I, like so many other podcast fans, am in withdrawal. Why? A few weeks ago, the top-rated and top-ranked podcast in the history of podcasting, Serial, ended their 12-episode first season.

While a second season has been promised and is fully funded, no one knows when it will start or what the subject matter may wind up being.

[Image courtesy of Mashable]

In the meantime, we're left in a bit of a lurch. Do we just wait or do we find another podcast to fill our time?

I opted for the latter and my quest led me to Criminal.

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[Sorry about that. Nathan jumped into the middle of the post. I thought it was too cute to not leave it here.]

Anyway, Criminal is less about a single case and focuses on facets of criminal activity. I've listened to four episodes so far out of 13 and really like it. Two in particular captured my attention: Episode 2 "Pants on Fire" about how cops use cognitive interviews as an alternative to lie detectors, and Episode 3 "The Buck Stops Here" all about counterfeiting. In the former, host Phoebe Judge interviewed a psychologist involved with cognitive interviewing and, in the latter, she interviewed a woman who became involved in counterfeiting after falling in love with a guy. So not all about a single case, but actually a bit of lesson on the criminal mentality.

While it may be easy to dismiss this as a Serial knockoff or wannabe, bear in mind that Criminal is seven months older than Serial although it only comes out once a month.

Honestly, that's my only complaint. Once a month is far too long to wait although, as a result, Criminal is released more consistently than Serial. If Criminal could come out once every two weeks and Serial could be stretched out to a similar schedule so both were more regular throughout the year, I'd be a happy podcast fan!

If you haven't already, give it a listen.


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I liked Criminal. Not as much as Serial, but it's good. I've listened to a bunch of the stories and have about 3 left I think (probably finish them up tonight on my way back home).

Oh and Nathan should totally have his own blog now.


I can't imagine what he'd do with his own blog. Oy. 

Kevin Spencer

I think I must be the only one on the planet not to have listened to Serial. Heard so many good things about it.


Go. Listen. Now. 

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