Serial is a podcast about a murder that happened in 1999. It's produced by This American Life and it's the best podcast series I've listened to.
From the podcast's about section:
On January 13, 1999, a girl named Hae Min Lee, a senior at Woodlawn High School in Baltimore County, Maryland, disappeared. A month later, her body turned up in a city park. She'd been strangled. Her 17-year-old ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed, was arrested for the crime, and within a year, he was convicted and sentenced to spend the rest of his life in prison. The case against him was largely based on the story of one witness, Adnan's friend Jay, who testified that he helped Adnan bury Hae's body. But Adnan has always maintained he had nothing to do with Hae's death. Some people believe he's telling the truth. Many others don't.
Serial's creator, Sarah Koenig, has been digging deep into the murder. She's interviewed Hae Min Lee and Adnan Syed's classmates, read court transcripts, listened to police interrogation tapes, met with lawyers, recreated key incidents in the events leading up to the murder, and more, to produce the engrossing weekly show. Each episode runs between 25-40 minutes and seven episodes have been released so far. The big question is: what really happened on the day Hae Min Lee was strangled? Each episode chips away at the mystery. (Which Koenig admits may never be answered.)
Uproxx has a good listener's guide to the series.
The captivating part of the show — the part that has wrangled it close to a million unique listeners, and that caused me to listen to all of the show's seven-episode backlog in a 24-hour span late last week — is the presentation. Koenig is an experienced and gifted storyteller, and the way she weaves things together ends up embedding the show deep in your brain.
Reddit's r/serialpodcast takes a very deep dive into the podcast, and the participants are posting high school yearbook photos and other details that have not yet been revealed in the podcast. I'm keeping away from it, because I want to get all my information from the podcast.
Slate has a podcast about Serial. This might be the first podcast about a podcast. It's a recording of the hosts' conversation about the episodes. They are fans of Serial, but also quite critical of the way Sarah Koenig is presenting the story. (I happen to think Koenig is doing a brilliant job.)