We're listening to Serial

02 March 2016

Our new feature is all about what we're watching, listening to and talking about this month. First up is the return of the phenomenally popular Serial podcast. 

This week, Content and Communities Editor, Sophie tells us why you should be listening to the new series of Serial

If you still haven’t listened to Serial, the weekly podcast phenomenon that re-investigated the murder of a Baltimore teenager in 1999 and captivated listeners around the world, you should do that. Right now. 

The twists and turns of Sarah Koenig’s investigation into whether or not Adnan Syed was wrongly convicted of the murder of his ex-girlfirend Hae Min Lee, puts the best fictional whodunnits to shame. It was a word of mouth success fuelled by endless chatter across social media around the globe and by December 2014 each episode of series one had been downloaded an average of 3.4 million times.   
Series two of Serial had an awful lot to live up to.
In a brave and interesting move, the new series isn’t really a murder mystery at all. This time it focuses on Bowe Bergdahl, a young soldier in the US army who, in 2009, left his base in Afghanistan and was captured by the Taliban, who held him for five years. He was released in 2014 as the result of a prisoner exchange but the case is still active in military court and could potentially lead to a life sentence for Bergdahl.
On first impressions it’s a Homeland-style investigation into whether Bergdahl is a hero or a deserter. It quickly develops into a much bigger story than the listener might expect, delving into the day-to-day experiences of US soldiers in Afghanistan, America’s policy on hostages, mental health and the military justice system. It’s fascinating, gripping and addictive in entirely different ways to series one but it similarly spins out in all sorts of unexpected directions. Fans of a good old-fashioned storytelling won’t be disappointed. 

Start listening to Serial now


We'd love to hear about your latest obsessions too. Eating cereal over Making of a Murder? Binging on The Bridge? Let us know in the comments below. 

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