10 podcasts to get you through lockdown
Are you a podcast fan? If you answered yes, then you're unlikely to be part of the 17 per cent drop in podcast listening during the pandemic, according to research.
For those who have dropped off, podcasting was something listened to on the long and weary commute to work or while running errands in the great outdoors - in short, part of a lifestyle that no longer exists.
But there are many others who have found comfort in podcasts during periods of quarantine and lockdown, especially if you find yourself isolating on your own. There's a comforting power in listening to other people's voices when you are inside by yourself, with nobody else to talk to.
If you are a dedicated podcast listener still turning to the audio medium during this coronavirus era, here are a few shows you might want to subscribe to.
Looking for things to pass the time? The best shows to watch, the funniest videos, the best hacks and home workouts? Find it all at our Life (goes on) in Lockdown section
JOE EXOTIC: TIGER KING
For anyone who misses: Tiger King
You've watched the Netflix documentary, you've seen the extra episode … Now what? Fans of Tiger King will be excited to learn that there's an access-all-areas podcast now streaming wherever you listen to audio shows, hosted by journalist Rob Moor and featuring interviews with some of the documentary's most colourful characters, including director Rick Kirkham and a juicy conversation with Joe Exotic's light-on-teeth ex-husband John Finlay.
New episodes drop on Tuesdays.
For anyone who misses: Scams
There are five episodes in this fascinating deep dive into Anna Delvey, the titular fake heiress who scammed her way through New York a few years ago.
Her story, splashed in glossy magazines and optioned for miniseries by both Lena Dunham and Shonda Rhimes, has been much-told, but this BBC-produced podcast splices fresh reportage and interviews with reproductions and staged scenes, giving this highly produced podcast an air of ye olde radio dramas of yore.
For anyone who misses: Going to the movies
Will we ever get to buy an overpriced cinema ticket and sit in the plush seats of a multiplex, clutching a watered-down Diet Coke, again? Coronavirus has raised serious questions about the future of the movie industry, and if that causes you even one iota of distress, you might want to download Blank Check.
A long-running podcast hosted by film critic David Sims and actor and comedian Griffin Newman (The Tick), the project began as a deep dive into the Star Wars prequels and now focuses on directors whose early successes have led them to receive blank cheques from film studios to make wild and wacky passion projects, some of which pan out and some of which crash and burn.
Past miniseries have focused on directors including Christopher Nolan, Ang Lee and Nancy Meyers, and this month they're investigating homegrown filmmaker George Miller, and you know what that means? A tonne of hilarious attempts at Australian accents. With five years worth of episodes - many of which run to two hours long - to go through, you'll find plenty to keep you occupied in lockdown.
For anyone who misses: Shopping
Sure, coronavirus hasn't impeded our ability to shop online, but there's a certain kind of thrill in going into a beautiful boutique and having a good old browse. Sophie McComas and Sophie Roberts, the two Sophies who co-host Australian podcast Highly Enthused know this thrill well, given that their show is all about recommendations.
Each week, the pair share things they've bought, watched, listened to, made and otherwise loved over the past seven days, impeccably curated lists of things that you will definitely want to try for yourself. A warning, though, as both are massive foodies, their discussion of restaurants and bars will make you pine, soulfully, for your coronavirus-impacted local.
THE WALKERS SWITCH
For anyone who misses: Yelling about conspiracy theories with your friends
It's been ages since we've had the chance to sit in a pub with our mates and yell about the latest conspiracy theory clogging up our social media feeds. Well, let The Walkers Switch be your much-needed replacement.
This podcast, part comedy and part stunning true crime investigation, wants to uncover whether Walkers - a popular brand of chips in the UK akin to Smiths though, between us, vastly inferior - switched the bag colours of a few of their biggest varieties (Cheese and Onion and Salt and Vinegar) without telling anyone.
Did Walkers hoodwink the great British public? Will they own up to their crime? And why would they lie in the first place? Thrilling stuff.
For anyone who misses: Their work colleagues
Working from home has its positives - pyjamas-as-clothing, endless tea breaks - but one of its major negatives is not getting to have face-to-face interaction with your beloved work colleagues. (Zoom conference calls and Slack conversations just aren't the same, and don't pretend otherwise.)
Locked Together, a brand new Audible original podcast which brings together comedy writing partners including Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, or Sharon Horgan and Rob Delaney to talk about life in isolation, will remind you of just how much you miss that office banter.
For anyone who misses: Office intrigue
The rise and rise and then delirious fall from grace of coworking behemoth WeWork is one of the biggest business stories of the year, and one that is raked over in epic detail in the WeCrashed podcast.
Is there a German word for the feeling of satisfaction you get from listening to this podcast from the comfort of your own home and not a coworking space filled with people in hoodies and treating AirPods like a status symbol? Well, there should be.
For anyone who misses: Going out for dinner
Friends Samin Nosrat, celebrated chef and author of the beloved cookbook Salt Fat Acid Heat and podcaster Hrishikesh Hirway, have responded to the coronavirus lockdown by creating this uplifting series all about eating at home.
Their enthusiasm for cooking, crafting, tasting and dining is infectious, not to mention the fact that each episode is stuffed full of handy tips and recommendations for how to make home cuisine a little bit easier (and more exciting). We might not be able to dine out in our favourite restaurants right now, but this is the next best thing.
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It’s alive!!! @hrishihirway and I made a real live podcast for you! It’s got beans and laughter and a cameo from Hrishi’s dad, as well as a serious discussion about latkes with @joshmalinasjoshmalina. We hope it brings you some comfort and joy today. Trigger warning: there are also A LOT of puns. Like maybe one too many. Link to listen and subscribe above in my profile. 🍅 #werehomecooking
For anyone who misses: Gossiping with your friends
Trashy Divorces does exactly what it says on the tin: this podcast looks at the biggest, baddest, most headline-grabbing divorces in celebrity history. And when we say history we mean it, the podcast has covered the sensational love lives of everyone from Ernest Hemingway and Frank Lloyd Wright to Julia Roberts, Sandra Bullock and Jeff and Mackenzie Bezos.
The two best episodes of this podcast were all the way back in season two - Trashy Divorces is now onto season six, where they've recently taken a look at Tiger Woods' disastrous divorce - when the podcast covered the relationship breakdown of Princess Margaret and Tony Armstrong-Jones and the Brad-and-Jen-and-Brangelina breakdown back-to-back. Enjoy!
THIRST AID KIT
For anyone who misses: Dating
Hosted by writers Bim Adewunmi and Nichole Perkins, Thirst Aid Kit is a smart, savvy and saucy look at the world of thirst. By which we mean the celebrities that we lust over and, crucially, why we lust over them.
This podcast has been running for several years and has produced standout episodes on everyone from Keanu Reeves and Dev Patel to James McAvoy, as well as a must-listen interview with thirst object Chris Evans. (Yes, Captain America himself.) But the real joy of listening to Thirst Aid Kit is the chemistry between its co-hosts, a reminder of how much fun it is to talk about a delicious new crush with your friends.
What are your favourite podcasts? Don't keep it to yourself, share it in the comments below
Originally published as 10 podcasts to get you through lockdown