The Guardian

A series exploring the wide open world of podcasts. Guardian staff will share our favourite shows, tell you why they're great, recommend episodes, and sometimes even interview the host(s).

Recommendations

08/13/2016 Vanessa and Casper explore the theme of hope in chapter thirteen of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. They discuss Neville's brawl with the Slytherins, the sacred space of quidditch, and whether a rhetoric of hope can be exploitative.
The Worst Bestsellers, the auditory book fair hosted by a librarian and a writer, opened up its collection of books by RL Stein, the teen-friendly horror master, including Goosebumps and Fear Street. Turns out they may not be as good as you remember. The Penumbra Podcast, a storytelling show that gives classic tales a head-spinning twist, released an entertaining intergalactic whodunit. Over on Harry Potter and the Sacred Text, a podcast that – as its name implies – treats JK Rowling’s fictions as if they were gospel, looks at the message of hope inside Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, including the so-called “sacred space of Quidditch”.
08/12/2016Sometimes the most powerful Trumpisms are throwaway lines like “I don’t know.” Michael Barbaro talks with Thomas Friedman, Patrick Healy and Barbara Res, Trump’s former construction manager, about how Trump uses language.
The FiveThirtyEight Elections show explains why this is the perfect year for a third-party candidate, while On the Media explores what could happen if a viable third party ever took root in the US political landscape. They also examine how so-called strategic voting could shake things up in the coming election. Speaking of the upcoming election, the New York Times has launched its own election podcast called The Run-Up. Hosted by Michael Barbaro, the show, which will drop episodes twice a week, features interviews with New York Times reporters and columnists, as well as guests like Newt Gingrich and Donald Trump’s construction manager. As for Trump himself, on MTV’s The Stakes, Marcus Ellsworth wrote a lullaby for the baby Trump kicked out of his political rally.
08/08/2016We discuss the return of "unskewed" polls, whether Clinton's big lead is the new normal, and talk to Julia Azari about why this is the perfect year for third parties.
The FiveThirtyEight Elections show explains why this is the perfect year for a third-party candidate, while On the Media explores what could happen if a viable third party ever took root in the US political landscape. They also examine how so-called strategic voting could shake things up in the coming election. Speaking of the upcoming election, the New York Times has launched its own election podcast called The Run-Up. Hosted by Michael Barbaro, the show, which will drop episodes twice a week, features interviews with New York Times reporters and columnists, as well as guests like Newt Gingrich and Donald Trump’s construction manager. As for Trump himself, on MTV’s The Stakes, Marcus Ellsworth wrote a lullaby for the baby Trump kicked out of his political rally.
08/12/2016 This week on Magic Lessons, Elizabeth Gilbert enlists the comedian Michael Ian Black to help coach Keith, an improv comedy performer in Baltimore. A few years ago Keith fell hard for improv. He took every improv class in Baltimore and but there wasn't a regular space to perform. So he formed a troupe and found a venue, building a vibrant improv community called the Charm City Comedy Project. But, somewhere along the way, he neglected his own dreams of creating a one-man show. Special Guest: Michael Ian Black is an actor, comedian, and host of the podcast "How To Be Amazing." On TV you can find him on The Jim Gaffigan Show and Another Period. He's also the author of the memoir Navel Gazing: True Tales of Bodies, Mostly Mine, (But Also My Mom's Which I Know Sounds Weird.) Find out more about him at MichaelIanBlack.org This week's sponsors: Audible, The Great Courses Plus, and Stamps.com Always use the promo code: Lessons
The Guestlist got rapper – and once upon a time Secret Skin podcaster – Open Mike Eagle to talk about his own psychological profile and how he uses his educational background in his songwriting. Eat, Pray, Love author Elizabeth Gilbert’s podcast, Magic Lessons, asked comedian and How to Be Amazing podcaster Michael Ian Black to coach an up-and-coming improv comedy performer on how to create a compelling one-man show.
08/08/2016Open Mike Eagle talks about how he got into the rap game and the importance of pulling back the curtain on the music industry. Former WWE world champ Mick Foley discusses an unlikely source of inspiration for his in-ring insanity.
The Guestlist got rapper – and once upon a time Secret Skin podcaster – Open Mike Eagle to talk about his own psychological profile and how he uses his educational background in his songwriting. Eat, Pray, Love author Elizabeth Gilbert’s podcast, Magic Lessons, asked comedian and How to Be Amazing podcaster Michael Ian Black to coach an up-and-coming improv comedy performer on how to create a compelling one-man show.
08/11/2016 Standing in line represents a particularly sloppy - and frustrating - way for supply and demand to meet. Why haven't we found a better way to get what we want? Is it possible that we secretly enjoy waiting in line? And might it even be (gulp) good for us?
Whether you’re waiting for a Predator showing, a cronut, a ramen burger, or a brunch reservation (or something non-food-related), Freakonomics looked at the psychology of standing in line.
08/04/2016Bob Costas is THE voice of the Olympics — the legendary broadcaster has hosted more than a dozen of the games. Today he talks with Katie and Brian about how he prepares to preside over the Olympics, and how a childhood passion for sports turned into...
Throwing Shade looked at the number of openly gay athletes competing in the games. In her self-titled podcast, Katie Couric talked to Bob Costas, AKA the American voice of the Olympic Games. Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir headed to Rio for their uproarious coverage of the Olympic Games and How to Do Everything released the only guide to the Olympics you will need, with a little help from Patrick Stewart.
08/04/2016 Well it's been 240 years and we finally elected the first female president, USA USA USA! Wait no that's wrong...it's the first time a woman has been the presidential nominee of a major political party. Half way there America! This week "Dilbert" cartoonist and confused asshole Scott Adams is concerned about men's testosterone levels lowering after watching the DNC; and a record breaking 41 out olympic athletes are competing in Rio this year! Also "Young & Hungry" actress Emily Osment is here to talk about working with Glenn Close, Christopher Walken, Miley Cyrus and many future "Sarah, Plain and Tall" projects.
Throwing Shade looked at the number of openly gay athletes competing in the games. In her self-titled podcast, Katie Couric talked to Bob Costas, AKA the American voice of the Olympic Games. Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir headed to Rio for their uproarious coverage of the Olympic Games and How to Do Everything released the only guide to the Olympics you will need, with a little help from Patrick Stewart.
08/04/2016Tara and Johnny are finally in Rio! They detail their latest excursions, how hard it can be to fully experience the Olympics magic while competing, plus their foray into Snapchat and shaping young minds at the NBC Sports intern dinner.
Throwing Shade looked at the number of openly gay athletes competing in the games. In her self-titled podcast, Katie Couric talked to Bob Costas, AKA the American voice of the Olympic Games. Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir headed to Rio for their uproarious coverage of the Olympic Games and How to Do Everything released the only guide to the Olympics you will need, with a little help from Patrick Stewart.
08/05/2016On your marks... Get set... GO! It's the Etymolympics, where the gymnastics should be gymnaked and the hurdles are a bloodbath. Find out more about this episode at http://theallusionist.org/olympics. Be an Olympic-level champ and express your opinions about the show at http://surveynerds.com/allusionist. Seek me out online at http://twitter.com/allusionistshow and http://facebook.com/allusionistshow, and on stage at the London Podcast Festival - get tickets at http://www.kingsplace.co.uk/whats-on/spoken-word/the-allusionist. The Allusionist is a proud member of Radiotopia.fm from PRX.org.
Beef and Dairy Network also went to Rio, making sure to appeal to its fanbase by reporting on the cattle angle of the games, including the dressage rider who was disqualified from competition for riding a cow instead of a horse. Adding to the fun, Helen Zaltzman provided translation services. Zaltzman’s own show, The Allusionist, also tackled the Olympics this week.
08/05/2016With how-to advice from a bunch of Olympians and Patrick Stewart.
Throwing Shade looked at the number of openly gay athletes competing in the games. In her self-titled podcast, Katie Couric talked to Bob Costas, AKA the American voice of the Olympic Games. Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir headed to Rio for their uproarious coverage of the Olympic Games and How to Do Everything released the only guide to the Olympics you will need, with a little help from Patrick Stewart.
08/05/2016 N.O.R.E. and DJ EFN are the Drink Champs. In this episode the guys drink it up with the West Coast legend Snoop Dogg. Make Some noise for another Drink Champs / Smoke Champs collaboration!
Drink Champs hasn’t been around that long (it just launched in March) but it has become mandatory listening for hip-hop fans and a podcast proving ground for rappers willing to risk being drunk on the air. Hosted by DJ EFN and NORE (aka Noreaga, of the Queens crew Capone-N-Noreaga), the show sounds like a cocktail of Another Round, Bodega Boys, and a Hot 97 roundtable. It has already landed candid (or drunken) interviews with 50 Cent, 2 Chainz, Talib Kweli, Ja Rule and Wu Tang Clan’s Raekwon. This week, Snoop Dogg returned as the undisputed Smoke Champ for the second half of his interview series, which already has covered working with 2Pac, the heyday of Death Row Records, and his recent, surprising collaboration with the Los Angeles police department.
07/15/2016In the first episode of Escape Plan, a road trip podcast from Atlas Obscura and Zipcar, our CEO David Plotz takes EIC Reyhan Harmanci on a one-day, surprise journey up the Hudson Valley, north of New York City, to spend a day exploring 19th century Industrial America. Download Escape Plan today, and listen on your next road trip! Stops on the trip included:A tour of  Kykuit, John D. Rockefeller's Hudson Valley estate http://www.hudsonvalley.org/Lunch at Stock Up in Beacon, NY http://stockupbeacon.com/menu/A hike through the West Point Foundry Preserve http://www.scenichudson.org/parks/westpointfoundrypreserve If you're looking for more road trip inspiration head here: http://www.atlasobscura.com/categories/zipcar This podcast is sponsored by Zipcar. Zipcar gives you access to cars in your neighborhood that you can drive when you need them, and forget about when you don’t. Need a car for your next adventure? Become a member today at Zipcar.com.
If summer has kicked your wanderlust into high gear, follow along as Maggie and Adam drive to Tierra del Fuego on Let’s Not Panic. Their most recent episode had them eating their way through Austin, which may have you drooling on to your shirt while you listen. Also check out Atlas Obscura’s Escape Plan. In the Zipcar-sponsored show, the host, David Plotz, takes a guest on a surprise road trip. Unlike Kurt Braunohler’s The K Ohle, though, they end up somewhere fun like the Hudson Valley, offering travel tips and adventure ideas.
07/28/2016In this episode we discuss one of Bruce Lee's most important philosophies—Take Action! Bruce Lee was known around the world as an action star but his philosophy about taking action goes much deeper. Philosophy was not just an intellectual exercise for Bruce, he believed in applying it in real life through continual action. It was also an emotional process that started in his heart, then energized his body to manifest ideas in the real world. It was a process of becoming more intensely himself. He encouraged his students to experience what it feels like to be fully alive and live the philosophy. “Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Willing is not enough, we must do.” #AAHA (Awesome Asians and Hapas) This week’s shoutout goes to pioneering martial artist, actress, writer and director Diana Lee Inosanto. Diana is also the daughter of Dan Inosanto, student and dear friend of Bruce Lee. #BruceLeeMoment (Bruce Lee’s philosophy in action IRL) We hear a story from Sydnie Wilson, one of our team members about how she researched her own discomfort and took action to create a positive shift in her life. Share your #AAHA recommendations and #BruceLeeMoments with us via social media @BruceLee or email us at hello@brucelee.com
The Bruce Lee Podcast looks behind the action star’s legacy to explore the philosophy that helped make him a household name. Hosted by his daughter, Shannon Lee, the show is not just a trip through Lee’s IMDB listing. It digs into his quotes, like the most recent episode which looks at his call to “take action!”, which extended far beyond action movies into his everyday life, or an early episode called Be Water, My Friend, whose title comes from a well-known quote from Lee. The mantras serve as a doorway into Lee’s mind and provide a fascinating portrait of the man.
07/28/2016Judy, a mother of two young kids, practices a demanding style of child-rearing. It’s called attachment parenting, and it says you should keep your baby close at all times, breastfeed on demand, share your bed, and avoid strollers. Like many attachment parents, Judy believes the sacrifices she makes will ensure her kids will become well-adjusted, successful, happy adults. But, what does the science say? To find out, Science Vs speaks to Prof. Alan Sroufe, Prof. Jane Fisher and Reut Avinun. If you liked this episode - our friends at The Longest Shortest Time have just published a story about *eating* placentas.  Credits: This episode has been produced by Heather Rogers, who interviewed our attachment parent Judy, also Caitlin Kenney and Kaitlyn Sawrey. Edited by Annie Rose Strasser and Alex Blumberg. Production Assistance by Austin Mitchell and Stevie Lane. Sound design and music production by Matthew Boll, music written by Bobby Lord. Sponsors: For 10% off your new Squarespace site, click here and punch in Science Vs at checkout. For 15% off your first purchase at Ministry of Supply, click here.
Science Vs has kicked off its new season with back-to-back episodes looking at the science behind two very different topics – fracking and attachment parenting. The show uses hard science, methodical studies, expert interviews, and, you know, facts to tackle fads, controversial trends, and sacred cows (is organic food actually better?) and looks for the science behind surprising questions like Does Race Exist? Host Wendy Zukerman started the show in Australia, but has now signed on with Gimlet and brought Science Vs stateside. Now based in New York, Zukerman has a dedicated production staff and the time to investigate topics and debunk trends more thoroughly, including gun control and even organic food.