Binge Netflix, Learn a Language [Turn On Subtitles For These 15 Shows]
One of the best ways to reinforce language learning is to incorporate it into a daily routine. This immersion will help with new language learning success. In fact, watching television is a great way to achieve this. How so?
In order to learn a new language, the brain requires a lot of processing to make accurate associations and generalizations about the way a language works. While some of this statistical language learning can come directly from conversations, the majority of this learning comes indirectly through visual and audio media.
Thanks to Netflix, anyone can take advantage of the benefits of watching movies with subtitles. Releasing an unbelievable amount of content every month (Netflix released a total of 54 original shows in March 2018 alone!), there’s an ever-growing amount of language learning content right at our fingertips. From popular American-based shows to foreign ones that have found their way to Netflix, below are some of the best binge-worthy Netflix shows with foreign subtitles.
Shows en Espanol
Spanish TV Series:
- Cable Girls: Also known as Las Chicas de Cable, this show is set in Spain in 1928. Following four switchboard operators, this dramatic series provides insight into what female rights were like in Spain during the flapper era.
- Narcos: This drama goes into the intricacy behind the true story of Colombia’s drug scene. Featuring gangsters and the violence associated with this, Narcos will provide viewers with a realistic impression of the intensity seen in Colombia’s drug world.
- Gran Hotel: Similar to Downton Abbey, Gran Hotel is a mysterious Spanish story of a family-owned hotel set in 1905. The plot will wrap you in with its suspense and watchers will also learn about the culture and history of Spain in the early 1900’s.
Popular American Shows with Spanish Subtitles:
- House of Cards: A popular American show, this series is based upon the BBC miniseries from 1990. The premise surrounds a ruthless congressman who will stop at nothing to obtain power in Washington D.C. Featuring five seasons, you’ll want to make sure that you’re in your comfiest clothes as once this show is started, it’ll be hard to stop.
- Disney Movies: While technically not a tv show, Disney movies are a great and easy way to learn (or brush up) on Spanish speaking skills. With well-known storylines, you’ll be able to quote these movies in Spanish in just about no time.
Shows en Francais
French TV Series:
- Marseille: A political-based show, Marseille is based upon the longtime mayor handing over his power to his protege when a sudden battle for control of the city erupts. This show will certainly leave you on the edge of your seat.
Popular American Shows with French Subtitles:
- The Crown: A drama, The Crown highlights the political, rivalries, and life of Queen Elizabeth’s reign while showcasing how those events helped to shape part of the 20th century. Watching this history unfold in French will truly leave viewers awe-inspired.
- Power Rangers: Full of action, this kid-based show is ideal for all beginners learning French. Featuring the classic good guy-bad guy scenario, Power Rangers will lead French language learners to hear and read basic vocabulary and learn action verbs.
Japanese TV Series
- Erased: Suspenseful in all the right ways, this show is truly captivating. Taking viewers on a time-traveling journey, Satoru (main character) tries to prevent the death of his mom and three of her classmates.
- Devilman Crybaby: A popular Japanese anime, this storyline follows a demon-boy who finds himself in the middle of a dangerous and mysterious war. Devilman Crybaby is a great show to learn Japanese, and it will also provide insight into Japanese tv culture.
Popular American Shows with Japanese Subtitles:
- Marvel’s Jessica Jones and Luke Cage: These two original Netflix series will appeal to all superhero fanatics. Portraying two of Marvel’s darker characters, Jessica Jones is a detective in New York City with cases typically surrounding those with special abilities. While her main focus is on herself, Jessica can be viewed as a modern day hero who faces real struggles and suffering. In a similar sense, Luke Cage is an action-packed series that follows a man with super strength and unbreakable skin as he tries to save the city.
Shows auf Deutsch
German TV Series:
- Dark: In this mind-bending 1-season series, viewers will be taken on a journey where four families searching for a missing child uncover a mystery that spans three generations. Dark will surely keep you enthralled.
Popular American Shows with German Subtitles:
- Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: A Netflix original series, this show follows a women’s comedic adventure through New York City after having spent years of her life living underground due to a fear that the world was ending. This show is by far the funniest to learn German with.
- Chef’s Table: Calling all foodie lovers, Chef’s Table showcases six world-renowned chefs (one is featured per episode) and features their viewpoints on life and food. This yummy show will certainly leave your taste buds wanting more.
Choosing to watch TV shows by turning subtitles on and even listening to them in a foreign language is one of the best ways to become immersed in a culture and in the language learning process. Are you currently learning a new language by watching one of the above top foreign language Netflix shows? Tell us about your experience in the comments below, we love hearing from our readers.