One great way to hear the latest on big cases unfolding in the legal world is through podcasts. Reporters and podcasters eliminate the dull legal minutia to bring you the hard facts of each case — in the most entertaining way. With that being said, we’re here to recommend four of our favorite legal podcasts to binge and follow.
We, for one, did not expect to be entertained by a legal podcast that talks about the ins and outs of the legal profession or the field of law, but we can assure you that these podcasts are far from dull. With that, here are four of our very favorite legal podcasts
What is a podcast?
Before we jump into the very best legal podcasts, let us just briefly talk about what a podcast actually is. A podcast, by definition, is a spoken-word audio file that can be downloaded and listened to for information and entertainment, typically in the form of a series of episodes. It has a host that guides the conversation, either in conversational style or as a reporter. Podcast topics range from stories to topic discussions, to nearly anything you can think of.
Recently, crime and legal podcasts have gained mainstream popularity by appealing to individuals who love true-crime and are fascinated with justice and truth. This is where our first podcast, Serial, comes in.
For those who love true crime, Serial (season 1), from the producers of This American Life and hosted by podcast legend, Sarah Koenig, follows the tragic death of Hae Min Lee and her convicted ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed.
Serial has won nearly all major awards for broadcasting, including the DuPont-Columbia, the Scripps Howard Award, and most notably, the Peabody award. If that doesn’t convince you, however, maybe Koenig’s first episode hook will:
“It's Baltimore, 1999. Hae Min Lee, a popular high-school senior, disappears after school one day. Six weeks later detectives arrest her classmate and ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed, for her murder. He says he's innocent - though he can't exactly remember what he was doing on that January afternoon. But someone can. A classmate at Woodlawn High School says she knows where Adnan was. The trouble is, she’s nowhere to be found.”
In this fight for the truth, Koenig interviews countless individuals who were once students at Woodlawn High School and addresses the problematic investigation that took place in this diverse community. Just when you think you have figured it out, Koenig will always throw another journalistic curveball and you will find yourself scratching your head once again. This podcast has earned the reputation of being highly addictive, so don’t start Serial unless you’re prepared to finish it.
Another one of our favorites is the Bloomberg Law Podcast. In this podcast, hosts cover current events in a new and exciting way that defies expectations.
In one of their recent podcasts, they discussed the Free Britney saga that has been at the forefront of the news over the past few months. In this episode, the podcast discussed what lies ahead for Briney and what legalities she has to undergo. The 26-minute in-depth discussion talks were handled by Harry Nelson, managing partner of Nelson Hardiman law, giving listeners an authentic and inside take.
Like this episode, many in the Bloomberg Law Podcast focus on current events that can keep us both up to date and entertained. We recommend jumping into a more recent episode if you want to try it out. Many episodes focus on high profile cases that you may or may not have heard about, but that are ongoing or recently concluded. Needless to say, this podcast will create a law buff in any average listener.
The Slow Burn podcast is another podcast that we certainly love listening to. This podcast is all about history, drama, and political commentary unlike anything we’ve ever heard before. It is a narrative podcast that is produced by Slate Plus, which is a division of Slate Journalism. The first two seasons of the show is hosted by the entertaining Leon Neyfakj and the third season was hosted by sports and entertainment reporter for Slate, Joel Anderson.
If you like history, specifically political history, you will find yourself in awe of the episode of Slow Burn that covered the Watergate scandal. This episode features political analysts who dissect and explain the nuances of the crime in an engaging and entertaining way.
With the six seasons that are already under its belt, the Slow Burn podcast is now with the following conversations under its belt:
Season 1: Watergate (6 episodes)
Season 2: Clinton–Lewinsky scandal
Season 3: Tupac and Biggie
Season 4: David Duke
Season 5: Iraq War
Season 6: Rodney King and the LA Riots
So if any of these interest you, or if you love politics and history and want to brush up on both, we recommend checking out this popular legal podcast.
Another podcast that keeps on giving is—Crime Show. Based on its Spotify brief, it describes itself as “Stories of crimes, told by the people who lived them. Every two weeks.” It is an amazing immersive experience that provides people to hear firsthand
from those who have experienced crime and want to share with others. This is not a podcast that you will want to miss.
Each episode is different with stories from the point of view of victims or from those who have experienced the trial within the courtroom. Regardless, each episode is riveting.
No matter how dark or how creepy the topic is, this podcast knows how to present material that is both realistic and engaging; and, it is truly an experience, unlike one you can merely read about.
We always say that a podcast is an immersive experience. Legal podcasts give listeners the opportunity to understand and become invested in important cases of our past and present, while of course, being thoroughly entertained in the process. Check out these podcasts and understand why we think they are some of the very best.
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