"You Guys are so.... Amazing": Ranking the Soundtrack of Scott Pilgrim V. the World
On August 13th, the movie Scott Pilgrim v. the World celebrates its 10th anniversary. Based on the comics by Bryan O’Malley, it's the story of a bassist named Scott Pilgrim who must battle the seven evil exes of a girl named Ramona Flowers before he can date her. With ingenious cinematography, a clever script, and brilliant cast; it's no wonder why it has become a classic. Music being not only a central theme in the movie, but also what inspired the series in the first place, it obviously also has a banging soundtrack. So without further ado, in honor of the brilliant movie that is Scott Pilgrim v. the World, here is my ranking of songs of the Scott Pilgrim soundtrack.
20) Anthems For a Seventeen Year Old Girl by Broken Social Scene I know this is a controversial choice, believe me, but I have never been able to understand the charm of this song or anything by Broken Social Scene, for that matter. It’s repetitive and breathy, but to its credit, it is a good one for the scene where Scott goes to talk to his ex, Knives.
19) Ramona by Beck (acoustic version) This song is literally just Scott strumming his guitar and singing Ramona over and over. Maybe that does it for you but I always found this one boring. It needs more, but then again, that’s why there’s also a longer, better version.
18) I’m So Sad, So Very Very Sad by Crash and the Boys (Broken Social Scene and Erik Knudsen) It’s literally a few seconds long, I don’t really have a lot to say on this one. To quote Wallace, “It’s not a race, you guys!”
17) Sleazy Bed Track by Bluestacks As a song, it’s melodramatic and moody. While this could have made it a memorable moment in the soundtrack and in the movie (during one of Scott and Ramona’s makeout sessions), it sort of falls flat. Maybe it’s just a personal preference, but I thought this one was a bit lacking.
16) Scott Pilgrim by Plumtree A bit of a generic rock song, it is catchy but pretty repetitive, and not one that I personally could listen to outside of the film. However, without it, there would be no Scott Pilgrim, for its title is what inspired Bryan O’Malley to make the comic in the first place (Ramierez).
15) Slick (Patel’s Song) by Dan the Automater While not exactly a stand alone song, it is pretty hilarious and it almost makes me wish that all of Ramona’s exes had a special musical number prepared (seriously, how cool would that have been?)
14) Threshold by Sex Bob-Omb A song written for Sex Bob-Omb, this one they play during the battle of the bands against the Twins (who happen to be two of Ramona’s exes). It’s supposed to be lackluster, because the band is supposed to suck, and in a way it sort of accomplishes that. Not a terrible song, but far from the best best by Sex Bob-Omb.
13) It’s Getting Boring By the Sea by Blood Red Shoes This one barely works, barely. With up and down vocals it's almost jarring, but it comes together nicely in the end. It also sets the mood for the scene, when Knives shows up with Young Neil to make Scott jealous.
12) We Hate You Please Die by Crash and the Boys (Broken Social Scene and Erik Knudsen) Dedicated to sweet Wallace, this one is surprisingly pretty good. It starts out rough, but by the end of the song I found myself wishing it was a little longer.
11) Summertime by Sex Bob-Omb Another one by Sex Bob-Omb, it also plays after Ramona during the credits. It’s fun and a lot better than Threshold, but not one I’d stick around for if I was watching the movie. However after it plays a hidden gem…
10) Threshold (eight bit version) by Brian Lebarton Somehow better than the original version of Threshold, it seems appropriate considering the videogame theme of the movie. There’s not a lot to it, but it's charming and definitely worth sticking around during the credits for.
9)I Heard Ramona Sing by Frank Black This one is charmingly odd, with cheerful instrumentation and droning vocals that somehow don’t get annoying. It doesn’t exactly fit in on the soundtrack, but is good on its own and is the perfect song to have playing in the background as Scott follows Ramona at the party.
8) O Katrina by Blacklips Upbeat with killer guitar and drum throughout, it also has sharp lyrics and a memorable chorus. While it doesn’t exactly stand out during the movie (it plays in the background of the party scene), it's one that someone could listen to afterwards.
7) Ramona by Beck A beautiful way to end the film, it's soft, sweet and like an upgraded version of the acoustic version. As I type this, I’m wondering if perhaps the upgrade is symbolic of the change that Scott undergoes in the film. Too far fetched? I dunno, I think I’m onto something.
6) Garbage Truck by Sex Bob-Omb While the word random is thrown around a lot, there’s no doubt that this song truly is. After all, are there any other songs about taking someone for a ride on a garbage truck? Bizarre as it may be, it works nicely with the film, perfectly reflecting the band Sex Bob-Omb.
5) By Your Side by Beachwood Sparks Playing in the background on Scott and Ramona’s first date, it perfectly encapsulates what it would be like to go on a date in a world created by Bryan O’Malley. It's intimate and (seemingly) simple, with just a touch of adult angst.
4) We are Sex Bob-Omb by Sex Bob-Omb While this song is supposed to be chaotically sucky (as is everything by Sex Bob-Omb), but for some reason it really works? With a catchy riff and fast pace, it’s the perfect song for the band's introduction.
3) Under My Thumb by The Rolling Stones Not only is this song pretty great, but it is used ingeniously in the movie; in the background when Ramona goes back to Gideon and Sex Bob-Omb signs to his record company. It's a subtle detail, but when you notice it you will most likely feel compelled to loudly point out its presence and significance to whoever else is watching with you (or was that just me?).
2) Teenage Dream by T-Rex This song is dramatically wonderful. It’s by T-Rex and has over the top, melodramatic, perfect, instrumentals, harmonies, and lyrics. Not only is it good on its own, but it compliments the film, playing after Scott dumps Knives Chau for Ramona.
1) Black Sheep by Metric and Brie Larson This song is literally perfect. It's incredibly catchy, has great vocals, and goes with just about every mood (I would know, considering the fact I listen to it on the weekly). Maybe it's sung by an antagonist, Envy Adams, but that doesn’t keep it from being the best song in the entire movie.
Ramirez Iliana. “Music in Film: The Action-Packed Soundtrack of Scott Pilgrim v. The World.” KTSW 89.9. March, 7, 3019.