The 30 Most Mind Blowing, Engrossing, and Surprising Podcasts of 2020 | 22 Words

Dying to get lost in a multi-part story, thrill yourself with true crime, laugh until you cry, or learn an entirely new skill in only a few hours?  Here are the 30 top podcasts you need to check out right now.

1. My Favorite Murder

via: Exactly Right Media

If you're a true crime junkie with a dark sense of humor, My Favorite Murder is soon to be your new favorite podcast. Each week hosts Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark pick a serial killer to cover while adding in their own LOL-worthy commentary.

2. Armchair Expert

via: Armchair Expert Pod

Dax Shepard and Monica Padman host this weekly podcast, which discusses "the messiness of being human" by interviewing celebrities, journalists, and academics. This one is as funny as it is enlightening.

3. 2 Dope Queens

via: NPR

Hilarious, inspiring, and ridiculously relatable, 2 Dope Queens is a podcast hosted by Jessica Williams and Phoebe Robinson. Some past guests of the show include Jon Hamm, Nick Kroll, and former First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama.

4. Office Ladies

via: Earwolf

If you're a superfan of The Office (who isn't?), Office Ladies is required listening. It's hosted by Angela Kinsey and Jenna Fischer, who played Angela and Pam, and features a breakdown of every episode as well as behind-the-scenes stories from Office cast and crewmembers.

5. Noble Blood

via: The Lazy Historian

Calling all history buffs! Noble Blood focuses on the fascinating lives of historical royals and breaks down all the gory details. Not really into history? You might be surprised by how hooked you'll become after the first episode.

6. Limetown

via: Two-Up Productions

In 2005, an entire town with a population of over 300 people disappeared without a trace. Limetown tells the story of the neuroscience research facility in Tennessee and tries to uncover the mystery of what happened to these missing men, women, and children.

7. Off The Vine with Kaitlyn Bristowe

via: Apple Podcasts

Remember Bristowe from The Bachelor and The Bachelorette? Her podcast is just as binge-worthy as your favorite reality TV shows without making you feel like you just wasted the last hour of your life. Her guests range from celebs to authors to activists.

8. Stuff You Should Know

via: iHeart Radio

Learning something new doesn't have to be boring. Stuff You Should Know covers topics such as How Narcolepsy Works, How Labor Unions Work, and even How Bras Work, for anyone out there looking for more info on the most supportive of undergarments.

9. The Viall Files

via: Stitcher

Relationships are tricky, and no one knows that better than Nick Viall, who became famous for appearing in the 21st season of The Bachelor. The Viall Files discusses the intricacies of life and love with a new guest each week.

10. The Goop Podcast

via: Facebook

You've probably heard of Goop, the modern lifestyle brand by Gwyneth Paltrow, but did you know that there's also a Goop podcast? Gwyneth Paltrow and Elise Loehnen cover a plethora of topics with new episodes coming out Tuesdays and Thursdays.

11. The Nod

via: Gimlet Media

Brittany Luse and Eric Eddings cover the black stories that you haven't heard on The Nod. This insightful podcast celebrates "the genius, the innovation, and the resilience that is so particular to being Black -- in America, and around the world."

12. Skimm’d From The Couch

via: The Skimm

Danielle Weisberg and Carly Zakin started The Skimm in 2012, and now they're chatting with some of the most powerful and influential female leaders in their podcast Skimm’d From The Couch. 

13. Second Life with Hillary Kerr

via: Second Life Pod

How do you master "the pivot", aka risking it all to make a major career stage? Successful women who've managed to make it work discuss how they did it and the mistakes they made along the path to victory in this empowering podcast hosted by Hillary Kerr.

14. Who? Weekly

via: Who Weekly

If you can't get enough pop culture news, get your weekly dose of juicy celebrity gossip with Who? Weekly hosted by Bobby Finger & Lindsey Weber, who are just as obsessed as you are.

15. The High Low

via: acast

Writers Dolly Alderton and Pandora Sykes discuss highbrow and lowbrow culture on this fun and informative podcast. Past episodes delve into topics such as The Rise and Fall of Victoria's Secret and Soft Ghosting.

16. Call Your Girlfriend

via: Call Your Girlfriend

It's tough to keep long-distance friendships going, and sometimes you just need to call up your bestie and chat for a while. That's exactly what Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman do in each episode of Call Your Girlfriend. You'll feel like you're at a bar grabbing drinks with your BFFs every time you listen.

17. The Cut on Tuesdays

via: Gimlet Media

The Cut on Tuesdays digs into culture, politics, sex, and style with host Molly Fischer at the helm. Every week, Fischer takes a deep dive into topics you think you know something about and teaches you something new and incredibly fascinating.

18. Radiolab

via: NPR

If you're not a big fan of the casual 'just two people talking' format that a lot of podcasts have, try giving Radiolab a listen. It's beautifully produced and tells human stories in such a gripping way that you'll be shocked at how engrossing radio can be.

19. The Daily

via: Stitcher

There's a lot going on in the world these days, and it can feel overwhelming to try to figure out the best way to get your daily news. That's where The Daily comes in. Each episode is one 20 minutes long and covers important and timely topics.

20. Up and Vanished

via: Up and Vanished

Where do people go when they disappear? And how do their friends and family members continue on when they can never put their loved ones to rest? Up and Vanished tells the stories of people who go missing, and each new episode is more captivating than the last.

21. Lore

via: Lore Podcast

Lore "exposes the darker side of history", with episodes exploring non-fiction scary stories that will make you slightly uneasy (but completely riveted). It's also produced in a way that's been referred to as a "campfire experience", so you might want to pick up some s'mores supplies ASAP.

22. The Bechdel Cast

via: The Mary Sue

The Bechdel Cast is a movie podcast that examines popular movies through a feminist lens, and you might be surprised by how horribly women are presented in some of your favorites. Hosts Caitlin Durante and Jamie Loftus are as hilarious as they are brilliant.

23. Conan O'Brien Needs a Friend

via: Stitcher

Poor Conan. He could really use a friend, and he's using his podcast Conan O'Brien Needs a Friend to find one. This weekly podcast is chock full of your favorite actors and comedians as well as, of course, the goofiest 6' 4" redhead around.

24. Reply All

via: Gimlet Media

Reply All, hosted by PJ Vogt and Alex Goldman, is a podcast about technology. Sure, that sounds like a pretty broad topic, but it's really more about the actual people who are using the technology than the technology itself.

25. In the Dark

via: Vulture

In the Dark is a journalism podcast featuring in-depth reporting on different crime-related news stories. Hosted and narrated by Madeleine Baran, he first season explores the  kidnapping and murder of Jacob Wetterling.

26. Swipe Left Swipe Left

via: Swipe Left Swipe Left

Looking for something lighthearted? Swipe left Swipe Left is an instant mood-booster. This delightful cast from Gavin Wong and award-winning radio producer Claire Crofton is filled with embarrassing stories and awkward true tales that will have you LOLing.

27. Anna Faris is Unqualified

via: Anna Faris is Unqualified

Anna Faris is simply delightful, and you'll soon discover that her podcast, Anna Faris is Unqualified, is, too. Faris talks to famous guests on topics such as public urination, WrestleMania, and homeschool prom.

28. Disgraceland

via: Tune In

Disgraceland, hosted by Jake Brennan, is a true-crime podcast about "musicians getting away with murder and behaving very badly". Sure, it might ruin how you feel about some of your favorite artists, but it's totally worth a listen.

29. Gloss Angeles

via: Stitcher

Beauty addicts, allow me to introduce you to your new obsession: Gloss Angeles. Kirbie Johnson and editor Sara Tan talk about all things beauty and fashion in this podcast that will make you want to spend 5 grand at Sephora every time you listen.

30. WTF with Marc Maron

via: Stitcher

The first episode of WTF with Marc Maron deputed in 2009, and it's been going strong ever since. Maron is known for his frank discussions on relevant topics, and his mix of humor and raw honesty makes for an extremely enjoyable podcast experience that never disappoints.