Five of the Best Series to Learn and Improve your Spanish

@emilys.eyes.explor

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Let’s face it, learning German can be a toughie, and we can always do with more engaging, relaxing and put-your-feet-up ways to practice and improve. One common misconception is that there aren’t any good German series out there. To save you trying to prove that myth right, we’ve compiled a short list of some seriously good shows to watch. Whatever way you like your subtitles, these shows will keep you interested throughout as well as improving your language skills…and probably renew your Netflix subscriptions.

When I first moved to Seville for two months, I was under the impression that I would be entirely fluent in no time. I studied Spanish every day at Spanish school, and although my level was good when I went travelling afterwards, I only noticed a more noticeable improvement during my time in South America: Spanish is spoken slower in parts of Latin America compared to Southern Spain, and as my confidence grew, I could speak to nearly every local perfectly. 

During my travels around the world, I could feel my Spanish level dropping, which was such a shame. One day, though, I was recommended to watch ‘La Casa de Las Flores’ on Netflix and BOOM: the language came rushing back to me. It completely slipped my mind how extensive the choice on Netflix can be, showcasing the best in films, series and documentaries in a foreign language.

Throughout lockdown, continuing Spanish as my hobby is something that has helped keep me sane. Not only is it a productive thing to do, but it can be really fun when you’re learning from simply watching, so it doesn’t feel like studying at all.

So, I wanted to write something for those that are interested in either learning Spanish, or advancing their own knowledge. Without further ado, here are my top six Netflix watches that are not only incredibly compelling in storyline, but have characters who speak clearly enough for you to learn something from them. Try listening to them in their original language with either Spanish or English subtitles depending on your level. You’ll be surprised at how much you can pick up!

1. Casa Del Papel - Money Heist

Many people have suggested that I watch Casa de Papel to help further my learning. Whilst it is a Spanish series, the characters speak SO fast it’s difficult to even understand them with subtitles. But considering it’s now one of the most watched television series in HISTORY, this is a must-watch if you’re learning Spanish. Just brace yourself for the pace. And if you’re not learning Spanish, just watch it, no questions asked.

During the first episode, you may think ‘ok so they rob a bank! What’s new?’ but soon you will be so attached to each of these amazing characters and the dramatic storylines that go along with them.

Watch it here

2. La Casa de Las Flores - The House of Flowers

This Mexican series is a mixture of comedy and drama, following the life of the De la Moras, an upper-class family who own a prestigious flower shop. Whilst they try their best to keep up their societal expectations, behind closed doors, everything is not as it seems. With every character hiding secrets behind their flawless portrayal, the series takes you down twists and turns you won’t be expecting. 

Watch it here

3. Elisa Y Marcela - Elisa and Marcela

This Spanish film is based on the true story of two women who fall in love during a period where homosexuality was forbidden. Set in the late 1800s, they start a secret relationship in a bid to stay together, with Elisa even taking on a male identity to stay with the woman she loves.

Watch it here 

Where can you find it? Netflix

4. Valeria

Valeria is a Spanish comedy/drama series focusing on the protagonist Valeria who’s in a dead end marriage, and trying to pursue her career as a writer. She seeks support from her three best friends who are all trying to navigate through life, figuring out their own paths. Labeled the new “Sex and the City”, some of the smouldering scenes are definitely not for the faint hearted.

 Watch it here

5. El Fotógrafo de Mauthausen - The Photographer of Mauthausen

Based on the true story of Francesc Boix, a Spanish inmate who tries to save photographic evidence of the atrocities committed within the Mauthausen concentration camp. The actor Mario Casas, who plays Boix, lost 12KG to illustrate how severely malnourished the man was. A truly incredible, yet harrowing film which must be added to your list.

Watch it here 

5. El Fotógrafo de Mauthausen - The Photographer of Mauthausen

With his diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis, this film follows the true story of Ramón who is determined to train and compete in an Ironman with the help of his bad-tempered father-in-law. Featuring real-life footage of the race, this film is a definite tear jerker, but a fantastic portrayal of a young man and his family trying to support each other through his declining health.

Watch it here

Have you got any Netflix recommendations to help improve your Spanish? We’d love to hear them - Let us know in the comments below!

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