Friday, June 17, 2016
#Fandom5: Five Favorite Podcasts (June 17th, 2016)
#Fandom5, or 5 Fandom Friday is a weekly blog link-up and the creation of Kristin at Super Space Chick and Megan at The Nerdy Girlie. It's a lot of fun and a great way to find new blogs! Go here to learn more about it or follow #Fandom5 on Twitter!
Today's topic is five favorite podcasts. I don't know about you, but I really didn't start listening to podcasts until 2014, when I listened to Serial and downloaded the NPR app to listen to at work.
Since then I have realized that I really enjoy listening to specific styles of podcasts - primarily those types that I describe as radio essays (host presents on a topic) and narrative interviews (interviewee does most of the talking, but the host might ask a few questions or edit in a brief comment for context). I also like serialized stories, especially mysteries both real and fictional. My favorite topics are science, history, human interest/personal anecdote, and true crime.
What do you like in a podcast? Do you have any recommendations for me?
1. You Must Remember This
One of my two most-favorite podcasts is "You Must Remember This" hosted by Karina Longworth. This podcast presents the (forgotten) history of Hollywood during the twentieth century, navigating studio spin and popular myth to find the truth behind those stories.
New episodes are released every one-two weeks, with interim weeks showcasing past episodes that are relevant to the current season. The past few seasons have followed themes or topics, with the most recent season being focused on the Hollywood Blacklist and the 1947 HUAC trials.
My other favorite podcast is Gastropod. This podcast is about the science and history of food. It is hosted by Cynthia Graber and Nicola Twilley. Episodes have included discussions on how different utensils change our perception of food, why we eat breakfast, and the history of Chinese food in the US. They just started the fifth season and episodes are released every two weeks.
Warning: this podcast will make you hungry!
3. Radiolab and This American Life
I listed these two together because they are very similar in style. Each episode follows a theme and includes 2-3 interviews or stories. I like the variety of the content and the production quality (I think both are associated with NPR). Older episodes of TAL can be found on its website.
4. The Black Tapes and Limetown
Like the above entry, I listed these two together due to their overall similarities. Both are fictional stories done in the style of a serialized radio program where listeners follow the host as she investigates a mystery. TBT is supernatural themed, while Limetown is a bit more science-fiction. Of the two, I definitely like Limetown more. TBT is a good story, but it's prone to poor voice acting and some other style/editing issues that annoy me as a listener.
Limetown finished its first season and I'm not sure if it will have a second. TBT is currently in its second season. Both podcasts should be listened to in order, due to the narrative.
This podcast is one I stumbled upon while browsing the popular podcast feed in iTunes and I really, really like it. This podcast explores folklore and local tales, looking at human behavior and the construction of these stories - and the truths behind them. Episodes are released every other week, and each episode is presented almost like an essay or paper focusing on an event or topic. I think I like this style because it is more "academic" than most podcasts I listen to.
This podcast has become so popular/successful that the creator, Aaron Mahnke, is working with Valhalla Entertainment to turn the series into a TV show.
Honorable Mention: The Mystery Show
This podcast hasn't been updated since July 31, 2015, and that makes me really sad. I loved pretty much everything about this show: the way it was edited, the theme song, even Starlee Kine's lisp. The mysteries she solves aren't earth shaking revelations... Basically someone wonders something (that couldn't be answered on Google), and she chases down an explanation. It's really fun to hear about the twists and dead ends, and the lengths she goes to to find an answer.
I really hope this show comes back soon and that the long delay is just because she is out solving more mysteries. (If you want to give this one a try, I highly recommend the Belt Buckle, episode #3.)