Podcasts to replace Serial: Here's What You Should Be Listening To Next
Podcasts to replace Serial is something we’ve been searching for ever since we finished listening to the drama that gripped the world. The true story of Baltimore high school student Hae Min Lee, who was murdered in 1999, and the consequent jailing of her ex-boyfriend Adnan Syed had us glued to our headphones in a did-he, didn’t he frenzy. If you haven’t listened to it yet, where have you been? If you have, here’s how to fill that aural void in your life before season two of Serial drops. Not that we’re counting the days or anything (we are).
The one where it all began: THIS AMERICAN LIFE
What: Before the whole Serial phenomenon, America’s First Pod Cast was doing just fine on its own, thanks. It’s now been delivering true life stories (from the investigative to the just-plain-wowza) for 15 years. Special mentions should go to its sublime host Ira Glass and the super popular chilling two-parter on guns and gangs at Harper High School.
Why: If you’re late to the pod cast party and want to start with the original, the best and the one they all want to be.
The chat show with balls: THE NERDIST
What: Like a Desert Island Discs for hipsters, this weekly interview show (often at the subject’s own home) is a breath of fresh air. The strap line, ‘what it really means to be a nerd,’ under sells it; with guests from Paul McCartney to Joseph Gordon-Levitt, it’s way cooler than that.
Why: Wossy, Nor-ty, Carr, you love em’ all, but the endless circus of self-promotion; not so much. Celebrities who want to interviewed? Now, there’s a thing.
The one for soap fans: WELCOME TO NIGHT VALE
What: The Twin Peaks of pod casts follows, in the form of news updates, the fictional small town of Night Vale, deep in a desert in South West America. It’s dark, surreal and hilarious; take their description of episode one: ‘A new dog park opens in Night Vale. Carlos, a scientist, visits and discovers some interesting things. Seismic things…’ Hooked already, no?
Why: You like the idea of The Archers but want something a bit, well, cooler.
The one that beats all other podcasts to replace Serial: THIS IS CRIMINAL
What: Real life ‘stories of people who’ve done wrong, been wronged, or gotten caught somewhere in the middle,’ told from the viewpoint of either the victim or the perpetrator. Head. Officially. Screwed.
Why: Those withdrawal symptoms from Serial just won’t go away. And you need another case to get stuck into.
The one that’s all a out the hip lit: THE MOTH
What: Bedtime stories for grown ups, set up by American poet / novelist George Dawes Green. Some famous (Salman Rushdie), some not; all page turners. Not literally, obvs.
Why: You’re most at home in a deck chair at the Hay fest listening to some bright young thing spinning a yarn. And you want that feeling every morning on your commute.