French ads, dubbed in French

French TV excels at dubbing over original-language movies in French. Why bother with subtitles when you can talk over world-class actors? But it’s not just the world-class actors who are dubbed. Take this McDonald’s advertisement. It advertises Toy Story DVDs. There is no dubbing yet, but hang in there while I explain. Here’s the ad if you want to see it, otherwise, skip over it (those receiving this in their inbox will need to click through to see the video):

The driver starts ordering her food when a kid pops his head out of the back window and starts ordering what he wants. I don’t have kids, but if I did and my kid interrupted me with his Maccas order, I’m pretty sure I’d subsequently cancel his order and eat mine in front of him to teach him a lesson.

But enough of my poor parenting skills. If the interrupting kid isn’t bad enough, McDonald’s rehashed this ad recently, but it’s no longer advertising Toy Story DVDs.

They’ve employed the same kid to dub himself.

The entire script has changed, and now the kid moves his lips with different words coming out. You can enjoy it here (or click through if you’re reading this via email):

I asked some French friends what they think and the general consensus was “bof” (a verbal shrug). Dubbing is so common in France that cheap rehashes by companies as big as McDonald’s doesn’t raise an eyebrow.

Let’s get back to that interrupting kid. It seems I’m not the only one who doesn’t like him. In the comments section of the last YouTube video, someone has commented: “Quel impoli ce gamin ! je lui mettrais 3 claques ! on ne coupe pas la parole au grand !! et cette serveuse !! de quoi je me mêle ! non mais quelle gourde ! c’est quoi se resto qui vient foutre la merde dans l’éducation de nos enfants !!!

Basically, the first part translates to: “How rude is this kid! I’d give him three slaps! We do not interrupt adults!!”, followed by insulting the waitress and then a lot of swearing.

That’s a top rant, and one I’m on board with after my own rant in English. What about you?

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I’m a technical author, journalist and writer from Australia who has been living in Europe since 2000 and exploring the world from there. My passions are writing, snow sports and travel.

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2 comments on “French ads, dubbed in French
  1. Ron Rundle says:

    Yep! Slappity slap slap!!

  2. Michelle says:

    I also DETEST the constant dubbing on French TV, but what’s worse is when they leave the original sound track on. My husband likes to watch documentaries, but I can’t stand it when you hear the original voices in English and then the French translator pitches in and you have to listen to both simultaneously. Grr!!
    And I do have kids, and while it’s cute that they can now order their own meal in a restaurant (one that we agreed on), I would not let them get away with interrupting like that!!!

About me

Wendy Hollands writer in Annecy, France

I'm an experienced professional writer based in the French Alps. I enjoy learning French language nuances, winter sports and travel. Read more...

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