The 10 Best Podcasts

I love listening to podcasts. With the move to Point Lookout, my commute has gone from 8 minutes to 48 minutes (if I'm lucky) - plenty more time for podcasts everyday! I'm realizing as I write this that 10 may a lot of podcasts to listen to. But I only listen to a handful religiously; the others I enjoy when I can. The trouble begins when I realize how many other podcasts I'd like to listen to as well. 

The 10 Best Podcasts:

Stuff You Should Know

A couple of buddies - Josh & Chuck - who try to explain it all. The format is very conversational, with many, many tangents. The hosts are, admittedly, not experts. But with the right episode, their wonder and enthusiasm is infectious.

TRY THIS EPISODE: Please Listen to How Plasma Waste Converters Work

Freakonomics Radio

Always interesting. This show, based on the books, uncovers the hidden side of everything. I love learning how this affects that and that some things aren't as they appear.

TRY THIS EPISODE: The Economics of Sleep, Part 1 (then listen to Part 2!)

Off Camera

Hosted by Sam Jones, a photographer and director, Off Camera is a conversational interview with artists, athletes, and actors. The soft-spoken host is endearingly enthusiastic when learning about his subjects and their craft

TRY THIS EPISODE: Lizzy Caplan

Stuff Mom Never Told You

A feminist conversation and interview podcast. The women who host cover topics ranging from famous influential women to gender roles to oft-avoided sexual questions. 

TRY THIS EPISODE: The Laverne Cox Effect

RadioLab

RadioLab mixes drama and science into an exciting, geeky collection of stories. The hosts weave stories on a theme every episode. The show audibly sets itself apart a bit by incorporating unique layers of sound effects. 

TRY THIS EPISODE: Patient Zero

Serial

Everyone's favorite podcast! Serial, unlike most of the podcasts listed here, spans one story over it's entire season. Serial episodes are not one-offs. The host and her team spend the season investigating the real-life murder case and conviction of the then-teenage Adnan Syed. Serial is the gateway into podcasts for tons of people! But, I'm sure you've listened to it already.

TRY THIS EPISODE: The Alibi

Savage Lovecast

The ultimate progressive sex & relationship advice column. Dan Savage offers his often humorous insights to listener's questions. The top of the show usually has the host monologuing about politics, which is important but can be tiresome. The meat of the show is his sincere - if irreverent - answers and opinions. 

TRY THIS EPISODE: Episode 469

Death, Sex & Money

Death, Sex & Money covers all the important things that make up life. Unlike informative and scientific shows like Freaknomics and RadioLab, DS&M is gentler, focusing on the big questions and human stories. Anna Sale, the host, sounds like a lovely woman - she seems to make it easy for her subjects to open up to her in interviews. I recently shared an episode about siblings to each of my four siblings (it made some of us cry).

TRY THIS EPISODE: Siblinghood

Invisibilia

I got hooked on this show after the first episode, which had me crying with it's second story. Invisibilia deals with the intangible beliefs and ideas that guide human behavior. 

TRY THIS EPISODE: The Secret History of Thoughts

Women of the Hour

A new podcast miniseries hosted by Lena Dunham. The first episode is about women & friendship - a topic that has been on the top of my mind a lot lately. The episode winds around the telling of Lena and her friend Ashley's falling into friendship, while featuring guest stories. Plus, Amy Sedaris! I LOVE Amy Sedaris.

TRY THIS EPISODE: Episode 1: Friendship

Podcasts on My List to Try:

  • Documentary On One - RTÉ Documentaries
  • Love + Radio
  • Neighbors
  • Reply All
  • 99% Invisible
  • How Did You Get Into That

Do you have any suggestions for me?