The Best Podcasts You Need to Listen to This Year

Music is great and all, but sometimes, when you put on your headphones to tune out the world, nothing hits quite like a great podcast. Whether you’re looking for a distraction, something new to learn, a way to improve yourself, or even a mystery to solve, the world of podcasts almost definitely has something for you… and in 2021, we’re already starting out strong with some brand new offerings.

So what podcasts will be the hottest of the year? This list is a good place to start.

Archewell Audio

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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry officially have a podcast on Spotify, and it’s definitely worth a listen. So far, they’ve only aired one episode: A holiday special, featuring cameos from absolute legends like Elton John and Stacey Abrams. It even included a short soundbite from Archie (yes, the Archie) so who wants to miss out in case that happens again?

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Meeting Tom Cruise

This podcast is exactly what it sounds like: Different people, famous or not, hopping on to discuss what it was like when they met Mission Impossible star Tom Cruise, hosted by two actors (Joel Johnstone and Jeff Meacham) who both desperately want to have one of these stories of their own.

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Nice White Parents

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Nice White Parents is a Serial podcast, so right off the top, you already know it’s going to be good—and very eye-opening. It delves into the ways that white parents have affected public education for decades, even though they can’t possibly speak for, or understand, what students of color actually need.

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The Daily Stoic

Working on your personal development in 2021? Try listening to The Daily Stoic. It offers up short meditations, along with longer interviews with stars like Camila Cabello and Matthew McConaughey, too, and it might just change the way you think.

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Beautiful Stories From Anonymous People

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This podcast is exactly what it sounds like. Hosted by Chris Gethard, each episode features a phone call with a totally anonymous stranger who will open up about their personal lives and anything they might be going through at the time, and things definitely get juicy.

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You’re Wrong About

If you’re a millennial, there’s a lot of stuff that went down when we were kids that was a big deal but that we didn’t fully understand, like the O.J. Simpson trial, and the whole Tonya Harding scandal (just to name a couple). In this podcast, hosts Michael Hobbes and Sarah Marshall explain what really happened, and fill us in on why we’re wrong about it. Listen to the Princess Diana episodes first, and you can thank me later.

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Yo, Is This Racist?

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Andrew Ti and Tawny Newsome take each episode as an opportunity to dive into why a certain concept is or isn’t racist, based on what their callers want to know. It’s definitely another eye-opening podcast, and it’s super entertaining (and timely, all the time) to listen to.

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In The Dark

True crime fans, this one is for you. In The Dark is about a Black man named Curtis Flowers who was accused of murder after a shooting in a Mississippi furniture store, and everything that happened as Flowers tried to clear his name.

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