The very best podcasts this week

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The apology line

For 15 years, anyone in Manhattan could call a dedicated phone line and anonymously confess and apologize for everything they’d done.

Wondery’s new podcast, The Apology Line, tells the story of this real-life phone line and the man behind it. Someone who has listened to thousands of callers apologizes for everything from shoplifting to breach of trust to murder.

The podcast analyzes how “Mr Apology” realized that he could no longer just listen and how this decision cost him almost everything.

One wild fact about this show that makes the story all the more exciting: Marissa Bridge, the host, is Mr. Apology’s sister.

New podcast The Apology Line tells the real-life story of a man who overheard thousands of callers apologizing for everything from shoplifting to infidelity to murder.

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New podcast The Apology Line tells the real-life story of a man who overheard thousands of callers apologizing for everything from shoplifting to infidelity to murder.

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The Battersea Poltergeist

Do you believe in ghosts? It’s a question that has preoccupied us for many years, and The Battersea Poltergeist may be the very story that attracts some infidels.

This BBC Radio 4 documentary tells a true story through a mix of documentary and drama with the voice of Dafne Keen (His Dark Materials) and Toby Jones (Captain America).

The haunt in question took place in Battersea, south London, and was a big story at the time: in 1956, an ordinary family who lived in an ordinary townhouse experienced strange events, including knocking on the roof, flying pots and pans on shelves, strange writing on the wall and a floating young girl.

If you don’t mind letting those kind of stories get right under your skin and scare you the Bejesus, The Battersea Poltergeist is perfect for you.

The missing

Fans of real life mysteries should download The Missing, a new podcast hosted by writer Pandora Sykes.

In the UK, someone is reported missing every 90 seconds and The Missing is investigating a new missing person case every week, taking into account the tragic human cost of each disappearance and asking listeners to help find them.

Sykes never loses sight of the heartache behind every story; Mystery tropes of true crime are avoided in favor of grounded, heartbreaking accounts of the missing.

It’s an often heartbreaking listen, but a fascinating experiment in terms of podcasting and crowd-sourced information.

Grounded with Louis Theroux

With New Zealand living as usual and the rest of the world under lockdown, quarantine podcasts may lose relevance, but Louis Theroux is such a great interviewer that this lockdown-produced podcast is well worth listening to no matter what your environment is in in the.

Theroux has a number of fascinating guests on this show, including the most recent respondents including Riz Ahmed, FKA Twigs, Michaela Coel, and Helena Bonham Carter.