Podcast reviews & recommendations.
Navigating the overwhelmingly dense world of documentary podcasts one season at a time.
Listen. Review. Repeat.
The prospect of using pattern-matching algorithms for detection is already part of public conversation, but mostly in the negative sense. Kuebrich makes a good case for how more sophisticated methods could help clear unsolved cases, which tend to disproportionately effect black communities. He also manages to shed some important light on the issue of untested rape kits.
Of course, the Mudaugh case is fascinating to begin with, but what Matney brings to the table is expert knowledge — both of the case itself and also of good storytelling. She busts myths, introduces new and important details, carefully constructs and deconstructs scenarios and, critically, she’s does a brilliant job of familiarizing her listeners with the local politics and hierarchies of her part of South Carolina.
It’s like listening in on a tense spat in the players’ lounge of a golf club. Older white men puff themselves up and vociferously deny each others claims to high rank and repute. It’s glorious.
It’s important to remember something that seems to be overlooked here: a listener comes to any story about a New Age leader with a very healthy skepticism. They don’t expect to emerge as a convert. We want and expect to have our assumptions pummelled but, aside from a few tales of well-executed business plans, the building up of Lenz isn’t sufficient enough to make the taking down particularly satisfying.
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