tv serial / tv series

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Vocabulary / Vocabulario Español-Inglés' started by Lenu, Aug 23, 2004.

  1. Lenu Senior Member


    I would be very grateful if someone could show me the difference between the following expressions, and about how they are commonly used:

    TV serial / TV series
    TV show / TV program

    Many thanks!
  2. Vicki Senior Member

    United States/English
    In American English:

    "TV series" is more appropriate. (I suspect, but am not sure, that "TV serial" is British usage.)

    "TV show" and "TV program" seem extremely close in meaning to me -- but "TV show" is more colloquial, more informal, lighter in tone. If I were talking/writing about a "serious" show/program -- for example, a public affairs panel discussion or the like -- I might choose "TV program" instead.

    I hope this is helpful.

  3. Fritzybabe

    Fritzybabe Junior Member


    I agree with Vicki for the second pair but I would say there is a slight difference between TV serial / TV series.

    A TV series is a program that runs for a number of weeks and each week is a new episode eg: Sex in the city, Fraizer etc

    A TV serial is usually a fictional story that is 'broken up' into a number of episodes eg: the Thornbirds etc. (It probably comes from "the serial isation of a novel").

    As TV serials are not so common now as they were about 20 years ago the actual meaning has probably become blurred and the 2 are interchangeable.

    TV series are more common and therefore the word more likely to be heard.

    As a point of interest I think that following is true (does anyone think otherwise?)

    TV serial (singular) TV serials (plural)
    TV series (singular) TV series (plural)

  4. Lenu Senior Member

    Muchas gracias a los dos!


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