When someone is learning Spanish in Chicago or any other city with significant Spanish-speaking demographics, one would think there are many opportunities to strike a conversation with a friendly Latino/a and practice what you have learned in your Spanish classes. The truth is if you don’t have to interact with a monolingual Spanish speaker because of work, chances are you won’t see yourself in many situations in which you are “forced” to use your Spanish. And even if you do find yourself using if from time to time, you need more exposure to develop the muscle memory you want. Get your hands on whatever you can: music, film, comics, and TV: New cable series present sort of an “accidental resource”.
For some reason, most movie DVD’s in the Spanish language do not include Spanish subtitles for the hearing impaired as an option. This is a bummer for people looking for effective exposure to the language. However, it turns out Cable series DVD’s on the other hand not only offer dubbed in Spanish audio but also Spanish subtitles. Now, if one is not used to watching audiovisual material dubbed in a foreign language, it most likely will appear quite bizarre at first but if it is possible to get used to it rather quickly.
Today I’m recommending Game of Thrones because the show and the books are great and it is the only cable series DVD set I own. I hope to be able to recommend others in the future. I watched almost an entire episode of the third season DVD set and I’m happy to report that the audio and subtitles although not identical, do reflect each other enough to make the series a worthwhile tool. The differences reside mostly on proper names: The audio uses the English names while the subtitles attempt to translate them. This could be very confusing if you are not already familiar with the franchise. There are also some lines in the script that are expressed differently in each, audio and subtitles, but these instances are not frequent enough to make it a problem. This should be a fun and potentially, very good way to practice your Spanish.