Learning a few words via TV

I have started on Duolingo again more to encourage my nephew and challenge him too. We have agreed to do Spanish (which I learned a bit a good few years ago) and Japanese (because he is into his Anime and fancies learning the language). It is still early days for Japanese and I find that most of the words I had learned in Spanish are helping me ace it now 🙂 We have also been watched quite a few European TV series (with English subtitles of course) which is also helping me learn some more languages or at least a few words here and there. But it definitely is helping me get a hang of these European languages better.

You already know how I feel about Inspector Montalbano (if you haven’t watched it, you should) but we are also big fans of Channel 4’s list. We completed watching Inspector Borowski, which was our first entry into the German language and their humour (it takes some getting used to and then you find it endearing once you get the hang of it). We totally loved it and were quite surprised by the topics that they handle, even though Mr M finds psychological thrillers a bit tedious to sit through but I love them 🙂 Once we finished with Montalbano, we wanted to continue with Italian TV series, we kind of like the portrayal of characters which are refreshing in some ways, so we started watching Ice Cold Murders by Rocco Schiavone, which is based in a place near Turin (and a totally different landscape to Rome) and very different characteristics too. The main character is similar to Montalbano but rougher. We were sad when they had only series 1 up and running on Channel 4 and the story was kind of incomplete. But then we started watching Non-Uccidere (Thou Shall Not Kill), this time with a female lead and it is very good just like the others. We are on Series 2 of this one and hoping to finish watching all episodes before we move (not sure if we will be able to see them in India). Because we were watching more Italian, (I can spout a few Italian words, especially the curses 😀 ) we decided to select a German one to watch in parallel. We found Inspector Falke. Another brilliant series set in a different area of Germany. And I have definitely picked up a few curse words from this for sure!!! I only hope I don’t say them out loud because I find it easier to curse in a European language as people around me might not know it and I may get away with it 😀

Recently we watched Series 2 Episode 3 of Inspector Falke and that was one of the best episodes of a TV series we have watched in the detective genre in a long time. It was like a full-blown thriller movie. It was awesome. The screenplay, the writing, the execution was very good. There is this one thing though with the German series that we have seen so far. They have this serious storyline and dark and sombre execution and then the credits start rolling with disco-like music which totally ruins it. I can’t tell you how funny it is when the credits start to roll. This happened with the Series 2 of Borowski and we were surprised by it and now with Falke, it’s there from the start. Wonder what that is all about. Any ideas? Also with the Italian ones, I find their music amazing. Non-Uccidere’s title music is my favourite.

If I am not able to see Channel4 in India I might be a tad upset and disappointed. I hope there is some kind of subscription that allows me to keep watching these amazing TV box sets that they have in their collection.

If you fancy watching any European TV series, especially of the detective and crime-drama genre, the ones mentioned above from Channel4 are good.

Flavor of the week

I have been listening to this song since yesterday and I am liking it even more.

Robotic Beauty

If you are interested in the English translation of the lyrics please click here.

Tuesday Tunes

The Taj Express – Bollywood Musical

As is the intention of the ads displayed near the escalators of the London Underground stations, I was intrigued by the poster of “The Taj Express”. Since it was in London only from 2nd to 20th October, we checked out the trailer which didn’t give me any idea how it was gonna be and promptly decided to give it a try. With a Bollywood fanatic at home (Mr. M if you want to know) it was an easy choice to make. We booked for a Friday night show because we got better seats for the same price as that of the Saturday matinee one. We had no expectations except that there would be good music and awesome dancing involved.

After watching the show I should say it was very good. In a small theater called Peacock Theater (did they pick this one so that it matched the theme?) the scene changes, the sound effects etc was well done.

The dancers and their dexterity, 6 pack abs (they took every chance to showcase their hard work at the gym in a very Bollywood way), amazing speed and lip sync, very funny interludes…it was very well done. It was also very interactive. They had references to English weather and Jeremy Corbyn too. The script was very much similar to any Bollywood script and it was an amalgamation of various Khan movies (Shah Rukh, Salman, etc.) The variety of the audiences surprised me. Also the fact that almost all of them, kids included, enjoyed the dances and tried their hand at it at the end and did a jolly good job of it too. Lot of A R Rahman songs and his references too. I almost thought that he would make an appearance. It would have been awesome. (Asking too much am I 😉?)

If you like a ridiculous story combined with awesome music and dance this will definitely be a treat.

Jai Ho!