5 Cartoon Theme Songs That Never Left Your Head

Everlasting Earworms are nothing new. You hear a song and it can pop back up in your head decades later for no apparent reason–and stay just as long as it wants to. It can be a pop song, a commercial jingle or even a cartoon theme song. Cartoon theme songs are the most tenacious as we heard them over and over and become tangled in our memories of childhood, sugary breakfast cereal and Hasbro toy commercials. In case you haven’t had one float up from your psychic unconscious lately, here are 5 Cartoon theme songs that never left your head, and probably never will.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Like circles in a tree trunk, which theme you remember from TMNT gives away your age. The lyrics are so easy to recall–”Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles–heroes in half shell” so you can sing them with whatever version you grew up hearing. The cartoon theme song has never lost its allure as audiences went wild when the “old school” version was played during end credits of 2016’s TMNT 2 Out of the Shadows.


When I first hear Lou Bega’s “Mambo No.5”, I thought the intro was lifted from The Ducktales Theme. In both songs, the percussive “bum, bum,bumpa dadum” sound eerily alike. Imagine my surprise when many videos did a mash-up of the two songs and Lou Vega cleaned up his lyrics and made a Disney Mambo No. 5 about going to the candy store instead of the “liquor store ’round the corna”. Still, “Ducktales whooooo” will pop back into your head during a job interview, a first date or even a funeral–it’s not picky. You just have to wait it out. Just hope they don’t play Mambo No. 5 on the radio and you’ll be okay again soon.

Scooby Doo

Another long-lasting cartoon franchise in pop culture, you could sing out “Scooby Scooby Doo, Where are you?” in Grand Central Station and someone would join in. It’s catchy, it’s cute and it’s in your head forever. The terms “Scooby snack” “Scooby gang” are in the English vernacular forever so the song is not going away–ever! As there have been variations throughout the years, many purists prefer the classic original.

Tiny Toon Adventures

One possible reason that “We’re tiny, we’re toony we’re all a little loony” stayed with us as it can be applied to so many of life’s situations. If you hear that song go off in your head while someone is talking to you, take heed. Still, there is no escaping this song, ever. Looney Tunes always had the coolest theme songs, like the original Looney Tunes/Merrie Melodies theme and The Bug’s Bunny Overture. “On With The Show, This is it”


It’s a cartoon, a movie franchise and one of the most popular toys ever! The market will never be totally saturated for all things related to Transformers so the original cartoon theme song/commercial “Transformers: More than Meets the Eye” isn’t going anywhere in our, and perhaps our children’s lifetimes. Easy to sing and impossible to forget, it makes you feel powerful just to think of this classic cartoon theme.

Honorable Mention (In A Class of Its Own) Chrono Crusade

This theme proves the words don’t have to be in your native language to stay in your head forever. Anime themes are generally well composed and full of poetic imagery, but even if you don’t know the English translation, the song Tsubasa Wa Pleasure Line is in the hearts and heads of fans of the show forever. Produced by Fuji TV, this show appeared on Showtime Beyond a few years ago and a whole new group got hooked on the theme for this anime treasure. Many of the episodes are still floating around the web so watch them and this opening song will be with you forever, too.

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