The best podcast shows of 2024 • Discoverology

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Discovering an excellent podcast can be similar to locating an outstanding vinyl album in a music shop. That is to say, the vast array of fantastic choices can be overwhelming and intimidating. Fear not, as we have curated an impressive selection of some of the most captivating podcasts available, deserving of your time and focus. In this instance, we’re examining the finest overall podcasts that are both engrossing and informative.

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Obscene: The Dublin Scandal

Obscene: The Dublin Scandal

In the summer of 1982, two seemingly random killings occurred within the space of days, sparking Ireland’s biggest manhunt. The smartly-dressed suspect, Malcolm MacArthur, was eventually found hiding in the home of Ireland’s Attorney General. His trial lasted seven minutes, and after spending 30 years behind bars, MacArthur can now be seen wandering the streets of Dublin.

Terrible, Thanks For Asking

Terrible, Thanks For Asking

It’s a question we ask (and get asked) all the time: “How are you?” And normally we just respond with “Fine!”. “Terrible, Thanks For Asking” is a show by author Nora McInerny that lets real people get real honest about how they’re really doing. It’s sometimes sad, sometimes funny, and almost always both.

Serial

Serial

“Serial” began in 2014 as a spinoff of the public radio show “This American Life.” Their shows have reached many millions of listeners and have won nearly every major journalism award for audio, including the first-ever Peabody Award given to a podcast.

TED Radio Hour

TED Radio Hour

Exploring the biggest questions of our time with the help of the world’s greatest thinkers. Host Manoush Zomorodi inspires us to learn more about the world, our communities, and most importantly, ourselves.

Spark

Spark

The Spark podcast from CBC, hosted by Nora Young, serves as your essential resource for exploring the digital realm and keeping up with innovative concepts. Listen to regular episodes covering intriguing subjects such as biometric monitoring, resource shortages in the technology sector, and the widespread accessibility of information.

Hardcore History

Hardcore History

In “Hardcore History” journalist and broadcaster Dan Carlin takes his “Martian”, unorthodox way of thinking and applies it to the past. This isn’t academic history, but the podcast’s unique blend of high drama, masterful narration and Twilight Zone-style twists has entertained millions of listeners.

My Favorite Murder

My Favorite Murder

Lifelong fans of true crime stories Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark tell each other their favorite tales of murder and hear hometown crime stories from friends and fans.

The Daily

The Daily

This is what the news should sound like. The biggest stories of our time, told by the best journalists from The New York Times. Hosted by Michael Barbaro and Sabrina Tavernise. Twenty minutes a day, five days a week, ready by 6 a.m.

Stuff You Should Know

Stuff You Should Know

If you’ve ever wanted to know about champagne, satanism, the Stonewall Uprising, chaos theory, LSD, El Nino, true crime and Rosa Parks, then look no further. Josh and Chuck have you covered.

Reply All

Reply All

Reply All is a show about the internet, hosted by Alex Goldman and Emmanuel Dzotsi. Their show first aired in 2014, and nowadays is downloaded around 5 million times per month. It’s a podcast that tells gorgeous, painfully human stories that happen to have bits of technology sprinkled in.

This American Life

This American Life

This American Life is a very popular weekly hour-long podcast produced in collaboration with Chicago Public Media and hosted by Ira Glass. Primarily a journalistic non-fiction program, it has also featured essays, memoirs, field recordings, short fiction, and found footage.

Over The Air

Over The Air

Budget overruns. Bricked devices. Data breaches. Building connected products is hard. Listen every other Thursday for unfiltered conversations with executives about their IoT journeys — the mistakes they made, the lessons they learned, and what they wish they’d known when they started.

Darknet Diaries

Darknet Diaries

Explore true stories of the dark side of the Internet with host Jack Rhysider as he takes you on a journey through the chilling world of hacking, data breaches, and cyber crime.

1619

1619

In August of 1619, a ship carrying more than 20 enslaved Africans arrived in the English colony of Virginia. America was not yet America, but this was the moment it began. No aspect of the country that would be formed here has been untouched by the 250 years of slavery that followed.

13 Minutes To The Moon

13 Minutes To The Moon

Discover the epic stories of Nasa’s missions to the Moon. Season 1: the first Moon landing, Apollo 11. Season 2: the near disaster of Apollo 13. Presented by the BBC’s Kevin Fong.

The Dropout

The Dropout

Money. Romance. Tragedy. Deception. The story of Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos is an unbelievable tale of ambition and fame gone terribly wrong. How did the world’s youngest self-made female billionaire lose it all in the blink of an eye? How did the woman once heralded as “the next Steve Jobs” find herself facing criminal charges and up to decades in prison?

How I Built This With Guy Raz

How I Built This With Guy Raz

Guy Raz interviews the world’s best-known entrepreneurs to learn how they built their iconic brands. In each episode, founders reveal deep, intimate moments of doubt and failure, and share insights on their eventual success. How I Built This is a master-class on innovation, creativity, leadership and how to navigate challenges of all kinds.

Cocaine & Rhinestones: The History of Country Music

Cocaine & Rhinestones: The History of Country Music

The history of country music and some of its icons are explored in this meticulously researched, essayistic podcast series. Even people who have never worn a cowboy hat will enjoy learning about the tawdry and contentious origins of the style.

Cover Story: Seed Money

Cover Story: Seed Money

A Silicon Valley venture capitalist was accused of running a massive sex-trafficking operation by his best bro friend. This podcast unravels the truth about both of them – their business, their break-up, their lies, and their embarrassing text messages. The story of a billionaire with a hero complex, the ex-spy who turned his life inside out, and us, the reporters who got caught up in their macho drama.

Chameleon: Wild Boys

Chameleon: Wild Boys

In 2003, two half-starved brothers emerged from the wilderness, telling an incredible story of survival. A small Canadian community took them in. The only problem? The boys weren’t who they said they were. Hosted by Sam Mullins.

Heavyweight

Heavyweight

Maybe you’ve laid awake and imagined how it could have been, how it might yet be, but the moment to act was never right. Well, the moment is here and the podcast making it happen is Heavyweight. Join Jonathan Goldstein for road trips, thorny reunions, and difficult conversations as he backpedals his way into the past like a therapist with a time machine.

Sympathy Pains

Sympathy Pains

For 20 years, Sarah Delashmit told people around her that she had cancer, muscular dystrophy, and other illnesses. It was all a con. Sympathy was both her great need and her powerful weapon. But unlike most scams, she didn’t want people’s money. She was after something far more valuable.

Sorry About The Kid

Sorry About The Kid

How do you forget your favorite person in the world? Alex remembers everything about the day a speeding police car killed his brother. But his brother, alive? Those memories are lost. And now, 30 years later, Alex wants them back. In this emotional four-part series, Alex unearths his childhood grief — with help from family, friends, and a therapist who witnessed his brother’s death.

Crime Writers On…True Crime

Crime Writers On…True Crime

The original true crime review podcast that looks at other podcasts, TV, and pop culture. True crime authors and real-life couple Rebecca Lavoie and Kevin Flynn hold a pop-culture round table with noir novelist Toby Ball and journalist-turned-investigator Lara Bricker.

Will Be Wild

Will Be Wild

Through in-depth stories from a wide range of characters – from people who tried to stop the January 6th attack to those who took part – hosts Andrea Bernstein and Ilya Marritz explore the ongoing effort to bring autocracy to America, the lasting damage that effort is doing to our democracy, and the fate of our attempts to combat those anti-democratic forces.

Rumble Strip

Rumble Strip

On Rumble Strip you’ll hear from taxidermists, soccer moms, criminals and waitresses. You’ll hear about what people love, hate, fear… and what makes them more like you than you’d realized. Rumble Strip gives you extraordinary stories about ordinary life.

All There Is With Anderson Cooper

All There Is With Anderson Cooper

Anderson Cooper takes us on a deeply personal exploration of loss and grief. He starts recording while packing up the apartment of his late mother Gloria Vanderbilt. Going through her journals and keepsakes, as well as things left behind by his father and brother, Cooper begins a series of emotional and moving conversations about the people we lose, the things they leave behind, and how to live on – with loss, with laughter, and with love.

Slow Burn: Roe v Wade

Slow Burn: Roe v Wade

In the early 1970s, the future of abortion in America was far from settled. Roe v. Wade would change everything, though few knew it at the time. For the seventh season of Slate’s Slow Burn, host Susan Matthews explores the path to Roe—a time when more Republicans than Democrats supported abortion rights.

Dead Eyes

Dead Eyes

Actor/comedian Connor Ratlif embarks upon a quest to solve a very stupid mystery that has haunted him for two decades: why Tom Hanks fired him from a small role in the 2001 HBO mini-series, Band Of Brothers.

Mother Country Radicals

Mother Country Radicals

The Weather Underground Organization declared war on the United States government. They brawled with riot cops on the streets of Chicago, bombed the Pentagon and the U.S. Capitol, broke comrades out of prison, and teamed up with Black militant groups to rob banks, fight racism – and help build a revolution.

Welcome To Provincetown

Welcome To Provincetown

Venture into Provincetown, Massachusetts, a two-street beach town at the end of a sand spit, and meet the fascinating people who live there. Welcome to Provincetown encapsulates stories of artistry, sensuality, solitude, and serendipity. Listen to the sounds of hopes and dreams being carried through the summer breeze, the feeling of letting go, and the feeling of going all in. This is a place where you can find yourself or lose yourself.

HeidiWorld: The Heidi Fleiss Story

HeidiWorld: The Heidi Fleiss Story

How ambitious LA girl Heidi Fleiss rose to become a “Hollywood Madam” in the early 90s, and how she fell at the hands of American sexual hypocrisy. A kaleidoscopic look at sex, drugs, glamour and corruption in Los Angeles.

The Prince: Searching For Xi Jinping

The Prince: Searching For Xi Jinping

Xi Jinping is the most powerful person in the world. But the real story of China’s leader remains a mystery. In this eight-part series Sue-Lin Wong finds out how he rose to the top, and what it means for China—and the rest of the world—now that he has ripped up the rule book to stay in power, perhaps for the rest of his life.

Sounds Like A Cult

Sounds Like A Cult

A podcast about the modern-day “cults” we all follow. Hosts Isa Medina and Amanda Montell ask the culty questions we’re all wondering… Do you think SoulCycle is a cult? What about Elon Musk stans? Or the Royal Family? What about spiritual influencers?

We Study Billionaires

We Study Billionaires

Stig Brodersen, Trey Lockerbie, and Clay Finck interview and study famous financial billionaires, including Warren Buffett, Ray Dalio, and Howard Marks, and teach you what they learn and how you can apply their investment strategies in the stock market. We Study Billionaires is the largest stock investing podcast show in the world with 100,000,000+ downloads.

Pig Iron

Pig Iron

Christopher Allen was trying to make it as a war reporter when, aged just 26, he was shot and killed on the frontline in South Sudan. But as news of his death began to spread, suspicion grew. Some claimed he was really there as a mercenary, a fighter. Others said he was a reckless freelancer, in over his head.

The Rest Is Politics

The Rest Is Politics

Two men who’ve been at the heart of the political world – former Downing Street Director of Communications and Strategy Alastair Campbell and cabinet minister Rory Stewart – join forces from across the political divide. The Rest Is Politics lifts the lid on the secrets of Westminster.

We Were Three

We Were Three

A three-part series from This American Life producer Nancy Updike. When Rachel McKibbens’s father and brother died suddenly, two weeks apart, from Covid, she’d had no idea her father was sick, and no idea her brother was dying.

Wild Things: Siegfried & Roy

Wild Things: Siegfried & Roy

Over the course of nearly half a century, Siegfried & Roy performed 30,000 shows for 50 million people and generated well over $1 billion in ticket sales. Although the German-born illusionists and pop culture icons were mega-famous, much about their private lives, eccentric public personae, and tragic final show remained shrouded in mystery…

Unreal: A Critical History Of Reality TV

Unreal: A Critical History Of Reality TV

Journalists Pandora Sykes and Sirin Kale explore how reality TV shapes our lives and the ethical questions raised by the format, featuring iconic shows and stars.

28ish Days Later

28ish Days Later

What do you really know about the menstrual cycle? India Rakusen explores the whole bloody story, discovering facts that could change your life. Periods are just the beginning.28ish Days Later

Can I Tell You A Secret?

Can I Tell You A Secret?

It starts the same way… A seemingly innocent message from someone who appears to be a young woman: ‘Can I tell you a secret?’ But as this six-part podcast explores, people are rarely their true selves online – and one man took it much further.

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