The British Podcast Awards this week announced its winners. Featuring everything from gripping true crime to hilarious comedy, this year’s entries covered all bases.
We’ve hand-picked our top ten to keep your commutes ticking by and to give you the upper hand in topical debates.
Image Credit: Barthy Bonhomme
1. Ways to Change the World with Krishnan Guru-Murthy
Channel Four News anchor, Krishnan Guru-Murthy, hosts this engaging and insightful podcast. Each week Guru-Murthy interviews a different celebrity, philanthropist or activist, delving into the ways in which they have ‘changed the world’. So far guests have included, activist and actress Jameela Jamil, author Salman Rushdie and singer-songwriter Imogen Heap. 2. Off Menu with Ed Gamble and James Acaster
Another interview podcast but this time with a culinary twist, Off Menu features comedians James Acaster and Ed Gamble. Each episode the pair ask
Even when Annie Lennox is trying to blend in, she can’t help but command the attention of the room. I’m standing in the lobby of the Bowery Hotel for mere seconds before I spot the Scottish rock star, lounging in the back patio amongst other patrons working from their laptops and sipping midday cocktails. She’s sporting the signature bleach-blonde pixie crop she’s been rocking since the ‘80s, an era she helped define as a member of the synth-pop duo Eurythmics alongside David A. Stewart. Buoyed by the runaway success of their 1983 single “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This),” Eurythmics continued to record hit albums and songs like “Would I Lie to You?” and, in a duet with Aretha Franklin, “Sisters Are Doin It (For Themselves).” When the duo parted ways in 1990, Lennox made the transition to a critically acclaimed solo career.
In search of something good to read? USA TODAY’s Barbara VanDenburgh scopes out the shelves for this week’s hottest new book releases.
1. “Wild and Crazy Guys,” by Nick de Semlyen (Crown, nonfiction, on sale May 28)
What it’s about: They were icons who defined a generation of comedy: Steve Martin, Dan Aykroyd, John Belushi, Bill Murray, Chevy Chase, Eddie Murphy. Just to see their names is almost to laugh. Film journalist Nick de Semlyen chronicles this era of comedy with entertaining anecdotes and revelations based on candid interviews.
The buzz: “Fans of Steve Martin, Dan Aykroyd and their wild-and-crazy ilk will find pleasure here,” says Kirkus Reviews.
2. “Stay Sexy Don’t Get Murdered,” by Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark (Forge, nonfiction, on sale
In the summer of 2016, Rachael Denhollander was scrolling through Facebook at her home in Louisville, Kentucky, when she happened upon the cover story of the day’s Indianapolis Star. It was an investigation into U.S.A. Gymnastics, one of the nation’s most prominent Olympic organizations, concluding that for years the federation’s top officials had mishandled allegations of sexual abuse. Denhollander, a lawyer, a devout Christian, and a mother of four, had competed as a gymnast during her high-school years in Kalamazoo, Michigan, as she explains on “Believed,” a podcast from Michigan Radio and NPR that was released last fall. In 2000, when she was fifteen, her mother managed to nab her physical-therapy sessions with Larry Nassar, the celebrated physician for the women’s national team. During their visits to his clinic, Nassar would drape a sheet over Denhollander’s body and, standing so as to obstruct his movements from her mother,
In her bestseller “The Stranger Beside Me”, Ms Rule wrote: “I tried, literally, to save his life.
“I began to phone Washington state agencies to try to arrange something that would allow Ted to confess to me, and, through plea bargaining, to be returned to Washington for confinement in a mental hospital.”
Although Ms Rule worked on trying to orchestrate a plea bargain, Bundy never pled guilty to his crimes, instead maintaining his innocence until his execution became inevitable.
Ms Rule was mistaken in her belief that Bundy would confess to her, too.
On June 2, 1969, the bodies of Elizabeth Perry, of Excelsior, Minnesota, and Susan Davis, of Camp Hill, Pennsylvania, were found 20 feet from each other in the “secluded underbrush” off the parkway just inside the boarder Egg Harbor Township, according to The Press of Atlantic City’s archives.
In Indecent Advances (Counterpoint, June), James Polchin, an NYU professor and cultural historian, examines true crime reports from the early to mid-20th century, showing how newspapers from that era reflected society’s fear of LGBTQ people and villainized victims. PW spoke with Polchin about his research process and how Stonewall changed representations of queer people in the media.
What sparked your interest in true crime reportage involving queer men?
Years ago, I came across these scrapbooks by Carl Van Vechten at the Yale archive. He was a pretty big character of modernism in the 1920s and ’30s in New York and Paris. He collected all sorts of books and records and ephemera. One of his scrapbooks was homoerotic material—photographs he’d taken, drag ball flyers. Interspersed with all these materials were true crime clippings. It was the first time I’d encountered small articles that were coded in their queer