Podcasts have grown to be one of the most popular forms of entertainment in the last few years, and they show no sign of slowing down. A growing public interest in true crime coupled with the availability of information and technology has led to an uptick in “arm-chair detectives” who aim to solve cases that have grown cold. As these podcasts have the ability to lead to important breaks in cases, check out the top ten true crime podcasts!
This podcast, written by the fine folks behind HBO’s series The Jinx, tells the true story of organized crime families and corrupt politicians from Providence, Rhode Island. Hosts Marc Smerling and Zac Stuart-Pontier from Gimlet Media do an excellent job interviewing and the podcast is extremely well-polished. No word yet on which City they will explore in Season 2, but it can’t be released soon enough.
9. Up & Vanished
Filmmaker Payne Lindsey begins his first podcast venture by attempting to re-investigate the cold case of the disappearance of Tara Grinstead in Ocilia, Georgia. He quickly finds his footing, and uses this confidence along with his unrelenting drive for justice to stir up the secrets that the small town had hoped to keep buried. The end result may surprise you!
8. Dirty John
Christopher Goffard uses this six episode series to tell the story of Debra Newell and John Meehan, who met on a dating site. Though most people in Debra’s life felt something was amiss, she chose her love, John, time and time again. This true story takes so many twists and turns, it will be hard not to binge all episodes in one sitting.
Season one of Serial, which recounts the murder of Hae Min Lee and the subsequent arrest of her boyfriend, Adnan, may well have been the first and best of it’s kind. Sarah Koenig, host, questions Adnan’s innocence, which he has always maintained. Serial has since won a Peabody Award, and is said to have put podcasts on the map. Season two of Serial took a look at US Army deserter Bowe Bergdahl and his time spent as a prisoner of the Taliban-aligned Haqqani network.
6. My Favorite Murder
Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark, comedians and co-hosts of My Favorite Murder, take a lighter approach when gabbing about true crime. Each week, they pick a murder to tell the other about, pausing along the way for witty observations and commentary. Between weekly episodes, they podcast themselves reading emails from listeners describing their own “hometown murders”.
5. In The Dark
Another Peabody Award winner, In The Dark delves into the 1989 disappearance of Jacob Wetterling – a case which led to a new federal law implementing sex offender registration. Season two is set to begin it’s release in May 2018 with a look at the case of murderer Curtis Flowers.
Source: Blue Diamond Gallery
Casefile is an Australian-based podcast, and it’s host once sought to keep his identity anonymous. He has since been identified as a man named Brad from a town north of Sydney. They feature cold cases, most predominantly from Australia but from around the globe as well. Casefile has now grown to over 80 episodes.
3. True Crime Garage
Every week, Nic and The Captain crack open a couple of craft beers in the garage and talk true crime. Their cases, which vary from episode to episode, are meticulously researched and will undoubtedly offer details from familiar crimes that you have never heard before. They never shy away from the sometimes gory details, so be prepared to hear it all.
2. Someone Knows Something
Each of the four seasons dive into a different Canadian crime. Host David Ridgen, of CBC Radio, uses his investigative journalism background to try to uncover new evidence that may have been missed.
Now led by the team of Phoebe Judge, Lauren Spohrer and Nadia Wilson, Criminal tells a different crime-themed story with each episode. With a wide range of topics, including how people get away with faking their own deaths, the bi-weekly episodes never get dull.
True crime seems to be of growing interest to the American public, and it’s podcasts like these that may be the cause of this trend. Delivering justice to the victims of cold cases is of the utmost importance, so bringing attention to their cases and keeping them relevant can only help the investigations. Perhaps, with their widespread reach to millions of people, one of these podcasts will find someone who has the missing key information, helping close a case that is long overdue.