No, this not a post about the No True Scotsman fallacy, no matter how much I tried to configure a title like that in my head sadly. No, this is more a lament than a fallacy problem.
My podcast app has become the new infinite open browser tabs cliché except the tabs are all the podcasts I haven’t gotten to, largely true crime and history podcasts. I was thinking about that today, incidentally while commuting listening to a political podcast, how 2020 is the year of no true crime, where true crime seems largely absent from my earholes and eyeballs this year.
I mean, not completely. I watched a few episodes of NBC’s Dateline true crime show, read Michelle McNamara’s brilliant true crime book, I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer, and Mark Bowden’s disappointing (sorry) book, The Last Stone, and yeah, I watched two seasons of Netflix’s rehashing of Unsolved Mysteries and blogged about each episode obsessively, but OTHER THAN THAT.
I’m being serious though! When I write it like that, it seems like I did partake in a lot of true crime this year, but for my usual standards, it felt like a low year for true crime. For whatever reason, I didn’t watch Dateline weekly or even semi-weekly like usual; I didn’t read any other true crime books and certainly not any longform articles; I didn’t catch any other movies or TV shows about true crime; and the biggest drop-off has to be the aforementioned realm of podcasts. Podcasts are typically where I consume the most true crime material to satiate my obsession, but I’m not sure I finished one full episode of a single true crime podcast? Unless I’m forgetting one. I just couldn’t get into anything. Not because it was bad or anything, but 2020 is that weird of a year, I guess. Escapism was the name of the game, revisiting old horror and action franchises, discovering new television series, and the like.
It also didn’t help that I became obsessed with two new podcasts (new to me, that is), which derailed any sort of true crime listening: Halloweenies and The Losers’ Club about horror movie franchises and Stephen King, respectively.
I don’t know. It just feels weird! Not having listened to a true crime podcast that blew my brain. My sister-in-law and I also bond over true crime, particularly in the podcast realm, and there was nothing like that this year. I don’t think either of us really listened to much of anything. Maybe it’s not us, it’s them? Them being the podcasters. Maybe there just wasn’t a groundbreaking new true crime podcast like S-Town or Dr. Death or Serial or Dirty John.
So, if you’re reading this, what were the true crime podcasts this year that grabbed you? Maybe I need to give it another whirl now that we’re closing out the year. I would specify, too, that it should be a podcast that came out this year, and not something from past years because it’s likely I’ve listened to it. Thank you in advance!