5 More Podcasts That YOU Should Be Listening To

The podcasting is still strong with this one.

You may remember my first post about podcasts; you know, the one where I obsess about how these audio delights are basically my life’s blood. Since that post, my schedule has been totally flipped on its head with a full time job and a 45 minute commute and all. But despite being much busier, I’m listening to podcasts even more than ever–if that’s even possible! Something needs to get me through entering spreadsheet data and standing on the train. The best part is, I’m now sharing my podcast obsessions with coworkers, and they’re sharing theirs right back.

That being said, I now have a bunch of new shows that I tune into. Some I love even more than those on my original list! Here are 5 More Podcasts that I strongly recommend.

 

Gilmore Guys

Who’d like this? Anyone who has a soul. I mean, Gilmore Girls fans; new and old.

Let’s sum it up: two dudes sit around and analyze every single episode of Gilmore Girls. That was enough to get me to listen to it, but in case you need more convincing, a longtime gilly (Gilmore Girls fan), Kevin T. Porter, got his friend, Demi Adejuyigbe (“did you ebay?”) to watch the show for the first time and they meet up to talk, critique, joke, and obsess about it. If you grew up with the GGs, this podcast is a must! And even if you’re watching it for the first time, this is a perfect companion. As someone who’s seen each season numerous times, these bros provide a fresh, funny new perspective. Everyone I know is Team Jess, but Kevin and Demi certainly do not “say yes to the Jess.” Now in the fourth season, the Gilmore Guys have brought this project into the spotlight and have managed to gab with the stars, like Scott Patterson, and showrunners. Even if you’re not a huge gilly, Demi and Kevin are absolutely delightful and I could (and have) listen to them talk, do bits, argue, pun, and sing all day.

The best taste: “Gilmore Gabs – Scott Patterson,” “322 – Those Are Strings Pinocchio (with Jessica St. Clair),” but you should really just start from the beginning.


Lore

Who’d like this? Those who like the thrill of feeling like something is hiding under their bed.

Everyone loves a good ghost story, but there’s nothing as terrifying as a true scary story. Thriller author, Aaron Mahnke, gives you chills down your spine by exposing the truth behind urban legends and the stuff that fuels our nightmares. Although only 20 minutes an episode, this podcast is a work of art. Each episode is meticulously researched and beautifully told. Seriously, Mahnke’s voice is enough to haunt you in itself. These stories will stay with you long after you hear them. Especially “The Castle;” I’ve never stared at my iphone muttering “uh, what?!” so much in my life.

The best taste: Episode 8: The Castle,” “Episode 6: Echoes,” “Episode 2: The Bloody Pit


#Millenial

Who’d like this? The twenty-something year old who wants to change the world.

#Millenial (the hashtag is silent) is more than just a podcast; they strive to be a community. A crazy, brazen, outspoken community. On the surface level, #Millenial is a current events podcast hosted by four friends in their mid-20s, covering everything from pop culture to politics through the eyes of today’s young adults (I just sounded very “get off my lawn” saying that). But if you like what you hear, you can go down the #Millenial rabbit hole by joining their Patreon account to get bonus “afterdark” episodes, exclusive content, blog access, host challenges, and lots of other perks. Being a #Millenial is like being part of an exclusive club! Even if you don’t want to be part of the Patreon community, the podcast itself is worth your while. Each hosts brings a different background to the table, educating each other and the audience about what you should know in the world. One commenter even went as far as describing it as filling the void of the Colbert Report. Those are some pretty heavy words.

The best taste: Episode #19: Taboo” (Trigger Warning), “Episode #23: =,” “Episode #13: The Floval Office


Mystery Show

Who’d like this? Those who ponder the great questions of the world, like how come melted frozen yogurt is not regular yogurt?

If there’s something wrong in the neighborhood, who you gonna call? Starlee Kine, of course! There is literally nothing too small for her to investigate. No really, the mysteries she sets out to solve are those that are so small that you can’t even google the answer. Mysteries such as “when and why did that video store close?,” “whose belt is this?,” “what does that license plate mean?,” or “how tall is Jake Gyllenhall really?”Starlee goes to great, sometimes extreme lengths to find a satisfying answer because she knows that these questions mean a lot to the person asking them. On her quests, Starlee’s ingrained curiosity and sunny disposition also touches the lives of those she interacts with. This podcast will brighten your day and open your eyes to the everyday world around you.

 

The best taste: Case #5 Source Code,” “Case #2 Britney,” “Case #3 Belt Buckle


Mortified

Who’d like this? Those who are freaks, those who are fragile, and those who survived.

This podcast makes me deeply regret that I didn’t document my bizzare antics better while growing up. You may have heard of the Mortified Movement, a project in which adults reflect on their adolescent selves. This is a continuation of that sweet, sweet schadenfreude. Each episode, someone shares their hilarious childhood writings in front of a live audience. This may be super embarrassing, but you come to realize that EVERYONE was their own special brand of weird loser when they were younger. Instead this podcast helps you appreciate how your childhood made you who you are today.

The best taste: “15 Tynan: Peace! One Luv!,” “20 Lizzy: My Semester in South Africa,” “16 Brooke: I Was a Teenage Witch”


Enjoy this new round of fabulous podcasts and hopefully you’ll find your next favorite among them!

 

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Game of Thrones Podcasts :: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Can you believe it?! The halfway point of Game of Thrones Season 5 is already here. And things are bigger, badder, and crazier than ever! Over these five seasons, we’ve met so many larger than life characters, traveled to new lands, and been entrenched in devious plots and motives. Even for the biggest fan, things can get a bit confusing. How does this superfan keep things straight? Well, it’s no secret that I LOVE podcasts, and it just so happens there are hundreds of GoT recap and theory podcasts out there. By tuning in after each episode, it really helps to refresh what just happened and make insane predictions for what that means. Unfortunately, with a zillion of these podcasts out there, there are bound to be some that aren’t pulling the weight of this epic series.

So naturally, some research had to be done.

Since I have an abundance of free time, in addition to catching up with some tried and true recaps, I listened to the past few episodes of the ten most popular Game of Thrones podcasts on iTunes. Some were hilarious, others informative, one mind-numbingly boring, and some made you wonder how why they were even recording a podcast if they couldn’t even keep track of the names of major characters. What was most important to me was knowledge and enthusiasm. Do the hosts know what the hell they’re talking about? They better. Can they help make sense of the narrative—why did the showrunners decide to do that? Can they enhance the story even more through book knowledge? Do they actually enjoy doing all this? Hopefully these reviews will help you decide which ones to delve into and which ones to avoid like greyscale. As the next half of the season builds up steam and shit starts to hit the fan, you’re going to be glad you have them.


A Cast of Kings

Hosts: David Chen and Joanna Robinson

Spoilers: No! And they’re really conscious to give listeners who want to stay pure that experience.

Knowledge: 4 out of 5

Enthusiasm: 5 out of 5

A Cast of Kings is one of my go-to sources for all things A Song of Ice and Fire. Joanna Robinson is the encyclopedica book reader and David Chen is the voice of the naïve show watcher (not that all show watchers are naïve, just clueless David). Because of this dynamic, these two don’t just review everything in the episode, but make it so much more. Any question you may have, David is able to think of it and ask it and Joanna is not only able to provide a satisfactory answer, but also provide lore from the book that makes the worlds of Westeros and Essos much more tangible. This is the only GoT podcast that I’ve listened to that aims to bring book readers and show watchers to one happy, coexisting space. Yet, they make an extremely honest effort to not spoil anything beyond what has aired. My god! Joanna Robinson is a saint for resisting all the foreshadowing and internet conspiracy that she knows! Joanna and David also have deep experience in film and entertainment, so they’re able to shed light on the production value and directing of each episode.  A Cast of Kings is fun, informative, and absolutely crucial to your Game of Thrones watching experience.

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 Gold Dragons


A Storm of Spoilers

Hosts: Joanna Robinson, Da7e Gonzalez, and Neil Miller

Spoilers: Absolutely

Knowledge: 5 out of 5

Enthusiasm: 5 out of 5

In conjunction to A Cast of Kings, Joanna Robinson also cohosts this no holds back spoiler podcast. Nothing is off limits for Joanna, who has read all the books multiple times, Neil, who has read all the books and fallen down the rabbit hole of internet forums, and Da7e (yes, that’s his name), who hasn’t read the books, but is eager to know all there is in this universe. Storm of Spoilers is A Cast of Kings on crack. They’re not so much as interested in recapping the episode as they are taking it, flipping it on its head, dissecting it, comparing it to the books, coming up with ludicrous theories, and sadly, determining who’s probably going to die by the end of the season. This is the true superfan’s podcast!

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 Vengeful Aryas


Game of Thrones: The Podcast

Hosts: Jim and A. Ron of Bald Moves

Spoilers: Sometimes, it depends on what broadcast you listen to.

Knowledge: 3 out of 5

Enthusiasm: 3 out of 5

This Bald Moves podcast delivers a pretty solid recap, but doesn’t expand upon George R.R. Martin’s world like some of the better ones do. What makes this one special is the many different perspectives they have to offer. There’s the Instant Take, where they give their immediate feedback to the episode, the regular spoiler-free episode, and the SpoiLORE episode, in which A. Ron goes balls to the wall with theories. Another thing I really like about this cast is how involved they are with listener feedback. A pretty large section is devoted to reading and answering listener questions. This well-worth the listen if you have time, but if you don’t there are more enthusiastic and fanatical ones out there.

Overall Rating: 3 out of 5 Direwolves


Game of Thrones: Tower of Babble Breakdown

Hosts: Daniel D’Souza and Julian Meush

Spoilers: I don’t think so…

Knowledge: 3 out of 5

Enthusiasm: 1 out of 5

By the old gods and the new! This podcast was soooo boring! Could they be any less excited about what they’re talking about? I tried listening to two episodes, but ended up spacing out halfway through both of them. From what I got, the two hosts seem to have a basic knowledge of GoT lore, but nothing more than surface level of the episodes. If you want a recap, you’re better off just rewatching the episode instead of listening to this.

Overall Rating: 2 out of 5 Iron Island Kingsmoots


Game of Owns

Hosts: Zack Luye, Micah Tannenbaum, and Eric Scull

Spoilers: Yes, but they try not to be obvious.

Knowledge: 4 out of 5

Enthusiasm: 4 out of 5

I listened to three whole episodes before it clicked. These are some familiar voices from Mugglecast, a Harry Potter podcast, and another one of my favorites, #Millenial! So naturally, the bar was set very high. But Game of Owns totally delivers! All hosts are highly entrenched in the show, and it seems that at least one of the hosts has read the books multiple times and serves to bridge that gap. Out of all the podcasts I’ve listened to, Game of Owns cuts the deepest into the events of the show, however, because so much detail is paid towards it, they have to cut each tv episode into two podcast shows. I just want to listen to everything at once! But by far my favorite part of this cast is the Owns; listeners write in to contribute the most badass character of the previous episode. Game of Owns is a great mix of comedy and knowledge, and I can’t believe it wasn’t part of my listening repertoire beforehand!

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 Badass Sand Snakes


 A Game of Thrones Podcast from LSG Media

Hosts: Jessica and Dean, whoever the hell they are.

Spoilers: No, they can’t even get character names right.

Knowledge: 1 out of 5

Enthusiasm: 4 out of 5

Whoof, this podcast is a hot mess. But what they get devastatingly wrong, is made up for with enthusiasm! That’s what really counts…? Seriously though, if you’re looking to learn more about Game of Thrones, don’t listen to this podcast; they can’t keep any of the characters straight, have forgotten what happened in past episodes, and future predictions are just insane. Not to mention, what annoys me the most is that they’re not Team Tyrell. Come on! Margaery is packing all the punches and Mace is a comic genius. One plus is that they realize that this is obviously a mature show and likewise, their audience has no problem with tits and wine, so they deliver the bawdiness that should be expected. Other than that, it’s a basic biddy talking about her lady boner towards Littlefinger (ok, ok, I don’t blame her).

Overall Rating: 2 out of 5 King Joffreys (whom we love to hate)


 

Afterbuzz TV’s Game of Thrones Aftershow

Hosts: Various

Spoilers: Yes + Insider Info

Knowledge: 3 out of 5

Enthusiasm: 4 out of 5

Out of all the podcasts I listened to, The Game of Thrones Aftershow probably has the biggest production value of the bunch. It is part of a larger platform called Afterbuzz TV, which provides aftershows for hundreds of shows, but just because it isn’t a passion project coming from someone’s basement, doesn’t mean that these hosts aren’t any less of superfans. A shifting group of hosts unfortunately doesn’t foster an intimate connection to the voices in your ears, but it offers many different perspectives so you’re not constantly in the same mindset. I also enjoy how they choose to get into the mind of characters, determining why they would do something as people, as opposed to that’s just how the show runners wanted it to be. Because of its larger network, the Game of Thrones Aftershow is also able to bring you video in addition to the podcast, as well as interview cast and crew from the show. On the most recent episodes, one of the hosts had just returned from the set! This is the podcast for those who are not just interested in what happened on the show, but what goes into making an entire series.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 Valyrian Steel Swords


Game of Microphones

Hosts: Grace, David, and Jason

Spoilers: Yes

Knowledge: 4 out of 5

Enthusiasm: 3 out of 5

Another very solid, enjoyable podcast! If I could give it a distinct vibe, I’d say Game of Microphones is the GoT podcast that caters towards the older crowd. I have no solid facts to back that up; I can’t even recall if they said anything specific to make me think that way. Some of the others feel very distinctly hosted by millennials for millennials, but this one seems like hey, the kids are in bed, let’s enjoy some sexy medieval fantasy too! Two of the hosts are book readers, giving the discussion a strong foundation, and all have keen enough minds to read deeper into the events of the episode. What makes Game of Microphones unique is that instead of covering each event in the order they happened in the show, they count down their top five insane GoT moments to talk about. If you want a no frills, straight to the meat podcast, this one is for you.

Overall Rating: 3 out of 5 Kings in the North


Podcast Winterfell

Hosts: Matt Murdick and Friends

Spoilers: Yes, but only in the second half.

Knowledge: 3 out of 5

Enthusiasm: 3 out of 5 

Sports radio for Game of Thrones fans! I have to admit, when the show opened, I had my doubts about this podcast; here were a bunch of dudes with heavy New York accents, some talking through the grainy call-in of a phone. I thought oh no, this is going to be a testosterone-fueled commentary on boobs and violence. Good news! Not even close! In this round table discussion, half of which is spoiler-free, half for book readers, the hosts are surprisingly intuitive and knowledgeable. In addition to their regular recap show, they have a separate live call-in show, where listeners and fans can call in and join in on the discussion. The whole thing is strongly reminiscent of driving around with my dad and listening to sports talk on the radio, only instead of football, they’re talking about the Night’s Watch and dragons.

Overall Rating: 3 out of 5 Dothraki Khalasars


Boars, Gore, and Swords

Hosts: Ivan Hernandez and Red Scott—supposedly standup comedians.

Spoilers: No. They don’t know squat.

Knowledge: 2 out of 5

Enthusiasm: 2 out of 5

Ugh, this was the worst! More like “bores,” gore, and swords. Am I right? They basically talked about everything EXCEPT Game of Thrones; the new Star Wars, Speed Racer, name dropping random people and actors I don’t know. And when they finally did talk about the show, they butchered names and doled out misleading and wrong information. This was terrible, avoid!

Overall Rating: 1 out of 5 Manhoods Chopped Off and Fed to the Goats


Does anyone listen to GoT podcasts? What are some of your favorites? Do you disagree with my ratings?—If so, TRIAL BY COMBAT!

5 Awesome Podcasts for the Flirty, Dirty, and Nerdy

Alas! The Golden Age of Podcasts has dawned!

On the treadmill, stuck in traffic, or pushing tedious paperwork, people are plugged in to the vast network of amazing podcasts. Of course they’ve been around since the dawn of iTunes, but thanks to the unprecedented hype of WBEZ’s true crime investigation, Serial (which is addictively mind blowing, btw), they’ve exploded in popularity. Personally, my week revolves around them! If I’m not learning something, I feel like I’m wasting time. Podcasts fill that time, and my brain with yummy tidbits of information.

So what makes podcasts so great? They’re TV shows for your ears! I hesitate to say movies for your ears because they are predominantly part of a reoccurring series. Like watching dramas? Tune into an installment of a continuing story, like the much raved about Serial. Stay up to watch late night talk shows? Get your celebrity fix from the godfather of podcasts, the Nerdist Podcast. Maybe docuseries are more your thing? Learn something with Invisibilia. Basically there’s something for everyone. And I mean EVERYONE; even the UFO conspiracy theorists out there.

Now that I have you convinced (or am just preaching to the choir), you’ll quickly realize that there are thousands upon thousands of podcasts out there. Where on earth should you start?! How do you know what’s good? Well, I’ve compiled a list of a few of my absolute favorites, and if you’re like me (a millennial geek girl who watches too much TV and has feminist tendencies), I guarantee you too will fall in love with at least one, if not all, off these podcasts!

Pop Culture Happy Hour

Who’d like this? The intellectual pop culture junkie.

Have you ever wished your college was like one of those cool colleges that offered courses on Harry Potter philosophy or the art of Lady Gaga, but unfortunately went to a stuffy Catholic liberal arts school that thought reading Plato was a good time? NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour will make up for that. Get ready for highly scholarly conversations about the ever-evolving nature of rock n’roll, what exactly makes a sequel successful, and just why the Grammy’s don’t really matter anymore. Any fan of books, movies, music, TV, comics, and video games will find this podcast fascinating, but what really solidifies it as one of my personal faves is its perfectly cast panel of experts. Fellow geek girl Linda Holmes leads the discussion with best friend (and I’m convinced secret lover) Stephen Thompson, the mastermind behind NPR Music, and my personal favorite, the cantankerous curmudgeon Glen Weldon, who has been voted most likely to yell “Get off my lawn!” After listening to a few episodes, you can earn your PhD in pop culture, or at least show your friends up at any party.

The cast of Pop Culture Happy Hour.

The best taste:Anniversaries and Kids Entertainment That Stands the Test of Time,” “A Grammy Postmortem and Reality TV in Middle Age,” “A New Definition of Smaug-ness: Movie Sequels and Christmas Music


Stuff Mom Never Told You

Who’d like this? The historically-minded feminist.

This podcast may be ladycentric, but everybody—male or female, old or young, feminists in training or those seasoned in theory—can learn a thing or two from it. Brought to you from the How Stuff Works flagship, hostesses Cristen and Caroline make history, science, relationships, and culture incredibly accessable. Seriously, they can make the most sobering of subjects such as stalking or ebola light and entertaining. Like Pop Culture Happy Hour, this podcast takes the most unassuming subjects and turns them into thesis level studies. Who knew undies had such a long history or that tween music fans control the politics of music. Whenever I see a new episode from SMNTY on my feed, it is the first thing I listen to. I just can’t concentrate knowing it’s waiting for me. Then of course I run off to blabber about what I just learned to everyone I meet. I’m cool like that.

The best taste: Why Take Taylor Swift Seriously?,” “Why Do Women Join Cults?” “Craft Beer Brewsters,” “The Friendzone

Cristen and Caroline of SMNTY.


The Dead Authors Podcast

Who’d like this? Lit lovers, comedians, and time travellers.

Here it is; the podcast that got me into podcasts! Ok, imagine this… science fiction author H.G. Wells uses his infamous time machine to go back in history to bring other renowned authors to modern Los Angeles where they’re interviewed in front of a live audience. Now imagine that H.G. Wells has an intense rivalry with Jules Verne, the apostles of the Gospels are wisecracking frat boys, and William S. Borroughs has a hilarious case of “paul-io” (probably the funniest thing I’ve ever heard). And to top it off, our host, H.G., is played by legendary comedian Paul F. Thompkins, joined by famous funny friends including Kristen Schaal, Andy Daly, Fred Armisen, John Hodgeman, and Nick Kroll. Depending on how the guest interprets their author (some get completely into character, others keep their comic persona), episodes can be a hit or miss. But the ones that are a hit… oh gawd… I could laugh myself into a coma.

The best taste: Chapter 26: William S. Borroughs, featuring Kurt Braunohler,” “Chapter 32: E. Gary Gygax, featuring Chris Tallman,” “Chapter 8: Aesop, featuring Mark McConville

Paul F. Thompkins as H.G. Wells interviewing Jason Mantzoukas as Plato.


Guys We F#@$!d

Who’d like this? The loud, the proud, and those who are looking to have a good time.

I LOVE these ladies! Touted as the “Anti Slut Shaming Podcast,” New York comedians Krystyna Hutchinson and Corrine Fisher interview, yes, the guys they’ve f#@$!d. And it’s hilarious! It all started as a coping method to deal with a particularly nasty breakup and has evolved into a celebration of sexuality and the diversity of relationships. They’ve also gone from sitting down with past sexual conquests to talking to men and women of all backgrounds; from those in sex work all the way to complete virgins. Krystyna and Corrine are hysterical and raunchy, yet also very sincere and extremely engaging with their followers. I sooo want to be their best friend. Each episode is guarenteed to be a fun time, but you might want to consider listening to it in the privacy of your headphones.

F#@$!ers Krystyna Hutchinson and Corrine Fisher.

The best taste:Shane S: What’s a Sex Talk from Dee Snider Like?,” “She Got Slimed? with Danny Tamberelli,” “Are You 50 Shades of Fucked Up?


The Moth

Who’d Like This? Storytellers, dreamers, and those who subscribe to Humans of New York

Everyone has a story to tell, no matter how big or how small. Sometimes those stories are funny, sometimes they’re sad; they can be inspiring, sentimental, heartbreaking, or quirky. But they will all stick with you hours after you hear them. The Moth Podcast is comprised of exerpts taken from The Moth Storytelling events, live shows that showcase the human experience. The greatest part is that these storytellers are no professionals; they are average people like you and me who want to share what they have gone through. And I’m certainly glad they did!

The best taste:Prom,” “Flight,” “My First Story


You certainly have a lot of listening to do. What are you waiting for? Get to it!

~ Erin