Germany. We go back to the year 2006. A brand-new comedy-drama series makes headlines and captures the German television market. "Türkisch für Anfänger" (literally Turkish for Beginners) is, speaking for myself, one of the most unique and enjoyable German TV shows. Aired in 52 episodes, the series focuses on the everyday life of the blended family called Schneider-Öztürk. As its name implies it is not about a typical and ordinary family. Quite the contrary, the series tells in a hilarious manner the story about the clash of the German and Turkish culture. It takes place in Neukölln, one of the most famous mix-culturing boroughs in Berlin. In the thick of the action is the 16-year-old cheeky German girl Lena Schneider. She tries to accept that her "forever young" mother Doris Schneider fell in love with the conventional Turkish descent commissioner Metin Öztürk. Ever since the couple decided to move together, fancy Lena has to share her bedroom with the devout and head-scarfed Muslim girl Yağmur Öztürk. Yağmur is full of religious fervor. Three times a day she prays on her prayer mat, avoids eating pork and considers that Lena is a German Nazi, who will go to hell anytime. Another important and sublime character of the story is the brother of Yağmur called Cem Öztürk, a handsome and pretty smug Turkish macho and a living cliché. Lena had loathed him from the moment she first met him. Nevertheless as time passes she has a crush on the Turkish poser and is completely overextended with the entire situation. As if she did not have enough problems, she also has to attend a new and multicultural school and make new friends. It's a recipe for disaster. During the series Lena narrates the story and gives the spectators an insight into the typical challenges and problems of a pubescent girl: annoying parents and siblings, rite of passage, first love and at long last she has to bear the cross-cultural experiences and clashes. The writer-director Bora Dagtekin knows how to entertain his audience with the propensity to exaggerate using plenty of clichés, prejudices and stereotypes about the German and Turkish culture, attitude and habits. Each episode is a real blockbuster, each character a hilarious embodiment and each dialog a trigger for getting the giggles. In my opinion Türkisch für Anfänger is by far one of the best German television series I have ever seen. A heart-touching, fast-paced, creative and in a way over the top crazy story full of amazing jokes and tactfulness. It is not for nothing that this TV show is highly distinguished, acclaimed and popular with all age groups and moreover even successful on the foreign market. After the first minutes of the series you will absolutely fall in love with the chaotic and unusual family Schneider-Öztürk. You have got to like them. I would highly recommend this amazing TV show to each person. It is more than just advisable. It is a must see and definitely a must love. It is addictive!
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