Listen In: Best True Crime Podcasts

True crime podcasts have become extremely popular in the last few years. Serial was one of the first podcasts to truly go viral, and since its explosive premier in 2014, producers and hosts have sought to capitalize on the public’s fascination with true crime stories by putting their own unique takes on cold cases, cults, and criminals out there for the public to enjoy. Some podcasts are funny and humorous, while others are seriously intent on their search for justice.

If you’ve been looking for a new podcast to try, we’ve rounded up a list of some of the best true crime podcasts out there today. You can sample them all, but maybe not right before bed.

1. The Last Podcast on the Left

The Last Podcast on the Left is put together by host Ben Kissel, producer and researcher Marcus Parks, and comedian Henry Zebrowski, and their banter and hilarious tangents will have you giggling even as they take you on a journey through the darkest true crime stories in history.

Their focus is on all things dark and scary. Serial killers and cults are two of their favorite topics, although they have been known to cover UFOs and conspiracy theories as well. Their most recent series was a four-part special tracking the development of cult leader Jim Jones. Their episodes are seriously long — generally an hour to up to two hours each — extremely well researched, and hilariously funny.

2. Somebody Knows Something

Put together by CBC, Canada’s national broadcasting company, Somebody Knows Something is an investigative podcast hosted by David Ridgen, who spends each season focusing on one unsolved cold case. Episodes are between 20 minutes and 1.5 hours, and each season generally has 12 episodes.

Ridgen is a great host who balances journalism with storytelling, and each case that he focuses on is compelling in its own way. From the first season, which focused on the disappearance of five-year-old Adrien McNaughton, to the fourth and current season which is investigating the exploding flashlight that killed Wayne Greavette, the podcast keeps you anxiously tuned in.

3. Sword and Scale

Sword and Scale is a true crime podcast that has been steadily producing content on the darkest crimes against humanity since 2014. Each standalone, 60- to 90-minute episode focuses on one story, and tells it using investigative journalism, music, audio clips, 911 calls, and other media to weave together a new picture that may not have been presented publicly before.

Hosted by creator Mike Boudet, the podcast has over one million downloads, and regularly ranks in the top 10 of the iTunes “Science” category. Follow Boudet as he delves into the mind of serial killers, cannibals, and other monsters who walk among us.

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