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  • Writer's pictureTeacher Stefano

Learn Italian with these shows on Netflix and Prime Video

Learn authentic Italian with these TV series in Italian!

Hello everyone and welcome to a new article! To learn a language it is essential to be exposed to authentic content such as TV series and movies! That's why today I want to recommend some content that you can easily watch in your country on Netflix and Prime Video!

However, before we start, I would like to talk about a fantastic platform that I recently discovered!

The all-in-one tool to learn a language with TV shows

Before we start I would like to tell you about a platform I recently discovered that is absolutely fantastic for learning a language by watching movies and TV series: LingoPie. LingoPie is the first platform in the world that uses authentic content to teach a foreign language. There are movies and TV series in several languages including Italian, and you can watch all LingoPie's features in the YouTube video above!

It is a great platform that I am using to learn Portuguese and I absolutely recommend it. The LingoPie team was super nice and gave me a link for all of you to get a special discount on their plans. You can click on the link here and start your 7-day free trial!

Now I am going to give you some recommendations for some TV series to watch on Netflix and Amazon Prime and I made sure they are available worldwide. Let's start with the easiest and we'll move on to the more difficult ones.

Guida Astrologica per cuori infranti Netflix series poster

  • Platform: Netflix

  • Level: experienced beginner (A2+)

  • Accents: standard, piemontese

This TV series is based on the novel by Silvia Zucca. It is a light and funny comedy about the life of Alice Bassi who is looking for love and fulfillment at work. She is single because she broke up with her ex-boyfriend who is now getting married and having a child, and she works as a production assistant in a small Italian TV network. Everything changes when she meets Tio, an actor working for the network, who is an astrology guru and becomes her personal guide for broken hearts. From here her sad but funny adventures start.

The language is fairly easy to understand and the accents are quite standard with a slight influence from Piemonte. In general, anyway, the language is easy to understand. There are many astrology-related words but also several idiomatic expressions, pronominal verbs and useful phrases. I recommend this TV show to experienced beginner students (A2+) with the use of Italian subtitles.

Many times you ask me here, via email or on Instagram what is my opinion on the use of subtitles, well, I have an episode of my podcast, The Teacher Stefano Show, on this very topic where I tell you my opinion on subtitles and how to use them in the best way possible! You can listen to it by clicking on this link and also download the transcript for only 4€ per month for all episodes of the Teacher Stefano show!

Alessandro Cattelan: una semplice domanda Netflix series poster

  • Platform: Netflix

  • Level: experienced beginner (A2+)

  • Accents: standard, mixed

This show stars Alessandro Cattelan, a very famous and likable Italian TV host who hosted X-Factor and now his own late-night talk show. The show begins with Cattelan's daughter asking him, "Dad, what is happiness?" Then throughout the show he travels around Italy and meets so many famous people just to discuss this and understand what happiness is. What I like the most about this program is the spontaneity, the message but most of all Italian culture. Watching this show, you will learn many things about Italian culture especially about the entertainment industry!

The language is very interesting because there are so many different accents, but all of them are quite understandable. Since people from all over Italy are interviewed, you will hear accents from the North, the Center and the South. There are lots of colloquialisms and the language is extremely colloquial. I recommend it for advanced beginner students (A2+).

Fedeltà Netflix series poster

  • Platform: Netflix

  • Level: experienced beginner (A2+)

  • Accents: standard, Lombardy

This is another series based on a novel about love and betrayal. Carlo and Margherita are a couple very much in love but some loyalty problems take their relationship to a crisis. I like it because the dialogues are short and slow and the story is quite easy to understand.

The language is very understandable and the actors have standard accents. It is set in Milan but still most of the actors speak with a very neutral accent. I especially like the fight scenes that can teach you some phrases Italians use when they are angry. I recommend it to advanced beginner students (A2+).

Il processo Netflix series poster

  • Platform: Netflix

  • Level: Intermediate (B1)

  • Accents: standard, mixed

This series with an outstanding cast is a crime story about the murder of Angelica, a 17-year-old girl. The case is assigned to Elena Guerra and a very complicated trial will start from there. The story is engaging and there are several twists and turns. It is set in Mantua and is a series to absolutely binge-watch.

The accents are fairly mixed and easy to understand for most of the actors. The vocabulary could be a bit formal at times considering that this show is a about a trial, so you will find many law-related words. It might be a bit difficult in some instances but not too much. I recommend it for intermediate (B1) students.

The Ferragnez Prime Video poster

  • Platform: Prime video

  • Level: Intermediate (B2)

  • Accents: milanese, mixed

This reality show is about the lives of Chiara Ferragni, one of the world's top fashion influencers, Fedez, Chiara's husband and Italian rapper, and their children, Leone and Vittoria. It's a very easy-to-follow show, the kind of series you can watch while doing other things around the house. It is very interesting though and will teach you a lot about Italian culture.

The language is not super easy, it is extremely colloquial and there are is a lot of Milanese slang. That is why I recommend it for intermediate-advanced students (B2).

LOL Prime Video Poster

  • Platform: Prime video

  • Level: Advanced (C1)

  • Accents: mixed

Based on an international game show, ten Italian comedians come together for a game called LOL. The program is hosted by Fedez, the rapper I mentioned earlier. Basically, there are 10 Italian comedians in a room for 6 hours and the goal is to make others laugh but if anyone laughs they lose. What I appreciate about this series is the Italian comedy, the fantastic cast of comedians and especially the spontaneity.

The language is difficult for two reasons. There are so many different accents: Milanese, Roman, Neapolitan because the comedians come from different parts of Italy. Then I think it is also difficult because in general understanding the jokes, and the sense of humor in another language is always more challenging! The gestures help a lot though! That is why I recommend this series to advanced students (C1).

Before I finish I would like to add one small thing. Some people might ask me why great Italian shows like Suburra, Gomorra, Generazione 56K, Strappare lungo i bordi, which have become very popular in Italy and around the world are not on this list. Simply because they are not in Italian. Suburra and Strappare lungo i bordi are in Roman dialect and although most Italians are able to understand them because we are constantly exposed to Roman dialect on television, it would be very difficult for a student who is learning Italian to fully understand them.

Gomorra is in Neapolitan and although I understand it a little because I am from the South, I need Italian subtitles as well to fully understand it. Generation 56K is one of the best TV series I have ever watched on Netflix but unfortunately it is not totally in Italian. It is full of what we call "Italiano frammisto" meaning Italian and dialect mixed, in this case Neapolitan dialect. These are wonderful series to watch but not with the goal of learning anything unless you want to learn Roman or Neapolitan dialect words. I recommend watching them only to extremely advanced students who speak Italian as they speak their first language and will therefore be able to understand what is Italian and what is not.

I hope you enjoyed my suggestions, and if you have more questions, or want more advice, please contact me by sending me a message in the contact section of my website!

Un abbraccio,

Teacher Stefano

I would also like to remind you that if you are interested in receiving interesting content every Sunday to study Italian, you can subscribe to my newsletter!



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