6. Star Trek: Enterprise
I... I just... what in the goddamn fuck. Not only is this a shitty Rod Stewart single originally written for Patch Adams, but it’s A COVER VERSION. No wonder fans actually petitioned against it. I mean, yeah, it’s supposed to be early on in humanity’s transition to space, birth of the Federation, “look how far we’ve come, baby!”, etc., but this should have been reason enough to strangle this series in its cradle. (I also never watched this series, but whatever.)
5. Star Trek: The Original Series
To be fair, definitely a prisoner of its time - and it could be forgiven for that, but then it turns out that there were actually WORDS to this song (allegedly just for royalty purposes to give Gene Roddenberry a songwriting credit, but I’m also not convinced that he was totally sincere when he wrote them.) Anyway, it’s still dumb. Not as dumb as the low-rent Rod Stewart fuckery above, but, close.
4. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
Hey, you know what? This isn’t really too bad! Does it suffer from a very 90s wanna-be John Williams pomposity? Yes! Is the French horn fanfare really the only good part of it and way better for the bumpers between commercials? Yeah, but oh well. (I really need to re-watch this series in earnest, as I usually only caught it in late-night reruns when said bumper fanfares would wake me up.)
3. Star Trek: The Next Generation
More than any of the others, this actually nails the show it’s introducing the best. Bright, bouncy, vaguely heroic, and the mid-range brass murmurs line up really well with the footage in the opening credits (to the point that, for years, I thought that was actually the sounds of the ship running.) Also: does a very solid job of punctuating the absurdly hilarious JAndrew Edits recuts from a couple years back.
2. Star Trek: Voyager
People get all grumble-y about this series, but the timpani at the beginning kick ass, and I think the rest of it being a slow, grand sweep makes it pretty epic. It’s also the most likely of any of these to pop in my head randomly, and I am pretty okay with that.
1. Battlestar Galactica
Sorry, Trekkies, but this was still way, WAY better than your stupid hopeful visions of the future, you goddamn losers.