It’s been fifteen-plus years since I’ve seen Gilligan’s Island. I always liked it as a kid, as far as shows produced thirty years prior go, but it’s not something I think about often. So it was a surprise to me when, out of the clear blue sky, I noticed something strange about it – the theme song makes no sense for the show.
I’ve easily heard it a hundred times and never approached it critically before, but I strongly suspect that the people in charge of coming up with the song weren’t told the show they were writing for was a comedy. Nothing about the song or title sequence is funny or suggests the show that follows in any way, save for introducing the character types.
Not only are the opening images baffling (a serious-looking storm posing a real threat to the passengers) but Gilligan is described as, “a mighty sailin’ man.” He’s a man, I guess it’s believable that he has sailed, but he certainly isn’t “mighty.”
What this suggests to me is that even when failure appears to be objectively inevitable, there always exists the possibility for success.