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Podcast Recommendations for Serial Addicts

Editor’s note: Jenny Benevento helped select our top podcasts of 2013 and recently published this guide to her own website. She kindly gave us permission to republish it.

So as you might know, I love podcasts (so much so I have my own!).  Like everyone you know, I  enjoy the podcast Serial, which you either binge listen to or wish people would shut up about.  I’ve heard it called The Wire of podcasts, and that’s a pretty accurate assessment–addictive Baltimorean crime drama…but true!

Since Serial is ending next week, I’ve been looking for similar podcasts.  I love true crime and figured there must be something else in that genre out there.  And boy did I find a whole bunch of lists recommending podcasts that claim to be like Serial.  On just the first page of a google search I found this and this and this and this and this and thisand this and this and this.  And I found most of these lists really lacking.

Because in addition to a podcast addict I am a librarian and thus I literally took classes on how to recommend books to people based on what they liked about another book.  And the recommendations in these lists were for great podcasts I loved, podcasts it’s easy to binge on, but podcasts that have nothing in common with Serial.  That’s bogus.  

If someone likes Harry Potter you don’t recommend them John Grisham just because both happen to be popular binge reads.  Podcasting has a “captive” audience of podcast lovers waiting to get a good recommendation and we’re not even giving them anything relevant to feed their love of this burgeoning medium.  This cannot stand!  What none of these lists take into account is WHY someone likes Serial.  So I fixed it.  I give you a list based on reasons you might like Serial.

Podcasts in bold are those that were recommended by several sources.  Italic are ones with my personal recommendation.

Serial related

First, a couple of podcasts ABOUT Serial that you can check out to keep it going:

True Crime Podcasts

If you liked Serial because you love Forensic Files and Law & Order you might like….

People discussing shameful/hard to believe true stories

There are SO MANY podcasts like this, so if you like Serial because people talk about secrets and shameful things, you’re in luck.


Do you not give a fig about whether the story is true or not but just love suspense and a spooky atmosphere?  These are for you.

Please include any other suggestions in the comments and I will add them!

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