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True Crime

Crime Writers On...True Crime Review

Updated about 1 month ago

True Crime
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The original true crime review podcast that looks at other podcasts, TV, and pop culture. True crime authors and real-life couple Rebecca Lavoie and Kevin Flynn hold a pop-culture round table with noir novelist Toby Ball and journalist-turned-investigator Lara Bricker. The panel chats about other podcasts (including 'Serial') as well as journalism, storytelling, TV shows and films, and the special segment, 'Crime of the Week.'Show website: crimewriterson.com. Follow the show on Twitter @crimewriterson. Find us on Facebook facebook.com/crimewritersonpodcast. Email the show at crimewriterson@gmail.com.Artwork by Benjamin Frisch

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The original true crime review podcast that looks at other podcasts, TV, and pop culture. True crime authors and real-life couple Rebecca Lavoie and Kevin Flynn hold a pop-culture round table with noir novelist Toby Ball and journalist-turned-investigator Lara Bricker. The panel chats about other podcasts (including 'Serial') as well as journalism, storytelling, TV shows and films, and the special segment, 'Crime of the Week.'Show website: crimewriterson.com. Follow the show on Twitter @crimewriterson. Find us on Facebook facebook.com/crimewritersonpodcast. Email the show at crimewriterson@gmail.com.Artwork by Benjamin Frisch

iTunes Ratings

2488 Ratings
Average Ratings
1987
201
81
67
152

Always listen the day it comes out

By LeahVC - May 26 2020
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I love love love this podcast. Especially Rebecca’s laugh!

Favorite

By Ea9 - Apr 28 2020
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This is my favorite podcast. Love all of the hosts, love their points of view and their discussions

iTunes Ratings

2488 Ratings
Average Ratings
1987
201
81
67
152

Always listen the day it comes out

By LeahVC - May 26 2020
Read more
I love love love this podcast. Especially Rebecca’s laugh!

Favorite

By Ea9 - Apr 28 2020
Read more
This is my favorite podcast. Love all of the hosts, love their points of view and their discussions
Cover image of Crime Writers On...True Crime Review

Crime Writers On...True Crime Review

Latest release on Jun 29, 2020

The Best Episodes Ranked Using User Listens

Updated by OwlTail about 1 month ago

Rank #1: Serial Season 2, Limetown, Dishing Maura Murray

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Rebecca, Kevin, Toby and Laura talk about the possibility of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl's story as the focus of season two of Serial. Rebecca also interviews the guys behind Missing Maura Murray, a podcast that has the rest of the panel up in arms. Plus, the Crime Writers dish on the surprise hit Limetown and dissect the latest 'Crime of the Week.'

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Oct 04 2015

1hr 7mins

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Rank #2: Extra! The Golden State Killer has been caught! So here's our I'll Be Gone In The Dark book club show!

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If you've been following the news, you've probably heard that the man dubbed the Golden State Killer by I'll Be Gone In The Dark author Michelle McNamara has been caught, according to multiple sources.

You probably also know that we just started making a special book club podcast for Patreon supporters. Well, in honor of the news, and to entice you to become a supporter, we're releasing our inaugural book club discussion about I'll Be Gone In The Dark.

Click here to support us on Patreon and hear future book club shows!

Book club guests: Rabia Chaudry, Patrick Hinds, and Rebecca Lavoie

Music by Twin Guns

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Apr 25 2018

1hr 5mins

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Rank #3: The Case Against Adnan Syed Part 1 & Leaving Neverland

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The crime writers give their take on part 1 of HBO's "The Case Against Adnan Syed." Like the movie version of a favorite book, the episode covers the story of Adnan and Hae's high school relationship, but adds to it in a way "Serial" did not. Note: this episode was recorded before Friday's decision in the case by the MD Court of Appeals.

TO REMAIN SPOILER-FREE FOR EPISODE ONE, GO TO MINUTE 40.

Then the panel wrestles with HBO's two-part "Leaving Neverland." The documentary - told simply and starkly - is the most powerful indictment of Michael Jackson's systematic abuse of star-struck children and their families. (Warning: discussion of this documentary may be triggering for some audience members.)

TO REMAIN SPOILER-FREE FOR LEAVING NEVERLAND, GO TO MINUTE 69.

In Crime of the Week: how the cookie crumbles.

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Mar 11 2019

1hr 16mins

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Rank #4: S-Town by Serial - Episode 1 Recap & Review

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The Crime Writers review episode one of S-Town - the new podcast series from the folks behind Serial and This American Life. The entire series, featuring host Brian Reed, dropped on Tuesday, March 28.

Watch your feed for recap shows reviewing episodes 2-4 and 5-7.

SPONSORS THIS EPISODE
Serial Killers podcast from Parcast

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Mar 29 2017

36mins

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Rank #5: Serial Epilogue: Adnan Syed Gets a New Trial...Maybe

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Ever since Sarah talked to Asia the world wondered whether she was the key to getting Adnan Syed a new trial. In the end, it was a single sentence in a pile of thousands of documents.

The result is in. Judge Welch has ruled Adnan's Sixth Amendment rights were violated and he'll get a new trial...if it ever gets that far. The Crime Writers pull apart the decision and discuss where the case may go from here. Does the state have any evidence left? How would 12 Baltimore jurors (who'd never listened to a podcast) size up Adnan? And why could it be years before he gets out of jail?

The panel is joined by super-professor Colin Miller, who answers questions about the legal ins-and-outs of the ruling. Then the Crime Writers take your questions and voice memos. They also discuss the dilemma of the Alford plea: would you admit your guilt to a crime you didn't commit if it gets you out of prison? Also, WTF is a jury view like at the scene of a lumber theft?

Here's something new: our first Crime Writers On Summer Book Club show. Each writer has nominated a book. You vote online, then we'll all read and share (bring your own white wine). The nominees are If I Did It by OJ Simpson, I am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes, People Who Eat Darkness by Richard Lloyd Parry, and Wilde Lake by Laura Lippman.

In the Crime of the Week, one of our listeners makes a marital confession...
#Serial #SerialSeasonOne #AdnanSyed #Undisclosed

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Jul 09 2016

1hr 16mins

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Rank #6: That Laci Peterson series, a Bowe Bergdahl update, and a podcaster controversy

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Red-eyed and jet-lagged, Rebecca and Kevin are back from Podcast Movement in Anaheim with stories of their exploits with your (and their) favorite podcasters. They'll spill some tea over what caused some controversy a big name - "NOT a podcaster" Payne Lindsey from Up & Vanished - made an audacious, self-congratulatory presentation...and how some even bigger names in the room reacted.

Plus, a true crime podcast update! A hungover R&K met up with old friend Lt Col James Weirick for an update on Bowe Bergdahl's court martial and the defense's move that could bode well for the disgraced former POW. (Audio of the full discussion can be found on our website - and beware, it's unedited and was literally recorded in a hotel hallway.)

Back in the confines of Square Egg Studio, Lara & Toby chime in on A&E's new limited series, "The Murder of Laci Peterson." So far, the show seems to be playing the story down the middle, not sensationalizing its retrospective of the crime, and is of surprisingly high quality for a basic cable show.

Then in Crime of the Week: our house is a very very very moldy house.


Sponsors this week:

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Sep 01 2017

1hr 23mins

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Rank #7: Breaking: Adnan Syed's DNA was NOT found in new evidence tests. But what does that mean?

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Ahead of this weekend's final episode in "The Case Against Adnan Syed," the Baltimore Sun broke the news with an article that says the State of Maryland ran DNA tests in October 2018 on previously untested evidence from the Leakin Park burial site of murder victim Hae Min Lee. And Adnan Syed's DNA was not discovered on any of the samples.

This has sparked a torrent of discussion and misinformation online. So, Rebecca and Kevin discussed the findings and their implications with attorney Susan Simpson of "Undisclosed."

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Mar 29 2019

16mins

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Rank #8: Adnan Syed's Bail Motion, Sarah Koenig's Serial Choices, Offshore's Big Splash

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Heads up Baltimore City Court! Here comes Adnan Syed seeking a bail hearing. It's not your usual motion, written more like a campaign speech than a legal brief.

The Crime Writers dig into the latest in the efforts of Serial's protagonist to get out of prison now that his conviction has been vacated.

And a journalism conundrum: IF Sarah Koenig knew about Jay Wild's post-Adnan criminal history, should she have included it in Serial?

Also, the panel hangs ten in Hawaii with the new podcast, "Offshore" from Honolulu Civil Beat and PRX. Can a white reporter do justice to a tale of Hawaiian culture and disenfranchisement?

Related: Toby recommends reading this article from the New Yorker, "The American Raj," to learn more about Hawaiian history.

In our Crime of the Week, the panel shakes the tree. But who goes undercover as a tree, anyway? (Kevin reported on a similar bank robbery story in NH. Watch the version filed by his colleagues.)

Plus: mystery solved! Who bought the family-sized bucket of massage lotion? We finally know. Finally.

This week's sponsors are:

thegrommet.com/crimewriters

madison-reed.com (promo code "writers")

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Oct 28 2016

1hr 18mins

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Rank #9: Hunting Warhead and The Devil Next Door

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Netflix’s “The Devil Next Door” recaps the legal battles of John Demjanjuk, a retired autoworker in Cleveland accused of being a Nazi prison camp guard known as "Ivan the Terrible." Featuring extensive film from the original trial as well as disturbing Holocaust images, "The Devil Next Door" challenges the viewer’s allegiances.

Then, CBC Podcasts and Norwegian newspaper VG have teamed up for a disturbing investigation into the digital world of child pornography. “Hunting Warhead” begins with an investigative reporter whose explorations of the dark web as he stumbles upon “Child’s Play,” a huge network of criminals around the world sharing images of child sexual abuse.

WARNING: THIS REVIEW CONTAINS DISCUSSION OF SEXUAL ABUSE THAT MIGHT NOT BE SUITABLE FOR ALL LISTENERS.

In Crime of the Week: Skelly's belly.

For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia.

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Nov 25 2019

1hr 8mins

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Rank #10: Broken Justice & Bikram: Yogi, Guru, Predator

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There arose such a clatter at Lara's town holiday celebration (fowl play). And Toby has been getting Twitter trolled by Dan Taberski! 

PBS NewsHour has released a podcast examining the public defender system in the US entitled “Broken Justice.” Frank Carlson and Amna Nawaz look at the issue through the lens of the Missouri public defenders office, one in which attorneys are given more clients than they can ethically handle.

A SPOILER-FREE REVIEW OF "BROKEN JUSTICE" CAN BE FOUND AT APPROXIMATELY 34:00.

Netflix's documentary “Bikram: Yogi, Guru, Predator” chronicles the rise of the self-made yoga-master-to-the-stars who founded the hot yoga movement.The film details how Bikram Chaudry used his position to prey on his students who had professional and financial pressures to please him. 

A SPOILER-FREE REVIEW OF "BIKRAM: YOGI, GURU, PREDATOR" CAN BE FOUND AT APPROXIMATELY 57:00.

In Crime of the Week: it's written all over your face

For exclusive content, sign up at patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia.

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Dec 09 2019

1hr 1min

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Rank #11: S-Town by Serial - Episodes 2-4 Recap & Review

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The Crime Writers jump in to chapters two through four of "S-town," the new podcast series from Serial and This American Life. The entire series, featuring host Brian Reed, dropped on Tuesday, March 28.

Watch your feed for recap shows reviewing episode 1 and episodes 5-7.

SPONSORS FOR THIS EPISODE
Hunt a Killer - Use the code "writers"
MeUndies - 20% off your first pair at meundies.com/crime.
Select Blinds - mention Crime Writers On and get free sample swatches.
Le Tote - letote.com (use the promo code "crime" at checkout)

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Mar 31 2017

1hr 12mins

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Rank #12: OJ: Made in America, Adnan Syed: Made for TV

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We've spent a lot of time with the boob tube (ahem) so far this summer. This episode, the Crime Writers take out their ear buds and tune in to some of the season's most talked about television.

The Adnan Syed case finally gets the prime-time treatment on Investigation Discovery. For crime fans who can't figure out how to download a podcast, or those who only know the tale from hearing it at the water cooler, this hour-long special provides an overview of Serial's season one case. But for those who've spent hours and hours devouring minutia about the crime (I'm looking at you cell tower L689!), is there anything in this show for us?

AND - Though you'd think we'd all have had enough of that former Bills running back, especially after the superior drama "The People vs OJ Simpson," ESPN's ambitious documentary may prove you can't get enough of a good thing - if it's a good thing. And "OJ: Made In America" is 450 minutes of a good thing. Race, sex, celebrity...this is why it was the Crime of the Century - and the Crime Writers dive right in.

Also - did the crime writers make the same mistake with "Reply All" that the jury made with Paul Modrowski? And we're going for the gold with the Crime of the Week.

#Serial #AdnanSyed #OJMadeInAmerica

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Jun 24 2016

1hr 21mins

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Rank #13: Serial Season 3 News? Sort Of. And What's Different About Up And Vanished?

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Breaking: Lara's cat has a super weird disease! For real.

Some maybe-news about Serial Season 3 has us theorizing. Was Kevin super, duper wrong when he said Sarah Koenig would never do a true crime story again?

Plus, we get a whole lot of listener email and tweets about what podcasts we should be listening to and talking about.

One of the podcasts we’ve had pimped to us the most often lately is the hit show "Up and Vanished," an investigative podcast about the 2005 disappearance of Ocilla Georgia Beauty queen Tara Grinstead.

But before we get into our discussion about Up and Vanished, we'll first listen in to Rebecca's conversation with someone who knows a little bit about that show - its host and creator Payne Lindsey. Even if you haven't heard the podcast, you should listen to this interview.

And, Toby apologizes to a nation. And our Crime of the Week strikes pretty damn close to home.

Episode sponsors:

thegrommet.com/crimewriters

madison-reed.com (use the promo code "writers" at checkout)

harrys.com (use the promo code "crime" at checkout)

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Nov 11 2016

1hr 18mins

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Rank #14: The Staircase/Michael Peterson Owl Theory, Alford Pleas & A Stranglers Podcast Review

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The panel tackles a HUGE true crime update - the Alford plea taken by Michael Peterson, the novelist and suspected murder featured in The Staircase - a documentary Rebecca contends is the Citizen Kane of true crime. As a bonus, our very own Legal Siri (AKA legal professor and Undisclosed genius Colin Miller) educates us on WTH Alford pleas actually are. 

Then the Crime Writers argue about an alternative theory posed in the Peterson case...was his wife Kathleen actually killed by an owl? That was the theory posed in the amazing pilot episode of the podcast Criminal - but Toby's not exactly buying it. (Shocking, we know.)

Then, in our regular segment about whether you should watch/listen to/read the latest big thing in crime media, we review Stranglers, the podcast by Earwolf that takes a deep ol' dive into the Boston Strangler case. (Warning: This segment features a quasi-mansplain meltdown and Kevin Flynn doing a pretty convincing trashy Boston accent.)

Finally, our Crime of the Week features one of Rebecca's favorite big box stores, a sex crime, and scabies.

Listen:

This week's sponsors:

Madison Reed. Go to madison-reed.com and use promo code WRITERS to get 10% off and free shipping.
The new book A Divided Spy by Charles Cumming.
Kopari coconut beauty products. Go to KopariBeauty.com/crime for 20% off!

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Feb 11 2017

1hr 1min

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Rank #15: Serial Season 3: Episode 1 and 2 - Our breakdown and review!

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Get ready for the best discussion and analysis of the Serial podcast. Sarah Koenig is back for season 3 (finally!) - Along with Emmanuel Dzotsi, Sarah gives us a year in the life of the Cleveland Justice Center.

For episode one, "A Bar Fight Walks into the Justice Center," the crime writers discuss whether the lesson is about prosecutorial discretion...or about race?

In episode two, "You've Got Some Gauls," we can't even with Judge Gaul. But does he have a point? (Spoiler alert - he does not.)

Also, we give our take on the Curtiss Flowers update episode of "In the Dark." The more things change, the more they stay the same.

In crime of the week: whale fail. See the dumpster snafu here and the classic exploding whale incident here.

DONATE TO KEVIN'S WALK A MILE IN HER SHOES EVENT, OCT 3, BY CLICKING HERE.

SPONSORS THIS EPISODE

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Sep 24 2018

1hr 18mins

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Rank #16: S2 Ep 11.5: The People Vs. Serial Season 2 - Was OJ The Better-Told Story?

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The Crime Writers welcome very special guest Lt. Col (R) James Weirick on board to talk about the art of storytelling, and whether Serial delivered on the big promises it made in season 2.

We also take apart the storycraft behind The People Vs. OJ Simpson, and how the cast, the plot frame, and even the casting of Ross as Robert Kardashian affected that show's arc.

Plus, we listen to some pithy listener voice memos and tackle a juvenile crime of the week.

A special thanks to classy-voiced British journalist Emma Finamore for reading some of the items our listeners from across the pond purchased on Amazon UK!

Links on crimewriterson.com :

Here's the article Toby mentioned in which the courtroom sketch artist compares the actors' portrayals to the real people in the OJ Simpson case.

What's on Weirick's Netflix list? Here you go:

1. Bronson

2. H.H. Holmes, America's First Serial Killer

3. Carl Panzram, The Spirit of Hatred and Vengeance

4. Punch-Drunk Love

5. Mirage Men

Crime of the Week link:

Read the Orange Street News, the greatest newspaper ever written by a kid.

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Apr 09 2016

1hr 24mins

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Rank #17: That JonBenet Ramsey Special - Yup, We Went There

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The Crime Writers take on what's good - and what's *not* so good - about the The Case of JonBenet, the four-hour CBS special featuring profilers Jim Clemente and Laura Richards and an all-star cast of forensic investigators. We talk about the case, the show's WTF moments (THEY BUILT THE HOUSE??), and dive deep into the potential defamation of Burke Ramsey, who is (in the experts' opinions) a leading suspect in the cold case.
We also chat with Ann Bartow, a law professor at UNH Law School and expert on all things defamation and internet speech, and tie that conversation in with issues raised in this week's episode of the excellent In The Dark podcast.
Finally, our crime of the week has Rebecca airing an old grudge with her favorite public radio host, Ira Glass.
Episode sponsors are the Havenly app (use promo code "crime") and Modcloth (also use promo code "crime") - and yes, we sometimes flub the ads, as you'll hear in the outtakes.
Interstitial music by Blue Dot Sessions and Jahzzar. Support Kevin's walk for domestic violence victims in crisis at crimewriterson.com.

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Sep 30 2016

1hr 12mins

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Rank #18: Adnan Syed & Steven Avery Updates, The Keepers (Wrapped in Newspaper!) Detail & 74 Seconds

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The State of Maryland got its bite at the apple, asking a three judge panel to reinstate Adnan Syed's conviction. The hour-long hearing dove more into Asia McClain and not-so-much into fax cover sheets. What's next for the "Serial" season one subject?

We also talk about the latest epic filing in the Steven Avery case. Will "brain fingerprinting" save the day for the man at the middle of Making a Murderer? And what's up with Brendan Dassey's case?

Did we forget to mention the CRAZIEST thing that came out of "The Keepers"? Like a particular body part wrapped in newspaper and thrown on the table during the interrogation of a priest? We're backing the train up so we can unwrap (sorry) that one.

The Crime Writers spend more than 74 seconds discussing the podcast "74 Seconds" from Minnesota Public Radio. This look at the fatal shooting of a motorist by a cop (live-streamed on Facebook) tackles the familiar themes of race, violence, and law enforcement training. With some episodes exploring the back story of the players in the shooting - and other episodes providing real-time updates from the court house - 74 Seconds feels like two separate podcasts. What's working? What's not? We'll give our review

In Crime of the Week: Some wanted men just can't stop the music. How karaoke landed a fugitive in jail.

Episode sponsors:

MHZ Choice - go to mhzchoice.com/writers and use code CRIME for 30 free days and 50% off your first month
Kopari Beauty - Get 20% off your order at KopariBeauty.com/crime.
Hubble Contacts - Get 15 pairs of contacts for free at hubblecontacts.com.
Storyworth - Get $20 off your subscription at StoryWorth.com/crime

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Jun 09 2017

1hr 16mins

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Rank #19: Accused and Don't F**k with Cats

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Rebecca and Kevin start by addressing some back-end tech changes that could affect listeners’ experience. There are shout-outs to our newest listener. And the panel solicits input from the audience for our upcoming 200th episode celebration.

The Crime Writers review the new season of “Accused.” The eight-part series is a story of corporate malfeasance, wrapped in a missing persons case filled with conspiracy theories, family secrets, and government lies.

OUR SPOILER FREE REVIEW OF “ACCUSED” CAN BE FOUND AROUND THE 33 MINUTE MARK.

Then they discuss Netflix’s "Don’t F**k With Cats: The Hunt for An Internet Killer." A gang of armchair detectives are looking for the person posting videos of animal cruelty. But before law enforcement takes the virtual manhunt seriously, the suspect turns his violent depravity on an unsuspecting man.

OUR SPOILER FREE REVIEW OF “DON’T F**K WITH CATS” CAN BE FOUND AROUND THE 1:22:00 MINUTE MARK

Then in Crime of the Week, shoulda called a cab.

For exclusive podcasts and more, go to patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia.

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Jan 06 2020

1hr 20mins

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Rank #20: Reply All Does True Crime & Shines Bright Like King Diamond

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Who thought we'd see Serial reborn in a podcast about the internet? Reply All's Sruthi Pinnamaneni brings us a four-part story about an inmate, his blog, the shifty characters associated with his crime, a flimsy evidence and nutty trial, and then - woah! - that final jailhouse interview! It's the podcast that has everyone asking, "Who the eff is King Diamond?"

In this episode, we'll hear from Sruthi about what went into creating the world's latest must-listen-to podcast. Then the panel will give their two-cents on the case and whether Sruthi is the one who finally stuck the landing.

There's also a correction or two. The song says "Don't you forget about me," but we might have forgotten about them.

Finally, you'll be repeating the Crime of the Week over and over again.

Also...can't get enough wisdom and insight from the incarcerated? Here are some blogs written by inmates, for future inmates (...if you're not careful).

On the Inside - Paul Modrowski's blog, edited by his mother, that started Reply All's four-episode profile of Paul and his case.

Between the Bars - a blog platform for prisoners in the US without internet access, done through MIT.

Live from Lockdown - a blog written by various inmates in the federal prison system, including highly influential gang-leaders and those held in solitary confinement.

Ben's Prison Blog - written by Ben Gunn, imprisoned in Sudbury (HM Prison), Derbyshire, England, 2009–2012. Since his release, Ben has continued his blog.

Lastly, for those looking for deeper meaning, here's King Diamond's song, "No Presents for Christmas."

Additional music this episode provided by Uncanny Valleys.

Support the show: https://patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia

Jun 11 2016

1hr 21mins

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