Best 10 True Crime Serial Podcasts

A curated podcast list by
Creation Date October 13th, 2019
Updated Date Updated May 7th, 2020
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About This List

A must listen list of the best crime podcasts currently available.
  1. Serial is a podcast from the creators of This American Life, hosted by Sarah Koenig. Serial unfolds one story - a true story - over the course of a whole season. The show follows the plot and characters wherever they lead, through many surprising twists and turns. Sarah won't know what happens at the end of the story until she gets there, not long before you get there with her. Each week she'll bring you the latest chapter, so it's important to listen in, starting with Episode 1. New episodes are released on Thursday mornings.
  2. Up and Vanished is an investigative true crime podcast hosted by Atlanta filmmaker Payne Lindsey. In Season 1, Payne tackles his first cold case story, the unsolved disappearance of Georgia high school teacher and former pageant queen, Tara Grinstead. The 11-year-old case remains the largest case file in Georgia history and is still unfolding. Season 2 focuses on the disappearance of young mother Kristal Reisinger from a remote mountain town in Colorado. Up and Vanished aims to tell compelling, true stories and give these cases the exposure they deserve.
  3. When Elizabeth Short, also known as The Black Dahlia, was brutally killed in 1947, it gripped the entire country. More than 70 years later, it remains America's most infamous unsolved murder. Many believe Dr. George Hodel was the killer, thanks to an investigation by Hodel's own son. But murder is just part of the Hodel family story, one filled with horrifying secrets that ripple across generations. Now, through never-before-heard archival audio and first-time interviews, the Hodel family opens up to reveal their shocking story. In this eight-part documentary series, sisters Rasha Pecoraro and Yvette Gentile, the great grand daughters of George Hodel, take a deep dive into their family history to try to figure out what really happened, and where do they all go from here? Root of Evil is the companion podcast to TNTs limited series I Am the Night. Inspired by the true story of the Hodel family, the series stars Chris Pine and comes from acclaimed Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins.
  4. In Feb 2018, an aspiring actress vanished from her Hollywood apartment. Rolling Stone journalist Neil Strauss was asked to help the family get answers. Together, they found them...sometimes at great personal risk. For the first time in a serial podcast, go inside a gripping multi-state investigation as it unfolds from the moment of the disappearance to each twist and turn in the case. Stay not only more informed than the news, but listen as the official story is dismantled with in-the-moment first-hand reporting with the leading figures in the investigation. The new #1 podcast from the team behind Up & Vanished and Atlanta Monster.
  5. Debra Newell is a successful interior designer. She meets John Meehan, a handsome man who seems to check all the boxes: attentive, available, just back from a year in Iraq with Doctors Without Borders. But her family doesn’t like John, and they get entangled in an increasingly complex web of love, deception, forgiveness, denial, and ultimately, survival. Reported and hosted by Christopher Goffard from the L.A. Times.
  6. We’re at our most vulnerable when we go to our doctors. We trust the person at the other end of that scalpel. We trust the hospital. We trust the system.Christopher Duntsch was a neurosurgeon who radiated confidence. He claimed he was the best in Dallas. If you had back pain, and had tried everything else, Dr. Duntsch could give you the spine surgery that would take your pain away.But soon his patients started to experience complications, and the system failed to protect them. Which begs the question: who - or what - is that system meant to protect?From Wondery, the network behind the hit podcast Dirty John, DR. DEATH is a story about a charming surgeon, 33 patients and a spineless system. Reported and hosted by Laura Beil.
  7. Welcome to Crimetown, a series produced by Marc Smerling and Zac Stuart-Pontier in partnership with Gimlet Media. Each season, we investigate the culture of crime in a different city. In Season 2, Crimetown heads to the heart of the Rust Belt: Detroit, Michigan. From its heyday as Motor City to its rebirth as the Brooklyn of the Midwest, Detroit’s history reflects a series of issues that strike at the heart of American identity: race, poverty, policing, loss of industry, the war on drugs, and our universal desire for a savior. Detroit’s a tough town, and its residents are even tougher. They’ve weathered riots, a drug epidemic, political scandal, and innumerable other hardships, but they’re still here—and they have stories to tell.
  8. Two barrels, four bodies, and an enigmatic killer. The cold case that changed the way murders will be investigated forever.
  9. When April Balascio was 40 years old, something she’d feared for decades was finally proven true. Her father, Edward Wayne Edwards, really was a murderer. The Clearing is about what came after April called a detective in 2009 to tell him about her suspicions — a call that led to her father’s arrest and eventual conviction on multiple murders — and tracks the emotional journey as she and host Josh Dean dig back into her childhood, unravel the truth of her father’s life, and overturn a viral online narrative that had turned Edward Wayne Edwards into a kind of serial killer caricature. Produced by Pineapple Street Media in association with Gimlet.
  10. Money. Romance. Tragedy. Deception. The story of Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos is an unbelievable tale of ambition and fame gone terribly wrong. How did the world's youngest self-made female billionaire lose it all in the blink of an eye? How did the woman once heralded as "the next Steve Jobs" find herself facing criminal charges -- to which she pleaded not guilty -- and up to 20 years in jail? How did her technology, meant to revolutionize healthcare, potentially put millions of patients at risk? And how did so many smart people get it so wrong along the way? ABC News chief business, technology and economics correspondent Rebecca Jarvis, along with producers Taylor Dunn and Victoria Thompson, take listeners on a journey that includes a three-year-long investigation. You'll hear exclusive interviews with former employees, investors, and patients, and for the first-time, the never-before-aired deposition testimony of Elizabeth Holmes, and those at the center of this story.

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