Full Disclosure – This post is transported (and updated) from an old site I worked with because I initially wrote it for here and put it there when content was needed. It is 100% my writing and is simply being placed here where it belonged all along.
Welcome, my true crime friends. If you are obsessed with watching documentaries about Bundy, Dahmer, or Gacy, this is the place for you. Come on in, sit down, and enjoy hanging with your people. You have found a safe space to obsess over true crime, come on in and buckle up.
Here you won’t get weird looks when you mention that you are binging Snapped or when you say that you can’t wait to see the new docuseries on GSK – and we will all know that you mean the Golden State Killer – and yes, most of us agree that Serial should have stopped after the first season.
We know that you aren’t weird or psychotic, just that you enjoy trying to understand and figure out what makes some human beings commit the worst crimes imaginable. You have that curiosity because you want to know the good and bad sides of our fellow humans. With that in mind, if you are a true crime nerd and you aren’t listening to the podcasts offered by The Obsessed Network, you haven’t really lived.
The Obsessed Network
What is The Obsessed Network? It is a network of podcasts that focus on various areas of true crime, and it is one of the only things that got me sanely through quarantine. It all started a new friendship and a desire to do a podcast between Patrick Hinds and Gillian Pensavalle. The success of that initial podcast, called “True Crime Obsessed,” would launch a network where true crime lovers could feel at home and get their true crime fix with a side of humor.
True Crime Obsessed – A Podcast
In 2017, Gillian Pensavalle and Patrick Hinds put out their first episode for their new podcast. It was a recap of the documentary The Imposter for their new true crime pod and little did anyone -, especially them – know that 246 episodes later (so many more if you are a Patreon supporter), they would still be going strong. It is not your typical true-crime show because they watch popular true crime documentaries/docuseries and recap them with a patented blend of compassion and humor that you will find few other places.
It may seem counter-intuitive that they approach this area with humor, but it comes from two people who seem to have some of the biggest hearts on earth. They handle the cases and victims with respect, and all of the humor comes from the shows themselves or the almost unbelievable and truly off-the-wall people.
If you are looking for people with a lot of heart and even more humor, you will love this duo.
Obsessed With Disappeared
This show started out being hosted by Patrick Hinds and Ellyn Marsh, but with Patrick’s insane schedule, the show now is hosted by Ellyn Marsh and her long-time friend and fellow Broadway performer Joey Taranto. OWD recaps episodes of ID’s series “Disappeared.”
No matter the duo, part of the magic of this show is that both sets of hosts bring decades of friendship to the air, along with a desire to truly help those missing, as well as their families. Ellyn and Joey (or Patrick) spend a lot of time bickering back and forth hilariously in a way that only true longtime friends can.
These are not people who will hold back, and you will know exactly how they feel about the players in the stories they are recapping, though they handle the actual cases themselves with the respect they deserve. As the shows play out, you will hear that between the laughs and the quotable lines, the duo truly wants to help. At the end of the episodes, they (usually Ellyn) will give the updates she got from side googing and explain policies that seem insane at the moment as she will have assuredly called some law enforcement agency associated with the case they are talking with to clarify something.
Finally, they are always sure to give out support numbers if anyone listening needs a safe space but is at a loss to get it. The heart in them shines through, making you know that they are laughing because if they didn’t, they would cry.
Also, with Ellyn and Joey being Broadway performers, there is a lot of breaking into song, and it is never bad…to be fair and fully transparent, I have talked with Ellyn over messages a lot and definitely am biased towards her seeing exactly what a wonderful caring human she is, so if you are ever to ask me my personal preference – OWD will get my endorsement hands down.
Though to be fair, I can think of at least a dozen people I have turned onto TCO as well, so, I guess just listen to them all. They are fantastic.
The other shows produced by The Obsessed Network are “Unjust & Unsolved” with badass host Maggie Freleng. She goes back over cases that were initially solved with the wrong perpetrator and now remained unsolved. Freleng is a hard-hitting investigative journalist, so the show definitely has a different vibe but is amazing and addicting.
“Crimes of the Century” is hosted by journalist Amber Hunt. More in the vein of Freleng, Hunt covers the cases impartially and with a more reporting feel. During the show, she reexamines cases deemed the crime of the century when they occurred, but for the most part, have been forgotten by the public.
Covering their bases as a network that covers what some deem to be weird obsessions, this is also the home to the Daisy Eagan pod “Strange & Unexplained.” As the name suggests, Eagan covers weird or unusual stories, playing into the obsession that exists throughout the public for eerie or supernaturalesque stories.
In a more “Serial” style, the podcast “Murder in Alliance” covers the murder of Yvonne Layne – an Ohio woman, age 26, who was killed on April 1, 1999. It is often referred to as the April Fools Day murder. While her ex David Thorne was found guilty and sentenced to life with no parole, also hosted by Maggie Freleng.
Most recently, there was a mini-podcast within the sphere of TCO hosted by the amazing Gillian Pensavalle called “Let The Women Do The Work.” Now, this has long been a saying on TCO, but it went to the next level when GP broke out into a 10-part series that looked into the lack of a women’s perspective on many true crime podcasts and corrected that by talking with some of the most amazing women in the true crime field, from Anna Vasquez from the San Antonio Four to the super-human Rabia Chaudry and her over two-decades-long work on the Adnan Syed case. This is a mini-series that is as intriguing as it is relevant and is a necessary listen for anyone who loves true crime.
So, go and do yourself a favor. Check out at least one of these fantastic offerings from The Obsessed Network, or even better, give them all a shot. There is no way you will not be able to find at least one that can satisfy your true crime obsession.
And in advance – you’re welcome – and as always, that is how I see it.