14 Hilarious TV Series Scenes to Boost Your English

If you’re like most learners, you know that studying grammar can be really BORING. Even worse, although it may improve your reading and writing, it won’t help you understand natural native conversations.

On the other hand, watching TV Series is extremely FUN and ENGAGING. You look forward to it, you feel immersed in the story, and if you do it right, it can be a very powerful way to learn English.

FREE: 10 Scene Power Lesson Packet (from scenes below)

In fact, as we’ve taught in our popular Fluent with Friends (TV Series) Course, the most effective English learners combine the best of both worlds: the structure and logic of English lessons, and the fun and engagement of authentic, real life spoken English. And there’s no better place to start than TV series.

Today,  I’m going to share with you 15 awesome TV series scenes and lessons that will help you understand real English, without getting lost, without missing the jokes, and without subtitles, from some of the most popular TV shows, including Friends, Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Two and a Half Men, and Seinfeld).

Each lesson will unblock your listening comprehension by explaining the following 3 things:

Why You Don’t Understand Natives

  1. Native Connected Speech: Yes, natives do speak fast, but even more confusing is how we connect and reduce our words in ways that you were never taught before.
  2. Idioms, Phrasal Verbs, and Slang: Native speakers use a rich and dynamic mixture of vocabulary that you must systematically integrate into your listening.
  3. Cultural Context: So much important meaning depends on cultural trends, history, geography, and even the native sense of humor.

IMPORTANT: For optimal use, download our brand new Learn English with TV 10 Scene Power Lesson Packet, offering 10 PDF Power Lessons, which include not only transcripts, but explanations of all native pronunciation patterns, as well as Idioms, Phrasal VerbsSlang, AND cultural explanations from most of these scenes. (see sample–>)

Learn English with Friends

1. Joey’s Perverted Tailor (Friends)

Description

Chandler is looking for a recommendation for a tailor, or a professional who can alter his clothes. Joey sends him to his family’s tailor, Frankie, but Chandler is in for a big surprise when he realizes that Frankie is a bit “unconventional” (to say the least) with his approach to altering clothes. (Time: 12:30)

Power Lesson for this Scene | 10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: Tailor, Chalk, Suit, Q-tip, Crack the Code, Cuffs, Inseam, Paisan, Cupping
  • Some of the Pronunciation: Clothes (“Cloz”), Why don’t you (“why-nchew”)

2. Joey’s Sexy Man Purse (Friends)

Description

Rachel helps Joey choose clothes for an important audition. Although Joey is very resistant, she convinces him to use a unisex “man purse,” which is a recent trend amongst men. This hilarious seen has lots of word play and sexual references. (Time: 5:56)

Power Lesson for this Scene 10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: audition, to be missing something, purse, odd
  • Some of the Pronunciation: You’re going to have to (“Yir gonna hafta”), I’m telling you (“I’m tellin ya”), “I aint gonna say no-duh that”

3. Ross’s Beautiful Cousin (Friends)

Description

Ross and Monica’s cousin, Cassie (played by Denise Richards), has come to visit New York. The guys, including Ross, can’t believe how beautiful she is. This scene is packed with humor, word play, and sexual references. (Time: 7:16)

Power Lesson for this Scene | 10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: you must be, it’s been so long, to set up a tent, fiancé, to stare, you do a great chandler, to have a knack for
  • Some of the Pronunciation: Nice to Meet You (“Nice-tuh-me-chew”)

4. Monica’s Boob Job (Friends)

Description

Monica has borrowed money from Joey and told him not to tell Chandler. Now Chandler asks Joey if he can borrow some money, but Joey ends up revealing (without knowing if it’s true) that he loaned Monica money for a boob job. (Time: 15:24)

Power Lesson for this Scene 10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: To be “on fire,” boob job, to compliment, to bring something on, to freak out, get on board with, to be “out $4,000”
  • Some of the Pronunciation: did you (“dih-jew”), Making them (“may-kin-em”), I never get his jokes (“I never ged-iz jokes”), I’m going to (“I’m-na”)

5. Flirting with the Police (Friends)

Description

Rachel and Ross are in the car and are pulled over by a cop (police officer). Rachel flirts with the police officer and gets away without a ticket. Ross tries to do the same but with different results. This scenes is full of word play and hilarious jokes. (Time: 11:29)

Power Lesson for this Scene 10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: Switch places with someone, “I’ll get right on that,” Get arrested, roll out of bed, in the meantime, handle a stick
  • Some of the Pronunciation: probably (“prah-lee”), does he have? (duz-ee-have?), your not going to give me… (“yir not gonna gimme”)

6. The Sexy Nanny (Friends)

Description

Joey hits on (shows romantic interest) in Ross’s babysitter, who’s very beautiful, but the guys questions the sincerity of his feelings. The scene ends with a big surprise that completely captures the guys’ attention. (Time: 6:28)

10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: Do you mind?, couch, leather, to blow somebody off
  • Some of the Pronunciation: Where did you (“where-juh”), What do you think (“wha-da-ya think?”

Learn English with The Big Bang Theory

7. Sheldon Harassing Penny (Big Bang)

Description

Sheldon goes to Penny’s work to ask her to fix her relationship problems with Leonard. She doesn’t cede, so Sheldon annoys and embarrasses her until he gets his way.  (Time: 6:38)

Power Lesson for this Scene 10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: “you would think,” paradigm, crawl back, hence, beverage
  • Some of the Pronunciation: what are you doing here? (“wha-da-you doing here?”),  is that what you want? (“is tha-wha-chew-want?”), Aren’t you going to (“arn-chew goin-duh”)

8. Nerds Become Bullies (Big Bang)

Description

In this scene, the guys bully Penny’s boyfriend, Zach, who is trying to impress them with his scientific knowledge, but sounds like an idiot. Then they feel bad and go over to Penny’s house to apologize. (Time: 14:48)

10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: Ponder, preschool, agree to disagree, turnout, starfish, boxer shorts, Nickelodeon, jump through hoops, bucket, praying mantis, hurtful, ditch someone, milk dud
  • Some of the Pronunciation: go with them (“go with-em”)

Learn English with Other TV Series

9. How I Met Your Mother: Barney’s Look-Alike

Description

In this scene, Lily and Marshall discover Barney’s doppelganger (Doppleganger is a person who looks exactly like another), marking an important event for them: it’s a sign from the universe that they can now have a baby (very strange, but you have to watch to understand!). This seen is hilarious! (Time: 7:35)

Power Lesson for this Scene 10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: Doppelganger, wrestler, eager, to turn out, to stand to reason, go time, (it’s a) deal

10. Two and a Half Men: Jake’s Crazy Teacher

Description

Alan decides to hire a private teacher to help his son Jake pass a test. The teacher is not at all what he expected. In fact, he’s very crazy. (Time: 8:28)

Power Lesson for this Scene 10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: Tutor, roadie, make fun of, pot
  • Some of the Pronunciation: I want him to (“I wan-im-duh”), don’t make fun of him (“don’t make fun uv-im”)

11. Seinfeld: The Stolen Limo 

Description

George goes to the airport to pick up Jerry, who is returning from Chicago, but his car breaks down on the way. Without transportation, they see a limo driver holding a sign for a man that Jerry knows is not coming (he saw that the man missed his flight in Chicago), and they decide to impersonate the man and get a free ride.  (Time: 10:07)

10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: get rid of, piece of junk, shaking, the exit, nervous breakdown, stopped dead, chauffuer, show up, overbooked, screaming, Madison Square Garden, Go up to somebody
  • Some of the Pronunciation: how long have you been (“how long ya been”), they wouldn’t let him on (“they wooden-led-im on”)

12. The IT Crowd (British English)

Description

In this British comedy scene, two IT nerds try their best to help people with their tech problems, but people don’t understand their technical language.  (Time: 8:40)

10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: to try something, turn on/ off, glowing, reboot, “there you go,” to be “all go,” to hit it off
  • Some of the Pronunciation: why don’t you (why-don-chew)

Learn English for the Holidays

13. Joey’s Thanksgiving Pants (Friends)

Description

Monica doesn’t want to cook a turkey for Thanksgiving because Joey would be that only one that would eat it, but Joey promises to eat the entire turkey so she agrees. As he tries to eat the whole thing, he needs to wear Phoebe’s maternity pants to finish (his belly is growing as he eats). (Time: 8:25)

Power Lesson for this Scene 10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: just so you know, a ton, left over, a sitting, jeans have “no give,” a little sliver, run out of something, maternity pants
  • Some of the Pronunciation: what are you doing? (“wha-da-ya doing?”), let me explain (“lemme explain”), at least give me (“ah-leas gimme”)

14. Fake Santa Claus (Elf- Christmas Movie)

Description

In this Will Ferrell Christmas movie, Elf, who is from the North Pole and knows the real Santa Clause, gets disappointed and angry at the fake Santa Clause at the mall. (7:00 long)

Power Lesson for this Scene 10 Scene Power Lesson Sample Packet

  • Some of the Vocab: who the heck are you, cool it, throne, a fake, stink, imposter
  • Some of the Pronunciation: How are you doing (“how ya doin?”), What are you talking about? (“wha-da-ya talkin-bout?”), don’t tell him what you want (“don’t tell-im wha-chew want”)
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