I hope you enjoyed our recent list of favorite podcasts from 2017 by each of the hosts from Orbital Jigsaw shows! Off the back of that, I’d like to also highlight several shows I think you should check out heading into 2018!
Listening to podcasts has become commonplace in today’s world as 1-in-6 adults listen to podcasts in some capacity. Over the last year, I’ve had the pleasure of listening to dozens upon dozens of high quality shows and, unfortunately, many of them will go unnoticed.
The independent podcasting community is a hardworking, close-knit group of dedicated artists who work day and night on their craft. I want to highlight some of the best independent podcasts I’ve had the pleasure of listening to this year and I am confident that if you give them a try, you will love them too.
1. Large Marge Sent Us
Everyone loves to relive their childhood and The Sweetie Sisters are no exception. Each episode they choose a film that impacted their childhood or one from the 80’s/90’s era to rewatch and then give a full discussion. The episodes are always structured well starting with a “Sweetie Synopsis” in case you’ve forgotten the plot followed by loads of movie trivia and film discussion. You are guaranteed to learn at least one thing from each episode and as an added bonus, you get to enjoy Emily and Andre’s witty banter and strong sister bond.
My Personal Favorite: “Episode 65: A League of Their Own”
2. The Story Behind: The Extraordinary History of the Ordinary
Have you ever gotten into bed with the intention of looking at your smartphone and drifting off to bed, but instead find yourself heading down a three-hour rabbit hole of miscellaneous information? Then this is the podcast for you!
Emily brings hours of research to each of her episodes, all of which are 7-15 minutes in length. You’ll find a variety of topics including but not limited to the invention of the spork, theater superstitions, and the origin of peanut butter. Be careful, this podcast is extreme “binge” material and you’ll want to listen to them all at once, so try and take the time to enjoy them. You’ll have plenty of ice breakers for your next cocktail party!
My Personal Favorite: “Dr Pepper – Forrest Gump February”
3. Podcasts We Listen To
Jeremy is someone to know when you’re starting an independent podcast. He is the creator of the 16,000+ member group “Podcasts We Listen To” on Facebook and also hosts a podcast by the same name. His passion to bring indie podcasters to the forefront is apparent in his episodes. Jeremy interviews an individual or set of co-hosts about their podcast, their inspiration to start their show, and why they love what they do. It showcases a wide variety of hosts and you get to know the person or people behind the microphone. It’s a wonderful outlet to learn more about the independent podcast community and the hardworking people within it.
My Personal Favorite: “Tawny Platis – The Dirty Bits”
4. Moms and Murder
True crime is always a hard subject to cover because you want to give all the major details of the cases, but still have time to honor the victims and find a way to enjoy yourself. Mandy and Melissa are pros at walking this fine line. Each of their episodes provides thorough research and a lot of fun crime discussion. Additionally, their unique takes as mothers adds an empathetic element to their show making the case discussions even more compelling. You’ll somehow find yourself immersed in a case and bursting at the seams with laughter from their sporadic jokes, reality tv talk, and hashtag #onmydateline. Check out their closed Facebook group “Mums the Word” for more crime talk and hilarious parenting discussions.
My Personal Favorite: “Episode 19: Vampire Cult Killers”
Animals are some of the coolest beings on the planet, but sometimes National Geographic is just too dry to watch for 4 hours straight. Cue Varmints! Hosts Donna and Paul conduct hours of research on a variety of species from prairie dogs to polar bears. This is a podcast for the entire family as it is completely kid-friendly and filled with hilarious quips, sound effects, and factoids. You won’t want to miss an episode if you are an animal lover!
If you enjoy a wide variety of animal articles and gifs, hop, slither, or fly over to their Facebook discussion group!
My Personal Favorite: “Platypus – Varmints – 36”
6. Fictional Females
People may find it difficult to name a dozen strong, female characters found in the media but Fictional Females is here to change all of that. The podcast features a female character that made a massive impact in a plot or story. You’ll find deep dives on well known ladies like Ellen Ripley, Moana, or Buffy the Vampire Slayer. You won’t want to miss a single episode as Cheyenne and Diana bring entertaining discussion with a feminist view. To keep up with even more fictional female fandom, subscribe to their blog!
My Personal Favorite: “Megara, Hercules”
7. The Peripheral
Many listeners may have found this podcast from host Justin’s larger show Generation Why, but I stumbled upon it earlier this year after a friend was a guest on the show, and couldn’t be happier with what I heard. Each episode, Justin sits down with a guest to discuss a taboo or shameful topic. The Peripheral has delivered in depth episodes on physical abuse, suicide, stalking, and drug addiction. Justin is a great interviewer and makes each guest feel comfortable and validated in telling their story.
My Personal Favorite: “EP 9 The road to hell is paved in silk”
8. We’re All Just Pretending
Ever wondered what people are really thinking? This may be your next favorite show. Self described as a mix of “Dear Abbey” and “Post Secret”, We’re All Just Pretending shares a number of confessions, secrets, and desires each episode. Some are deep and serious, others are fun and frivolous. Each segment provides something completely different from the others. You’ll love hearing Lanie’s take with straightforward advice and Charlie’s Corner that mainly discusses parenting and relationship topics. Dive into Bad Advice with Haley as she covers some of the more ridiculous tips you need for an unstable life and don’t forget Drunk Advice with Josh where he may berate you for your taste in wines. Any way you slice it, this show is an hour or more of complete entertainment.
My Personal Favorite: “Episode 2: A Question of Sour Friends and Secrets In the South”
What are some of your favorite podcasts that you think people should check out in 2018?! I’m always looking to add to my playlist, so let those recommendations fly in the comments, or come join us in the Orbital Jigsaw Podience group on Facebook and tell us there!
Happy New Year!
Orbital Jigsaw is a boutique podcasting network consisting of a wide range of genres and high quality content. We strive to improve the content of seasoned podcasters and teach new podcasters the best practices in audio production, growing an audience, as well as enhancing a podcast identity. If you’re interested in joining in depth discussion, request access to our exclusive Facebook Group: Orbital Jigsaw Podience
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