I have exciting news today. We’re starting a new show! We’ve never done this before. It’s coming out in the fall. It’s called Serial and it’ll be a weekly podcast, not a radio show at all. The main way it’s different from This American Life is that instead of bringing you a different theme each week, every episode of Serial will bring you back not just to the same theme but to the same story, to bring you the next chapter. We’re starting with a crime story, that’ll run for about a dozen episodes. Our hope is that it’ll play like a great HBO or Netflix series, where you get caught up with the characters and the thing unfolds week after week, but with a true story, and no pictures. Like House of Cards, but you can enjoy it while you’re driving.
The show’s produced by This American Life’s longtime senior producer Julie Snyder, and Sarah Koenig will host. She’s one of our show’s producers and she is – no question – the best radio reporter in the world for this series. Regular listeners may remember the hour-long story she did a while back, investigating a murder committed by this doctor named Gilmer. Every ten minutes, you learned something that changed your whole idea of the case and the story, and in the end, she found exculpating facts nobody at the trial on either side knew about. It was amazing reporting. I can’t wait to hear Sarah do this once a week. Seriously — she’s done some of the best stories we've put on the air: the Coincidences show, the story about her dad’s career in the “Mad Men” era of advertising, the episode about the maintenance man in the Schenectady, NY schools who became a petty tyrant. She produced Jake Halpern's Switched at Birth story, one of the show's most popular episodes.
Even though Serial doesn’t come out till fall, you can sign up for updates here.