French Barbie Doll Commercial

This is a fun vintage French Barbie Doll commercial from the 1980s. This is a speaking Barbie that’s programmed to say over 40,000 sentences in French. Barbie Te Parle means “Barbie speak to you”.  Come to think of it, Barbie Te Parle would probably be a fun little toy to have for learning French!

Text from the commercial with translation

  • Narrator: La nouvelle Barbie Te Parle, elle a des milliers des choses à te dire. Écoute.
    The new Barbie Speaks To You, she has thousands of things to say. Listen.
  • Barbie: Ah oui, j’aimerais bien sortir avec tous nos amis.
    Ah yes, I would like to go out with all our friends.
  • Barbie: D’accord. Nous pourrions aller au restaurant avec Stacy et Todd.
    Okay. We can go to a restaurant with Stacy and Todd.
  • Girl 1: Elle parle bien!
    She speaks well!
  • Girl 2: Oui, et c’est toujours une surprise!
    Yes, and it’s always a surprise!
  • Barbie: Nous pouvons regarder la télé!
    We can watch TV!
  • Barbie: Génial! Je peux aller danser avec les copines.
    Great! I can go dancing with the girls.
  • Narrator: Barbie Te Parle, il n’y a que toi pour dire quarante-mille phrases comme ça. Par Mattel.
    Barbie Speaks To You. You’re the only one who can say 40,000 sentences like that.

Vocabulary and phrases of interest

  • des milliers de + noun: Means thousands of. Des centaines de + noun means hundreds. Des centaines de fleurs. Hundreds of flowers.
  • j’aimerais bien + infinitive. I would like to or gladly. J’aimerais bien manger. I’d gladly eat. This is the verb aimer in the present conditional.
  • Nous pourrions + infinitive. This is the verb pouvoir (to be able, can) in the conditional, meaning can in a the hypothetical sense. Je pourrais manger. I could eat, hypothetically.
  • Nous pouvons/je peux. The verb pouvoir in the present tense.
  • il n’y a que + noun. There is only + noun. This a special negation ne + verb + que, meaning only. Je ne mange que le fromage. I only eat cheese. Here it’s combined with il y a – there is or there are. Il n’y a que toi – there’s only you or you’re the only one.

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