Should Monk have kept the original theme song?

There's an inside joke hidden in two Monk episodes referring to the absolute fan fury unleashed when Randy Newman's song replaced the original theme.

Read to Me

The bouncing guitars of the Monk theme song heard throughout the show’s first season became a surprise hit with viewers tuning in.

The song became so popular that the original Monk network USA posted a version of the song that fans could download and listen to even when the show wasn’t on air.

This original theme song was composed by Jeff Beal, who has earned Emmy nominations for compositions for hit TV shows for HBO and Netflix.

Playing the tune was Grant Geissman, a jazz guitarist and session musician who has recorded with Quincy Jones and Sheila E.

On TV, Geissman’s music has been featured on live shows like The Tonight Show, Merv Griffin, and Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, as well as on more recent hit series like Boy Meets World and Dawson’s Creek.

But it was on Monk that he arguably found his biggest TV fanbase, with super-fans of the show downloading his original theme to save a version for themselves.

That’s why it caused quite the disruption when Monk producers out of nowhere swapped out Geissman and Beal’s song for a new theme song.

For the second season of Monk, it’s Randy Newman’s "It’s a Jungle Out There" that’s heard over the show’s opening credits.

Fans were so distraught by this decision that Monk producers couldn’t ignore their loud protests and wound up writing a bit into the show that made light of the theme song scandal.

In the Monk episode "Mr. Monk and the TV Star," Sarah Silverman makes her debut appearance as Marci Maven, an obsessive TV fan who loudly complains about her favorite TV show replacing its theme song.

Silverman would appear three times over the series run of Monk as Marci, so the inside joke doesn’t end when this episode ends.

According to IMDb, fans felt so passionately that the original theme song should be reinstated that they organized letter-writing campaigns to the network.

As a gift to these fans, at the end of "Mr. Monk and the TV Star," Adrian Monk makes a solemn promise to Marci that if he ever gets a TV show of his own, that he would never change the theme song. When this scene ends, the original theme song plays, and if you pay attention, you’ll hear this joke recur at the end of the episode "Mr. Monk and His Biggest Fan," which is the next time Marci appears.

Watch Monk on MeTV!

Two Full Hours

Sundays at 8 PM

*available in most MeTV markets
 
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?
Close

16 Comments

Post a comment
lynngdance 10 days ago
Honestly, The Randy Newman Theme Song is the only thing I really like about Monk 😆
LorenKeiser 14 days ago
The first theme song was far better than the later one which actually sucked!
Larry 14 days ago
I love Me. TV. I am a 69-year-old man and, I like many grew up with tv at a time when tv was growing up with me and many others. Programing today with what they bring out from today's world is very sad. Reality TV, "Really", I don, "t think so! Ther used to be decent writers at one time that used their imagination and created great shows, that great tv actors came from.
Now, all we have is "phoney" Reality shows that are about money Shame on the television industry for allowing this. God Bless the creators of, "Me. TV for allowing our children, and their children to not only view but witness what TV and great & wholesome entertainment was meant to be, and what it is all about. Amen!
jholton30062 14 days ago
I'm not much a fan of the show, but loved the original theme song. When Randy Newman's song replaced it, I saw no reason to keep watching the show.
JamesB 15 days ago
I understand that Randy Newman’s "It’s a Jungle Out There" has become synonymous with "Monk" but that doesn't make it better. I agree with others who feel that it the original theme was good and should not have been replaced.
glennh3365 15 days ago
The fact they didn't change it back says a lot about what they thought of the viewers.
MichaelNivens 15 days ago
should have kept original
https://youtu.be/cml6-InI2-U
trogg888 15 days ago
i loved the original theme song and as for randy newmans song.the lyrics and the melody are terrible and as for his so called singing ive never understood why hes such a big deal.just dont get it
Runeshaper 17 days ago
WOW! That song really must've hit home for a lot of people. Gotta love Monk either way! (-:
Lacey Runeshaper 15 days ago
Eh, I think Like is a better word. Never really loved Monk.
Pacificsun 17 days ago
I dunno, Monk fans are unique. The 2nd theme song fits the show much better. It IS a jungle out there, especially for Monk. But the beat of the song is what's important. And if you're going to make the opening credit a montage, especially of beautiful San Francisco, then you want the viewer to be hopping along with it.

Otherwise, what's the point of title credit.
gort53 Pacificsun 15 days ago
Monk never would have made it in todays needle & feces saturated San Francisco.
Pacificsun gort53 14 days ago
Please, don't make me cry. They should've just set off a grenade in the middle of it all.

Btw: I don't think they actually filmed all the time "in" San Francisco but took their title shots and key landmark shots from there. They did a lot of interior filming.

Being a native to the Bay Area you can tell when they start using neighborhoods and streets and other details. Not saying they never, ever did, but it wasn't completely filmed like "Streets of San Francisco" or "Nash Bridges" (obviously)!!
TheSentinel Pacificsun 12 days ago
It may be a minority opinion, but I actually prefer the second theme for the show (although the first theme is okay, the second does indeed have a better fit to the show's theme).
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?