I’m obsessed, obsessed with true crime podcasts. In general my most consumed media right now is podcasts. Yah I still watch my guilty pleasure shows (::coughlucifercough:: and ::coughcupcakewarscough::) and am fanatical about a few, like The Leftovers and Better Call Saul, but I probably listen to 6 or 7 hours of podcasts a week. I like a range of genres, and I’ll share my top faves across genres in another post, but I’ve been talking about my obsession with true crime podcasts lately and thought I’d write up a quick review of the recent series I’ve got my tooth and claws into lately so I can share one link easily across all my social media platforms. Because I’m lazy like that. Aren’t we all?
I use the app BeyondPod which allows me to download episodes over my WiFi, create a queue, and press play whenever I want to listen to something but not use up my data (yah, it’s awesome, it’s a win and I wish my husband would convert because he literally uses 5x as much data as I do and I swear it’s because of streaming podcasts). Sorry Apple peeps, you’ll have to find one for iOS, I have an Android so no recommendation for your operating system.
Like every other podcast obsessed person I started with Serial as my first foray into the true crime podcast genre. I mean this podcast hit the social media frenzy and word of mouth virility in a short amount of time and it’s staying power exists because of the excellent investigative journalism exhibited and it’s intriguing story lines. Two season, two different story lines.
Season 1 Synopsis:
A high-school senior named Hae Min Lee disappeared one day after school in 1999, in Baltimore County, Maryland. A month later, her body was found in a city park. She’d been strangled. Her 17-year-old ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed, was arrested for the crime, and within a year, he was sentenced to life in prison. The case against him was largely based on the story of one witness, Adnan’s friend Jay, who testified that he helped Adnan bury Hae’s body. But Adnan has always maintained he had nothing to do with Hae’s death. Some people believe he’s telling the truth. Many others don’t.
Season 2 Synopsis:
Sarah Koenig teams up with filmmaker Mark Boal to find out why one idiosyncratic guy,[Bowe Bergdahl], decided to walk away, into Afghanistan, and how the consequences of that decision have spun out wider and wider. It’s a story that has played out in unexpected ways from the start. And it’s a story that’s still going on.
Of course when I first started listening to Serial they were advertising another podcast which has some true crime elements to it, but in the end is a story about many things and one odd ball character in particular. So when I finished Serial I immediately started on S-Town.
JOHN DESPISES HIS ALABAMA TOWN AND DECIDES TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. HE ASKS a reporter to investigate the son of a wealthy family who’s allegedly been bragging that he got away with murder. But then someone else ends up dead, sparking a nasty feud, a hunt for hidden treasure, and an unearthing of the mysteries of one man’s life.
And after that I was hooked but unsure of what to listen to next. I told everyone about these other podcasts and was hungry for something interesting and brain boggling to listen to next. Luckily my next door neighbor also listens to these types of podcasts and recommended, In the Dark. And dark it is. This story wont be for everyone, but it intrigued me and the consequences of the abduction, assault, and murder of young Jacob Wetterling were both widespread and far too late to help him.
Though I would caution people to not talk about stranger danger, but “Tricky People” vs “Safe Adults.” Read about the program here and how to talk to your kids about tricky adults who ask kids for help.
Season 1 Synopsis:
For 27 years, the investigation into the abduction of Jacob Wetterling in rural Minnesota yielded no answers. Reporter Madeleine Baran reveals how law enforcement mishandled one of the most notorious child abductions in the country and how those failures fueled national anxiety about stranger danger, led to the nation’s sex-offender registries and raise questions about crime-solving effectiveness and accountability.
Now I’m obsessed and googling, “True Crime Podcasts” and trying to track down another well investigated, well produced podcasts. Currently I’m listening to my latest obsession, Up and Vanished. I’ve gotten my sister hooked. I still haven’t finished the first season, but it definitely falls into the well investigated and well produced true crime podcast genre. I also enjoy all the “Case Evidence” in-between episodes and listen as attorneys, private investigators, and other journalists weigh in on the case.
‘UP AND VANISHED’ IS AN INVESTIGATIVE PODCAST THAT EXPLORES THE UNSOLVED DISAPPEARANCE OF GEORGIA BEAUTY QUEEN AND HIGH SCHOOL TEACHER, TARA GRINSTEAD, AN 11-YEAR-OLD MYSTERY THAT IS THE LARGEST CASE FILE IN GEORGIA’S HISTORY. FOLLOW ALONG AS HOST PAYNE LINDSEY, A DOCUMENTARIAN TURNED AMATEUR INVESTIGATOR, EXAMINES OLD CASE EVIDENCE, RE-INTERVIEWS PERSONS OF INTEREST, AND UNCOVERS NEW LEADS, WHILE GUIDING LISTENERS THROUGH HIS REAL TIME INVESTIGATION. A RECENT BREAK IN THE CASE MAY HAVE GIVEN US MORE QUESTIONS THAN ANSWER, AND THE MAIN QUESTION STILL REMAINS…
WHAT HAPPENED TO TARA GRINSTEAD?
What are your favorite True Crime podcasts? Post them in the comments and I may check them out!