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Known for butchering the facts, CNN has now taken it upon itself to also butcher theme songs — classic theme songs, that is.
As part of a special called “Where Have All The Theme Songs Gone,” network host Don Lemon has been digging into the history of some of the country’s most classic theme songs and how exactly they were written.
To Lemon’s credit, he performed some actual journalism — a very rare feat for him — and spoke with, as one example, Gary Portnoy, one of the two co-writers of the “Cheers” theme song.
The problem is what happened afterward. Lemon appeared on CNN’s “Newsroom” to talk about his special, and all hell broke loose as he and the show’s host, Alisyn Camerota, began butchering the theme songs live on the air.
Watch the first half (*Graphic content warning):
No theme song was spared.
Not the theme song of “The Brady Bunch.”
Not the theme song of “Maude.”
Not the theme song of “All in the Family.”
Not the theme song of “Greatest American Hero.”
Not the theme song of “Welcome Back Kotter.”
Not the theme song of “Gilligan’s Island.”
Not even the theme song of “The Jeffersons.”
It was brutal …
Watch the second half (*Graphic content warning):
“They are part of the reason I stopped watching CNN,” one critic wrote in response.
They are part of the reason I stopped watching CNN.
— Colleen Scanlon (@ColleenScanlon) July 23, 2021
— Randy (@comcast65) July 23, 2021
This isn’t the first time Lemon’s butchered a song. The only difference is that he’s usually drunk when he does so.
“With 2019 drawing to a close Tuesday night, the CNN anchor joined Brooke Baldwin in Nashville for a night of NYE punditry, drinking and overall fun. As a singer crooned, Lemon offered (unsolicited?) backing vocals. The newscaster belted out a tune — with a drink in one hand and a microphone in the other — and danced along,” Deadline reported on New Year 2020.
Unfortunately, the video of him singing has disappeared, because everybody who tweeted it was eventually suspended.
In his defense, at least he’s never butchered a song as badly as his colleague, Chris Cuomo.
Back in March, Cuomo sang his rendition of the “Good Times” theme song, which was bad enough.
But then asked to explain how he knew all the song’s lyrics, he replied, “You know I’m black on the inside?”
A Republican would get non-stop ridicule for saying this.https://t.co/ezITuJ8DV4
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) March 8, 2021
The remarks provoked some outrage.
Look (*Language warning):
I feel that a lot of people are downplaying the impact of this statement, when we should already understand the influence of politics in modern culture. If unchecked, shit like this would normalize, as if they could ever relate to the black struggle. Miss me with that.
— Upper Broke Bracket (@8ighth__) March 8, 2021
Remember when Chris Cuomo said calling him Fredo was “the Italian equivalent of the n word” and every Italian and Italian-American on Earth together was like “lol ummm no it isn’t wtf”
We tried to tell the rest of the world then he was trash but they wouldn’t listen
— Vulgar Capital LLC Ltd PLC SpA Incorporated (@VulgarCapLLC) March 8, 2021
If your last name is Cuomo maybe just stop talking for a while because it ain’t going well right now lol
— Back 2 Back Champs ⚡⚡ (@jones_shaun) March 8, 2021
— GrandShepherd (@ShepGrand) March 9, 2021
It’s fucking offensive. Black isn’t something you can just say you feel you are inside without having to deal with the racism that comes with being physically Black on the outside. This is cultural appropriation.
— Aisha K. Staggers (@AishaStaggers) March 6, 2021
He could have avoided this whole saga by saying. Hey! I’m a huge fan of the show! Instead he had to be so extra! pic.twitter.com/zyqbS7oCwM
— Luxury Brown (@Red1988Deep) March 8, 2021
As for the theme song special, it was apparently Lemon’s idea.
“It’s so funny because I was sitting around with a group of friends and one of them happened to be someone who worked at CNN, and we were singing TV show theme songs. And we said, whatever happened to TV show theme songs,” he told Camerota.
“And we had this whole thing about the history of the sitcom, and talked to the boss, and we said the boss said, yes, why don’t you do it. And then we can pair it with history of sitcoms and it would be perfect. But everybody — it’s an age thing,” he added.
As to where the theme songs have gone, it appears it’s all about the dollar bill, ya’ll.
“Where have they gone? Money, advertisers. The executives wanted to make money so they either shortened or cut out the theme song because it took too much time and they wanted to devote more time to advertising,” he explained.
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