Looking to get the chills on a 90-degree day? Perhaps you're dying to fall down the true crime rabbit hole while you work on your tan. Whether you're heading to the beach (sunscreen!) or settling in while the AC cranks, these bone-chilling true crime podcasts will keep you obsessed all summer long.
From 1979 to 1981, Atlanta was terrorized by a serial killer who authorities believe was responsible for the murder of 28 people–mostly children and adolescents. A man named Wayne Williams was tied to two of the murders, and police assumed he was the killer they were after. He was convicted and sentenced to two consecutive life terms. But Williams has long maintained his innocence–in Atlanta Monster, Payne Lindsay reopens this horrific and largely overlooked case for a whole new audience.
This brand-spanking new true crime podcast is obsessed with the intersection between criminality and music. From Classic FM radio, Case Notes has covered strange tales like the story of composer Haydn’s missing head (allegedly stolen by grave-robbers) and the mystery of Mozart’s last work, a requiem for the dead commissioned by a masked man. Fans of the movie The Red Violin or Donna Tartt’s The Secret History will find this podcast right up their alley.
The host of this podcast, Glynn Washington, knows a thing or two about cults: He used to belong to one himself. Luckily for Washington, his experience ended better than 39 other members of the Heaven’s Gate cult, who as a group committed suicide in 1997. The mass-suicide shocked the world. This podcast follows the lives and stories of former members and the families and friends who lost their loved ones that fateful day.
My Favorite Murder
Die-hard true crime fanatics Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark took their obsession with the genre to new heights when they created their own podcast. What began as the two reminiscing over their “favorite murder” has blossomed into podcast gold, though some say that My Favorite Murder is too lighthearted, given its subject matter. The popularity of My Favorite Murder is undeniable–most likely because Kilgariff and Hardstark’s enthusiasm for true crime is contagious.
Coming from the creators of Serial, S-Town had big shoes to fill when it premiered in 2017. But this podcast became wildly popular. A man named John B. McLemore called into NPR and asked them to cover a murder in his hometown of Woodstock, Alabama, which he frequently called “a s—t town,” hence the title. But when NPR sent producer Brian Reed to investigate, it turned out there was no murder. The lack of an apparent crime didn’t stop Reed from creating a fascinating and eerie portrait of both McLemore and the town he said he loathed.
In the Dark
The winner of a Peabody Award, the first season of In the Dark covers the disappearance of Jacob Wetterling, an 11-year-old boy who was kidnapped from his home in St. Joseph, Minnesota. For 27 years, his family had no idea what had happened to him. Then, in 2016, human remains were discovered about 30 miles from the abduction site. It was Jacob. In the Dark asks the tough questions about how and why it took so long to bring Jacob’s killer to justice. The second season of In the Dark, airing now, follows the case of Curtis Flowers, a man who has been tried six times in 21 years for the same crime, by the same prosecutor.
Featured photo via Atlanta Monster
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