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Unpopular opinion: A TV series or film is only as good as its soundtrack.
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Music, after all, can do a lot to elevate a particular scene for viewers, so it makes perfect sense that a composer’s job on a show is just as important as the writers and producers who create the storyline. Think about it, what’s a horror movie without hair-raising eerie music?
Without further ado, we look at some of various TV series with the best soundtracks.
1. Stranger Things
Set in a small suburban town in Indiana, Stranger Things is definitely a show for 80s fans. The costumes, setting, and haircuts all create a sense of nostalgia for viewers. Besides being one of the most-watched shows on Netflix in 2022, the series has an ace soundtrack. Expect tunes from Duran Duran, The Police, and Bon Jovi.
This list wouldn’t make sense without Atlanta in it. The rapper Childish Gambino created the series about the lives of a hip-hop artist and his cousin. If you’re a fan of hip-hop and funk, this one’s for you.
3. Gossip Girl
Many artists, including Peter Bjorn and John, have Gossip Girl to thank for their meteoric rise to fame. Millennials who watched this series about the lives of New York’s elites will remember how GG pretty much shaped their listening habits when they were teenagers.
4. Big Little Lies
Let’s be honest, the opening song for this series is already great, so it makes perfect sense that the rest of the series’ songs are also impressive. Elvis, Otis Redding, Frank Ocean, and Sade… do we have to go on?
5. Sex Education
A fan of 80’s UK music? Sex Education will be your jam. While it’s not actually set in the 80s, the outfits and setting force viewers to reminisce. Velvet Underground, Fleetwood Mac, and T.Rex appear on the soundtrack.
6. Money Heist
What’s a global TV phenomenon without some good music? Even if you’re not a fan of the series, you’ll know of the famous Bella Ciao song. While the soundtrack includes classic Spanish hits, Arcade Fire, The Prodigy, and Van Morrison also appear.
A series like Suits definitely needs a strong soundtrack, and that’s exactly what the composers are doing. Seriously, Etta James, Jimi Hendrix, and Nina Simone? The TV series soundtrack reads more like a Grammy Hall of Fame roll call.
Despite the issues the series had with certain cast members, it was a hit, and it’s difficult not to bop to any of its tunes. After all, the series was about a very musical family and their empire. Season one of the series was particularly impressive.
9. Vampire Diaries
Like Gossip Girl, Vampire Diaries, too, was responsible for the musical choices of teenagers in the past. Some of our favorites on the soundtrack include songs by The Prodigy, MGMT, and The Fray.
10. This Is Us
Need a soundtrack for just about any life event? Consider tuning in to the one by This Is Us. Really, if there’s one other thing the series has managed to do well—besides its storyline—it is to select songs that fit just about any theme. From The Rolling Stones to Lizzo, it’s all there.