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Picks of the week
Dr Death (available from 16 Aug)
Just when you thought it was safe to step back into the surgery, here comes season three of Wondery’s unnerving blockbuster of a podcast, subtitled Miracle Man. This time round, the shady medic in question is “super surgeon” Dr Paolo Macchiarini, whose windpipe transplants and handsome looks caught the attention of TV producer Benita Alexander. In textbook Dr Death style, she’s floored by the “dashing, charming” George Clooney lookalike, and starts a whirlwind romance with the promise of a lavish wedding blessed by the pope. What could possibly go wrong?
All New Fonejacker Podcast
Prank calls have the potential to seem passé in 2021, but not when they’re delivered by Fonejacker’s Kayvan Novak on his podcast. All eight episodes are available now, with Novak resurrecting his TV aliases including wheeler dealer Terry Tibbs, the ever-meddling Dufrais Constantinople, Donald Donaldson – permanently convinced that his wife is having an affair – and Brian Badonde, who can say any letter, as long as it’s b. Bitesized episodes mean that the characters don’t outstay their welcome, while “victims” are as unsuspecting as ever. Hannah J Davies
Producer pick: AfroQueer
Chosen by Shivani Dave
AfroQueer does phenomenally well in highlighting authentic voices from the African continent, each telling their story of being queer. The podcast focuses on the lives of people from across Africa and the diaspora, sharing stories of love, laws, the media, race, class, family and much more. All of the episodes are highly produced, but no two stories are the same. The podcast showcases the variety of experiences and challenges this community faces – from the complications of using Grindr in Africa to coming out stories, and and hosting a gay pride event in Uganda where being gay is illegal.
Host and executive producer Selly Thiam has produced LGBT+ content for years, and her expertise shows as she delicately traverses the nuance of reporting, interviewing and investigating the issues that face queer Africans both today and historically.
Its three seasons are a must-listen, and feature both heartwarming and heart-breaking stories.
Spotify continues to add to a stellar music documentary catalogue that includes Dissect and Mogul, with LOUD: a History of Reggaeton, hosted by Puerto Rican rapper Ivy Queen. From the humble origins of the dancehall, reggae and hip-hop-inspired Latin American genre to its international impact, it offers an intimate look at its evolution, and features hitmakers including J Balvin and Bad Bunny.
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