A few years ago, I was taking a 9 hour road trip by myself to visit my sister during a break from work. I typically go with at least one other person, and around hour three, I grew tired of XM radio. At the next stop, I browsed Spotify while pumping gas. I clicked on podcast, having almost no knowledge about the wide and wild world I was about to step into. Up until this point, the closest experience I had with podcast was when a dear friend of mind would listen to The Joe Rogan Experience. I like Joe, and find is content entertaining, but his episodes are so fucking long, that the show doesn’t hold my attention well. Besides, anyone who knows me knows that I like my content a little more dark than what Joe Rogan usually puts out. So, I decided to type in “true crime” to the podcast search, and clicked on one of the first podcasts that popped up. As I pulled out onto the road, Ashley Flowers soothing voice lulled me into driver’s heaven with stories of death and murder. For the next 6 hours, I listened to Crime Junkies. Years later, it’s safe to say that true crime podcasts take up most of my listening time. So, without further ado, here are my most favorite true crime podcasts, ranked in no particular order. All of these podcasts where accessed by me in Spotify, but I believe that they are available wherever you listen to podcasts.
Ok, so I said that these weren’t in any particular order, but the first one that came to my mind was also my favorite podcast. Morbid is hosted by Ash and Alaina, who are related in some way- but I’m not entirely sure how. As far as Vulgar Little Ladies is concerned, Morbid passes the vibe check in all the ways. The girls are clever and well spoken whole also bringing that spicy language that I love. I vulgarity isn’t your thing, honestly wtf are you doing on my page, but also this podcast isn’t for you. They are also inclusive, funny, and informative. There’s a ton of episodes, and even more if you join their Patreon. Their episodes do tend to be a little longer, but the research and preparation they do for each episode absolutely shows, and as the listener, I feel confident that I’m not getting short changed on relevant information. In addition to true crime stories, they do spooky stories and other dark mysteries that will keep you up at night. True crime meets witty banter in Morbid, and I am here for it.
2. Crime Junkies
Life long friends Ashley Flowers and Brit Prawat host Crime Junkies, which was my first love in true crime podcasts. They do a variety of different types of true crime, mainly murder but they do have stories with no deaths. Unlike Morbid, they do keep it pretty G rated as far as language so it is safer to listen to when you are in ear shot of others. One thing that I really like about Crime Junkies, is that they try to focus on stories that need a voice. They intentionally do episode on lesser known cases, cases where the victims are POC, or cases where socioeconomic status played a part. They also share plenty of well known cases to appease their listeners. Ashley Flowers has a ton on other projects, including the podcast Supernatural that has more of a paranormal vibe. I haven’t listened to those as much, but if you enjoy her voice, then they are worth a listen as well.
3. Moms and Murder
It’s exactly what it sounds like. Two moms, Mandy and Melissa joined forced to discuss the joys of parenthood and the horrors of true crime. As someone who cannot talk about murder all day and has to appear normal for my day job, I really appreciate two moms who take a break from dancing to the dreaded baby shark video to talk about brutal cases of true crime. If you want to feel like you’re sitting at a kitchen table discussing murder with some friends, then this is the one for you. They’ve got corny jokes, a ending called “last thing before we go” which feels like a pallet cleanser, other fun segment, and of course shocking cases of crime and murder.
4. Voices For Justice
If you’re super into true crime, then you probably have a case that just sits with you. One that you can’t get out of your head, and that you’d give anything to solve. For me, that case is the mysterious and unsolved disappearance of teenager Alissa Turney. So many reasons that this is a great listen, but one thing that makes this podcast amazing is that you hear the story firsthand from sister Sarah Turney, who is still fighting for justice for her missing sister 20 years later. The main suspect according to Sarah and many involved is her father Michael Turney, which makes the case all the more horrifying. You get a front row seat to the heartbreaking story, which has many different layers and spans over the course of years. Another reason that it is such a good and comprehensive podcast is that first father Michael Turney, then daughter/ sister Sarah makes audio recordings of everything, so you get to actually hear what was said and how it was said. She also does interviews with people who were involved, and shares absolutely everything she can with her listeners. The most remarkable thing about this case is that it is still active, and currently under investigation. Sarah is unable to speak further about this case for now due to new developments and arrests, so like a true saint she is using her platform the help other families get the justice they deserve by doing new cases weekly until she can once again speak on her own case.
Like Voices for Justice, Cold is another podcast that focuses solely on one case. In Cold, we hear about the case of missing mother Susan Powell, and the murder of her two children by a cruel and disgusting man. Unfortunately, the murderer is also the husband and father of the victims, making this case one of the most heinous family annihilator cases that I know of. Josh Powell is a blight on mankind, and he did nothing but cause chaos and heartbreak for those who had the misfortune to know him. I will warn you, this case is not for the faint of heart. Not only does it involve child murder, but it involves manipulation, child pornography, and a whole slew of other disgusting twists and dark turns. it also has the most infuriating 911 call you will ever hear. The host of the show does a great job telling the story in an informative and respectful way, and includes as much audio evidence and different perspectives possible.