The 50 best podcasts of 2016

From Obliging Oprah to Trumpcast and My Dad Wrote a Porno, here are the most bright, essential listens of the year

Storytelling

Mortified

People read foregrounds from their childhood diaries in front of a mob of strangers. Wonderfully cringeworthy.
Episode of the year: The Summer Camp Spectacular, predominantly for the line: Dear Mum and Dad, I cut my penis when I flunked my canoe experiment Rowan Slaney

The Heart

Stories about friendship, cherish and the messy beauty of our lives.
Episode of the year: The first of the courageous four-parter from Tennessee Watson, in which she opened up about being sexually assaulted as a child. Without uncertainty best available listen all year. Jason Phipps

Reply All

A podcast about the internet that is actually an unfailingly original expedition of modern life and how to survive it.
Episode of its first year : Voyage into Pizzagate, in which Reply Alls recurring peculiarity Yes, Yes, No( in which Alex and PJ excuse creepy internet material to their boss) unknowingly prophesies one of the biggest storeys to emerge from the post-US ballot, post-truth bulletin hertz. Fred McConnell

Radiolab

I
I Hart K-Pop Radiolab highlights the fact that intrusive paparazzi were good for the almost militarily strict Korean pop music vistum. Image: The Chosunilbo JNS/ Multi-Bits via Getty

Now in its 14 th time, Radiolab remains the gold standard of accessible documentary podcasts. This time has been no objection, with escapades on everything from Alzheimers to the ethical conundrums are confronted by defense lawyers.
Episode of the year :
I Hart K-Pop, which argues that intrusive paparazzi tactics are really a good situation for the ultra-conservative, virtually militarily strict Korean pop music vistum. Stuart Heritage

Heavyweight

The hilariously deadpan Jonathan Goldstein helps people deal with unfinished business, whether it is scattering your papas ashes illegally or getting Moby to give your CDs back. Funny, stroking and short. A perfect podcast.
Episode of the year : Gregors storey searches something so relatable the feeling of being left behind by your peers. And when those peers are Moby and the chairmen of Estonia, its easy to interpret why anxieties might arise. RS

The Dollop

Twice a week, standup comic Dave Anthony tells Gary Reynolds the life story of one astonishing figure in American history such as President Andrew Jackson, who was given a monstrou cheese that stank out the entire White House. Informative, clever and unbearably amusing. You would never learn this stuff in a classroom.
Episode of its first year : Huey Long . Did you know that in the 1930 s Louisiana was passed under a tyranny that virtually stood apart from the remainder of the US? RS

99% Invisible

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The lone telephone box in the middle of the desert that became an internet whiz 99% Invisible. Photograph: Gilles Mingasson/ Getty Images

Roman Mars delves into pattern and structure accounts to disclose the person or persons and opinions who have determined the world around us.
Episode of the year :
Mojave Phone Booth the story of a lone phone box in the desert and the person who is became obsessed with first announcing, and then visiting, it before eventually revolving it into an internet agitation. Leah Harper

How to Be a Girl

An anonymous mum steers the first few years after her young daughter comes out as transgender. A tender take on an under-represented reality.
Episode of its first year : How to Be a Dad. The frank conference between Dad and Mum, as they compare fears and following procedures, is compelling and runs counter to expectation. But equally potent is how much they sound like any old mothers; frightened, besotted and in awe “of childrens rights” all at once. FM

Interviews

Roam Schooled

Jim Brunberg takes his twinned six-year-old daughters on US roadtrips in their Winnebago to answer questions such as Whats a lone wolf ?, interviewing beings until the girls come to their own conclusions.
Episode of its first year: Whats a hippy ? in which the three fill veterans of the hippy action who pronounces frankly about drugs and fornication. A refreshing, beautiful listen. RS

Love+ Radio

Nick van der Kolk advises you to listen to Love+ Radio with headphones on and, while it often gives its explicit tag, the issue is little formula apart from in-depth interviews. They may be controversial, they may be seedy and they are unable to imply taxidermy.
Episode of the year: A Girl of Ivory, peculiarity Davecat, who is in a ludicrous three-way relation. Hannah Verdier

The Adam Buxton podcast

Adam
The father of British podcasting Adam Buxton. Picture: Ben Meadows

The daddy of British podcasting is beloved for the right reasons. His pod is fastened with the same productivity and nerdy attention to item as everything he has ever done.
Episode of its first year: Although he is most at home chatting to sidekicks such as Joe Cornish and Louis Theroux, the
episode with Michael Palin whom Buxton obviously reveres is a standout, predominantly for the exceedingly moving minute when they discuss the end of Graham Chapmans life. SH

Death, Sex and Money

A podcast about the things we think about a lot, and need to talk about more, hosted by Anna Sale.
Episode of its first year
: Were Not Moving to Have Karl Again. The heartbreaking story of Karl Towndrow, who died at nearly four months old on his first day in daycare, as told by his mothers. LH

Hello Internet

An Australian and an American living in the UK have in-depth debates and banter that is actually amusing. And they are still well informed on topics, whether serious( electoral systems) or silly( the sticks that plug takeaway coffee eyelids ). Their period jobs as educational YouTubers must help.
Episode of its first year : A Classic Episode, which is just that. The two bicker over flag design and dissatisfying tech, before propelling in to some satisfyingly objective Brexit talk. FM

WTF With Marc Maron

Marc
Peerless Marc Maron. Picture: Barry J Holmes for the Guardian

Even Marc Marons failed interviews, such as the one Jerry Lewis abandoned half an hour in, are meatier than most. Peerless.
Episode of its first year :
Billy Crystal, who stops the schmaltz and fires out one world-class fable after another. SH

Fiction

Homecoming

One of the most high-profile launchings of the year. The big-name stars David Schwimmer, Catherine Keener, Oscar Isaac ensure there is no cringey radio-drama behaving. Heidi( Keener) is a caseworker in both governments facility facilitating soldiers with PTSD back into the community.
Episode of the year : The first escapade is a scene-setter, and facets Schwimmer having a most unRoss-like meltdown at the airport. LH

The Radio Adventures of Eleanor Amplified

Adventure, plot and feline videos. The silly drama of this kids cod will retain listeners of all ages fastened. It is filled with drama on the high seas, brainwashing bad guys, trips to Siberia and the mysterious Scary Dangerous Jungle Island.
Episode of the year: Its Breakfast Time, America. Its hard not to root for an intrepid daughter reporter going up against a scoundrel forearmed with “cat-o-nine-tail” videos. Will hard-nosed journalism prevail over viral content? Melissa Locker

The Orbiting Human Circus( of the Air )

The
Most surreal podcast of the year The Orbiting Human Circus( of the Air ). Photograph: Caleb Bryant Miller

And the medal for most surreal podcast of its first year be applicable to Neutral Milk Hotels Julian Koster and his oddball provide set in a variety show at the top of the Eiffel Tower. Listen in order, because you will be confused enough as it is.
Episode of its first year : Start with the addictive first chapter, in which Julian the porter places the incident. HV

Darkest Night

This horror anthology podcast follows the top-secret Project Cyclops, where researchers uncover the secrets of the dead. But we are including it for one reason it is recorded in binaural music. After 10 hours of the rackets and expressions coming at you from all slants, you will be so disoriented you are able walk into a lamppost. Fully immersive.
Episode of the year : Horns Limo Service has stomach-turning resonated outcomes and brilliantly blunt forensic pathologist chit-chat: Head almost completely subdued. FM

The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel

Students are fading from HG Wells middle school and merely Mars Patel and his pals are likely to discover. With no adults willing to help, it is up to Mars to investigate. This adventurous minors podcast, reminiscent of old-time radio dramas, is controlling listening for young and old.
Episode of the year : The Gift, in which a strange letter is demonstrated by from halfway around the world. ML

Discussion

Another Round

Tipsy
Tipsy twosome Another Rounds Heben Nigatu and Tracy Clayton. Photograph: Jon Premosch/ Buzzfeed
Calling out racism, quaffing concoctions and shedding sharp one-liners: Heben Nigatu and Tracy Clayton return consistent podcast rapture. No problem the subject, from healthy devouring to tickling Whitney Houston, the tipsy duet tackle it with humour.
Episode of the yea r :
Oh, The Racism !, in which Nigatu and Clayton bond with Insecures Issa Rae over karaoke and lipstick. HV

The Guilty Feminist

If you are the kind of feminist who secretly sings along to Robin Thickes Blurred Lines, then Sofie Hagen and Deborah Frances-White understand your pain. The Im a feminist but intro wreaks revelations and chuckles each week. Test: Im a feminist, but I realise that my own dreams have the same men-to-women ratio as most British panel shows.
Episode of the year : Not Having Kids swaps from entertaining to beautifully happy and back again in style. HV

Beautiful Fibs from Anonymous Beings

A podcast with two conventions: a nameless stranger will telephone up comic Chris Gethard and talking here anything they like, and he cant hang up on them. So far, callers have discussed homelessness, the facts of the case that they are only detected they are married to small children molester, and which animal they would be happiest to be chewed by.
Best escapade of the year : I Cry When I Guide. Its virulent to hear two strangers connecting so easily. SH

Scummy Mummies

Grace
Grace Jones, who requested Miranda Sawyer back to her inn room. Photo: Steve Lyne/ Rex Shutterstock

Ellie Gibson and Helen Thorn are two south-east London jesters where there is this very funny parenting podcast with clients. Disclaimer: Ive appeared on it, so I know how drunk they are when they chronicle it, and its amazing that it even exists.
Episode of its first year:
The midlife crisis special with Miranda Sawyer, solely for the fable that ends with Grace Jones requesting her back to her hotel chamber. SH

2 Dope Queens

Live standup converges insinuate chat between acquaintances as Phoebe Robinson( Broad City) and Jessica Williams( ex-Daily Show) disagree about jobs, racism and whether its OK to like Bono.
Episode of the year : How to Channel Your Inner White Lady. Or, getting better customer services with people saying: Its intolerable! HV

Unorthodox

I love podcasts that draw you feel as if you are listening in on a gossip you are able to never usually get to hear. These guys examine weekly information of the Jews, as well as religion matters and secular Jewish culture, all of which I would otherwise have no insight into.
Episode of its first year : Into the Woods, with a progressive-yet-conservative rabbi guest, perfectly exemplifies the lively conversations about theology that Unorthodox does excellent. FM

Call Your Girlfriend

Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedmans podcast for long-distance besties everywhere celebrates the therapeutic supremacy of a catchup. From the forge torso positivity of Meghan Trainors All About That Bass to Fleabag and free boobin, little is off-limits.
Episode of its first year : The detailed deconstruction of Taylor Swift v Kanye West in Make America Smell Great Again. HV

RuPaul Whats the Tee ?

RuPaul
Graham Norton on Conchita Wursts success is a gem RuPaul Whats the Tee. Photo: Jonathan Nackstrand/ AFP/ Getty Images

The natural pairing of RuPaul and Michelle Visage is camp, self-opinionated and funny. Drag Race gossip, life exercises and elegance tips keep coming, along with celebrity guests.
Episode of its first year:
Graham Nortons enthusiastic template to Eurovision and Conchita Wursts success is a gem. HV

Sooo Many White Guys

One half of 2 Dope Queens, Phoebe Robinson, nails a chatshow that rotates the tables on white-guy advantage in the podcast zone. Her Ryan Seacrest impression may not cut it, but her humour and converse with people who are killing it who are not just straight up lily-white dudes surely does.
Episode of the year: The goal of season special with token white man Mike Birbiglia and so much friendlines. HV

True violation

They March Among Us

Proof that a podcast recorded in your bedroom genuinely can become a stumble. A strange husband and wife obsessed with true-blue misdemeanour tell the stories of chill actions, from Canoe Man John Darwin to the murder of Sadie Hartley.
Episode of the year : The departure of Shannon Matthews is an superb portion of storytelling. HV

Crimetown

The developers of HBO documentary The Jinx grow their attention to corruption in American cities. The display begin with young prosecutor Buddy Cianci, who takes on the local felony house in Providence, Rhode Island. But as his political desires change, he intent up in bunk with the mob. A riveting succession that knits harsh felonies and dirty politics with good humour.
Episode of the year : The Making of a Mayor. When Cianci decides to run for office, the cut-throat world of party politics clears him wonder everything. ML

In the Dark

Minnesota
Minnesota guardsmen search for Jacob Wetterling. Photo: Alamy

Twenty-seven years ago, 11 -year-old Jacob Wetterling was biking residence from the video storage in his Minnesota hometown when he was kidnapped at gunpoint by a stranger. He was never seen again. The lawsuit gripped the nation and led to the US creating a sex-offender register. This mesmerizing podcast retraces the criminal investigation, culminating in the courtroom where a hostage acknowledges his involvement and Wetterlings mothers lastly get answers.
Episode of the year:
The One Who Got Away . The reporters look at a related felony implying a young boy that stole through the fissures of the police investigation with dreadful outcomes. ML

My Favourite Murder

A world of repugnance and jocularity. Formerly a few weeks, Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark come together to talk about murder. One of them tells the story of a annihilate, while the other reacts in emit collapse and anger. Its important to note that they are incredibly respectful, and anguish at the world nearly endlessly. This has built up quite a following, with fan artwork, Etsy sheets and a sell-out pas of T-shirts( all revenues go to charity ). Stay Sexy and Dont Get Murdered.
Episode of its first year: W here the women focus on a Hometown Murder subject submitted by a devotee and theres a “cat-o-nine-tail” who loves cookies. RS

Comedy

My Dad Wrote a Porno

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