I listen to so many podcasts out there that I have to scroll down on my iTunes feed. They are of varying quality, and a variety of themes and I often find new podcasts through friends recommendations and hearing about them on other podcasts. This was how I found Serial. Series one had me hooked and though series two was good, it didn’t have the same impact.
When I when I heard that the same people who did This American Life and Serial were doing a new podcast, it naturally made its way into my feed and I am so pleased that it did…Needless to say that the rest of this post contains minor spoilers.
In a Netflix style move they released every episode at once, allowing people do one of my favourite things…binge listen, and that was oh so easy to do. I was hooked from the first moment and listened to it over the course of two days, whilst reorganising the craftroom.
The series starts with a man called John contacting our host, Brian, from a small town called Woodstock in Alabama. He is suspicious that local police have covered up a murder, it sounds like we have another murder mystery on our hands. How wrong am I?
As events start to unfold we realise that this is not about a murder, it is about a troubled and fascinating man, called John B, by those that know him. This man from small town America, a man who is disenfranchised with the world around him, a man with an obsession with the bigger picture.
It is a roller coaster of emotions, and nothing is ever quite resolved, life is like that. It seems to be a story of people failed and tragedy, of people who care for each other, of feuds, of lost ways, of a lack of trust and of mystery. I feel like I cannot talk about anything more without some major spoilers, all I can say is go and listen to it and keep your mind open.
It seems that in a way John got what he wanted. His concerns and research have been put our into the world in a way that he could not have done alone. With a built in audience of thousands of listeners and the intrigue at the start of the story, John managed to pull Brian in and give him something to chew on, gave him a reason to listen and, though the story told is ultimately tragic, maybe there is a little hope too. You cannot deny that John’s message is now out there for everyone to hear, and just maybe we will listen.