Well, I’ve come to the conclusion that calling these blog updates “cue of the week” was a mistake as I have not been able to maintain a weekly schedule with them. So, from now on we’ll just call them Cue Analysis until and unless I can think of something catchier.
Anyway, the cue I’ve chosen here was actually introduced in Episode 6, but since the cue I chose to discuss was a different one that I felt encapsulated that episode better, I’ll go ahead and discuss this one now.
As you may have noticed, Zhon blends both comedic and dramatic elements, and from the beginning, my greatest challenge has been to find ways to get that across musically. I have always found the “secret agent” movies of the 60′s as well as the many parodies of them to be very entertaining. Even the most serious ones seem to have a certain campiness to them. Whether this was deliberate on their part or not or just the way I perceive them due to my “modern” sensibilities, I do not know, but I get a kick out of them.
I am particularly fond of the sound of the music of those early 60′s shows and movies. I especially love how oftentimes the lounge/exotica/space-age pop sound of the previous decade meets the burgeoning 60′s surf-rock & psychedelic sound. Vibraphone meets Fender guitar drenched in reverb &/or tremolo. ”Square”, meet “Hip”. “How do you do?” “I’m groovy, baby what’s shakin’?” Etc. Etc.
In any case, it’s a sound I’ve tried to incorporate into Zhon whenever it seems appropriate. Even though the majority of the show takes place in the present, there’s something about that sound that to my ears manages to allude to stuffy, uptight “Agent” types while also maintaining that element of camp and humor.
You can hear the cue in context about 43 seconds into the Season 1 finale, Episode 7 “A Tangled Web We Weave”