More notable podcasts have started offering subscription options, offering extra features and episodes for a small cost. Let’s have a quick look at them. 

Captains with Sam Warburton, a relatively new series that looks at the tactics that help professional sports teams beat their opponents, have special episodes called ‘The Huddle’ looking at how best to give helpful feedback, how to prep for a big speech, and how to get back on form after a disappointment.

Something Rhymes with Purple, the language podcast hosted by broadcaster Giles Brandreth and Countdown’s Susie Dent, now has an additional episode once a week featuring questions sent in from listeners. Rock & Roll Politics with Steve Richards is now a feature where subscribers can get new episodes early, with the most recent episode featuring an episode with Andy Burnham. 

And for the little ones, Fun Kids provide over 30 podcasts in their subscription offer allowing ad-free listening and bonus content. On the Fun Kids Science Weekly it offers a bonus episode once a month, full to the brim with extra science facts. A recent episode explored why earworms get stuck in your head and the colours that animals can see compared to our own. And on Storyquest it’s started providing bonus improv-style interviews with main story characters.


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Here are our podcast picks for the week ahead

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SnowcastIt was only going to be a matter of time before we would hear from Jon Snow following his retirement from Channel 4 News, simply because you can sense his hunger for news and interviews. So, inevitably but also thankfully, here is that debut, starting with an engaging interview with the journalist Jon Ronson. In the 45-minute episode, Ronson talks about how he got interviews, people at the fringes of the story, and how conspiracy theories have had such a hold in the U.S rather than the U.K.

“I’m interested in mystery. I see myself as the people in the van in Scooby Doo,” Ronson said. “That’s the wind behind my sails. I always try to understand a world I don’t understand … with curiosity and empathy.”

The News MeetingAn interesting format looking at the week’s news. Created by the news website and podcast publisher Tortoise, alongside platform Podimo, this podcast recreates a newsroom meeting where journalists pitch their top story and argue for its inclusion. 

The site’s editor James Harding, who also used to be the director of BBC News and the editor of The Times, works out what order these stories should be in. There’s also a frank and thoughtful discussion about what these stories say about the times we live in. New episodes are out every week.

Love, JanessaA new series by the BBC World Service and the Canadian broadcaster CBC starts with a story you’ve heard many times before, about someone who parted cash after being catfished on the internet. But then a fact told here completely knocks you. The image that has been used to lure in victims to part with their thousands is one of the most impersonated people on all of the internet, with more than 100,000 fake profiles using her images.

This series throws you into the inner workings of a massive fraudulent industry, whilst hoping to pin down the real identity of the person whose photo has been stolen.

Stolen Hearts – If you are bereft that there is no more Happy Valley, this new storytelling series from Wondery might help fill the void. It tells the story of Sergeant Jill Evans, a respected and fearless police officer in a small town in Wales called Haverfordwest. She madly fell in love with a beauty entrepreneur called Dean, who then mysteriously goes missing on Halloween. 

You might be thinking it is another catfishing story (like Love, Janessa) but it really isn’t. This six-part series tells the whole story, featuring interviews with both Jill and Dean, and the storytelling is entertaining and witty. The whole series is available to listen to for subscribers, but there’s a new episode available free-to-air every single week.

Thanks so much for reading (and listening). 

We’ll be back next Sunday with another podcast newsletter.

Categories: Weekly Picks