Sunday, February 18, 2018

6 Podcasts for True Crime Lovers

Growing up, I always loved crime shows.  I remember being in middle school and watching CSI followed by Without A Trace on Thursday nights.  In high school, my favorite TV channel quickly became Investigation Discovery because it was filled with true crime shows.  Being a typical millennial, I haven't had cable in years, which means no more ID or other crime shows unless they're on Netflix or Hulu.  I've spent a lot of the last couple years in my car, driving between Clarksville and Huntsville on the weekends, to and from Nashville a couple times a week, and up to Minnesota and back for holidays.  As much as I love music, I needed something more to keep me company as I racked up the miles on my car.  This is when I decided to venture into the world of podcasts. Of the 13 podcasts that I am subscribed to, half of them are true crime, so I wanted to share my favorites!

1. Serial: Season 1

"A high-school senior named Hae Min Lee disappeared one day after school in 1999, in Baltimore County, Maryland.  A month later, he body was found in a city park.  She's 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 teh 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 true.  Many others don't."

I started Serial after hearing about it in an ad while listening to  S-Town (another great investigative journalism podcast produced by This American Life). At the time, they were still releasing season one episodes, but they do have two seasons out now. Hosted by Sarah Koenig, Serial only covers one crime in each season, so it goes into a lot of detail.  I did begin the second season, but I wasn't into it as much as I was the first season so I stopped listening to it.

2. Undisclosed

Like Serial, Undisclosed focuses on one case per season.  Since I had just listened to Serial and the case of Hae Min Lee/Adnan Syed, I was excited to find that season one of Undisclosed was on the same topic, because I could not get enough of this case.  I even ended up buying the audiobook about the case after finishing the Undisclosed season.  Another great thing about Undisclosed is that even though season one is over, they continue to release episodes as Adnan's case continues through present time.  I continue to listen to the new seasons of Undisclosed because they're just as engaging as the first.  As an added fun fact, their website offers the case files on each of the cases that they cover if you're looking for more information.

3. Up and Vanished

Hosted by documentarian Payne Lindsey, Up and Vanished explored the unsolved case of Tara Grinstad, a young woman who went missing in Georgia over 11 years ago.  As Lindsey investigated the case, new leads were discovered, and an arrest actually took place.  I loved that Lindsey incorporated news reports, interviews, and phone calls with people involved in the case into the episodes to get others' point of views and stories.  I'm really bummed that U&V didn't continue to release more seasons about other cases.

4. Sword and Scale 

Sword and Scale was recommended to me by a lot of people, and I could see why.  It covers a broad range of criminal activity, from murder, to kidnapping, to sexual assault.  S&S can get pretty graphic, but they usually provide warnings at the beginning of the episode, especially if it involves topics like sexual assault or child abuse.

5. True Crime Garage

This is definitely my favorite true crime podcast.  Hosted by beer aficionados Nic and The Captain, TCG explores a variety of crime.  They began by exploring a new crime each episode, but now each case sometimes spans two, three, or four episodes.  Sometimes the cases are closed, but sometimes they remain open to this day.  An added feature that most podcasts do not include is a short segment on beer!  TCG  takes place in an actual garage, and during each episode the hosts introduce the beer the're drinking, where it came from, and how they rate it.  Another thing I love about this podcast is that they have a recommended reading page on their website.  At the end of each episode, the guys share a couple true crime books that they recommend which are added to this page on their website.  As a book fiend and true crime lover, this feature is much appreciated!

6. Atlanta Monster

Atlanta Monster is a new true crime podcast hosted by one of my favorite podcast hosts, Payne Lindsey.  It focuses on the over 40-year-old Atlanta Child Murders.  Although a man was once arrested to the crime, many questions still exist that Lindsey is looking to have answered.  Like his previous podcast Up & Vanished, Payne includes true accounts from Atlanta residents and others who lived in the area during this era. This podcast has just begun, so I cannot speak to how good it is yet!

Two more true crime podcasts that I have just started listening to are My Favorite Murder and Someone Knows Something.  I can't attest to how good they are yet, but if you're in need of new listening material, you could definitely try those ones out!

Please let me know in the comments or email if you have any other True Crime podcasts that you'd recommend! I'm always looking for new podcasts to listen to!

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