My top five podcasts

Recently I’ve really gotten into podcasts! I’m usually listening to them during the commute to and from work, and sometimes when I’m doing housework. I love how engaging they are and sometimes feel like listening to a conversation. So far these are my favourite (highly recommended) podcasts:

Serial

Like many people, this is how I was introduced to podcasts! I believe this is still the most popular podcast worldwide. Serial is described as: “A podcast from the creators of This American Life. One story. Told week by week. Hosted by Sarah Koenig.” This isn’t a constant podcast, so far there are two seasons and there will be a wait for the third seasons. Sarah Koenig is an amazing story teller as she digs into the case for each season (both season’s cases are still ongoing). Even episode to episode, going over the case again and again at different angles, it doesn’t feel old or boring. I’m always completely zoned out of everything else around me when listening to this. Episodes are long and have a lot of content to follow. I appreciate the humongous amount of information digging that has gone on and it is amazing how the team piece together the details. I liked season one a lot more because season two was a bit complicated and harder to follow (for me) with all the army politics and background.

Real Crime Profile

Join Jim Clemente (former FBI profiler), Laura Richards (formerly of New Scotland Yards, Founder and Director of Paladin, National Stalking Advocacy Service) and Lisa Zambetti (Casting director for CBS’ Criminal Minds) as they profile behavior from real criminal cases.” The first several episodes covered the Making A Murderer documentary and the rest of the episodes so far (except for one) have been covering The People vs O. J. Simpson drama, both of which have been hugely successful productions about real crime. This podcast is more of a roundtable discussion, and I love how conversational it is. It’s been fascinating listening to these people with experience in law enforcement talk about these two wildly popular television productions and the real cases behind them, in particular shedding light about criminal and victim behaviour, how law enforcement works in certain ways and how it works badly in certain ways. They often use their work experiences in helping to explain these things. I actually started but stopped watching Making A Murderer and The People vs O. J. Simpson, but that hasn’t taken away from the value and interest of these podcasts.

This American Life

Described as: “There’s a theme to each episode of This American Life, and a variety of stories on that theme. Most of the stories are journalism, with an occasional comedy routine or essay. There’s lots more to the show, but it’s sort of hard to describe.” The overarching themes sound vague, but the stories (often told by various people) tie in well with the episode’s title and are incredibly interesting – sometimes funny, sometimes sad, something thought provoking and sometimes utterly bizarre and ridiculous. The episodes are long but divided into roughly three acts with different stories.

Planet Money

The economy explained“, this is a podcast all about money, but told as stories in a way that everyone can understand. Each episode takes something that we might have all heard about but don’t know the details. Or it could be some aspect of economy we’ve never heard about. How does a shell company work? What is citizenship for sale? Can there be a bank without interest? I don’t have a background in economics and this podcast isn’t targeting those with one. Telling stories to explain various aspects of economies that I’ve never thought about, I find each episode absolutely fascinating. Episodes are nice and short so easy to get through.

Freakanomics

A spawn of the hugely successful Freakanomics book, “Host Stephen Dubner has surprising conversations that explore the riddles of everyday life and the weird wrinkles of human nature—from cheating and crime to parenting and sports. Dubner talks with Nobel laureates and provocateurs, social scientists and entrepreneurs — and his Freakonomics co-author Steve Levitt.” These lengthy episodes are quite content-heavy, talk about everything under the moon and may vaguely touch upon economics. But again, no interest or background in economics is needed to enjoy this podcast.

Please let me know what your favourite podcasts are!