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Podcasts for Your Back-to-School Commute

Bad news, faithful teen patrons. Summer reading has come to an end. Your teachers are reorganizing their shelves and planning cruelly draining lessons. But there’s a positive side to all this! With school comes a commute, and that commute means more time for podcasts!

If you haven’t heard of podcasts, then get with the times, bruh. Basically television streaming for your ears, podcasts are hands-down the greatest thing since opting out of HULU commericals. Use the recommendations below to get started. For the rest of you steadfast readers, here are some A+ podcasts to bring a little joy back into your daily commute.


EOS 10“To you, miscreant, I say suck it.” – Doctor Urvidian. The basic premise: two doctors and their medical teams treat various ailments. The catch: they’re stationed on EOS 10, an intergalactic travel hub on the edges of deep space. Featuring your favorite science fiction troops, inclusive LGBTQ representation, alcoholic doctors passing out on the floor, and a (deposed) prince working in the food court, EOS 10 is told in traditional radio-drama format – with talented voice actors playing various roles. An excellent podcast for those of us who are more interested in Bones than Kirk.  

Average Length: 18 minutes


Historically BlackA remarkable podcast focusing on the more glossed over aspects of history. Namely, black history. Each episode of Historically Black emphasizes the idea that objects hold history. Using interviews, the hosts bring an object to life, telling the stories and exploring the people connected to each personal item or photo. For fans of Hidden Figures, check out the episode on NASA’s Human Computers. If you adored the world of Luke Cage, find the episode on James Van Der Zee, New York's leading black photographer during the Harlem Renaissance. This podcast is perfect for woke history buffs everywhere.

Average length: 20 minutes


The Magnus Archives: The Magnus Archives. A research institute tasked with documenting and investing public reports of the paranormal, separating the facts from the crazy loons off the street. Saddled with the duty of converting written statements into digital format, each episode begins with Jonathan Simms, Head Archivist, narrating witness accounts of the spooky and supernatural. From demonic possession to cults, the episodes cover every “traditional” horror archetype possible - throwing in a few new ones to keep you up at night. Perfect for car rides in the dark. Highly recommended!

Average length: 20 minutes


Limetown: If there’s a “gateway drug” for podcasts, this is it. Suspenseful, mysterious, and downright unsettling, Limetown is a seven episode miniseries following American Public Radio reporter, Lia Haddock, as she investigates the disappearance of every man, woman, and child from Limetown, Tennessee. Each episode brings Lia and her listeners deeper and deeper into a daunting ten-year-old question: how do over three hundred people disappear without a trace? Featuring phenomenal voice acting and sound effects, Limetown starts with an intriguing mystery and ends with a discovery that will leave you paralyzed.  

Average Length: 30 minutes


Sawbones: Have you heard of that popular YouTube channel dedicated to pimple popping? If you have, or if you’re Googling it right now, then you might want to pause to check out Sawbones - a podcast about the more… perverse elements of medical history. Always hilarious and reliably grotesque, Sawbones' hosts, Justin McElory and Dr. Sydnee McElory, take listeners on a delightful tour of the peculiar, bizarre, wrong, and just plain idiotic ways we’ve tried to fix people over the years. Educational, historical, and fun!

Average Length: 40 minutes


Serial, Season 1: Listen to the podcast that gave rise to a whole new generation of arm-chair investigators and the popular true crime Netflix shows Making a Murder and the Keepers. In Serial, Sarah Koenig investigates the 1999 Baltimore murder of Hae Min Lee, and the conviction of her ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed, for her murder. Adnan, over ten years into a life sentence, maintains his innocence. But what about his friend who testified in court that Adnan showed him Hae’s body? What about the cell phone log placing him at site where the body was found? And what about the witness who claims she saw Adnan in the library during the estimated time of death? Someone’s lying. But who? Please note: I’m only recommending Season 1. Season 2 is garbage.

Average Length: 50 minutes


Adam Ruins AnythingEvery episode, host and comedian Adam Conover brings on a guest expert to discuss how your knowledge about an everyday subject – from the “contents inside may be hot” warning on your coffee cup to breast feeding – is wrong. This podcast is a supplement of Adam’s television show, but whereas the experts get a 2 minute blurb on his show, this podcast gives Adam and his expert of the week time to go more in-depth to the issues and complexities of the misconceptions surrounding their subject. If you love proving people wrong and chiming into conversations with “well, actually…” than give this podcast a chance to ruin everything you know.

Average Length: 55 minutes


The Adventure Zone 

Do you play D&D? Do you love Critical Role? Then Adventure Zone is the podcast for you! Undoubtedly, the longest podcast recommend here, but if you’ve ever played a round of D&D, you’ll understand why. Adventure Zone pairs best with long boring road trips, like the next time your parents drag you to Denver. Episodes of the podcast feature the dynamic Dungeon Master leading a regular (and entertaining) cast of characters through puzzles, battles, and a continuous series of cinematic and humorous quests. Listen and don’t forget to tell your nerd friends!  

Average Length: 70 minutes


All of these podcasts and more are available on iTunes or via the podcast app on your smartphone. Love one of them? Loath one of them? Have a favorite podcast of your own to recommend? Let everyone know in the comments below.

Happy listening, readers!

- Rachael


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