Categorised | French TV

Dallas's theme tune had lyrics… but only in France

Posted on March 29, 2016 | Post a comment | Bookmark and Share

So I was listening to the World in Words podcast this morning and discovered a fascinating fact. When Dallas aired on French TV back in the 80s, French broadcasters wanted to explain the show to its audience. So along with a new theme tune, they wrote some lyrics to explain it to them. Listen to them for yourselves:

And here are the lyrics in French in all their glory [via]:

Dallas
Ton univers impitoyable
Dallas
Glorifie la loi du plus fort
Dallas
Et sous ton soleil implacable
Dallas
Tu ne redoutes que la mort

Dallas
Patrie du dollar du pétrole
Dallas
Tu ne connais pas la pitié
Dallas
Le revolver est ton idole
Dallas
Tu te raccroches à ton passé

Dallas
Malheur à celui qui n'a pas compris
Dallas
Un jour il y perdra la vie
Dallas
Ton univers impitoyable
Dallas
Glorifie la loi du plus fort

Dallas
Malheur à celui qui n'a pas compris
Dallas
Un jour il y perdra la vie
Dallas
Ton univers impitoyable
Dallas
Glorifie la loi du plus fort

Dallas
Malheur à celui qui n'a pas compris
Dallas
Un jour il y perdra la vie
Dallas
Ton univers impitoyable

Which more or less means [via, since I can't be arsed to translate it myself]:

Dallas, your ruthless world,
Dallas, where might is right,
Dallas, and under your relentless sun,
Dallas, only death is feared.

Dallas, home of the oil dollar,
Dallas, you do not know pity;
Dallas, the revolver is your idol,
Dallas, you cling to the past.

Dallas, woe to him who does not understand,
Dallas, one day he will lose his life.
Dallas, your ruthless world,
Dallas, where might is right.

Wowzers, hey? But accurate.

Incidentally, it was not alone in this. I mentioned this discovery of mine to French TV journalist Thierry Attard, hoping to find out more, as he is not only a noted expert and consultant on European dubbing, he's literally written the book on it. He reveals that this is just the tip of the iceberg:

I hate when they put a French song on a foreign series. In the 80s they were legion: Hart to Hart, Vegas, Mr Merlin… Santa Barbara, The Bold and the Beautiful, Buck Rogers, The A Team, Days of our Lives (this one didn't last long). If my memory serves and without chronology, we can add Starsky & Hutch, Knots Landing. Later, Prison Break or... Heroes.

So much fun to be had! I leave the full quest to you, gentle reader, but brace yourself - here's your starter for 10. It's Prison Break's French lyrics:

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