Are you listening to the great shows Sleepover, The Why Factor, and Close Encounters? Below, four podcast enthusiasts — Sara, Adela, Leaf, and Harriet — explain why you should drop everything and subscribe to them right now...
Listen to Sleepover, a new show from CBC Radio, and be the ultimate fly on a wall as three strangers meet and share a hotel room overnight with host and producer Sook-Yin Lee. Three half-hour episodes are dedicated to each group of strangers. Each guest comes with a problem to solve and an object that exemplifies their struggle, and they help each other find clarity and a path forward. How these strangers interact and learn from one another is very telling about human nature, and I love how the guests challenge each others' long-held self-perceptions in a kind way in order to solve problems. It's such a positive show, without being over-the-top sugary sweet, and I can't wait for more episodes.
The Why Factor
The Why Factor takes one “why” question and uses the next 18 minutes (usually) to talk to experts and laypeople in an effort to answer the question. As an example, one recent episode asks “why do pet videos go viral?” and another asks “why are men more violent than women?” I came across The Why Factor as I was searching for podcasts about identity for an upcoming Podcast Brunch Club theme. I became an instant fan.
The Guardian has been leading the podcast charge in the UK as of late — right now it feels like there's a new launch every week. Our favourite so far is Close Encounters, in which sex educator Alix Fox interviews Brits about their bedroom activities. Fox approaches interviewing like she's sitting down to have a chinwag with an old neighbor over tea, and it totally works — she gets people talking, and even laughing, about everything from vaginismus to life with a little penis. We hate to admit it, but the stereotype about English people being less than forthcoming when it comes to talking about sex is... kind of true. This show is a wonderfully crafted exception.