investigative

Podfluence True Crime Tuesday: The Case

The Case Season One: Boston

If you aren’t familiar with Kirk Minihane, a quick Google search will present you with a variety of search results highlighting his career in podcasting. I can summarize those search results quickly for you. Kirk Minihane is a podcasting and radio legend, who is well known for his raw, uncensored commentary on everything from sports to politics and pop culture. Although this is Kirk’s first true-crime podcast, it is not his first piece of investigative journalism. In 2018, Kirk unearthed a groundbreaking story about how Kevin Cullen of the Boston Globe falsely claimed to be at the site of the Boston Marathon Bombings. Since that article was published, it was only a matter of time until Kirk put his investigative skills to work again. 

 

 

Kirk lets us know his intentions for The Case within minutes of the first episode: “This is not a true-crime podcast, this is an investigation.” He’s clearly someone that has familiarized himself with true-crime podcasts and identified what works well and what doesn’t work for listeners. The Case is jam-packed with interview snippets from journalists who covered the case, and friends and family members related to the subject of the case. 

Kirk mentions early in the first episode that he had a desire to start a true-crime podcast, and outlines some of the criteria for the case he selected. He wanted to keep it local to Massachusetts, a state that he grew up in and has lived for most of his life. After exploring several cases he finally landed on a cold case that he had never heard of before. In Season 1 of The Case, Kirk and his producer Steve, explore the story of a missing teenage girl, Jennifer Fay. Jennifer Fay went missing on the night of November 14th, 1989 in Brockton, Massachusetts. Jennifer was your typical, playful, 80’s teenage girl that was the life of everywhere she went. For years police considered Jennifer a runaway, but Kirk quickly flips that theory on its head minutes into The Case’s first episode. 

The first season of The Case is an eight-part investigative true-crime podcast that will explore and investigate the case of Jennifer Fay. The first episode clocks in just under 45 minutes and sets the precedent for The Case to become one of the best new true-crime podcasts. In just hours after the launch of The Case, it climbed to a top 10 spot across all podcast genres. The Case is poised to be one of the best podcasts of 2021. The combination of Kirk’s tenacity and dedication to the truth of the Jennifer Fay case make this a podcast you do not want to miss. 

Check out the case on Barstool Sports, Twitter, and Instagram. Let us know what you think in the comments below. 

Podcast Review: Down the Hill: The Delphi Murders Podcast

DOWN THE HILL

Down the Hill is a ten-episode podcast produced by HLN TV and hosted by Barbara Macdonald  and Andrew Iden  The podcast features The Delphi Murders– the story of Abigail Williams and Liberty German, two friends who went out for a hike on an unseasonably warm day on February 13th, 2017 in Delphi,  Indiana. The case takes place in Delphi  a small suburb of just under 3,000 people. Delphi is the quintessential reminder of the small-town USA, a place where many of us can call home. Delphi is also a disturbing reminder that there are real monsters among us.

Down the Hill

The case remains unsolved, but the podcast is a platform for detectives and family to engage the public. Besides being one of the best podcasts, it’s also an opportunity to see if you can help. The beginning of each episode begins with a recording that one of the victims took—where the offender told them both—”To Go Down The Hill”. The website lays out the case file, along with information about who you can contact. Four years later and with 50,000 tips—they are asking for your help.

I do not want to discuss the case too much out of respect for the victims. It only happened four years ago and is an on-going investigation. Honestly, its fucked up. But, unlike other unsolved cases, the local police engaged the FBI almost immediately.

The podcast itself is an excellent piece of journalism. Barbara and Andrew are engaging hosts and push to understand what happened that day and a possible suspect.  The episodes follow the case chronologically and include interviews with friends, family members, and law enforcement. The production and audio quality are both of high standard, thanks to Dan Szematowicz.

Down the Hill is a great podcast to binge on and one of the best true crime podcasts out there. Give it a download and see if you can help solve the case. There is a monster out there, and the more attention given to the case increases the chances the suspect will be apprehended. If you enjoyed the podcast, be sure to check out the special that just dropped on HLN  This is a two-part special just aired on Sunday and Monday of this week.

We have our playlist below along with a link to Spotify podcast. Be sure to check out our other podcast pics for binges and for this month

Podcast Review: The Clown and the Candyman

Two serial killers, Dean Corll and John Wayne Gacy, thousands of miles apart, brutally murdered over 60 teenage boys. The police said the murders were the work of these sole deranged killers, but for the first time we reveal that they were actually connected by a network of pedophiles which was partially financed by prominent members of American society. This is America’s sordid secret.

Podcast Review: THE APOLOGY LINE

If you could call a number and say you’re sorry, and no one would know…what would you apologize for? For fifteen years, you could call a number in Manhattan and do just that. This is the story of the line, and the man at the other end who became consumed by his own creation. He was known as “Mr. Apology.

Podcast Review: Crawlspace

Crawlspace

Missing Maura Murray first launched in July of 2015. The podcast became one of the best true crime podcasts. Tim Pilleri and Lance Reenstierna’s instantly became podcast gurus and created a platform for Maura Murray’s investigation. But as you can imagine, they wanted to branch out from just covering the case of Missing Maura Murray. In 2017, they decided to launch their second podcast: Crawlspace. Crawlspace continues Lance and Tim’s deep dive into missing person cases, murders, robberies, and other mysteries.

It’s important to note that Lance and Tim’s chemistry oozes out of earbuds on your first listen. Besides the chemistry between, one of my favorite parts of Crawlspace is the variety of cases and topics. The podcast initially focused on Brianna Maitland’s disappearance. A teenager who went inexplicably missing in Vermont in March of 2004. The case is eerily similar to Maura Murray.

However, Tim and Lance have expanded into various unsolved cases that they approach with the same passion they have for Maura Murray.
With variety being the spice of life, listeners can expect to hear guests ranging from criminologists, podcasters, victims, and government officials. Tim and Lance have a unique ability to draw information out of their guests while making them comfortable. This creates fantastic conversations with troves of valuable information. As a listener, it’s a great product to digest. Each episode is about an hour-long making it an easy podcast to add to your rotation.

Both Missing Maura Murray and Crawlspace have a very loyal fan base and take time to engage their audience. It’s more than just a podcast, which is why we love them here at Podfluence. If you want to check them out, check out GetVokkl on Thursday evenings. The two do a live show, and it’s a great opportunity to interact with the hosts and whatever subjects they may be exploring that given week. Also, check them out on FacebookTwitterInstagramPodchaser or Spotify below. Crawlspace network continued to produce some of the top podcasts in 2020.

Podcast Review: Morally Indefensible podcast

Morally Indefensible

What do the Jinx and the Crimetown podcast have in common? (Besides being some of the best binges out there). Marc Smerling.  

Marc hosts a new short podcast series called “Morally Indefensible”. The podcast centers around the book “Fatal Vision”, a bestseller from the 1980s. If you are like me, you may not be familiar with the book and the controversy. In 1970, a young doctor & former Green Beret was accused of killing his wife and two daughters.  On the surface, Jeffrey McDonald had it all. A successful doctor with a young family. What would drive someone to do this? Morally Indefensible is one of the best true crime podcasts and a great binge. 

Initially, he tells the police a story of acid-loving bloodthirsty murderers (it is the Manson era anyways). His charismatic demeanor and illustrious background created doubt about whether or not he is guilty. Eventually, he is convicted 9 years later.  


While waiting for an appeal, he hires an author to write a book about his innocence, or so he thought. Over time the two become friends and Joe McGinnis uses this relationship to gain access to the material. He asks Jeff to share everything, so he can better write the book, at one point staying at Jeff’s house. While Jeff believes Joe is a true friend, the feeling is not mutual. Jeff opens up to Joe and unknowingly creates his demise.  


Morally Indefensible dives deep into the story about Jeff and Joe. Over the course of seven episodes, Marc investigates both sides. Besides using Jeff to write a NY Times Best Seller, was it ethical for Joe to release a book while a man is awaiting an appeal? Even worse, the book calls Jeff a murderer and completely shatters any positive perception. 


The podcast is a companion to the FX TV series, A Wilderness of Error. The show just premiered, so you can either jump into it or wait for a weekend binge.  

Podcast Review: The Syndicate

Buried cash. DEA moles. Sibling rivalries. Skydiving planes. Fast cars. And an exploding hash lab. A group of college friends took advantage of Colorado’s medical marijuana laws to create one of the longest, most lucrative smuggling runs in U.S. history. But when a drug mule flipped, the whole enterprise came crashing down— and revealed how the marijuana black market is not just evolving in the era of legal weed, but thriving.

LISK

LISK: Long Island Serial Killer

Are you running out shows to binge on Netflix? For me, I spend each day searching but the well is starting to run dry. I recently watched the Lost Girls—which is one of the better movies on Netflix right now. What’s better than a Netflix binge? A podcast to follow. The LISK podcast is based on the same book and is a must binge for anyone interested in the Long Island Serial Killer. Both the podcast and Lost Girls take their source material from the bestselling book “Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery”. 

There is currently a serial killer operating just an hour drive from New York City. The Long Island Serial Killer (FKA LISK), is one of the most prolific killers in recent years. He or She  has operated virtually undetected for almost 20 years until a Shannan Gilbert disappeared in 2010 in Suffolk County.

LISK: The Long Island Serial Killer is hosted by Chris Mass. The podcast not only looks to bring attention to the case itself, but more importantly the victims. The LISK has been able to go undetected because he or she pried on prostitutes. These “lost girls” were written off by police because of their backgrounds and completely dehumanized, and they tend not to grab the larger headlines. Chris’s podcast looks to shed light on these individuals and let their family tell the world who they were. Chris leverages interviews with family members, friends, police, and everyone who was touched by these victims and senseless acts of violence.   

The other piece of this mystery is the alleged corruption of the Suffolk County police department. Not only were cases overlooked, but some were down right ignored. Were the police too busy covering their own schemes up to pay attention to a killer at large?

LISK will keep you engaged from start to finish. The podcast opens with the interview of Shannan Gilbert’s boyfriend and driver. She disappeared in the night which eventually set off the discovery of the remains of a body—which was not Shannan. Over the course of the day, police found more bodies in bags on a picturesque beach. A stark contrast between what lay beneath. One of the best true crime podcasts. 

We recommend checking out this Podcast during quarantine. Although the podcast is a limited series and can be completed in a day, I guarantee you will spend much more as an armchair detective searching the internet for clues. Top true crime podcast this year! 

Podcast Review: Cool Mules

Cool Mules: A Cocaine Smuggling Ring within VICE Media

Canadalands’s “Cool Mules” podcast series is about a cocaine smuggling operation inside of Vice Media. The podcast is led by Kasia Mychajlowycz who investigates the players, operation, and downfall of a short-lived smuggling operation. The six-part podcast series just ended yesterday, making the next fix for your quarantine binge. Besides an intriguing story line and a cast of characters, the podcast will make you think about what you would do to achieve financial stability and fame.

At the center of the podcast is former Vice Editor Slava P. The interviews take place with him while he is under house arrest and waiting for sentencing. At the surface Slava looks like a journalist who took a story too far and got swept up into a life of crime. But Kasia digs into Slava’s own motivations and Vice Media as a whole. Vice’s rebellious culture, pressure and horrendous entry level pay forced employees to go above and beyond to get noticed within Vice. Was an event like this bound to happen?

Or is it a story of a predator at Vice taking advantage of naïve employees who were looking to impress a senior editor while putting money in their pocket? Oh, and I forgot to mention a Mexican cartel, $20 million dollars of cocaine and very lengthy Australian prison sentences.

If someone asks you to take a suitcase to Australia for $10K, you might want to think twice.

We cannot recommend this podcast enough, give it a download.

.

Podcast Review: Felonious Florida

Felonious Florida is an investigative journalism based podcast hosted by Lisa Arthur and the South Florida Star Sentinel in partnership with Wondery. With a slew of investigative podcasts out there, you will quickly learn why Felonious Florida is one of the best. And no, it’s not because it features Florida Man. Well, maybe it does… depending on your definition.

Each season the cases covered take place in sunny, but dangerous Florida. For a state that is known for its theme parks, alligators, and heat, I never knew it had such a dark side. And that dark side carries some terrifying statistics. Florida currently ranks 7th amongst all states in the crime index.

With that kind of background, it’s no surprise that Felonius Florida currently has two seasons flush with gruesome crime and fantastic journalism. In Season 1 Laura Arthur focuses on two separate cases involving murderers that could be walking the streets today. What I love about Felonious Florida is that host does an incredible job of making you feel the grittiness of the cases. The inaugural episode is centered around the murder of a local nightclub owner in South Florida. Season two is even better and EmmaKate Austin dives into some of the strangest cases I have ever heard – killer clowns…need I say more?

As incredible as the journalism is covering each case, the production cannot be overstated. Each episode is just a solid experience that sounds great. Listeners will be engaged by the content as episodes are rich media coverage clips pertaining to each case. After you read this review and listen to an episode you’re likely to get the urge to research the cases. I recommend starting with the Felonious Florida website. It’s arguably the most detailed website for any podcast as it’s filled with source information.

Like any other armchair detective, I have a day job and the hour episodes are great…but, to be honest, one hour turns into a few pretty quickly. I’m slightly hesitant to visit certain parts of Florida again but I am overjoyed to recommend this podcast to others. The cases, content, and length of episodes make this a perfect podcast for a great binge or a quick listen. Felonious Florida is reporting and podcasting at it’s best.