One of the huge advantages that streaming delivered was the ability for me to easily watch movies and series’ in English. Austrian television, unsurprisingly, is in German, and I don’t think I’ve actually watched more than five minutes of it since I moved here (also unsurprising). Even something originally created in English is dubbed with German voice over here. So if ‘Bad Boys’ is on TV, the voices are replaced with odd sounding German (odd to me, because that’s not the way Will Smith speaks!). And the funny thing is, because there aren’t as many German voiceover actors as actors (duh), after watching a few German-dubbed shows, you start to hear the same voices over and over.
Of course, they do say that watching movies in a foreign language is a great way to learn said language, but it doesn’t help a great deal in the beginning unless you have subtitles to go along with it. Either that or you stick to watching the kinds of movies you’ve watched 1000 times before and don’t actually need to understand the dialogue. Back in the days before streaming, to find shows in different languages with different subtitles, you had to buy them.
But with the introduction of streaming, it all changed.
I was extremely happy to discover that my Austrian husband hated watched dubbed-over English movies. So we watch the bulk of our TV in English. The exception, of course, is when it’s a German-original show, because then it makes sense to watch it in German. If I can watch a show in German-original voice, with subtitles, then firstly it’s going to be a better experience, and secondly it’s going to improve my German.
Here’s three of our favourite German-original shows so far:
Possibly one of the best shows I’ve seen in a very long time – something completely unexpected. Dark is complicated and confusing and of course the time travel element makes matters even more complex. While we were watching it we actually printed out a chart of all the characters over the different time periods to try and make better sense of it. I’d highly recommend… but be prepared it may leave you scratching your head… and wanting to watch it again.
How to Sell Drugs Online (Fast)
This show is based on the true story of a German teen who singlehandedly launched an online and highly successful drug business from his bedroom. The Netflix version is witty and entertaining – obviously amped up to make things more interesting – but it makes for great watching.
This one has an interesting storyline whereby a medical student plots to study under the woman who she holds responsible for the death of her parents many years before. This one definitely didn’t go where I was expecting it to, and season two still held my interest. The ending ties up most loose ends which makes it short, sweet and satisfying.