While “Serial” certainly helped put true crime podcasts on the map, it isn’t the only chilling and addicting series in the genre. Whether you’re looking to immerse yourself in a cold case or keep up with the details of a high-profile murder, you won’t be able to stop yourself from binging on these investigations.
Here are seven of the best true crime podcasts from 2017:
1. “Dirty John”
In the Los Angeles Times’ “Dirty John,” host and reporter Christopher Goffard serializes the nightmarish relationship between interior designer Debra Newell and her husband John Meehan, a seemingly perfect doctor who slowly entangles Debra and her family into a “complex web of love, deception, forgiveness, denial and survival.” The unsettling, six-part narrative will make you question the lengths we go to for the ones we love.
From the producers of “Serial,” “S-Town” follows host and producer Brian Reed as he investigates the allegedly widespread corruption in “Shitown,” Alabama, at the behest of 49-year-old John B. McLemore, a florid storyteller and troubled horologist. After an unexpected death, the investigation turns into a slow-burning character study of Southern Gothic proportions that will leave you undoubtedly haunted.
3. “Up and Vanished”
In “Up and Vanished,” documentarian and host Payne Lindsey digs deep into one of Georgia’s oldest cold cases: the disappearance of high school teacher and beauty queen Tara Grinstead. During his gripping re-investigation, Lindsey ultimately finds answers to the questions people of Georgia have been asking for more than a decade.
During “Criminal,” host Phoebe Judge highlights stories of those “who have done wrong, been wronged and/or gotten caught somewhere in the middle.” From visiting the “body farm” at Texas State University to figuring out why a medium was convicted under a 200-year-old “Witchcraft Act” in the 1940s, Judge walks you through the oddities of crime in each self-contained episode.
5. “Martinis & Murder”
In Oxygen’s “Martinis & Murder,” hosts Daryn Carp and John Thrasher pull apart the crazy details from some of history’s most notorious murders and disappearances — always with an episode-themed martini in hand. Whether you’re in the mood for stories of bizarre social media violence or high-profile court cases, “Martinis & Murder” will tell everything you need to know about how the crime went down.
6. “My Favorite Murder”
From comedians Georgia Hardstark and Karen Kilgarif, “My Favorite Murder” takes a lighter approach to some of the grisliest crimes in history. Along with sharing their own favorite tales of murder, Hardstark and Kilgarif also cover hometown killings sent in by their “murderinos” fan base, which they produce as mini-episodes.
From the creators of HBO’s “The Jinx,” “Crimetown” investigates the culture of crime in a different American city every season — with the first installment focusing on Providence, Rhode Island, where corruption and organized crime “infected every aspect of public life.” Hosts Marc Smerling and Zac Stuart-Pontier dive into the life of Providence prosecutor-turned-mayor Buddy Cianci and tell a story where “it’s hard to tell the good guys from the bad guys.”
[Photo: Getty Images]