fiction podcasts
November 5, 2018 2:20 PM   Subscribe

What are your favorite fiction podcasts, or radio dramas I can easily download and access on my phone?

All genres welcome. Not asking about audio books at the moment.
posted by latkes to Media & Arts (23 answers total) 27 users marked this as a favorite
Alice Isn’t Dead. First person road trip horror story about a woman searching for her missing wife. It’s by the Nightvale people; their other work is not my style, but this one very much was.
posted by eirias at 2:24 PM on November 5, 2018 [2 favorites]

I'm so glad to be able to recommend Archive 81 to someone who actually is wanting to listen to such sorts of things.

Great writing, cool story, likeable voice work.

I was on a kick of these a while back and don't have my bookmarks for them handy. I also recommend checking out old times radio podcasts, there were a ton of different sci-fi programs, lots public domain now I think. They're a trip to listen to because of their alien cultural values of their era, which can be a curse and a blessing.
posted by GoblinHoney at 2:25 PM on November 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

Jarnsaxa Rising. SF / Feminist / Mythology / Kickass.
posted by seanmpuckett at 2:47 PM on November 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

Alba Salix, Royal Physician: a comedy about a magical doctor in a fairy tale kingdom. It’s like a full-on radio play with voice actors, sound effects and music. There’s a spinoff set in a troll tavern, The Axe & Crown.
posted by moonmilk at 3:19 PM on November 5, 2018 [2 favorites]

Not exactly what you're asking for, but I'm enjoying it so much I'll toss it out: Levar Burton Reads. Every episode he reads a new short story, all different genres of fiction, and the variety is great.

Limetown is a cool one if you haven't heard it yet. Horror/mystery and really well done. I think they just started their second season actually.

For a weirder one, I've really enjoyed Within the Wires, especially the second season. It's definitely an experimental podcast but worth checking out IMO.
posted by caitcadieux at 3:40 PM on November 5, 2018 [3 favorites]

Homecoming was apparently good enough to merit a TV adaptation, which just released on Prime.

I'm a fan of Rude Alchemy, which has a different narrative each season, all set in the same universe. Very silly.

Seconding Alba Salix.

Someone is podcasting X Minus One, a radio show from the 1950s featuring Golden Age science fiction stories in half an hour. Great quality, based on their most recent episode. Ditto Dimension X.
posted by Sunburnt at 4:05 PM on November 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

Homecoming is soooo good. The sound design is incredible.

I am not sure if this is technically fiction, but it's basically improv: Everything is Alive. The host interviews people pretending to be inanimate objects (lamppost, can of cola, etc.). It's fascinating to get inside the head of these objects!
posted by radioamy at 4:15 PM on November 5, 2018

I poked my head in here to see how many people recommended Welcome to Night Vale and was astonished that the number is zero (if I don't count eirias's aside), so, just in case you have yet to encounter it: Welcome to Night Vale.
posted by Basil Stag Hare at 4:33 PM on November 5, 2018

Welcome to Nightvale: good
Alice isn't Dead: good
The Black Tapes: excellent first two seasons. Skip the third.
Tanis: good
Limetown: a little cheesy but ok
The Magnus Archives: excellent
Homecoming: only listened to the first season but it was really good
Rabbits: good
The Message: good

Apparently most of the fiction I listen to is vaguely horror-ish science fiction....

Oh! Hello From the Magic Tavern!
posted by Green Eyed Monster at 4:40 PM on November 5, 2018 [3 favorites]

Podcastle (fantasy fiction), Escape Pod (science fiction), and Pseudopod (horror fiction). Lightspeed. Apex Magazine. Clarkesworld. Chuck Tingle's Pounded In The Butt By My Own Podcast. Sayer.

And my very favorite: The Hidden Almanac. Three episodes a week, generally five minutes or less, following the adventures of Reverend Mord (who may or may not be a collective intelligence of beetles disguised as a plague doctor) and Pastor Drom (miracleworker, author of multiple self-help books, tequila enthusiast). Written and performed by author Ursula Vernon (aka T. Kingfisher) and Kevin Sonney.
posted by Lexica at 4:45 PM on November 5, 2018 [2 favorites]

Levar Burton Reads!! It's Reading Rainbow for Grownups. Lots of good sci-fi by women and POC.

I've also enjoyed The Truth, Bronzeville, and Station to Station.
posted by brookeb at 4:46 PM on November 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

Ghosts In The Burbs is my favorite right now. Limetown's first season was great, we'll see how the second season goes in light of a TV show also being made.

This may be outside your genre interests, but My Dad Wrote A Porno is hilarious.
posted by Lyn Never at 4:52 PM on November 5, 2018

I love Levar Burton Reads!

Also, Selected Shorts and its sister/spinoff Selected Shorts: Too Hot for Radio. It's not quite the same since Isaiah Sheffer (host and short story selector) died, but the stories and readers are still great.

The New Yorker Fiction Podcast is more highbrow/ Iowa Writers Workshop style reading, which I appreciate in a very different way.
posted by basalganglia at 4:59 PM on November 5, 2018

The Mysterious Secrets of Uncle Bertie's Botanarium. Voyage of the Beagle meets Heart of Darkness meets Flight of the Conchords. Deeply, deeply hilarious and wonderfully produced. The original music by Lawrence Arabia is perfection.
posted by apparently at 5:23 PM on November 5, 2018

The Drabblecast.
Starship Sofa.
Both have extensive archives. SS has rather extensive framing and non-fiction content, but if you look for the episodes marked as "Aural Delights," they are nearly 100 percent well-narrated goodness.
posted by Gilgamesh's Chauffeur at 5:32 PM on November 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

For another take on Horror/mystery, I LOVE LOVE LOVE Limetown but Tanis really fell short for me. The story of Tanis is really interesting but the delivery became really grating to me—it’s like the creators have never heard human dialogue or something. Limetown’s dialogue is a bit unnatural but it’s supposed to be a produced radio program so it’s not wholly unexpected.
posted by emkelley at 5:37 PM on November 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

I really enjoyed the first season of Tumanbay, which is sort of Game of Thrones level of palace intrigue in a podcast. I didn't realize the second season was available so I'll have to listen to that next.
posted by carolr at 6:14 PM on November 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

The BBC Sherlock Holmes with Clive Merrison is on This link has most of them, but a couple of the new adventures (written by Bert Coules) are not in this bunch. This summer, I listened to this daily on my phone on Firefox -- all day, I tell you, humming in the background. I love Merrison's Holmes, and Michael Williams's Watson -- they are both perfect. This fanpage describes the series and names the episodes. has a lot of radio dramas -- Pigman seems to be a user who uploads many of them.
posted by Francolin at 6:20 PM on November 5, 2018

I hate to keep adding horror/science fiction recommendations, since you didn’t specify a preference for it, but knifepoint horror is an excellent horror fiction podcast.

I loved the first season of Limetown. Season 2 has only put out one episode so far, and while it’s well-written it has gone in a quite different direction.

Within the Wires season 1 was amazing, go listen to it now! Season 2 suffered (in my opinion) for not having season 1’s element of surprise, and for concentrating more on world-building than the characters’ story. Season 3 is ongoing and hasn’t hooked me yet (but I’m hopeful).
posted by ejs at 7:22 PM on November 5, 2018

The Bright Sessions!
posted by quadrilaterals at 9:43 PM on November 5, 2018

I really like The Truth.
posted by source.decay at 5:25 AM on November 6, 2018 [1 favorite]

not quite what you asked for but you should definitely listen to My Dad Wrote a Porno
posted by JenThePro at 2:45 PM on November 6, 2018

The Lost Cat is my favourite podcast that no one seems to know about. Its tone is hard to describe, kind of unlike anything else out there — literary, existential horror with a surprising amount of humour, warmth, and gentleness.

The Family Tree is my other favourite podcast no one seems to know about. It's a magical realist drama that presents itself & unfolds in a very unscripted, naturalistic way (the metafictional frame is a series of interviews). It's about family, belonging, identity, otherness. It's so insightful and ambitious and humble and I really, really like it.
posted by fire, water, earth, air at 8:55 PM on November 7, 2018

« Older Pleasurable Dining Out With Extensive Dietary...   |   What are some good short stories where the hero... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments