If you’ve decided to start learning French, you may want to include some French TV shows into your contact hours with the language. Naturally, the sole action of watching TV in another language is not going to make you fluent, but you can benefit by learning new vocabulary, training your ears for real conversation, and picking up idioms and slang that would be useful in conversation. As a matter of fact, according to research, watching non subtitled tv shows showed an increase in vocabulary for language learners. Of course, it’s more challenging, but it gets you to the goal more quickly as well, so try to turn those subtitles off from time to time if you want to jump to a new level of listening.
If you’re looking for French TV shows that will enhance your learning, whatever level you’re at, continue reading, we’ve compiled a list!
1. French in Action
This is a series perfect for beginners as it’s both a television series and a french language course. The series centers around a young Frenchwoman and an American student. It has eight seasons and the topics include: planning and anticipating, names and origins, physical appearances, kinship, describing others, encounters, occupations, getting around, food and drink, transportation, habitat, entertainment, getting and spending, geography and tourism and getting away. You can watch the series on YouTube.
2. 7 jours sur la planète (7 Days on the Planet)
This tv show is great for any level! It’s really a news show that summarizes the news items from French-speaking countries over the past week. On their website, their videos are separated into A2 Elementary, B1 Intermediate, B2 Advanced. Therefore whatever language level you’re at, you can find some videos you’ll be able to understand and learn from.
3. Les Aventures de Tintin (The Adventures of Tintin)
You’re probably familiar with this show in English from your childhood. The show, which is adapted from a comic book, is great for beginners and those who are intermediate learners. You’ll be entertained by the adventures of the Belgian detective and his dog Snowy. You can get the first season on Amazon Prime, kid’s channels or catch some clips on YouTube.
4. Plus belle la vie (Life Is More Beautiful)
This French soap opera is perfect for beginners and those at an intermediate level of French. The show is set in Marseille in a fictional neighborhood known as “le Mistral”. It’s said to be super entertaining, owning in part to its plot twists. The series is actually still ongoing and it’s in its 17th season. You can watch here.
5. Scène de ménage (Domestic Scene)
This show which gives you a look into what the average French household looks like follows 3 couples. They’re all of different age groups. It’s perfect for intermediate learners. The humor may be dark sometimes so watch out for that if that’s not your thing. You can watch some clips on YouTube.
6. Un Gars, Une Fille (A boy, a girl)
This French series is perfect for more advanced learners. The show revolves around a couple and their lives. It’s a pretty popular show in France and you’re bound to pick up nuances and other aspects of French culture. You can catch the first season right here.
7. Braquo (Stick-Up)
If you love crime dramas and are intermediate to advanced in French then this one is for you. The show follows four police officers whose colleague and friend committed suicide after getting in trouble about a case they were investigating. This action-packed drama shows the officers trying to clear their colleague’s name and honor his name. You can watch the first season here.
8. L’amour Est Dans Le Pré (Love is in the Meadow)
If you’re a reality show fan then you’ll love this one. This French show revolves around farmers trying to get a wife. This show may be more suitable for intermediate or advanced learners but should be entertaining for all. What’s interesting about the show is that the public gets directly involved. The show showcases single farmers and viewers who are interested will send them a letter. The farmer then chooses ten letters and meets with their writers in Paris. After the meetings, he chooses two people who will then live on the farm with him for two weeks. Interested? You can watch the episodes here.
9. Les Revenants (The Returned)
This one is for intermediate French learners who love shows with supernatural themes. The premise of the show is that a group of people return home but they’ve been dead for several years and so no one was expecting them. It’s only one season but you can watch the series here on YouTube.
If you’re a fan of horror and are an intermediate or advanced learner then this show is perfect for you. The summary is that a horror writer returns to her hometown and finds out that the presence in her nightmares is real and creating chaos at home. This show has had people seriously spooked and so it’s not suitable for kids. You can watch the full series on Netflix.
As mentioned before, while French TV shows won’t make you fluent, you can get great contact time with the language. If fluency is your goal or you want to be able to hold conversations in French, consider getting a French language tutor. Take a trial class for just $35 and see how you like us at TruFluency. If you have any questions, please, don’t hesitate to contact us.