5 Podcasts Every True Crime Fan Will Love

March 29, 2016
By: Amelia McDonell-Parry

[Source: assorted screenshots]

[Source: assorted screenshots]

It’s been more than a year since the first season of Serial ended, but people are still talking about the murder of a 1999 high school student named Hae Min Lee, allegedly by her ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed. And given the bingeworthy nature of the series, fans are also still thirsting for a replacement, especially since Serial season two has been kind of a letdown. If true crime is your thing and Serial left a hole in your heart that’s desperate to be filled, here are five more addictive podcasts (plus two podcasts from Investigation Discovery) to start listening to ASAP.

Undisclosed: Picking up where the first season of Serial left off, Undisclosed is hosted by Rabia Chaudry, who first brought Adnan Syed’s case to Sarah Koenig’s attention. Joined by two other lawyers, Colin Miller and Susan Simpson, Undisclosed not only covered all the nitty gritty details that Serial missed, but also essentially investigated the police investigation into Hae Min Lee’s murder. In sifting through the police notes and other case documents, the Undisclosed team has found all sorts of potential evidence that could be used in court if Syed is granted a retrial. Meanwhile, starting this summer, the show’s second season will be focused on another false conviction case which Simpson has said is just as compelling as Syed’s. Can’t wait.

Truth & Justice: Also initially inspired by Serial, this podcast hosted by former fire chief Bob Ruff used to be Serial Dynasty before a name change late last year. At first, Ruff parsed each episode of Serial, mulling over his own theories about the case, unsure of Syed’s guilt or innocence. He did the same with episodes of Undisclosed, and seemingly inspired by their investigative work, Ruff also began to do a little digging into the case as well, unveiling some bombshells of his own. Ruff was inspired to take an early retirement so he devote his attention to investigating other false convictions, and the second season of Undisclosed is focused on the case of Kenny Snow and police and prosecutorial misconduct in Tyler, Texas. Ruff has a genuine, folksy demeanor and a knack for getting anybody he interviews to open up.

Real Crime Profile: This newish podcast – hosted by Jim Clemente, a former criminal profiler for the FBI, and Laura Richards, formerly of New Scotland Yards – is focused on profiling the behavior of key people involved in famous criminal cases. Joined by a casting director for the TV show Criminal Minds, Clemente and Richards have analyzed recorded interviews, testimonies, confessions and 911 calls from the Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey case, made famous by Making A Murderer, and have done a few episodes focused on the OJ Simpson case. Clemente grates on my nerves a bit, but overall, this podcast is an interesting look at criminal profiling and how its used by law enforcement.

Criminal: The thing I like about this monthly podcast is that it’s not just about criminals, per se, but people who have somehow been involved in a crime, or as the show’s about section puts it: “Criminal is a podcast about crime. Stories of people who’ve done wrong, been wronged, or gotten caught somewhere in the middle.” For example, episode 35 is about a courtroom sketch artist in Chicago; episode 29 is about a North Carolina detective whose longtime K-9 partner, Talon, retired and what happened when he was paired with a new dog; and episode 34 is about the first man sentenced to death by lethal injection in Connecticut. Each episode fascinating and impeccably reported. Seriously a must-listen for any true crime fan.

Sword & Scale: I’m new to this podcast, but after only a few episodes, I’m already dying to go back through the archives. Sword & Scale, hosted by producer Mike Boudet, has actually been around for awhile, and holds the distinction of being one of the first long-running true crime podcasts. Each episode is focused on an already closed case, so it doesn’t have the whodunnit quality of Serial, however these are not your average easily-solved murders. The first episode I listened to was about a sheltered woman’s truly bizarre online catfishing scheme that resulted in two young parents being murdered. It was creepy, shocking and utterly riveting.

PLUS! We would be remiss if we didn’t also include, for those of you who haven’t become addicted already, Investigation Discovery’s podcasts Detective and What The Crime!?

Detective is coming back on in early June for a second season with homicide detective and star of the new ID show, I Am Homicide, Garry MacFadden.

What The Crime will be back in July for another season of the weirdest and wildest in the world of crime. Look forward to exploring topics like conjugal visits and crazy criminal names!