Serial

So, Serial Season Two is complete, and in my opinion this season has helped firmly cement the show’s status as the premier podcast available on the internet. The two seasons are entirely individual and separate both thematically and conceptually, but are intrinsically linked by the way in which they enthral and enrapture listeners week by week. Where season one was about the fallibility of the human memory and the piecing together of evidence to form a timeline, this season is essentially a denigration of war and all the baggage it brings along with it. When the synopsis of season two was announced, that it was to follow the story of a solider who walked off his base in Afghanistan and was captured and held hostage for five years by the Taliban, I initially had some trepidations that this story wouldn’t be as tight, affecting and personal a story as the one which I loved so much in season one. My fears were swiftly cast aside however, because although this story is much broader in scope and focuses largely on a war – the influence of which was felt around the globe – the crux of the issue rests upon the mental state of a man who was under severe stress and made a bad decision. Sarah Koenig and her team manage to bring this story down to a human level, despite how deep the fundamental issues of this story go, and that showcases what a talented production team Serial has. If someone had somehow never heard about podcasts before and was looking for a recommendation of where to begin, I would look no further than Serial, the perfect example of what this medium is capable of.

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