Here are the best French TV shows to watch on Netflix! Watching French series is an excellent way to gain cultural fluency while honing vocabulary and listening skills. And I think it’s one of the best ways to learn or relearn the French language.
Being French, I’ve saved you some time by listing really good French TV shows on Netflix that are available to stream right now. Below is my guide to the best French-language sci-fi, horror, supernatural, crime thrillers, dramas, and comedies. I’ll add to this list regularly as I watch more French TV shows. And if you’re a French film lover and you enjoy this list, don’t forget to share it!
French TV Thrillers
This series is the first French series to rank among the top ten of Netflix in the United States! The story follows professional thief Assane Diop (Omar Sy), the only son of an immigrant from Senegal who had come to France to seek a better life for his child. Assane’s father is framed for the theft of an expensive diamond necklace by his employer, the wealthy and powerful Hubert Pellegrini, and hangs himself in his prison cell out of shame, leaving the teenage Assane an orphan. Twenty-five years later, inspired by a book about gentleman thief Arsène Lupin his father had given him on his birthday, Assane sets out to get revenge on the Pellegrini family, using his charisma and mastery of thievery, subterfuge, and disguise to expose Hubert’s crimes. Lupin is one of my favorite French TV shows on Netflix with one of the best French actors: Omar Sy.
Dealer · Caïd (2021)
Synopsis: tensions erupt when two filmmakers infiltrate an area ruled by gangs to shoot a music video for a rapper in this gritty found-footage series. Caïd is a French series that might open your eyes to another side of France showing you the violence of the French ghettos.
Inhuman Resources (2020)
Inhuman Resources (starring Eric Cantona) tells the story of Alain Delambre, an aging blue-collar worker struggling to make ends meet and keep his dignity intact. The man lost his job as HR manager years earlier when his company began shedding redundancies. He’s lured by an attractive job opening. But things get ugly when he realizes he’s a pawn in a cruel corporate game.
Black Spot · Zone Blanche (2019)
Black Spot is a dark detective drama in a small village in France with slightly supernatural undertones. Synopsis: set in the fictional small town of Villefranche, the story begins with the arrival of prosecutor Franck Siriani, who has been tasked with discovering why the town’s murder rate is six times the French average. The landscapes in Zone Blanche are amazing and haunting at the same time.
The Bonfire of Destiny· Le Bazar de la Charité (2019)
Set in 1897 and centered around a real fire that killed 126 people at an annual charity event for the Parisian aristocracy, Le Bazar de la Charité is a fictionalized version of the story that follows the lives of three women who attended the event but survived. This well-plotted and -a paced costume drama set in the Belle Époque is well worth a watch.
The Chalet · Le Chalet (2018)
The Chalet is the perfect French TV show if you’re looking for a crime TV show or a thriller. During summer 2017, in a village named Valmoline with only six inhabitants, thirteen guests meet in this peaceful hamlet in the far reaches of the Hautes-Alpes. No sooner have they crossed the bridge than a huge rock collapses and blocks the passage, crushing a man tied down below. The village is now isolated, the massacre can begin.
The Forest · La Forêt (2017)
Another thriller/horror French series on Netflix to binge-watch! La Forêt is a crime drama about the disappearance of a teenage girl in a small, tight-knit Belgian town surrounded by the Ardennes forest. The six-episode miniseries is gripping from beginning to end, a must-watch for fans of dark police dramas and small-town secrets.
La Mante (2017)
La Mante is a French series about the track of a serial killer. Synopsis: decades after her capture, a serial killer offers to help solve a string of copycat murders —but only if her son, now a cop, will work by her side.
Glacé· The Frozen Dead (2017)
The Frozen Dead is the perfect entertainment if you are looking to get scared. Synopsis: a dark mystery stirs a small town in the French Pyrenees after a group of workers to discover a headless body of a horse. Commandant Martin Servaz dives into the investigation and begins to unravel a dark story with years of history.
The Break· La Trêve (2016)
The Break is a French-language Belgian crime drama television series. Synopsis: police detective Yoann Peeters moves from Brussels with his daughter, Camille, to his hometown, where the body of a young African football player was pulled from the river. The death is originally thought to be a suicide, but Peeters suspects murder. In addition, there is corruption associated with gaining approval by farmers to sell their land to allow the construction of a dam and reservoir.
I don’t know why Marseille had received some tough reviews by French critics because personally, I loved this show! Especially because one of my favorite actors Gerard Depardieu plays in this French TV show. Synopsis: After 20 years as mayor of Marseille, Robert Taro (Depardieu) enters into a war of succession with his former protégé turned rival Lucas Barres (Benoît Magimel). Marseille is the story of corruption, lies, deceit, betrayal, and revenge that accompany the hunger for power. For those of you who enjoy political drama, this might just feel right. Created by Dan Franck, Marseille is the first French-language original production for Netflix. It is one of my favorite French TV shows to watch on Netflix!
French TV Comedies
Family Business (2019)
Family Business is a really good French comedy to watch on Netflix! The story is about Joseph Haxan (Jonathan Cohen), the son of a Parisian kosher butcher who attempts to persuade his father to transform his declining business into a cannabis shop. You will find the rising French actor Jonathan Cohen playing the main character, the actresses Julia Piation, Liliane Rovère, and the famous Gérard Darmon. The genre is familiar as it borrows from the much-loved American combination of stoner comedy and Jewish humor.
Mythomaniac · Mytho (2019)
The series is originally called Mytho which is the French slang for a lie. The story is about Elvira a disenchanted mother of three ignored by her family, cheated on by her husband, and kicked around by suburban life who feigns a medical diagnosis. What starts as a lie to get noticed once again and receive her family’s attention; snowballs into a troublesome burden. This is a solid family drama with a strong lead performance.
Huge In France (2019)
Gad Elmaleh is a real-life comedy superstar in France —but you may not recognize his name if you’re not French. In Huge in France, Gad faces an emotional crossroads and decides to leave his fame, and the associated celebrity perks behind to move to Los Angeles. There, he hopes to reconnect with his estranged, comedy-hating teenage son. But he has to do it without the benefits that he is used to receiving in his homeland thanks to his popularity.
A Very Secret Service · Au Service De La France (2015)
A very Secret Service is a humorist French series that reminds me directly of the famous French movies of OSS 117 (one of my favorite French movies). It’s a spy show that parodies classic espionage thrillers. Synopsis: early 1960s, the French Secret Service recruits the young André Merleaux, back from Algeria. André is trained with real spies who were more concerned with their expenses than with their missions. It is a long and complicated road to becoming a spy worthy of 007.
Call My Agent! · Dix Pour Cent (2015)
Dix Pour Cent meaning “ten percent” in English refers to the percentage of the fee that an artistic agent earns. Call My Agent! is about a group of Parisian talent agents who try to juggle the careers of their clients as well as their own complicated love lives. It’s probably one of the best French TV shows from the last few years. Each episode features real-life stars such as Jean Dujardin, Giles Lelouche, Audrey Fleurot, or Juliette Binoche. The show is touching and funny, and an excellent way to discover what it’s like in a busy office in the media industry in Paris while you practice your French. It is one of my favorite French TV shows to watch on Netflix!
French Romantic TV Shows
Emily In Paris (2020)
Even though this romantic show is mostly in English, I wanted to include this series in this list as Emily in Paris was filmed entirely in Paris and with a French film crew.The show follows the adventures of Chicago native Emily (Lily Collins), who moves to Paris on a one-year placement with a French marketing agency as a last-minute replacement after her boss falls pregnant. She is tasked with advising the French firm on their social media strategy but finds that they are not receptive to her input. In Paris, she struggles to achieve success in her new workplace while searching for love and experiencing a clash with Parisian culture. You can read my complete review on Emily In Paris, all about the French stereotypes and clichés that carry this series.
Twice Upon a Time · Il Était Une Seconde Fois (2019)
This French sci-fi romance is about a man (Gaspard Ulliel) who receives an object in the post that enables him to travel back in time to nine months earlier when he attempts to resurrect a failed relationship with his ex (Freya Mavor). This is not a rom-com and if you’re a fan of meditative science-fiction that poses moral questions and doesn’t provide all of the answers, Twice Upon a Time could be for you. You can treat this miniseries like a movie by watching the 4 episodes at once.
The Hook Up Plan · Plan Cœur (2018)
Plan Coeur is a humorous rom-com that follows a young lady as she attempts to get over her ex and ends up falling for a male escort. Synopsis: Elsa, single forever, doesn’t understand why she can’t find love. Her three friends, determined to put an end to her bachelorhood, decide to hire an escort boy, who is supposed to help Elsa get back in touch with men and love. I think this French series is really funny and gives you a real taste of what life is like for twenty-somethings in Paris.
French Teen TV Shows
This French teen drama Vampire is about a Paris teen who’s half-human, half-vampire, and who’s trying to make it through high school while resisting her blood-thirsty urges. This series is perfect if you’re looking to fill the Vampire Diaries and True Blood-sized hole in your heart.
Mortel is a French TV series with a bit of teen drama with elements of the supernatural. If you loved Stranger Things, I’m sure you’ll love Mortel (the French slang for cool). This French series is the story of two teenagers, Sofiane and Victor who strike a deal with the god of voodoo, Obe who gives them supernatural powers in order to solve and avenge the death of Sofiane’s brother. Sofiane can manipulate people’s actions whereas Victor can read their minds. I thought it was a very refreshing TV show to watch.
French Sci-Fi TV
Into The Night (2020)
Into The Night is a science fiction TV show of six episodes (skip it if you’re afraid of flying). This series is set entirely on an airplane in the midst of a natural disaster. Down on earth, people are being exposed to a fatal toxin carried by sunlight. The passengers on the airplane must keep the sun behind them if they’re to survive. I’ve included this Belgian series in the list just in case you want to watch it in order to improve your French.
The story is about twelve participants in an experimental scientific study designed to match people with their perfect partner using an AI named Martin. Things don’t turn out so well for the test subjects who sacrifice their privacy in order to combat their loneliness. Osmosis attracted excellent reviews on release, including many favorable comparisons to Black Mirror. This French sci-fi drama Osmosis is a Netflix original series that is full of thrills, twists, and love.
French TV Horror
La Révolution (2020)
La Révolution is a fictionalized version set against the history of the French Revolution. Synopsis: investigating a series of mysterious murders, Joseph Guillotin —future inventor of the guillotine— discovers the existence of a new virus: blue blood. The disease spreads within the aristocracy and pushes the nobility to attack the people.
If you’re a fan of shows like American Horror Story, you’ll love this 8-episodes series that’s full of unexpected twists and just the right amount of gore. The French Netflix Original Marianne is a horror series about a young novelist who is compelled to move back to her hometown. She discovers that the monstrous characters she created in her series of horror novels are really coming to life. This is a must-watch French TV show to watch on Halloween.
French Reality TV
The Parisian Agency: Exclusive Properties (2021)
It is one of my favorite French TV shows to watch on Netflix! The Parisian Agency follows the Kretz family and their luxury property business as they help clients buy and sell fabulous homes in France and abroad. It’s the perfect French series to watch if you love Paris, interior design, and beautiful homes.
The Circle France (2020)
If you liked the series The Circle that hit Netflix in 2020, thus you can watch The Circle France! The concept is simple: reality contestants are kept separate (but in the same building) and interact through a private social network where they present their best selves or someone else entirely. And then they vote anonymously within The Circle (that’s the social network) for who gets to stay.
Room 2806: The Accusation (2020)
In Room 2806: The Accusation, this docuseries follows the 2011 sexual assault case involving French politician Dominique Strauss-Kahn at the height of his career. A really exciting docuseries if you want to know more about this story.
Who Killed Little Gregory? (2019)
Who Killed Little Gregory? is a documentary streaming television mini-series. The premise revolves around the murder of 4-year-old Grégory Villemin in 1984. The case became a media spectacle in France, and no killer has ever been identified.
Wonder Boy (2019)
Wonder Boy chronicles a year in the life of Olivier Rousteing, the fashion designer who became creative director at French fashion house Balmain at the tender age of 24. Anissa Bonnefont’s intimate documentary takes an unusual approach, using a verite style to follow her subject as he sweats his way through celeb-studded haute couture events — and tries to find his birth mother, who gave him up for adoption immediately after he was born.
Chef’s Table: France (2016)
Chef’s Table: France, goes inside the lives and kitchens of some of the world’s most renowned French chefs. Each episode highlights one renowned French chef sharing what inspires them to push the boundaries of France’s rich culinary tradition. This France-themed spin-off features the trademark gorgeous cinematography and production of the Chef’s Table series.
I hope you will enjoy one of those French TV shows on Netflix. Do you know other ones? Let me know about it in the comment section. I will make sure to keep this page updated.