My Favorite Episodes of All Time

A curated episode list by
Emily Boda
Creation Date November 15th, 2018
Updated Date Updated July 3rd, 2019
 4 people like this

Beautiful Episodes

The Lumineers - Ophelia
Song Exploder
The Lumineers released their second album on April 8, 2016. Their first album went platinum, and they spent months touring relentlessly in support of it. That schedule took a toll on their relationship, but they ended up putting it into their songs. In this episode, Wes and Jeremiah break down their song “Ophelia." You’ll hear their demos and a version that didn’t make it to the album. They’ll explain how the final track is not just a product of what they put into it, but what they decided to leave out. This episode is sponsored by SeatGeek and Lagunitas Brewing Company.
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Emily Boda

beautiful. I loved this song before but now I love it even more
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Baby Blue Blood Drive
Radiolab
Horseshoe crabs are not much to look at.  But beneath their unassuming catcher’s-mitt shell, they harbor a half-billion-year-old secret: a superpower that helped them outlive the dinosaurs and survive all the Earth’s mass extinctions.  And what is that secret superpower? Their blood. Their baby blue blood.  And it’s so miraculous that for decades, it hasn’t just been saving their butts, it’s been saving ours too. But that all might be about to change.    Follow us as we follow these ancient critters - from a raunchy beach orgy to a marine blood drive to the most secluded waterslide - and learn a thing or two from them about how much we depend on nature and how much it depends on us. This episode was reported by Latif Nasser with help from Damiano Marchetti and Lulu Miller, and was produced by Annie McEwen and Matt Kielty with help from Liza Yeager. Special thanks to Arlene Shaner at the NY Academy of Medicine, Tim Wisniewski at the Alan Mason Cheney Medical Archives at Johns Hopkins University, Jennifer Walton at the library of the Marine Biological Lab, and Glenn Gauvry at the Ecological Research and Development Group. Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate. 
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Emily Boda

the whole episode is okay but the story read after the credits is really really good
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BONUS: Leave A Message
Invisibilia
In this story, comedian Cord Jefferson tells a heartfelt personal story and offers up some illuminating science about the power of the human voice. Support for this episode was provided by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention: https://afsp.org/.
I, I, I. Him
Invisibilia
In this episode, we talk to a 74-year-old woman who decides the only way to get over her husband's death is to jump out of an airplane. And to a third generation beekeeper whose entire collection of hives has been stolen - he believes by Russian mobsters. After losing so much can they tell themselves new stories about themselves that allow them to function?
BONUS: The Prayer
Invisibilia
Five years ago, Leena Sanzgiri was living her childhood dream... New York city apartment, job at Vogue, and a boyfriend she planned to marry. Until the July day she woke up in the hospital, and everything changed. Support for this episode provided by Charles Schwab: https://www.schwab.com/.
#50 The Cathedral
Reply All
Amy and Ryan Green’s one-year-old son is diagnosed with cancer and begins an agonizing period of treatment.And then, one night in the hospital, Ryan has a strange epiphany: this whole terrible ordeal should be a video game.
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Emily Boda

I cried while at a food truck listening to this episode... twice.
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Interesting and Informative

#53 In The Desert
Reply All
Strangers keep coming to Mike and Christina’s house looking for their stolen cell phones. Nobody knows why. We travel to Atlanta to find out what’s going on, in our thorniest Super Tech Support yet.Be sure to check out Kashmir Hill's story on Fusion. 
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Emily Boda

What happens when an arbitrary decision by one tech programmer causes all types of desperate people to come to your house looking for people who aren't there? You call Reply All.
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642: The Impossible Dream
This American Life
Before he leaves the Senate for good, Republican Jeff Flake is trying to get a bill passed. He has his work cut out for him, with a Senate that barely brings anything to the floor, a party he feels estranged from, and a president who seems to hate his guts. Producer Zoe Chace hung out with him for four months.
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Emily Boda

awesome episode about the complexities of politics without getting into the partisonship that usually dominates this conversation
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187- Butterfly Effects
99% Invisible
Ballots are an essential component to a working democracy, yet they are rarely created (or even reviewed) by design professionals. Good ballot design is mainly a matter of following good design principles in general—familiar territory for graphic designers, but not … Continue reading →
Alpha Gal
Radiolab
Tuck your napkin under your chin.  We’re about to serve up a tale of love, loss, and lamb chops.  For as long as she can remember, Amy Pearl has loved meat in all its glorious cuts and marbled flavors. And then one day, for seemingly no reason, her body wouldn’t tolerate it.  No steaks. No brisket. No weenies.  It made no sense to her or to her doctor: why couldn’t she eat something that she had routinely enjoyed for decades? Something our evolutionary forebears have eaten since time immemorial? The answer involves mysterious maps, interpretive dance, and a collision of three different species. Support Radiolab by becoming a member today at Radiolab.org/donate.
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Emily Boda

classic radiolab. super interesting science development disguised as a funny and interesting story
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The Gun Show
Radiolab Presents: More Perfect
For nearly 200 years of our nation’s history, the Second Amendment was an all-but-forgotten rule about the importance of militias. But in the 1960s and 70s, a movement emerged — led by Black Panthers and a recently-repositioned NRA — that insisted owning a firearm was the right of each and every American. So began a constitutional debate that only the Supreme Court could solve. That didn’t happen until 2008, when a Washington, D.C. security guard named Dick Heller made a compelling case.

Wild Stories

War of the Worlds
Radiolab
It's been 80 years to the day since Orson Welles' infamous radio drama "The War of the Worlds" echoed far and wide over the airwaves. So we want to bring you back to our very first live hour, where we take a deep dive into what was one of the most controversial moments in broadcasting history. "The War of the Worlds," a radio play about Martians invading New Jersey, caused panic when it originally aired, and it's continued to fool people since--from Santiago, Chile to Buffalo, New York to a particularly disastrous evening in Quito, Ecuador. Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate. 
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Emily Boda

one of my old favorites
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Stereothreat
Radiolab
Back in 1995, Claude Steele published a study that showed that negative stereotypes could have a detrimental effect on students' academic performance. But the big surprise was that he could make that effect disappear with just a few simple changes in language. We were completely enamoured with this research when we first heard about it, but in the current roil of replications and self-examination in the field of social psychology, we have to wonder whether we can still cling to the hopes of our earlier selves, or if we might have to grow up just a little bit. This piece was produced by Simon Adler and Amanda Aronczyk and reported by Dan Engber and Amanda Aronczyk.  Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate.
78. Oot in the Open
The Allusionist
You are born and raised in a household speaking a language. Then you start going to school, and that language is banned. If you speak it, you’ll be punished physically or psychologically. Across your country, there are people like you who associate their first language with shame, or not even being a language at all. This is the predicament of the Scots language. Find out more about this episode at http://theallusionist.org/scots. I have several events coming up – in the next few weeks, the live Allusionist stage spectacular is hitting Australia and New Zealand. Check the listings at http://theallusionist.org/events The Allusionist’s online home is http://theallusionist.org. Stay in touch at http://twitter.com/allusionistshow and http://facebook.com/allusionistshow. The Allusionist is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX, a collective of the best podcasts on the interwaves. Hear all the shows at http://radiotopia.fm. This episode is sponsored by Bombas and Babbel. Get a 20% discount on Bombas’s expertly engineered socks by visiting http://bombas.com/allusionist and entering the offer ALLUSIONIST in the checkout code space. There are fourteen languages you can learn via Babbel, the number 1 selling language app in the world. To get 50% off your first 3 months of Babbel, use the code ALLUSION when you go to babbel.com/allusion.
77. Survival part 1: Second Home
The Allusionist
There are two main places in the world where the Welsh language is spoken: Wales, and the Chubut Province in Patagonia. How did this ancient language take root in rural Argentina, 12,000km away from its home base? Find out more about this episode at http://theallusionist.org/survival1. The Allusionist’s online home is http://theallusionist.org. Stay in touch at http://twitter.com/allusionistshow and http://facebook.com/allusionistshow. The Allusionist is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX, a collective of the best podcasts on the interwaves. Hear all the shows at http://radiotopia.fm. I have several events coming up – live Allusionists and Bugles and the Radiotopia tour. Check the listings at http://theallusionist.org/events This episode is sponsored by Bombas. Get a 20% discount on their expertly engineered socks by visiting http://bombas.com/allusionist and entering the offer ALLUSIONIST in the checkout code space.
325- The Worst Way to Start a City
99% Invisible
Sam Anderson, author of Boom Town, guides us through the chaotic founding of Oklahoma City, which happened all in one day in 1889, in an event called the Land Run. Plus, we talk about Operation Bongo, the supersonic flight tests that rattled OKC residents in the 1960s. Anderson calls Operation Bongo his favorite research discovery of his entire career. The Worst Way to Start a City
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Emily Boda

How do you relate basketball and the founding of Oklahoma City?
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