LA is, among other things, a podcasting city. Every aspiring comedian and their mom (probably in some cases literally) host their own show about some niche or gimmicky topic. On the other side of the equation, we've got powerhouses producing popular shows like Nerdist and Maximum Fun, and even our own Podcast Festival.
Today, Apple released its iTunes Best of 2015 list for, among other things, podcasts. LA-based WTF with Marc Maron for Best Classic Podcast, while Starlee Kine's Mystery Show won Best New Podcast.
The criteria for Apple's list are a little unclear—probably a combination of which shows have the most downloads and editor's picks. In addition to the winners, they split up the rest of the list into categories: Classics, New This Year, Recent Debuts and Most Downloaded.
Maron's show, taped out of his Highland Park garage, has had a huge year, including a sit-down interview with President Obama and an anticipated civil confrontation with SNL's Lorne Michaels (partially about Maron's long-mythologized (by him) botched SNL audition). Mystery Show is hosted by This American Life vet Starlee Kine, who on the podcast plays a detective and solves mysteries including a particularly fantastic one involving Britney Spears.
To be clear, "Classics" really just means that it's been around for longer than a year. Seems wrong to let them get away with calling Psychobabble with Tyler Oakley a "Classic," but the list is chock-full of great listens like Karina Longworth's exploration into classic Hollywood, You Must Remember This, and what is probably the definitive Bad Movie podcast, How Did This Get Made.
The New This Year list includes the extremely popular NPR show Invisibilia, about "the invisible forces that control human behavior" (their tag line), the round-table pop culture show from Maximum Fun, Pop Rocket, and the recreational basketball commentators from Pistol Shrimps Radio.
The full lists of Classics and New This Year, with links to the show pages, are listed below—shows based in Los Angeles are denoted with an asterisk (let us know if we missed any). To check out the full lists, just go to iTunes.com/podcasts and click on the Best of 2015 banner.
Best of 2015:
Best Classic Podcast: WTF with Marc Maron Podcast *
Best New Podcast: Mystery Show
- Song Exploder *
- On Being
New This Year:
- Pop Rocket *