Lazy language learning: Netflix edition

If you’re anything like me, then you will know the perils of being a lazy language student. Stuck in the paradox of wanting to become fluent in the language, but sometimes lacking the necessary effort to do so. Who can blame us when learning a second language often comes with endless grammar rules, confusing tense agreements and a whole host of irregularities that simply ‘sound right’ to the native speaker?

I would describe my experience of learning French so far as a bit of an uphill struggle. The journey to fluency is an exciting, novel and enjoyable one, but a very difficult one nonetheless. People often don’t realise the level of concentration required to simply stay focused in a lecture, or be involved in a group conversation. What’s more, it’s often overlooked how tiring maintaining this concentration can actually be. Sometimes at the end of a long day you simply feel too tired to try and communicate in another language.

So how can you improve your language skills with minimal effort? For that, we must turn to every student’s trusted companion: Netflix.

I started watching French series on Netflix a while ago to improve my listening skills. I usually watch them with French subtitles as otherwise it can be easy to miss parts of the dialogue. Being obsessed with thrillers/murder mysteries, I thought I would dedicate my first lazy language learning post to three series in this genre that I absolutely LOVED…




Processed with VSCO with c1 preset

When a copycat killer commits a series of gory murders, the police are met with constant dead ends. Performing their crimes with military precision, the murderer perfectly reenacts the killings of the infamous Jeanne Deber, known as ‘the mantis’, that happened more than two decades before.

Struggling to solve the case, the police face a race against time before more murders are committed, leaving them no option but to call for help in the unlikeliest of places. The original man-murderer works alongside the forces to catch the killer in exchange for a list of demands. But can this cold-blooded killer really be trusted?

Intriguing and dramatic, this series will keep you glued to your screen and have your heart racing along with the characters themselves.



The break

Processed with VSCO with c1 preset

When police officer Yoann Peeters moves from Brussels, following the death of his wife, back to his little home town of Heiderfeld, he expects to live a quiet life. But when the whole town is rocked by the murder of a teenage boy, it becomes clear that this little town is not what it seems.

Tangled in a web of secrecy and lies, it seems that everybody in Heiderfeld has something to hide. But will Yoann’s own demons get in the way of him solving the case? Worse still, could he become incriminated himself?

This series was frustrating in a good way. With every new revelation, you think you’ve cracked it, until something else comes to light. I thought the acting in this Belgian series was amazing, definitely a must-watch!




Processed with VSCO with c1 preset

Waking up from a coma after being shot, Dr Alice Lambert finds her world ripped apart with the murder of her husband and the disappearance of her baby daughter.

In her desperate quest to be reunited with her child, she seeks the help of the police, friends and an ex-lover. With the delivery of mysterious packages, shocking threats and a demand for ransom, Alice must do everything she can to find her missing daughter. But with many of the tip offs resulting in loose ends, is she too late to catch the kidnapper?

Riddled with twists and turns, I never knew which way an episode was going to end. Tense and emotional, this series had me on the edge of my seat until the very last episode!


There you have three French language series that I have been loving at the moment. Practicing your language skills doesn’t always have to involve revision, and watching Netflix can be a great way of surrounding yourself with the language. What’s more, these series are SO GOOD! Who said you can’t be lazy and learn a language at the same time??