21 votes

Reply All is officially dead. What to listen to now?

Reply All was consistently one of my favorite podcasts on my player. I've been a listener for years, and while risking sounding parasocial, I felt a huge loss when the show finally ended. There's something about the consistency of some content, and the nostalgia for the rough patches where that content helped make things easier, whether it be a podcast, TV show, or blog.

It was that right mix of personality, investigative journalism, humor, and weird internet culture. I have a lot of alternatives in my player, but none of them seem to fill that RA-shaped hole. Here's what I'm listening to nowadays:

  • Underunderstood
  • You're Wrong About
  • Endless Thread
  • Darknet Diaries
  • Crypto Island

Basically, I'm begging for podcast recommendations from shows you consider to be your favorite. Preferably, if you can include a recent, really good episode to get started with, I'll give it a listen and report back. Thanks!

27 comments

  1. NaraVara
    Link
    So not as much current event or internet-culture oriented stuff, but I listen to a few podcasts in a similar niche as Reply All: 99 Percent Invisible The Atlas Obscura Podcast Secretly Incredibly...

    So not as much current event or internet-culture oriented stuff, but I listen to a few podcasts in a similar niche as Reply All:

    • 99 Percent Invisible
    • The Atlas Obscura Podcast
    • Secretly Incredibly Fascinating
    6 votes
  2. [3]
    cloud_loud
    Link
    A lot of the podcasts I listen to are movie-centered. So I don’t know if you’ll enjoy them but here’s the ones that I listen to: The Weekly Planet (this is the longest podcast I’ve listened to....

    A lot of the podcasts I listen to are movie-centered. So I don’t know if you’ll enjoy them but here’s the ones that I listen to:

    The Weekly Planet (this is the longest podcast I’ve listened to. Been a listener since 2016. It’s provided escape during hard times. The closest thing I have to a parasocial relationship. Its basically pop culture news talked about by two Australians.)

    This Had Oscar Buzz (basically self-explanatory. These two guys talk about movies that had Oscar buzz but ended up getting no nominations. They’re really funny guys.)

    SmartLess (this is a pretty recent thing for me. It’s hosted by Will Arnett, Jason Bateman, and Sean Hayes. They interview celebrities who they’re friends with. The Bradley Cooper episode is great, I really like the Ryan Reynolds episode).

    Watcheando Movies (probably the more underground podcast I listen to. A guy shows his cousin movies that he’s never seen. It can be pretty funny.)

    It Was A Sh*t Show (same name as the YouTube channel. He goes over the making movies and how headache inducing the process is. He does it with his wife and his friend. Highly recommend the YouTube channel as well).

    4 votes
    1. [2]
      deknalis
      Link Parent
      I have very little interest in any of the movies Weekly Planet usually covers (largely superhero films and blockbusters) and it is still one of my favorites. It's made me laugh like no other show...

      I have very little interest in any of the movies Weekly Planet usually covers (largely superhero films and blockbusters) and it is still one of my favorites. It's made me laugh like no other show I can think of.

      2 votes
      1. cloud_loud
        Link Parent
        Yeah definitely. I discovered Mr. Sunday Movies in 2014, around when I was first getting into movies. And the way I got into movies involved watching a lot of those “nerdy” type channels that...

        Yeah definitely. I discovered Mr. Sunday Movies in 2014, around when I was first getting into movies. And the way I got into movies involved watching a lot of those “nerdy” type channels that talked a lot about comic book movies. As I got older I grew out of those guys, but I still watch Mr. Sunday Movies and listen to The Weekly Planet. I think it’s because they don’t take themselves seriously, they don’t really take comic book movies seriously, and they kind of make fun of the YouTube review culture.

        2 votes
  3. [7]
    tomf
    Link
    Jonathan Goldstein's Heavyweight is good, but Wiretap is worty tracking down and going through.

    Jonathan Goldstein's Heavyweight is good, but Wiretap is worty tracking down and going through.

    4 votes
    1. [3]
      teaearlgraycold
      Link Parent
      IMO Heavyweight is the best podcast ever made.

      IMO Heavyweight is the best podcast ever made.

      3 votes
      1. Parliament
        Link Parent
        I was just recommending Gregor to my co-worker last week. That's the episode that got me hooked.

        I was just recommending Gregor to my co-worker last week. That's the episode that got me hooked.

        3 votes
      2. tomf
        Link Parent
        yeah, I'm pretty much on board with this. JG is the best.

        yeah, I'm pretty much on board with this. JG is the best.

        1 vote
    2. [3]
      RNG
      Link Parent
      Looks really exciting, but apparently there's no RSS link, so I can't play it on my pod player

      Looks really exciting, but apparently there's no RSS link, so I can't play it on my pod player

      2 votes
  4. [2]
    Comment deleted by author
    Link
    1. 0d_billie
      Link Parent
      I still miss it 😭 are they both still insisting that they're just taking a break?

      Hello Internet (1-49) -- Also finished. Good rapport between the hosts (CGPGrey / Brady Haran). Focused on culture (as experienced by science Youtubers), with the occasional whimsy that would lead to one making a podcast on a wax cylinder.

      I still miss it 😭 are they both still insisting that they're just taking a break?

      2 votes
  5. [2]
    bhrgunatha
    Link
    The Tobolowsky Files Stephen Tobolowsky, it turns out, is a captivating storyteller and has obviously kept detailed diaries over the years. Each of the 99 episodes is about an hour long where he...

    The Tobolowsky Files

    True stories about life, love, and Hollywood from legendary character actor Stephen Tobolowsky.

    Stephen Tobolowsky, it turns out, is a captivating storyteller and has obviously kept detailed diaries over the years.

    Each of the 99 episodes is about an hour long where he waxes philosophical about life and its meaning as he recalls individual stories of growing up, training and breaking into the industry as an actor. There's no overall narrative but he does elaborate on people and his relationship with them so I'd recommend listening in order.

    I won't choose an episode.

    Instead here's a 5 minute video that demonstrates his way of extracting meaningful lessons from everyday life events that's typical of his style.

    3 votes
    1. RNG
      Link Parent
      That seems promising, thanks!

      That seems promising, thanks!

      1 vote
  6. bonsai_angel
    Link
    Recommending podcasts is weird. For shows like Reply All that are structured and produced, you can tell someone, "this is a good show", and even if they don't like it they'll at least understand...

    Recommending podcasts is weird. For shows like Reply All that are structured and produced, you can tell someone, "this is a good show", and even if they don't like it they'll at least understand what it is, and agree that it is definitely a show of some kind. But most of the podcasts I like are just people talking to each other about stuff, for hours, with very little structure and low production value. I don't think the parasocial quality is necessarily unhealthy, but it does mean that by recommending a podcast you're sort of recommending a person, and it's hard to know whether someone's personality will click for you. So I'm actually... not going to recommend anything. Except for Reply All. You should download all the old episodes and listen to them again.

    3 votes
  7. mat
    Link
    My go-to podcast of facts/jokes/opinion Answer Me This recently finished (well, last year but I had some catching up to do) and while No Such Thing as a Fish is top quality facts/jokes/opinion it...

    My go-to podcast of facts/jokes/opinion Answer Me This recently finished (well, last year but I had some catching up to do) and while No Such Thing as a Fish is top quality facts/jokes/opinion it is only weekly.

    So I have been listening to The Guilty Feminist and very much enjoying it. Good mixture of comedy and facts and opinion, on all sorts of topics, obviously with a feminist slant but it's not overwhelming. I've learned a lot of stuff so far and I've got several year's worth of it left.

    All are easily found in your usual podcast player.

    3 votes
  8. elcuello
    Link
    I will never not recommend "You must remember this". It has nothing to do with your examples but focus on the people in and around entertainment industry in Hollywood back in the day. It's kinda...

    I will never not recommend "You must remember this". It has nothing to do with your examples but focus on the people in and around entertainment industry in Hollywood back in the day. It's kinda theatrical which I normally stay away from but the narrating and production is really well made and makes people you know and don't know interesting and captivating. I'm sorry for not providing any links but it's on spotify so I guess a lot of other places as well.

    2 votes
  9. phlyingpenguin
    Link
    Loremen: Two blokes discussing and making fun of lesser-known local legends and rating their job with an arbitrary scoring system. They try to stay away from the kinds of big-name stories you've...

    Loremen: Two blokes discussing and making fun of lesser-known local legends and rating their job with an arbitrary scoring system. They try to stay away from the kinds of big-name stories you've probably heard before.

    2 votes
  10. kwyjibo
    (edited )
    Link
    Lots of good recommendations in this thread. Without going too out of topic or repeat a recommendation, I can wholeheartedly recommend the concluded Mystery Show and the ongoing Beautiful...

    Lots of good recommendations in this thread. Without going too out of topic or repeat a recommendation, I can wholeheartedly recommend the concluded Mystery Show and the ongoing Beautiful Anonymous.

    Mystery Show has only 6 episodes, but if you really want to get a feel on it, try the second episode titled Britney. It was aired 7 years ago and I still sometimes think about it.

    As for Beautiful Anonymous, there are too many episodes to recommend. Love Is Everywhere (#69) is incredibly sad, but it's a must listen. (There's also a follow up episode on it.) Just do it when you think you can handle it. Ron Paul's Baby (#1) and Prison Bound (#121) are also pretty good introductions.

    Additionally, I can also highly recommend the first season of Invisibilia without being able to single out an episode.

    2 votes
  11. [3]
    cliambrown
    (edited )
    Link
    I don't have a direct replacement to suggest, but for what it's worth, here are some of my favourite podcasts in no particular order: Criminal: Each episode, host Phoebe Judge reports on a true...

    I don't have a direct replacement to suggest, but for what it's worth, here are some of my favourite podcasts in no particular order:

    Criminal: Each episode, host Phoebe Judge reports on a true story that has some connection with crime. (But it's not a typical "true crime" podcast.) Sometimes light, sometimes heavy, sometimes historical, sometimes current and political, always excellent.

    Everything Is Stories: Intense, long-form interviews with people who have incredible stories. Ended in 2018.

    The Ballad of Billy Balls: A miniseries that was published as the "second season" of a totally different show, The RFK Tapes. A moving story about a family mystery.

    S-Town: A miniseries from some people who worked on Serial. Tells a true story that shifts and turns, surprising and shocking and sad.

    Beef and Dairy Network Podcast: The #1 podcast for those involved (or just interested!) in the production of beef animals and dairy herds. An absurd British comedy podcast. Start from the beginning.

    Constellation Prize: Only 5 episodes published in 2020, but they are lovely.

    Other shows that are probably too well known to warrant a blurb, or were mentioned elsewhere in this thread:

    2 votes
    1. [2]
      lou
      Link Parent
      Mystery Show has like 5 episodes on the feed. Is that correct?

      Mystery Show has like 5 episodes on the feed. Is that correct?

      1 vote
  12. [4]
    rosco
    Link
    Oh man, so many good recommendations so far! I had a very similar experience to you when Dinner Party Download went off air ~2015. I still miss Rico Gagliano and Brendan Francis Newnam. I want to...

    Oh man, so many good recommendations so far! I had a very similar experience to you when Dinner Party Download went off air ~2015. I still miss Rico Gagliano and Brendan Francis Newnam.

    I want to give a big second to This American Life and Radio Lab. Both are great examples of accessible dives into complex subjects and really stick to current events. It's hard to pick great intros for each because they are both so good, but I really enjoyed Radio Lab episode The Dirty Drug and the Ice Cream Tub and from This American Life, Christmas and Commerce is always a classic during the holidays, No Coincidence, No Story! had some gems, and The Room of Requirement

    My most recent binge podcast has been Off Menu by James Acaster and Ed Gamble. They dive into the best Starter, Main, Side, Drink, and Desert for comedians and chefs. sounds like a dull format but it ends up eliciting some pretty hilarious conversations. My favorite episode so far was Andi Oliver, she is hilarious and I just recreated her Oysters/Champagne concoction. It was delicious.

    For the outdoor enthusiasts I'd like to suggest he Dirt Bag Diaries. It's not always consistent, but there are some really great stories about outdoor sport. They cover Biking, climbing, running, skiing, fishing... sometimes all mashed together in one story. I really enjoyed the episodes Mr. Hodges, You Slept Where?, and Flyathon.

    For a deeper dive into singular stories, I love the work that Brian Reed and the Serial team has done on S-Town and The Trojan Horse Affair. I've listened to S-Town 4 times through now and I cancelled social engagements when the Trojan Horse Affair came out. They are great. Start with episode 1 of each and roll on!

    For random stories, almost like open mic night, the Moth podcast has some really fun stories. I think my favorite is from Steve of Blue's Clues. It's a real gem.

    2 votes
    1. RNG
      Link Parent
      Wow, I have a ton to check out! Thank you so much for taking the time to write this all out. I've had an outdoorsy streak, and I'm excited for an episode of Dirt Bag Diaries! Thanks for being so...

      Wow, I have a ton to check out! Thank you so much for taking the time to write this all out. I've had an outdoorsy streak, and I'm excited for an episode of Dirt Bag Diaries!

      Thanks for being so generous with your time

      1 vote
    2. [2]
      cliambrown
      Link Parent
      I mentioned it above, but if you liked S-Town as much as I did, you should try The Ballad of Billy Balls.

      I mentioned it above, but if you liked S-Town as much as I did, you should try The Ballad of Billy Balls.

      1 vote
      1. rosco
        Link Parent
        I'll definitely check it out!

        I'll definitely check it out!

  13. lou
    Link
    Not the same subject but I really like Freakanomics podcast.

    Not the same subject but I really like Freakanomics podcast.

    1 vote