May the Source Be With You: August Edition | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon

May the Source Be With You: August Edition

How to get less overwhelmed by podcasts

Cool, so what you're telling me is that summer is half over, the SAG/AFTRA/WGA strike is still (rightly) going strong and that most of the movies set to release across the rest of this year are getting moved to next year, so pretty soon theaters might not have any new movies to show? Wow. I don't think I properly prepared for any of those things to happen. I guess the one bright spot is that there's so much content out there that if the strike lasts through and past Labor Day, there are a ton of older shows and podcasts to check out before we get some of that new-new.

click to enlarge May the Source Be With You: 
August Edition
Photo courtesy of The New York Times
I could listen to Karen Kilgariff (left) and Georgia Hardstark talk to each other about serial killers for literally ever. And I just might.

But wait! There are literally hundreds of thousands of podcasts to choose from and you're getting anxiety trying to choose which ones to check out? No problem, dear reader. Indecision and panic are my entire wheelhouse, so check out my foolproof system for podcast consumption. This way we can reign in the constant creeping anxiety together!

In Pod We Trust

I know most people know this already, but the podcast market is oversaturated. Like, insanely so. Almost every single actor and comedian has their own podcast at this point, with very few of them actually being worth a listen. I'm a nobody and I've had two different podcasts over the last five years and guest-starred on FIVE!! So, I've decided to be lot more choosy with the podcasts that I listen to by breaking them up into six separate categories and only listening to one podcast from each category at a time.

Here are the categories:

"Legacy:" A podcast that has been around a long time and has a massive, unwavering listener base. Usually my legacy podcast would be "WTF" with Marc Maron, but lately I'm just too exhausted for his brand of cynical humanism, so I'm sticking with "Welcome to Night Vale." Me and Cecil to the bitter end.

"Murder:" I guess you could call it "True Crime," but we all tune in for the murder and you know it. There are definitely more accurate or intensely researched pods, but "My Favorite Murder" still holds this spot for me because I could listen to Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark talk to each other about serial killers for literally ever.

"Fiction:" This is a pretty broad category, but a lot of fiction podcasts either tell very abbreviated stories or have season-long arcs and then fairly long breaks, so you can keep this one pretty fresh and diverse. I just discovered "Holy Shit," a deeply hilarious (and short) binge about two best friends who are at different universities sending each other voice messages. When one of them thinks that their newest hall mate might possibly be Jesus, things get really weird. I don't want to say more, but with only 10 episodes that range around 15 minutes in length, you can find out for yourself pretty easily.

"Funny & Famous:" This is the category of famous comedians/actors talking to each other about dumb shit. I used to jump around in this category too much, but I've been really hooked on the "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" podcast. They aren't recording new episodes during the strike, so now is the perfect time to jump into the 77 episodes they've already recorded. Episode 60 is just Danny DeVito telling stories and it is everything.

"Storytelling:" I fell off of listening to "The Moth" for some reason and never really got back into the storytelling genre. I think ultimately it's the one genre of podcast that tends to always put me to sleep. I haven't reconnected with "The Moth," but I did discover "Grown," a spinoff focused on stories from people's teenage years. As someone who has always felt like I had a really weird and specific high school experience, it has been comforting listening to other people sharing their most awkward stories of growing up.

"Learning Stuff:" This covers such a broad spectrum of podcasts that it gives you a lot of freedom to fill this slot with something cool. Right now I've been hooked on "Louder Than a Riot" which is mostly focused on the marginalization of hip-hop culture in America and how that culture also marginalizes women and queer culture. For a die-hard rap kid like myself, this show is an endless buffet of new perspectives on old ideas that I had never considered.

Now Streaming

Listen to a podcast! Do you not see all that space I spent writing about things to put your ears on?? For the next May the Source Be With You, I'll talk about some of the older shows you can discover while waiting for your favorite new ones to return! Talk to you soon!

About The Author

Jared Rasic

Film critic and author of food, arts and culture stories for the Source Weekly since 2010.
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