This past summer, I accidentally got myself hooked on investigative journalism and true crime podcasts. I know it sounds kind of boring to listen to people talk for 50+ minutes, and it was definitely hard to get into podcasts. However, I am literally obsessed with all things true crime, and podcasts are an easy way to get my fix. Whether I’m working, commuting, or having some down time when I’m not in the mood to watch TV, here are three of my favorite podcasts to enjoy:
1. Crime Junkie
Hosted by Ashley Flowers and Brit Prawat, Crime Junkie is a totally underrated true crime podcast. Both Ashley and Brit are based in Indiana and cover crimes from all over the nation (and even outside the U.S.). From murders to missing persons, the hosts provide all the facts while maintaining an engaging, flowing commentary throughout the podcast.
I highly recommend Crime Junkie if you’re just starting to get into true crime podcasts, because Ash and Brit’s podcasts have a really simple, easy-to-follow structure. Also, if you’re really into a specific case, Ash and Brit even allow their listeners to send in case ideas for them to cover. You can suggest cases here. Crime Junkie’s most recent case actually involves a previous UMass student, Maura Murray; you can listen to it here. You can enjoy their podcasts on Spotify, Apple Podcasts and Stitcher.
My rating: 9/10
2. Unsolved Murders: True Crime Stories
Unsolved Murders, produced by Parcast, is super unique and great for long hours at an internship or commutes. Hosted by Carter Roy & Wenndy Mackenzie, Unsolved uses voice actors, music and sound effects to reel in listeners and cover well-known cases. Unsolved usually has some longer episodes; individual cases can span two or three episodes alone.
My favorite part about this podcast is that the music and sound effects paint a vivid picture about the cases. Plus, the music usually correlates to the era or year that the case takes place, so listeners really feel like they have been transported back in time. Carter and Wenndy provide the listeners with their personal view on the case, but always talk about all sides of the story and thoroughly “investigate” all known suspects. If you are easily bored of conversation-based podcasts, Unsolved will really keep you on your toes and draw you into the episode from the very beginning. You can enjoy Unsolved on Apple Podcasts, Google Play and Spotify.
My rating: 8/10
Hosted by Phoebe Judge, Criminal is a investigative crime podcast that focuses on the historical and sociological aspects of crime and criminal cases. This podcast is unique because it contains interviews and the occasional live story. If you are a fan of the well-known podcast Serial, this is another awesome podcast to get into!
Criminal is really great if you are into the cold, hard facts of a case or issue. I particularly enjoy how Phoebe conducts this podcast; she allows the interviewee to speak for themselves and tell the story to the listeners. Phoebe does not jump in by throwing a bunch of facts at the listeners, unlike other podcasts. Instead, it’s a pretty slow-paced podcast. If you have a hard time following podcasts for a long period of time, Criminal allows you to get your podcast fix in one go—without having to rewind too often. You can listen to Criminal on Apple Podcasts or here.
My rating: 9/10