Fall podcast recommendation list
Aria Meixel, Arts & Entertainment Editor
Podcasts are a fantastic way of filling time between walking to and from classes, driving, or cleaning up your dorm room or apartment. There are thousands of podcasts out there, each one unique in its own way, but if you don’t know where to start, here are some audio dramas that are sure to keep you entertained no matter where you are or what you’re doing.
Welcome to Night Vale
One of the most popular fiction podcasts out there, “Welcome to Night Vale” follows the radio broadcasts of Cecil Palmer, reporter for the small desert town of Night Vale. In this town, though, all conspiracy theories and supernatural occurrences are true. With such popular segments as the Children’s Fun Fact Science Corner, the community calendar, reports on business and traffic in the area, and the weather, this show takes any and all of your expectations and throws them into the hole in the vacant lot out back of Ralph’s grocery store.
The Bright Sessions
If people with superpowers went to therapy, what would they talk about in their sessions? The general public doesn’t know about “atypicals,” so time travelers, empaths, mind readers, and the like find it hard to fit into regular society. Dr. Bright helps them control both their abilities and emotions, but when her own hidden agenda is revealed, things get much more complicated for the lives of her and her patients. Entertaining and thought-provoking, this series is hard not to devour soon after finishing the first episode.
PodCastle produces a different fantasy story each week, each episode beautifully narrated and accompanied by either the host’s thoughts or comments from the author. With over five hundred episodes, it’s easy to find one or many that you’ll enjoy. Some recommended episodes to start with: Episode 554 – Hosting the Solstice, about a family of nature spirits colliding with humanity; Episode 571 – The Guitar Hero, about a pair of hard-rock-loving demon exorcists; and Episodes 579 and 580 – I Am Not I, about a world where humans are evolving, and non-evolved humans are reviled.
Within the Wires
Each season of this show follows a different type of found audio from an alternate reality where the “Society” has completely reformed the structure of families and countries after a cataclysmic event. From relaxation cassettes to museum audio guides to letter dictations, the story of this world unfolds in a mystifying, enrapturing way. With season four coming on September 10th, now is the perfect time to start listening to this captivating story.
Join the Party
Many are intimidated by Dungeons & Dragons, with all its rules and the sheer scope the game covers, but this real-play D&D podcast is both a hilarious, beautiful story and a great way for those who know absolutely nothing about the game to learn about the mechanics. Following a teen assassin, a light-obsessed warlock, and a kind-hearted warforged robot, the team behind Join the Party also hosts Afterparty episodes, where they talk about what happened the episode prior and answer questions from fans. Even for people who have no desire to play D&D, this show provides a wonderful story that anyone can enjoy.