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Top 20 Russian TV Shows: Study Russian the Fun Way

Did you know that comedy is the most watched TV show genre in modern Russia? On the one hand, Russians enjoy hilarious series, entertaining games, and funny reality shows. On the other hand, they value their military past and refresh their memories about the Second World War by watching truthful and heartbreaking military series.

It’s essential for Russian language learners to watch these TV shows in order to understand the complicated Russian brain and pick up some great phrases. We’ve meticulously selected the most interesting and useful Russian TV shows that will boost your language learning process.

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Table of Contents

  1. How to Learn Russian Using TV Shows
  2. Russian TV Series
  3. Where to Watch
  4. Conclusion

1. How to Learn Russian Using TV Shows

Switching on a Russian TV series is an effective way to broaden your vocabulary, work on pronunciation and accent, have a closer look at Russian culture, and practice your listening skills. And besides that, you can have some fun watching Russians fighting, falling in love, joking, studying, traveling, and the list goes on. Some of these things you’ll find surprisingly common within your culture, but others will come as a surprise.

In order to use this language learning instrument more effectively, we recommend preparing a spare notebook in which to write down new exciting words, phrases, or even whole sentences and dialogues to better memorize new vocabulary. Then practice it while chatting with your Russian-speaking friends.

Further, don’t hesitate to stop the show and repeat the sentences or phrases after the actors. This is excellent practice for your pronunciation skills and for improving your accent.

Also, watching the best Russian TV shows to learn Russian is the perfect way to stay motivated in your study process.

2. Russian TV Series

We’ve chosen top Russian TV shows for learners. Some of them are old ones that nearly every Russian has seen, and others are brand-new and beating all the charts. Read the descriptions and choose the one that best resonates with your state of mind.

We’ve taken the liberty to put each show we’ve chosen into a category: those for beginner, intermediate, and advanced learners, based on language difficulty and the range of vocabulary. But don’t worry if you’re a beginner and start watching the advanced-tagged Russian television shows. You can still get the full language learning effect, though you’ll have to work harder at writing down the new words.

So, let’s get started! Here’s the list of Russian TV shows that we’ve prepared for you.

1- Comedy

1. Кухня (Kukhnya) — “Kitchen”

Kitchen

What about: Maxim gets a dream job as a chef in one of the most expensive restaurants in Moscow. But it turns out to be not as great as he expected. His boss—a star-chef in the restaurant industry—drinks too much alcohol, gambles, and has an unbearable character. The art director is an ice queen of business. Maxim spends a night with her before his first day at work and has to face the consequences. And on top of that, all the other chefs are waiting for him to make every newbie mistake so they can have a laugh at him.

Russian level: For beginners.

Phrases and quotes:

  • Ты что, уксус тыришь? (Ty chto, uksus tyrish?)
  • Может, у меня дети дома голодают! (Mozhet, u menya deti doma golodayut!)
  • Ага, уксуса просят. (Aga, uksusa prosyat.)

Vocabulary:

  • Уксус (uksus)—“vinegar”
  • Тырить (tyrit`)—“to steal” (in spoken language)
  • Может (mozhet)—“may be”
  • Дети (deti)—“children”
  • Дом (dom)—“house”
  • Голодать (golodat`) —“to be hungry”
  • Просить (prosit`)—“to ask for”

Answer:

  • “What are you doing? Stealing vinegar?”
  • “Maybe my children are hungry at home!”
  • “Yeah, and they are asking for vinegar.”

Start now: Start with the first episode by following this link:

2. Интерны (Interny) — “Interns”

Interns

What about: This show follows the career of interns at the hospital who always get into funny situations. To make this series more endearing, their boss doctor Bykov enjoys watching that and teasing them. This series will be useful in learning Russian sarcasm and the game of words, so you can learn to create sarcastic jokes yourself.

Russian level: Intermediate.

Phrases and quotes:

1. У нас выходной, и мы не будем отмечать этот день чаем.
(U nas vykhodnoy, I my ne budem otmechat` etot den` chaem.)
“It’s a day off and we will not celebrate it with tea.”

Vocabulary:

  • Выходной (vykhodnoy)—“weekend day” or “day off”
  • Отмечать день (otmechat` den`)—“celebrate the day”
  • Чай (chay)—“tea”

2. Быстро эволюционируем до прямоходящих, и за мной!
(Bystro evolyutsioniruem do pryamokhodyashchikh, i za mnoy.)
“Quickly evolve into orthograde and follow me.”

Vocabulary:

  • Быстро (bystro)—“quickly”
  • Эволюционировать (evolyutsionirovat`)—“evolve”
  • Прямоходящий (pryamokhodyashchiy)—“orthograde”
  • За мной (za mnoy)—“(go) after me; follow me”

Start now: Here’s the first episode of the first season. Give it a try!

2- Classical

1. Мастер и Маргарита (Master I Margarita) — “The Master and Margarita”

The Master and Margarita

What about: This mystery mini-series is based on the famous novel, The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov, which stays first place on the “must-read” list for Russians. It has several crossing storylines, with the first storyline taking place in Moscow under the regime of Stalin where the Master lives. He works on a manuscript about the biblical Pontius Pilate in Jerusalem—and that is the second storyline. The antagonist—Woland and his retinue—are manipulating events and people all over Moscow using people’s sins. The Master’s muse, Margarita, gets into Woland’s hands when she tries to save the Master.

Russian level: Advanced.

Phrases and quotes:

Аннушка уже купила подсолнечное масло, и не только купила, но даже и разлила. Так что заседание не состоится.
(Annushka uzhe kupila podsolnechnoe maslo, I ne tol`ko kupila, no dazhe I razlila. Tak chto zasedanie ne sostoitsya.)
“Annushka already bought sunflower oil, and not only bought but already spilled. So there will be no meeting.”

Explanation: Because of the spilled oil, one of the characters dies, so the phrase Аннушка уже разлила масло (Annushka uzhe razlila maslo) means that the course of actions that one cannot change has started.

Vocabulary:

  • Уже (uzhe)—“already”
  • Купить (kupit`)—“to buy”
  • Подсолнечное масло (podsolnechnoe maslo)—“sunflower oil” (the most commonly used Russian oil)
  • Только (tol`ko)—“only”
  • Разлить (razlit`)—“to spill”
  • Заседание (zasedanie)—“an official meeting with a lot of people” (e.g. the committee meeting)
  • Состояться (sostoyat`sya)—“to take place” (e.g. Мероприятие состоялось [meropriyatie sostoyalos`]—“the event has happened”)

Start now: Here is the first part of the first episode with English subtitles for you to view:

2. Идиот (Idiot) — “Idiot”

Idiot

What about: This series is based on the famous Russian novel of the same name, written by Dostoevsky (yes, the one who wrote The Crime and Punishment). The show follows the life of Russian Prince Myshkin (XIX century) who returns to St. Petersburg after treatment in a psycho-clinic. As Prince holds an enormous fortune, he gets into the middle of the intrigues which rule the city.

Russian level: Advanced

Phrases and quotes:

1. Главная, самая сильная боль, может, не в ранах…
(Glavnaya, samaya sil`naya bol`, mozhet, ne v ranakh.)
“The main, the most violent pain is probably not because of the wounds…”

Vocabulary:

  • Главный (glavnyy)—(adj.) “main”
  • Сильная боль (sil’naya bol`)—“violent pain”
  • Рана (rana)—“wound”

2. И в тюрьме можно огромную жизнь найти…
(I v tyur`me mozhno ogromnuyu zhizn` nayti.)
“And in prison one can find a life…”

Vocabulary:

  • Тюрьма (tyur`ma)—“prison”
  • Огромный (ogromnyy)—“huge”
  • Жизнь (zhizn`)—“life”
  • Найти (nayti)—“to find”

Start now: Find the first episode with English subtitles here:

3- Historical

1. Бедная Настя (Bednaya Nastya)—“Poor Nastya”

Poor Nastya

What about: This series has been translated and shown in more than twenty countries, with a huge budget of $11.8 million. The story follows the life of a poor, parentless girl who has been raised by a kind baron as his own daughter. Everybody loves Nastya and are sure that she’ll have a great future. She is studying to become an actress and play in the Emperor Theater, as the baron wants. Prince Repnin falls in love with Nastya at first sight. But what will happen if everybody finds out that Nastya was born a poor serf?

Russian level: Intermediate.

Phrases and quotes:

Совсем недавно я понял, что страсть и любовь – это разные вещи. Страсть изматывает, превращает душу в пепел… а любовь дает умиротворение и покой.
(Sovsem nedavno ya ponyal, chto strast` I lyubov` - eto raznye veshchi. Strast` izmatyvaet, prevrashchaet dushu v pepel… a lyubov` dayot umirotvorenie i pokoy.)
“Just recently I realized that desire and love are different. Desire exhausts, turns the soul into ashes… And love brings peace and rest.”

Vocabulary:

  • Страсть (strast`)—“desire”
  • Любовь (lyubov`)—“love”
  • Разный (raznyy)—“different”
  • Вещь (veshch)—“thing”
  • Изматывать (izmatyvat`)—“to exhaust”
  • Превратить (в) (prevratit`)—“to turn (into)”
  • Душа (dusha)—“soul”
  • Пепел (pepel)—“ashes”
  • Давать (davat`)—“to give”
  • Умиротворение (umirotvorenie)—“peacefulness”
  • Покой (pokoy)—“rest; peace”

Start now: This is the first episode, which can be watched with English or Russian subtitles. Check it out!

2. Екатерина (Ekaterina)—“Ekaterina”

Ekaterina

What about: The Empress Elizaveta Petrovna is infertile. The only heir of the throne is her slow-witted nephew Petr III. Elizaveta can’t let Petr become an emperor, so she decides to wed him, wait for the birth of his son, and raise him to be a true Russian emperor herself. To do that she invites potential brides from all over the world.

Russian level: Advanced.

Phrases and quotes:

- А ты что думала, милая, я долго терпеть буду?
(A ty chto dumala, milaya? Ya dolgo terpet` budu?)

- Но я же терплю. Вы отняли у меня сына, а я улыбаюсь вам, кланяюсь, слова говорю вежливые. Вы отняли у меня все. Моя жизнь не имеет смысла. И в этом виноваты только вы…

(No ya zhe terplyu. Vy otnyali u menya syna, a ya ulybayus` vam, klanyayus`, slova govoryu vezhlivye. Vy otnyali u menya vsyo. Moya zhizn` ne imeet smysla. I v etom vinovaty tol`ko vy.)

Translation:

- “And what did you think dear? That I will tolerate that?”
- “But I bear everything. You took away my son, and I smile, bow to you, say polite words. You took everything from me. My life is senseless. And that is your fault.”

Vocabulary:

  • Милый (milyy)—“dear”
  • Терпеть (terpet`)—“to tolerate; bear”
  • Отнять (otnyat`)—“to take away”
  • Сын (syn)—“son”
  • Улыбаться (ulybat`sya)—“to smile”
  • Кланяться (klanyat`sya)—“to bow”
  • Слово (slovo)—“word”
  • Вежливый (vezhlivyy)—“polite”
  • Жизнь (zhizn`)—“life”
  • Смысл (smysl)—“meaning”
  • Виновен (vinoven)—“guilty”

Start now: Here’s a link to the first episode (without subtitles):

4- Criminal

1. Бригада (Brigada)—“Brigade”

Brigade

What about: This one is about criminal Moscow at the end of XX centuries, and tells the story of four friends who grew up in one block courtyard. They decide to make some money, but an unexpected murder makes them fight for their future. With high stakes, they make their way into the criminal world and become a strong criminal group.

Russian level: Advanced.

Phrases and quotes:

Пуля-дура. И я дурак…
(Pulya - dura. I ya durak…)
“Bullet can’t think. I am the same…”

Vocabulary:

  • Пуля (pulya)—“bullet”
  • Дура (dura)—“fool” (about female)
  • Дурак (durak)—“fool” (about male)
  • Пуля-дура (pulya-dura)—This is a phrase which is used when the bullet behaved unexpectedly.

Start now. Here is a link to the first episode for your viewing pleasure:

2. Метод (Metod)—“Method”

Method

What about: Rodion Meglin is a brilliant investigator who solves the most mysterious crimes. Young graduate Esenya becomes his intern and has to cope with everything that this job brings. Yet in spite of this, she has a hidden motive not to leave this job: she is investigating the murder of her mother.

Russian level: Intermediate.

Phrases and quotes:

Чем всю жизнь таскать ребенка на спине через реку, лучше один раз научить его плавать.
(Chem vsyu zhizn` taskat` rebyonka na spine cherez reku, luchshe odin raz nauchit` ego plavat`.)
“Rather than carry a kid on your back across the river the whole life, better teach him how to swim.”

Vocabulary:

  • Жизнь (zhizn`)—“life”
  • Таскать (taskat`)—“carry; drag”
  • Ребенок (rebyonok)—“kid; child”
  • Спина (spina)—“back”
  • Река (reka)—“river”
  • Научить (nauchit`)—“teach”
  • Плавать (plavat`)—“swim”

Start now: Here is the first episode:

3. Мажор (Mazhor)—“The Boy Born with a Silver Spoon in His Mouth”

Mazhor

What about: Igor Sokolovskiy is the son of rich, high-ranking parents. Kids like these are called mazhor (мажор [mazhor]) in Russia. He doesn’t have an education, has never accomplished even a day’s work. He enjoys living it up and wasting his life on meaningless pleasures. One day, he stands up for his friend and disarms a police officer. His father punishes him and sends him to work in a police division—but everyone there despises him. This is when he starts to become a man, finds his love, and discovers who killed his mother.

Russian level: Beginners.

Phrases and quotes:

- Соколовский, будешь делать все, что Жека говорит.
(Sokolovskiy, budesh delat` vsyo, chto Zheka govorit.)
- А если он извращенец? Я на такое не подписывался.
(A chto esli on izvrashchenets? Ya na takoe ne podpisyvalsya.)

Translation:

- “Sokolovskiy, you will do everything that Zheka tells you.”
- “What if he is a pervert? I didn’t sign up for that.”

Vocabulary:

  • Делать (delat`)—“to do”
  • Говорить (govorit`)—“to talk”
  • Жека (Zheka)—This is one of the ways to call a person named Евгений (Yevgeniy) when speaking.
  • Извращенец (izvrashchenets)—“pervert”
  • Подписаться (podpisat`sya)—“to sign up” (here the phrasal meaning is “to agree”)

Start now: Here is the first episode of season 2:

5- Military

1. Диверсант (Diversant)—“Diversionist”

Diversionist

What about: This show shares the story of two young boys who finish the military scout academy and work as scout saboteurs during the Second World War. They plan and carry out risky plans in the enemy rear.

Russian level: Intermediate.

Phrases and quotes:

Русское упрямство — из-за него немцы проиграют войну.
(Russkoe upryamstvo — iz-za nego nemtsy proigrayut voynu.)
“Russian stubbornness, this is the reason why Germans will lose in this war.”

Vocabulary:

  • Упрямство (upryamstvo)—“stubbornness”
  • Немец (nemets)—“German person”
  • Проиграть (proigrat`)—“to lose”
  • Война (voyna)—“war”

Start now: Check out the first episode below:

2. Грозовые ворота (Grozovye Vorota)—“Storm Gates”

Storm Gates

What about: Senior lieutenant’s company is relocated to the pass in North Caucasus. They will need to be heroes to defend this pass when huge enemy forces try to storm through it.

Russian level: Intermediate.

Phrases and quotes:

- Они что, обкуренные, раз так прут?
(Oni chto, obkurennye, raz tak prut?)
- А мы тогда кто, раз так стоим?
(A my togda kto, raz tak stoim?)
- А мы – русские, нам так положено!
(A my russkie, nam tak polozheno!)

Translation:

- “Are they what… high? To assail like that?”
- “And who are we then when we defend like that?”
- “We are Russians, we are supposed to do that.”

Vocabulary:

  • Обкуренный (obkurennyy)—“high” (smoked too much)
  • Переть (peret`)—“to assail; go forward” (used when you don’t like when someone moves forward, push)
  • Стоять (stoyat`)—“to stand” (means here “to defend”)
  • Так положено (tak polozheno)—This is a phrase that means that this is the way things should be.

Start now: Here is the first episode:

6- Fantastic

1. Чернобыль: Зона отчуждения (Chernobyl: Zona otchuzhdeniya) – Chernobyl: exclusion zone

exclusion zone

What about: Five young people jump in an old car and start searching for a thief who stole eight million rubles (= $127,000) from one of them. The thief — usual Moscow IT specialist — instead of staying low, shoots a video where he states that his destination point is Chernobyl AES and Pripyat town.

Russian level: Beginners.

Phrases and quotes:

- Пойдём, задрот, может, там жратва в холодильнике осталась.
(Poydyom, zadrot, mozhet, tam zhratva v kholodil`nike ostalas`.)
- Радиоактивная жратва 25-летней давности.
(Radioaktivnaya zhratva dvadtsatipyatiletney davnosti.)

Translation:

- “Let’s go, geek, maybe there is some food left in the fridge.”
- “Radioactive food twenty-five years old.”

Vocabulary:

  • Пойти (poyti)—“to go; move out”
  • Задрот (zadrot)—“geek”
  • Жратва (zhratva)—“food” (slang word, a bit rude)
  • Холодильник (kholodil`nik)—“refrigerator”
  • Остаться (ostat`sya)—“to stay; to be left”
  • Радиоактивный (radioaktivnyy)—“radioactive”
  • Давность (davnost`)—“age” (Usually used in one of the phrases NN-летней/-месячной/-дневной давности [NN-letney/-mesyachnoy/-dnevnoy davnosti]. Instead of NN, put the number of years/months/days.)

Start now: Here’s the trailer for the show:

2. Маргоша (Margosha)—“Margosha”

Margosha

What about: Though we’ve included this one in the “fantastic” genre, Margosha is actually a Russian romantic TV series. The show starts when the editor-in-chief of the glossy magazine—a successful guy named Gosha—wakes up and finds out that he became… a woman! Why did it happen? How does he deal with the job? And how does he become a man again? While trying to figure all of that out, he has to learn how to be a woman.

Russian level: Beginners.

Phrases and quotes:

- Борис Наумыч у себя?
(Boris Naumych u sebya?)
- Борис Наумыч вне себя.
(Boris Naumych vne sebya.)

Translation:

- “Boris Naumych is at his place?”
- “Boris Numych is angry.”

Explanation: The above quote is based on the game of words. У себя (u sebya) means “to be at one’s place” (for example, the boss will be at the boss’s office). Вне себя (vne sebya) means “to be angry.” The only difference between the phrases is in the proposition.

Start now: Check out the first part of the first episode with English subtitles:

7- Romantic

1. Сердца трех (Serdtsa Tryokh)—“Hearts of Three”

Hearts of Three

What about: Young millionaire Francis Morgan and his bankrupted distant relative Henry Morgan start a journey to find a treasure that was hidden by their pirate ancestor. The journey becomes even more exciting when a young lady—that both men have feelings for—decides to join them.

Russian level: Advanced.

Phrases and quotes:

- Ты боишься смерти.
(Ty boishsya smerti.)
- О, великий святой человек, очень боюсь.
(O, velikiy svyatoy chelovek, ochen’ boyus`.)
- Не бойся. Лучше в любой момент умереть человеком, чем вечно жить скотом.
(Ne boysya. Luchshe v lyuboy moment umeret` chelovekom, chem vechno zhit` skotom.)

Translation:

- “You are afraid of death.”
- “Oh, great saint man, I am really afraid.”
- “Don`t be. It’s better to die as a man at any moment, than live forever as cattle.”

Vocabulary:

  • Бояться (boyat`sya)—“to be afraid”
  • Смерть (smert`)—“death”
  • Великий (velikiy)—“great”
  • Святой (svyatoy)—“saint”
  • Человек (chelovek)—“person; man; human”
  • Любой момент (lyuboy moment)—“any moment”
  • Умереть (umeret`)—“to die”
  • Вечно (vechno)—“forever; for eternity”
  • Жить (zhit`)—“to live”
  • Скот (skot)—“cattle; animal”

Start now: Here’s the first episode, without subtitles:

2. Не родись красивой (Ne Rodis` Krasivoy)—“Don`t Be Born Beautiful”

Don`t Be Born Beautiful

What about: Katya is a smart girl who gets into a huge corporation. She perfectly handles her responsibilities and job with success, but nonetheless she becomes a victim of a cruel joke that hurts her feelings.

Russian level: Beginners.

Phrases and quotes:

Я справилась со своими чувствами, а у него их никогда не было.
(Ya spravilas` so svoimi chuvstvami, a u nego ikh nikogda ne bylo.)
“I have handled my feelings, and he has never had them.”

Vocabulary:

  • Справиться (spravit`sya)—“to handle; overcome”
  • Чувства (chuvstva)—“feelings”
  • Никогда (nikogda)—“never”

Start now: Here’s the first episode:

8- Russian Reality TV Shows

1. Вечерний Ургант (Vecherniy Urgant)—“Evening Urgant”

Evening Urgant

What about: This is one of the most popular Russian TV programs. The onscreen moderator Ivan Urgant discusses the world news about films, sports, new gadgets, and art with incomparable wit and humor. In each program, he interviews guests from all over the world.

Russian level: Intermediate.

Phrases and quotes:

- Скажите, почему ваша машина самая крутая?
(Skazhite, pochemu vasha mashina samaya krutaya?)
- О… Спасибо!
(O… Spasibo!)
- Нет, я так не сказала, я спросила.
(Net, ya tak ne skazala, ya sprosila.)

Translation:

- “Tell me, why your car is the coolest car?”
- “Oh… Thanks!”
- “No, I didn’t say that. I asked.”

Vocabulary:

  • Сказать (skazat`)—“to tell”
  • Машина (mashina)—“car”
  • Крутой (krutoy)—“cool”
  • Спросить (sprosit`)—“to ask”

Start now: Here’s the episode with Chris Pratt—the star of the Jurassic World movies and The Guardians of the Galaxy:

2. КВН (KVN)—“Club of Fun and Resourceful”

Club of Fun and Resourceful

What about: This is a popular and humorous game where teams from different universities, companies, etc. compete in improvisations. They typically act in fun scenes, give witty answers, and so on.

Russian level: Intermediate.

Phrases and quotes:

Во время проезда президентского кортежа гаишник так сильно втянул живот, что повредил позвоночник.
(Vo vremya proezda prezidentskogo kortezha gaishnik tak sil`no vtyanul zhivot, chto povredil pozvonochnik.)
“While the president cortege was passing a traffic cop, he held his stomach muscles in so hard that it damaged his spine.”

Vocabulary:

  • Проезд (proezd)—“a drive”
  • Президент (prezident)—“president”
  • Кортеж (kortezh)—“cortege”
  • Гаишник (gaishnik)—“traffic cop” (the worker of GAI, spoken word)
  • Сильно (sil`no)—“hard; tough”
  • Втянуть (vtyanut`)—“to hold in”
  • Живот (zhivot)—“stomach”
  • Повредить (povredit`)—“damage; harm”
  • Позвоночник (pozvonochnik)—“spine”

Start now: Here’s of the scenes from this show with English subtitles:

3. Comedy Club

Comedy Club

What about: This is one of the most popular Russian television shows. The comedians show various witty scenes on relevant topics and news.

Russian level: Intermediate.

Phrases and quotes:

- Мистер Трамп, я… Я к Вам не с пустыми руками… Я вам принес в подарок большую матрёшку Трампа. Здесь в Трампе – Меркель. В Меркель – Олланд, а в Олланде – маленький Порошенко.
(Mister Tramp, ya… Ya k vam ne s pustymi rukami… Ya vam prinyos v podarok bol`shuyu matryoshku Trampa. Zdes` v Trampe – Merkel`. V Merkel` - Olland, a v Ollande – malen`kiy Poroshenko.)
- О-о, а в Порошенко ничего нет.
(O-o, a v Poroshenko nichego net.)
- Согласен.
(Soglasen.)

Translation:

- “Mister Trump, I came not empty-handed… As a present, I brought you a big Trump matryoshka. Here in Trump – Merkel. In Merkel – Olland, and in Olland is tiny Poroshenko.”
- “Oh, and nothing in Poroshenko.”
- “I agree.”

Vocabulary:

  • С пустыми руками (s pustymi rukami) – “with empty hands” (phrase is usually used when the one visits someone and brings or doesn’t bring a guest present)
  • Принести (prinesti) — “to bring” (somewhere or to someone)
  • Подарок (podarok) — “present”
  • Большой (bol`shoy) — “big”
  • Матрёшка (matryoshka) —“traditional Russian doll”
  • Здесь (zdes`)—“here”
  • Маленький (malen`kiy)—“small; tiny”
  • Согласиться (soglasit`sya)—“to agree”

Start now: Here’s one of the scenes about Donald Trump’s second month on a president post:

4. Орел и решка (Oryol I Reshka)—“Obverse and Reverse”

Obverse and Reverse

What about: Every weekend, two moderators go to different cities all over the world. According to the rules, once they arrive in the country, they throw a coin. The loser will have only $100 for the whole weekend and the winner can spend unlimited money from his gold card. With a lacing of humor, the show tells about traditions in different countries, places to visit, souvenirs to buy, food to eat, and much more.

Russian level: Beginners.

Phrases and quotes:

Дом на воде. Представляете, живёшь и плывёшь, живёшь и плывёшь. (ГОА, Индия.)
(Dom na vode. Predstavlyaete, zhivyosh I plyvyosh, zhivyosh I plyvyosh. [GOA, Indiya.])
“House on water. Just imagine, living and swimming, living and swimming. (GOA, India.)”

Vocabulary:

  • Дом (dom)—“house”
  • Вода (voda)—“water”
  • Представлять (predstavlyat`)—“to imagine”
  • Жить (zhit`)—“to live”
  • Плыть (plyt`)—“to swim”

You can find the list of the words essential for traveling here.

Start now: Check out the episode when moderators visit Tokyo:

5. Уральские пельмени (Uralskie Pelmeni)—“Ural Dumplings”

Ural Dumplings

What about: This is a comedy show created by one of the KVN teams; it has seen great success among Russians.

Russian level: Intermediate.

Phrases and quotes:

- Сама ищи!
(Sama ishchi!)
- Я не могу, я грязью лицо чищу.
(Ya ne mogu, ya gryaz`yu litso chishchu.)
- Аккуратней там, об мыло не испачкайся.
(Akkuratney tam, ob mylo ne ispachkaysya.)

Translation:

- “Search it yourself!”
- “I can`t, I am cleaning my face with a mud.”
- “Be careful, don’t get dabbled with soap.”

Vocabulary:

  • Искать (iskat`)—“search”
  • Грязь (gryaz`)—“mud”
  • Лицо (litso)—“face”
  • Чистить (chistit`)—“to clean”
  • Аккуратный (akkuratnyy)—“accurate; careful”
  • Мыло (mylo)—“soap”
  • Испачкаться (ispachkat`sya)—“to get dabbled”

Start now: Check out one of the most humorous pieces from this show (with English subtitles) that tells about a typical Russian supermarket:

Find the vocabulary list for a supermarket visit here.

3. Where to Watch

Here’s the list of the best sources to find Russian TV shows:

  1. You can find Russian TV shows on Amazon Prime.
  2. A lot of series — even with subtitles — are on YouTube. Search for Russian TV shows on YouTube by their English-spelled name plus “with English subtitles” if you’re a beginner. If you don’t see the subtitles right away, don’t worry — they are usually hidden under the button “Subtitles” in the bottom-right corner of the video. If you click on “Settings” to the right of this button, you can find subtitles in other languages (if they were created for this video).
  3. Vkontakte — a Russian social network — is a great source for all kinds of shows. You’ll find a huge list of Russian TV shows if you input Русский сериал (russkiy serial) or “Russian series” in a video search.
  4. Also, you can find some of the most popular Russian TV shows on Netflix. The list of Russian TV series on Netflix is pretty lengthy, so you’ll definitely find something great to watch.

4. Conclusion

So, as you can see, there are a lot of interesting Russian TV shows online to benefit your learning process with. There are great Russian TV shows for beginner, intermediate, and advanced students. We’ve told you about the best Russian TV shows, but you can find more using the most popular Russian review website: Kinopoisk. Learn Russian TV show words in order to enrich your vocabulary and your Russian skill level.

Keep reading RussianPod101 and learn interesting Russian words and expressions that you can start using right away.

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