Studio: Criminal & Radiotopia
Category: Personal Journals
What Is It
Host Phoebe Judge helms well-produced, short episodes dealing with all aspects of crime.
Criminal debuted in 2014 and it just passed the hundred episode mark. The entire archive is available at the official website. Episodes run fifteen to thirty minutes usually.
What About It
I like this show and host Judge, but there are certainly issues with it. I think the biggest weakness I see is perhaps also something a lot of people see as a strength, which is the often rather short running times of the episodes. In their very first episode, they covered the case that inspired the TV series, The Staircase. In fifteen minutes. Yes, the same case that The Staircase is still working on; they’re currently at thirteen episodes, around eleven hours. I mean, I get bite-sized and if that’s what you want, then this is the show for you. If you want anything approaching depth and/or nuance, go elsewhere. Still, it’s not really a bad show, just an inferior one to many others, if that makes sense.
You finally burned through the archive of 60-Second Mind.
Avoid Like the Plague If
You just kind of feel like that ten episode Oh No Ross & Carrie Scientology series was a bit shallow.
Best Starting Place
Actually, I’ve got a really good one. It’s called Walnut Grove and it’s got an astonishingly good hook: A guy goes to visit his incarcerated son only to be turned away by the authorities of the correctional facility for a completely shocking reason: they can’t find his son. That’s right, a correctional facility has lost one of its inmates. And what’s more, they don’t really seem to care. It’s a great episode.