Five Fab Podcasts
I wasn’t sure about podcasts when they first became a Thing – there was a fake chumminess about some of them that I found off-putting. But, come the pandemic, the idea of chatting, or even listening to other people chatting, suddenly became a lot more appealing.
Perhaps it was because my own Child 2 now has her very own podcast, From A to Gen Z, with her talented friend Jaleh (they’re on Spotify and everything), that I suddenly got more interested. I now listen to a few and, just in case you are dipping your own toe (ear?) into the airwaves I thought you might like a few suggestions.
- During the recent Line of Duty frenzy (well, it was a frenzy in this house, highest drama ratings of the 21st century, anyone?) I was glued to Obsessed With Line of Duty, with Craig Parkinson, who played Dot Cottan in the early series of the show. In LoD, as we obessionados call it, Dot had an in with the police and with the OCG (do keep up) and much the same seems true in real life, as Craig Parkinson got interviews week after week with the stars playing key roles, ie vile pass-agger Patricia Carmichael, as well as puppetmaster general Jed Mercurio himself. Have a listen on BBC Sounds.
- Once LoD was done and dusted, forever I fear, I moved on to Craig Parkinson’s other venture, the Two Shot Podcast. This is a bit more of a ramble – but isn’t everything once the urgency of finding H/the fourth man is finally over? Think two actors, possibly only lightly employed thanks to pandemic conditions, and time to fill. Parkinson is an understated questioner, but he certainly wrings some interesting titbits out of his guests. Well worth a listen.
- If you’re after more of a giggle, you might like my most recent find. It’s been going for yonks, but I’ve only just stumbled across Jenny Eclair and Judith Holder’s Older and Wider. Jenny, comedian and author, is funny and clever, Judith is pleasingly neurotic in a way that makes me feel as though I am a glowing model of sanity. A recent podcast mooted the idea that menopausal women should be given salt lick-style lumps of valium to suck in moments of stress. You can’t really argue with that, can you?
- Fortunately with Fi and Jane. This one stars Fi Glover and Jane Garvey, and anyone missing Jane Garvey on Women’s Hour will find this a joy. The two chunter on, with the odd fascinatingly waspish aside on BBC so-called talent (I bet they’ll be funny about Martin Bashir, if the lawyers don’t get to them first). They sound like very old friends, but then break into tremendous professionalism when interviewing their guests. A lovely mix.
- Dear Joan and Jericha is a rather lovely acidic spoof of just the type of cosy chitchat formula podcasts put out by numbers three and four on my list. Acted by Julia Davis and Vicki Pepperdine, I am sometimes amazed at what they get away with. Often eye-wateringly graphic, frequently hilarious, it points a clever finger at the internalised misogyny that women of a certain age often project. Give it a go – if you dare.