations, despite sophisticated gags like this:

After two seasons and thirty-something episodes, poor little Angie got the ax.  I would guess that viewers mourned the loss of the theme song more than the show itself.  I know I did.  I really miss television that spells everything out for you in the opening credits.

Example:

1.) Brad and Angie are perfect for each other!
2.) Brad and Angie have eccentric relatives!
3.) If birds fly near you in an open area, your outfit and all the birthday presents you just bought are ruined!
4.) It’s always sunny in Philadelphia!
5.) Balloons are pretty when they’re different colors and in a great big bunch!
6.) Women should NOT be trusted with food (Salt, apples, pretzels, roast turkey and… Ahh!!  Watch out for that wacky whipped cream cannister!)

Click below the hear “Different Worlds” and see more Angie-related shenanigans.

Click here to listen to “Different Worlds” the theme from TV’s “Angie”

Theme Song Graveyard #1: “Sweepstakes” – Ron Dante (NBC 1979)

Greetings from Delta flight 101, seat 33C, 32,000 feet in the air and currently over Lubbock, Texas. I am a little less than two hours from destination Atlanta and my extended weekend with the Wild Granberries. I neglected to charge my laptop so I’m blogging from my phone. That makes listing recipe ingredents and explaining preparation techniques too tedious to attempt, so instead I bring you one of the catchiest television theme songs from the tail end of the disco era, “Don’t Be Afraid to Dream” from the late 1970s NBC mega-flop, Sweepstakes.
Is there anyone else out there who remembers this show? Having landed in our living rooms several years before the Reagan prosperity bomb went off, one would think American tv audiences would have been hungering for a weekly one hour drama about the lives of finalists in a million dollar sweepstakes featuring new celebrity guest stars each week, but apparently the only one who tuned in was me. And to be honest, I wasn’t as into the show as I was its theme song and opening titles featuring piles of cash and lucky lottery tickets showering down from a sunny blue sky. The song is performed by Ron Dante, best known for singing the lead for the cartoon rock band The Archies and producing and singing back-up for Barry Manilow through most of the seventies. Knowing that, you should not be surprised at this song’s super slick production, infectious melody and uplifting key change towards the end. Wow! A television theme song long enough to afford time for a key change. Is it possible? Find out for yourself below.
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