This Week in Podcasts: 10/15/17 – 10/21/17

This Week in Podcasts a weekly roundup of mini-reviews of all of the podcasts I’ve listened to in a week. If you see any podcasts that you feel are missing from my list, there’s a good chance I haven’t listened to the show yet! Feel free to give me recommendations–as well as any feedback or discussion!–in the comments below, in my asks on tumblr, or on twitter.

This week, I returned from Boston and therefore my hiatus. While in Boston, I visited the Podcast Garage to see a 5 Things event with Hot Pod creator Nick Quah. I talk about this more in Podcast Problems’s brand new newsletter! The newsletter is a weekly email with featured posts, podcast news, musings on the industry, recommendations, and other things that don’t quite fit the blog.

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The Bright Sessions made its return for its fourth season, and I discussed one of my biggest problems with some nonfiction podcasts. I reviewed What’s the Frequency, a fantastic new audio drama, and Glynn Washington’s Heaven’s Gate premiered.


Highlights

Showcase by Radiotopia

“The Polybius Conspiracy #3 – The Cassette”

It’s been a while–since season one of Serial, maybe, or Limetown–that a podcast has made me Google, “Is [show] fiction?” Showcase by Radiotopia‘s “The Polybius Conspiracy” had me search this question not once, but one time per episode so far. “The Polybius Conspiracy” is a nonfiction–I checked–investigation into Polybius, the maybe-real, maybe-myth cabinet of internet fame. Stories about the game say it caused sezures or drove players to suicide, but no evidence of the game’s existence can be found outside of stories. It’s difficult to recommend this podcast without giving too much away. Just know that this showcase is already feeling like what I wanted both S-Town and Rabbits to be. “#3 – The Cassette” had me so stunned my jaw literally dropped several times, and I listened to the episode at least three times in a row while other podcasts remained unlistened.


Pitfalls

Snap Judgment

“Snap #824 – Confessions of a Baby Snatcher”

While both of the stories presented in this episode were good listens, this episode exemplifies one of my biggest problems with Snap Judgment: curation problems. The two episodes had nothing to do with each other, the title only indicated one of the stories, and the tonal whiplash between the two stories was borderline tangible. Snap Judgment always provides good stories; it often doesn’t provide a good, cohesive show, though.

Fave This

“Rick and Morty’s Recent Season Didn’t Have Much to Say”

Everything wrong with this episode, like Fave This‘s last episode, is discussed in my most recent Podcast Problems post.


This Week’s Ratings

Sunday, 10/15/17

  • The Hilarious World of Depression, “John Green Took a Bad Approach to Writing His New Book”: C
  • The Sporkful, “Is a Takeout Burger a Lesser Burger?”: C+
  • Radiolab Presents: More Perfect, “The Heist”: B

Monday, 10/16/17

  • Hello from the Magic Tavern, “Season 2, Ep 31 – Bard, Elf and Fortune Teller (Live from Chicago)”: B-
  • My Brother, My Brother and Me, “MBMBaM 376: Face 2 Face: Shrimp, Heaven, Live!”: C+
  • Within the Wires, “Season 2, Cassette 4: Bardo Museum (1975)”: B
  • The White Vault, “Episode 2 :: Hatchway”: B-

Tuesday, 10/17/17

  • Greater Boston, “Cow-Dacon vs. BBQ  Jackfruit”: B-
  • Beautiful Stories from Anonymous Strangers, “83. The Relaxed Satanist”: C-
  • Join the Party, “Punchbowl: Lauren Bilanko, 20 Sided Store”: B
  • The Moth, “Radio Hour: Me, Myself, and I: Stories of Questioned Identity”: C+
  • Earbud Theater, “After the Haunting Ep 4”: B-
  • Station to Station, “Ep. 5 – Organisational Memory”: B
  • Code Switch, “A Year of Love and Struggle in a New High School”: B+
  • Note to Self, “Play Video Games for Your Mental Health”: B
  • 99% Invisible, “280- Half Measures”: B-
  • Station to Station, “Ep. 5 – Organisational Memory”: B
  • Myths and Legends, “86-Grimm”: Clever”: C+
  • She’s in Russia, “20: Mini Leviathan”: C
  • The Kind Rewind, “TKR 32: Firefly, Season One, Ep 12”: C

Wednesday, 10/18/17

  • Song Exploder, “TOKiMONSTA – Bibimbap”: B
  • Girl in Space, “Human After All – Episode 103”: B+
  • Wonderful!, “Ep. 7: Dog Beach”: B+
  • The Bright Sessions, “41 – Birthday”: B+
  • Spirits, “Episode 47: Sekhmet”: B
  • Imaginary Worlds, “The Haunted Mansion”: B+
  • The Psych Central Show, “Why Do People Believe Conspiracy Theories?”: B

Thursday, 10/19/17

  • Victoriocity, “Even Greater London”: B+
  • The Adventure Zone, “Commitment – Episode 1”: B
  • A Taste of the Past, “Episode 283: Gourmands Way…”: C+
  • Snap Judgment, “Snap #824 – Confessions of a Baby Snatcher”: D
  • The Splendid Table, “641: Gail Simmons’s Key 3”: C+

Friday, 10/20/17

  • Showcase from Radiotopia, “The Polybius Conspiracy #3 – The Cassette”: A
  • Bite, “42 – After Napa’s Inferno, ‘We’re Still Standing'”: B-
  • Fave This, “Rick and Morty’s Recent Season Didn’t Have Much to Say”: D
  • Reasonably Sound, “036 – Put ‘Em Together”: B+

Saturday, 10/21/17

  • Nothing of note

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