True crime and not-so-true crime among the highlights of inaugural Vancouver Podcast Festival

Comedian Alicia Tobin and musician Jessica Delisle host the Vancouver podcast Retail Nightmares.

Are you a podcast listener? If so, you probably know that one of the most popular podcast genres is true crime.

With that in mind, organizers behind the inaugural Vancouver Podcast Festival have chosen “True Crime and Justice” for the festival’s theme. Festival guests include award-winning investigative journalists who have worked on podcasts such as the Peabody-winning In The Dark, Someone Knows Something, Kelly&Kelly, and You Must Remember This.

The festival will be held at various venues across Vancouver from Nov. 8-10. See below for highlights.

Karina Longworth (You Must Remember This), Uncover; Escaping NXIVM; Pop This!/Heavy Content (Nov 8 at 6:30 p.m., at The Rio Theatre)—Longworth is the host of You Must Remember This, a popular podcast covering (and uncovering) the secret and/or forgotten histories of Hollywood’s first century. She’ll discuss her hit podcast as well as her new book, Seduction: Sex, Lies and Stardom in Howard Hughes’s Hollywood. Uncover: Escaping NXIVM is an investigative podcast about NXIVM, a group that calls itself a humanitarian community and which others call a cult. Ex-NXIVM member Sarah Edmondson joins the show’s host, Josh Bloch, for a discussion around the making of the show. CBC News’ Johanna Wagstaffe hosts. Pop This! is two women talking about pop culture and feminism.

CBC meteorologist Johanna Wagstaffe.

In the Dark; Someone Knows Something (Nov. 9 at 7 p.m. at The Rio Theatre)—Investigative journalism series In the Dark uncovers injustice and reveals the truth about America’s penal system. Peabody Award-winning host Madeleine Baran discusses the issues she has reported on, including racism and the criminal justice system. Arif Noorani and Cesil Fernandes, producers of Someone Knows Something, talk about the art of true crime investigating sharing audio and video, and never before heard material from the podcast.

Criminally Funny (from the creators of This is That and This Sounds Serious); Retail Nightmares (Nov. 10 at 9 p.m. at the Rio Theatre)—In Criminally Funny, the cast and crew behind local podcasts This Sounds Serious, This is That, and Stop Podcasting Yourself join forces with some of the city’s comedians to bring you a night of improvised true crime comedy. In Retail Nightmares, comedian Alicia Tobin and musician Jessica Delisle “cover pressing issues like favourite grapes, cute animals, and Keanu Reeves.”

You Must Remember This host Karina Longworth.

The Vancouver Podcast Festival also features workshops, panel discussions, and something about Harry Potter. For a full schedule visit

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