I recently devoured season one of the French show Call My Agent on Netflix, and that reminded me that I have watched so much French TV during the pandemic.

Black Spot was perhaps the first one I saw. It’s a dark fairy tale mixed with a police detective show. At first I thought it would be too scary, but I realized that every episode ended on a positive case resolution.

Lupin is a wonderful homage to the fictional French detective Arsene Lupin, with a few twists and a charismatic hero who must clear his father’s name. The plots are completely ingenious.

Ad Vitam is a science fiction take on the downsides of immortality.

Ad Vitam really made me think. It’s a very Black Mirror concept: Humans have achieved near immortality via various technical and medical advances, but in a world where people live well into their hundreds, young people are no longer valued. There are many unexpected consequences of these extreme lifespans, and the show slowly unfolds them, making you value your current timeline even more. I think that’s what the best science fiction does, anyway.

Honorable mention: A Belgian dystopian series about an airplane that must keep flying to avoid daylight. Another French show about a middle-aged unemployed guy who only manages to find employment where they pay him to fake a corporate hostage-taking, but he turns the tables. The one about the young friends who go off to a remote vacation cabin and all start getting murdered. I’m sure I’ve watched even more French shows, but these are the ones that spring to mind.