The Best Turkish TV Shows For Language Learners

Are you keen to learn the Turkish language but find traditional methods a bit dull? Look no further! In this article, we will share with you the best Turkish TV shows that are not only entertaining but also perfect for language learners. These captivating shows will immerse you in the Turkish culture, helping you improve your language skills while having a great time. So grab your popcorn, sit back, and get ready to dive into an exciting world of language learning through the power of television!

The Best Turkish TV Shows For Language Learners

If you’re learning Turkish, watching television shows can be a great way to improve your language skills. Not only do they provide an entertaining and engaging way to practice listening comprehension, but they also expose you to native speakers and colloquial expressions. Turkish TV shows offer a diverse range of genres and themes, catering to every taste. From historical dramas to romantic comedies, crime thrillers to sci-fi fantasies, there is a TV show for every language learner. In this article, we will explore the best Turkish TV shows across various genres that can help you on your language learning journey.

1. Historical Dramas

Historical dramas have always been a favorite among Turkish viewers, and they are also popular worldwide. These shows often delve into significant periods of Turkish history, showcasing grand sets, intricate costumes, and compelling storylines. They not only entertain but also educate viewers about Turkish culture and history.

1.1. Diriliş: Ertuğrul

Diriliş: Ertuğrul” is a highly acclaimed historical drama that chronicles the life of Ertuğrul Bey, the father of Osman I, the founder of the Ottoman Empire. Set in the 13th century, the show takes viewers on a journey through the struggles and triumphs of Ertuğrul Bey as he establishes a powerful Turkic state in Anatolia. With its vivid portrayal of historical events and strong characters, “Diriliş: Ertuğrul” has garnered a massive following both in Turkey and internationally.

1.2. Payitaht: Abdülhamid

“Payitaht: Abdülhamid” is another captivating historical drama that revolves around the last years of Sultan Abdülhamid II’s reign. The show offers an insightful glimpse into the political intrigues and challenges faced by the Ottoman Empire during the early 20th century. Through the mesmerizing performances of its cast and its attention to historical accuracy, “Payitaht: Abdülhamid” transports viewers to a pivotal period in Turkish history.

1.3. Magnificent Century

“Magnificent Century,” also known as “Muhteşem Yüzyıl,” portrays the life and reign of Süleyman the Magnificent, one of the most influential sultans of the Ottoman Empire. This sweeping historical drama captures the opulence of the Ottoman court, the political maneuvers, and the complex relationships between the ruling elite. “Magnificent Century” captivates viewers with its captivating storyline and lavish production values.

2. Contemporary Dramas

If you prefer modern settings and relatable storylines, contemporary dramas offer a window into the lives of everyday people in Turkey. These shows provide insight into modern Turkish society and showcase the country’s vibrant culture, customs, and social issues.

2.1. Aşk-ı Memnu

“Aşk-ı Memnu” is a compelling contemporary drama based on the classic novel by Halit Ziya Uşaklıgil. This story revolves around the forbidden love between Bihter, a beautiful but unhappily married woman, and Behlül, her husband’s nephew. The show offers a poignant exploration of love, morality, and societal expectations, making it a gripping watch for language learners.

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2.2. Kurt Seyit & Şura

“Kurt Seyit & Şura” transports viewers to the early 20th century and tells the story of a passionate love affair between a Russian noblewoman, Şura, and a Turkish officer, Kurt Seyit. The show takes place against the backdrop of World War I and the Russian Revolution, highlighting the cultural clashes and personal sacrifices faced by the characters. “Kurt Seyit & Şura” enchants viewers with its breathtaking cinematography and emotionally charged performances.

2.3. Kara Sevda

“Kara Sevda,” meaning “Endless Love,” is a contemporary drama that unravels a complex love story between Kemal, a middle-class young man, and Nihan, an affluent woman. Set in Istanbul, the show explores themes of love, betrayal, and family dynamics against the backdrop of a city full of contrasts. With its gripping storyline and memorable characters, “Kara Sevda” is a highly addictive Turkish TV show.

The Best Turkish TV Shows For Language Learners

3. Romantic Comedies

Romantic comedies, or rom-coms, provide a light-hearted and entertaining option for language learners. These shows combine elements of romance and humor, offering an enjoyable way to learn Turkish while laughing along with the characters.

3.1. Ezel

“Ezel” is a popular romantic comedy that follows the story of Ömer, who assumes a new identity as Ezel to seek revenge on his former friends who betrayed him. As he navigates his plan for retribution, Ömer/Ezel also finds himself entangled in a complicated love triangle. With its witty dialogues and charming characters, “Ezel” keeps viewers hooked and entertained throughout.

3.2. Kiralık Aşk

“Kiralık Aşk,” meaning “Love For Rent,” revolves around the hilarious misadventures of Ömer İplikçi, a young lawyer who hires a woman named Defne Topal to be his fake fiancée. The show follows their journey as they navigate the complexities of their arrangement and develop unexpected feelings for each other. “Kiralık Aşk” offers a delightful blend of humor and romance, making it perfect for language learners seeking a lighthearted series.

3.3. Şeref Meselesi

“Şeref Meselesi,” or “A Matter of Honor” in English, centers around the lives of two lawyers, Ayşegül and Ayşe, who are polar opposites. With their clashing personalities and professional rivalry, a love-hate relationship ensues. This romantic comedy explores themes of ambition, friendship, and personal growth, providing an entertaining and relatable tale for language learners.

4. Crime and Thriller Series

If you enjoy suspense, mystery, and a thrilling plot, Turkish crime and thriller series will keep you on the edge of your seat. These shows are known for their intricate storylines, unexpected twists, and captivating performances.

4.1. Behzat Ç.

Behzat Ç.” centers around the titular character, Behzat Ç., a grizzled and unconventional detective who solves complex murder cases in Ankara. The show delves into the dark underbelly of society, exploring corruption, organized crime, and the challenges faced by the police force. Known for its gritty portrayal of crime and Behzat Ç.’s charismatic personality, this series is a must-watch for fans of crime dramas.

4.2. 7 Numara

“7 Numara” follows the lives of the residents in a fictional apartment building, where each apartment reveals a unique story and vibrant characters. This comedy-drama series combines humor and suspense as the tenants find themselves embroiled in various intriguing situations. “7 Numara” offers an enjoyable way to practice Turkish while immersing yourself in the lives of its quirky residents.

4.3. Suskunlar

“Suskunlar,” meaning “The Silent Ones,” is a gripping crime thriller that centers around the lives of four friends who reunite years after serving time in prison for a crime they didn’t commit. As they navigate the dangerous underworld and seek justice, they must confront their haunting pasts. “Suskunlar” captivates viewers with its intriguing plot, intense performances, and suspenseful atmosphere.

The Best Turkish TV Shows For Language Learners

5. Sci-Fi and Fantasy Shows

For language learners interested in the realms of science fiction and fantasy, Turkish TV shows offer imaginative and captivating storylines. These shows transport viewers to fantastical worlds and explore themes of adventure, mythology, and the supernatural.

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5.1. Fi

“Fi,” an abbreviation of the word “fidelity,” is a psychological thriller that follows the complex relationships and dark secrets of a group of friends. This mind-bending series delves into the themes of love, obsession, and the consequences of one’s actions. With its unique narrative structure and gripping suspense, “Fi” is a must-watch for fans of psychological dramas.

5.2. Masum

“Masum,” meaning “Innocent” in English, revolves around a man named Cevdet who leads a quiet and content life with his family until a tragic incident shatters their idyllic existence. As secrets unravel and suspicions arise, the show explores the thin line between innocence and guilt. “Masum” offers a thought-provoking storyline and brilliant performances, making it a fantastic option for language learners who enjoy psychological thrillers.

5.3. The Protector

“The Protector” combines elements of superhero fiction with Turkish mythology. The show tells the story of a young man named Hakan, who discovers his role as the last protector of Istanbul against supernatural forces. With its action-packed sequences, mythical creatures, and intriguing storyline, “The Protector” blends fantasy and adventure in an exciting Turkish TV series.

6. Sitcoms and Comedy Series

If you’re looking for laughter and light-hearted entertainment, sitcoms and comedy series offer an excellent choice for language learners. These shows provide comedic relief and showcase the wit and humor of Turkish culture.

6.1. Leyla ile Mecnun

“Leyla ile Mecnun” is a surrealist comedy series that follows the lives of Leyla and Mecnun, two star-crossed lovers in modern-day Istanbul. The show offers absurdist humor, pop culture references, and a cast of eccentric characters that will keep you entertained and chuckling throughout. “Leyla ile Mecnun” is a fantastic option for language learners who enjoy offbeat comedy and unique storytelling.

6.2. Behzat Ç. Bir Ankara Polisiyesi

“Behzat Ç. Bir Ankara Polisiyesi” continues the story of Behzat Ç., this time in a sitcom format. The show provides a lighthearted and humorous take on the gritty crime drama genre, showcasing the comedic aspects of Behzat Ç.’s personality and adventures. With its witty writing and entertaining ensemble cast, this comedy series offers a delightful twist to the beloved character.

6.3. Avrupa Yakası

“Avrupa Yakası,” meaning “European Side” in English, takes place in Istanbul and follows the lives of a group of friends as they navigate the challenges of adulting and relationships. This sitcom offers a mix of comedy, romance, and relatable scenarios, making it a popular choice among Turkish viewers. “Avrupa Yakası” guarantees laughter and a glimpse into contemporary Turkish life.

7. Historical Documentaries

Historical documentaries provide an educational and informative option for language learners who have a keen interest in the past. These shows utilize archival footage, interviews, and expert analysis to present a comprehensive view of various periods in Turkish history.

7.1. Vatanım Sensin

“Vatanım Sensin” is not only a historical drama but also an educational series that sheds light on the struggles faced by ordinary people during World War I and the Turkish War of Independence. Through the stories of veterans and civilians, this documentary-style drama provides insights into the sacrifices and resilience of the Turkish nation. “Vatanım Sensin” is an excellent choice for language learners interested in history and social issues.

7.2. Bir Zamanlar Osmanlı: Kıyam

“Bir Zamanlar Osmanlı: Kıyam” examines significant events during the late Ottoman Empire, focusing on the emergence of resistance movements and the battle for independence. With its meticulous research, vivid reenactments, and interviews with historians, this historical documentary offers a deeper understanding of the struggles and aspirations of the era. “Bir Zamanlar Osmanlı: Kıyam” provides a valuable resource for language learners seeking to broaden their historical knowledge.

7.3. Tarihin Arka Odası

“Tarihin Arka Odası,” meaning “The Backroom of History” in English, uncovers lesser-known stories and events from Turkish history. From political intrigue to cultural milestones, each episode sheds light on captivating details that have shaped the nation. This documentary series presents history in an engaging and accessible manner, making it an excellent resource for Turkish language learners.

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8. Talk Shows and Variety Shows

Talk shows and variety shows offer a different format for language learners to practice their Turkish skills. These shows provide an opportunity to listen to natural conversations, hear different accents, and immerse oneself in contemporary Turkish culture.

8.1. Medcezir

“Medcezir,” meaning “Tide” in English, is a popular talk show that features interviews with celebrities, politicians, and experts in various fields. The show provides in-depth conversations on current events, social issues, and personal stories, giving viewers an insight into the lives of notable figures in Turkish society. “Medcezir” offers language learners an informative and entertaining way to engage with Turkish culture.

8.2. Yok Böyle Dans

“Yok Böyle Dans” is a lively dance competition show that showcases the talent and creativity of Turkish dancers. Each week, participants perform different dance styles, ranging from traditional Turkish folk dance to contemporary choreographies. This variety show not only entertains but also exposes viewers to diverse dance forms and music genres, making it a vibrant option for language learners.

8.3. Aşk Ve Mavi

Aşk Ve Mavi,” meaning “Love and Blue” in English, is a popular Turkish drama series that revolves around Mavi, a young woman who becomes entangled in a tumultuous relationship while navigating personal challenges. The show tackles topics such as relationships, family dynamics, and societal expectations. “Aşk Ve Mavi” offers an engaging storyline and relatable characters, making it a great choice for language learners interested in contemporary issues.

9. Action and Adventure Series

For adrenaline junkies and fans of action-packed TV shows, Turkish series in the action and adventure genre provide thrilling storylines, intense fight scenes, and high-stakes drama.

9.1. Kurtlar Vadisi

“Kurtlar Vadisi,” meaning “Valley of the Wolves” in English, is an action-packed TV series that tells the story of Polat Alemdar, an intelligence agent who fights against various criminal organizations and corrupt officials. With its fast-paced narrative, gripping action sequences, and political intrigue, “Kurtlar Vadisi” keeps viewers hooked from start to finish.

9.2. Kayıp

“Kayıp,” translated as “Lost,” follows the journey of Azra, a young woman who embarks on a mission to find her missing son. This action-packed series combines elements of mystery, suspense, and emotional depth as Azra unravels the dark secrets surrounding her son’s disappearance. “Kayıp” offers a rollercoaster ride of emotions and gripping plot twists.

9.3. Ezel

“Ezel” is not only a romantic comedy but also an action-packed thriller. The show tells the story of Ömer, who assumes a new identity as Ezel to seek revenge on his former friends who betrayed him. As Ömer navigates his plan for retribution, he becomes entangled in a complex web of crime and deception. With its high-intensity action sequences, suspenseful storyline, and memorable characters, “Ezel” is a must-watch for fans of adrenaline-fueled series.

10. Children’s Programming

Last but certainly not least, Turkish children’s programming provides language learners with age-appropriate content, vibrant animation, and educational value. These shows engage young learners while introducing them to Turkish vocabulary and cultural elements.

10.1. Pepee

“Pepee” is a beloved children’s series that follows the adventures of Pepee, a curious and adventurous boy. Through Pepee’s adventures, young viewers learn about friendship, problem-solving, and the world around them. With its vibrant animation and engaging stories, “Pepee” is an ideal choice for language learners who are just starting their Turkish language journey.

10.2. Niloya

“Niloya” is an animated series that follows the endearing character Niloya as she explores different themes such as friendship, empathy, and creativity. With its simple and relatable stories, “Niloya” provides an accessible and enjoyable way for young language learners to immerse themselves in the Turkish language.

10.3. Ali Baba ile 7 Cüceler

“Ali Baba ile 7 Cüceler” brings the beloved tale of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves to life in an animated series suitable for children. This show introduces young viewers to Turkish folklore and encourages them to develop their imaginative and storytelling skills. “Ali Baba ile 7 Cüceler” combines adventure, humor, and valuable life lessons, making it a fantastic option for language learners of all ages.

Turkish TV shows offer a wealth of content for language learners, allowing them to improve their Turkish language skills while experiencing the rich culture and captivating storytelling of Turkey. Whether you prefer historical dramas, romantic comedies, action-packed thrillers, or educational programs, there is a Turkish TV show that suits your interests. So, grab some popcorn, sit back, and immerse yourself in the world of Turkish television!