My Favourite Podcasts of 2019

Anyone who has read my earlier post about living with chronic exertional compartment syndrome knows that I really dislike walking due to the pain factor. Enter podcasts as great way to distract myself and get where I need to go. I listen to mostly podcasts that fall into the true crime category, but also have a some other favourites. Here’s some I rate particularly highly from 2019 (and a few from 2018 that a worth of a mention). I’m not going to reveal too much of each story line, but I encourage you to take a listen

The Man in the Window is hosted by Pulitzer Prize winner podcast Paige St John and is about the Golden State Killer, Joseph James DeAngelo. DeAngelo was a prolific rapist and burglar who also murdered 13 people. The podcast details the terrifying nature of his crimes and how DNA many years later played a vital role. This is a seriously scary podcast that will stay with you for a long time.

I really thought Theranos would revolutionize phlebotomy with their one drop blood tests. But despite the charisma of Elizabeth Holmes it was all too good to be true. The Drop out asks,

“How did the woman once heralded as “the next Steve Jobs” find herself facing criminal charges — to which she pleaded not guilty — and up to 20 years in jail? How did her technology, meant to revolutionize healthcare, potentially put millions of patients at risk? And how did so many smart people get it so wrong along the way?”

It’s a fascinating tale and definitely worth a listen.

Dr Ruja Ignatova persuaded millions to join her financial revolution One Coin. Then she disappeared. Why? If you remember the crypto hysteria of 2017, you’ll enjoy this, assuming you didn’t invest in One Coin!

Hunting Warhead is an investigative podcast produced by Canadian network CBC and the Norwegian newspaper Verdens Gang about their efforts to discover the people behind of a dark web child abuse pedophile site. The role of the Queensland police with Taskforce Argos and the ethical considerations of dealing with these kinds of offences and the offenders gives you a lot to think about.

Teacher’s Pet involves the murder of Lynn Dawson. It’s really good investigative journalism form the Australian media with a surprising outcome.

If you enjoyed Mindhunter on Netflix, then Atlanta Monster is for you. It deals with the murder of 26 children in the late 70’s — early 80’s in Atlanta. It’s desperately sad, and you’ll be bamboozled by the some of the episodes. Did Wayne Williams really do it? You decide. There’s a great interview with John Douglas, I read all his books years ago at university!

You’ll need a strong stomach for this one. Happy Face is created by Melissa Moore who discovers her father Keith Hunter Jesperson, was a serial killer. How does it colour instances in her own life and her self view? Note: the episode where she meets with the son of one of his victims is heartbreaking.

Wondery does some really strong podcasts including the afore mentioned Man in the Window. Dr Death is about one of those harrowing cases of medical negligence, dealing with Christopher Daniel Duntsch, a former neurosurgeon who has been nicknamed Dr. Death for gross malpractice.

Health/Tech/Psychology Related :

The Future of X is a podcast by OZY and looks at what things will be like in 50 uears. Th first season explored healthcare in 2069, and they are currently looking at work. If you read a lot about tech, you’ll be familiar with most of the content but it’s interesting hearing different perspectives and thoughtful commentary.

Getting older is not much fun in some respects. Enter a couple of writer/bloggers Mrs Woog and Mrs Berry with The Hot Flush where they talk about the realities of perimenopause in a highly entertaining way. You learn about their lives and their families, it’s sitting down with a glass of wine and a friend as they make it ok to talk about being hot and cranky.

Dear Prudence is a weekly advice column style show where people write/call in about their relationship problems. It’s sometimes weird, but no question is taboo and Daniel M Ortberg/Lavery and his guests handle the problems of the world with grace, empathy and aplomb.

Note: You’ll note that i don’t have My Favourite Murder on the list, that’s because I don’t like it! I dislike the slavering ‘fan girling’ of serious crime which celebrates serial killers and never really takes a critical look at investigative science,policing, or the politics of criminal justice in America that means many crimes will never be solved.

The reality is most victim centered crime is a lot more mundane and statistically overrepresented by young men against other young men (although domestic violence might be catching up in Australia), not serial killers. If I was a victim of one of the offenders mentioned, and listened to people laughing and joking like this, I would be furious.

Currently listening to:

Culpable
The Dream

Tech journo and writer, based in Berlin, Germany.

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