This is primarily for the American series and partly for the Danish series.
American – AMC
Here’s a fairly new series from AMC. First season is done and did quite well, and the order for a 13-episode second season has already been made official.
The Killing features a short and dark 30-second introduction sequence that features more of a background music than a catchy, series-defining theme song. The song is by a band called We Fell to Earth from London, England. I don’t think the song is titled and included in any commercial releases, as it perhaps was made especially for the show.
We may not be that familiar with We Fell to Earth but their songs have been featured in American television series such as Gossip Girl, CSI: NY, and Numb3rs.
YouTube users are weary of getting banned from uploading copyrighted material from AMC, so most of the videos you’ll see are distorted in some way. Like the one below, which plays the sequence in mirror image. Good thing the song is intact.
If you don’t know yet, the U.S. The Killing is a remake of a Danish series that is entitled Forbrydelsen, meaning “The Crime”. As I do not know a word of Danish, I trust that this YouTube upload featured the correct theme song. It says it was composed by a certain Frans Bak. See below.
This is quite a show, huh? Add to that, Sarah Wayne Callies!
I saw two MP3-download albums slash semi-soundtracks for the television series—both released December last year. Check them out: album one, album two. Both include the theme song, credited as “The Walking Dead Main Title”, in a number of remixes. The first album also includes the ending theme.
The albums were released by Tam Tam Media. We all know The Walking Dead official scoring is handled by composer extraordinaire Bear McCreary, but both fail to credit him, and I do not know why.
Below is the official opening sequence. Great job on this, I have to say.
This is barely even a song, let along a theme song, but for the sake of archiving, I have the full, albeit short opening sequence of Breaking Bad below. It is this Western-themed play on bongos and a steel guitar that accompanies the revealing of the logo.
No music credits yet are available, so for now this theme is unnamed and still without a composer.
There is also some talk about the song used on Breaking Bad promotional stuff. It has been answered though, and is known as the one that goes “whoo, whoo…” “Feeling the Moment” by Feeder.
Mad Men has got such a “jammy” theme song, don’t you think? It’s one of those shows where I actually look forward to the opening credits, unlike, say, Weeds, where I just forward it to the show proper.
The theme song for Mad Men is entitled “A Beautiful Mine.” It was created by someone called RJD2—a DJ/music producer/singer, real name Ramble John Krohn, from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The full version is part of the the album Magnificent City Instrumentals, a sort of spin-off of the album Magnificent City by rap artist Aceyalone. The version in Aceyalone’s album has vocals (rapping, rather).
The Mad Men opening credits video in YouTube is “unembeddable,” so just listen to the long version video below of “A Beautiful Mine.”