Everybody you talk to has a podcast recommendation. And, if you haven’t listened to the podcast they’ve listened to, it’s an affront.
Wait, hooooooooold up, you haven’t heard S-Town? That show came out like three years ago and you haven’t even listened to one episode? What are you, anti-podcast? Do you even care about the world? Do you even care about ME?
Half of the problem with podcasts is that they’re are so many to listen to. The other half of the problem is that they’re are so many crummy podcasts to listen to.
The little free time you do have to invest in a podcast should not go to enduring shoddy production, longwinded hosts, and episodes that go absolutely nowhere.
So, naturally, it’s hard to take a podcast recommendation seriously these days.
That’s why we turned to great podcasters for their recommendations. Because when a great podcast recommends a great podcast, you should listen, right?
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So we asked a guy behind our favorite show for his top underrated podcast. Then the producer of that series told us her top unsung series, and on went the show.
Men’s Health recommends…
The Hottest Take
A staffer from the sports-and-culture website The Ringer offers a wild opinion and then defends it with vigor for seven minutes. Just a few: Home Alone is not a Christmas movie. Toilets should have foot pedals. No one over 40 should celebrate a birthday. Pop one in if you need a quick work-grind break.
Chris Ryan, editorial director of The Ringer, recommends…
Ryan says it’s “possibly the sanest, smartest, and most slyly amusing politics podcast.” Cambridge University professor David Runciman hosts equally important-sounding guests, but the talks never veer into lecture drone. And they offer what most political podcasts don’t: context.
Catherine Carr, producer of Talking Politics, recommends…
Exponential View with Azeem Azhar
“Azeem is a tech brain with access to some amazing guests,” says Carr. For starters, listen to his 2019 interview with Tony Blair on technology regulation and then check out the Fortnite episode. This is your dinner-party-conversation fodder.
Azeem Azhar, host of Exponential View, recommends…
The Curious Cases of Rutherford & Fry
Geneticist Adam Rutherford and mathematician Hannah Fry tag-team conventional wisdom and common conundrums with the help of authoritative guests. Are humans really the dominant species? Why does food that’s bad for you taste so good? Bonus: Your kids will like it, too, if you have them.
Adam Rutherford, cohost of The Curious Cases, recommends…
Behind the Bastards
“Never has human shittiness been so hilarious,” Rutherford says. Host Robert Evans delivers audio essays about the worst people in history. “There’s a lot of white supremacists, cult leaders, lethal corporations, quack doctors, maniacal despots— but every one is a shitty grifter.” Enjoy!
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