The 15 Best New Podcasts of 2021 (So Far)

Like listening in to your funniest, most knowledgable friends.

podcasts
Courtesy/Morgan McMullen

With everyone stuck inside for what has felt like an eternity, there's been little else to do—other than binge-watch every great show on Netflix, that is—than order a microphone on Amazon Prime and share your thoughts and feelings with the world. But if you're not prepared to divulge your innermost thoughts with everyone you know and plenty of people you don't, let your favorites take the reins, right? From Rickey Thompson and Laverne Cox to Meghan Markle, pretty much everyone you know and love launched their own show over the course of the last 12 months. Ahead, we rounded up a few of our favorite new podcasts for when you're in the mood to add some *spice* to your daily routine. These are buzzy new podcasts everyone will be talking about in 2021.

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The Michelle Obama Podcast
the michelle obama podcast
Courtesy

When Michelle Obama launched her podcast with a moving episode that featured her mom and brother, I knew it was going to be good. Each episodes includes thoughtful, deep conversations with her close family and friends.

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Back Issue
back issue podcast
Spotify

If you're an early 2000s mega fan, meet your new favorite podcast. Each week, hosts Tracy Clayton and Josh Gwynn rehash some of the biggest scandals and moments that changed the course of (pop culture) history forever.

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Welcome to the OC, Bitches!
podcasts
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I know, I know—you never realized your life was missing a throwback podcast series about The OC until it materialized. Hosts Rachel Bilson and Melinda Clarke, who of course played Summer Roberts and Julie Cooper, walk us through one episode per week, interviewing guest stars and reminiscing about their experiences.

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Your Magic
your magic podcast
Courtesy

If you’re at all intrigued by spiritual beliefs, the occult arts, and meditations, then Your Magic is right up your alley. Michelle Tea hosts the podcast, which invites celebrity guests to discuss their forays into spirituality and explores spiritual beliefs from around the world. Don’t miss the episodes featuring guitar-smasher Phoebe Bridgers and rockstar Brittany Howard.

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Things You Can't Ask Yer Mum
things you can't ask yer mum
Spotify

This British podcast, hosted by influencers and IRL besties Lizzy Hadfield and Lindsay Holland, is like having girl chat with your nearest and dearest friends. Prepare to hear a few embarrassing college stories mixed in with humorous—and poignant—life advice.

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We Said What We Said With Rickey and Denzel
we said what we said
Spotify

Internet darling Rickey Thompson is joined by his best friend Denzel Dion to talk all things pop culture. Expect the same kind of positive energy—and the same hot takes—that you get from Thompson's Instagram videos and TikToks.

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The Treatment
the treatment podcast
Spotify

Film nerds, unite! Movie critic Elvis Mitchell interviews some of the most interesting and influential characters in film and TV about who they are behind the camera. Recent guests include Succession's Jeremy Strong and director Sophia Coppola.

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Brown & Black: Race and Pop Culture
black and brown podcast
Spotify

Film critics Jack Rico and Mike Sargent explore the intersection of race and entertainment on their new podcast. Each episode offers a mix of film reviews and conversations about the future of film and television post-pandemic.

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Clickbait with Bachelor Nation
clickbait with bachelor nation
Bachelor Nation

You've already binge-watched Tayshia Adam's season of The Bachelorette, so why not binge-listen to this podcast that's straight out of Bachelor Nation? Adams is joined by co-host—and fell0w fan favorite—Joe Amabile to discuss all of the show's juicy details.

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Archewell Audio
archwell audio
Archwell Audio

If there was one good thing to come out of 2020, it was that Meghan Markle and Prince Harry became podcasters. Meet Archewell Audio, the result of their multi-year partnership with Spotify. Their episodes "will host and produce podcasts that build community through shared experience, narratives, and values."

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Dare to Lead with Brené Brown
dare to lead with brene brown
Brene Brown

Brown's newest podcast is based on her recent book with the same name. It's a combination of solo episodes and interviews with game-changers in every industry, and it's going to make you want to chase your dreams head-on in 2021. Of course, each installment features the same genius advice that Brown has become known for.

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The Laverne Cox Show
the laverne cox show
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The eponymous host introduces us to dating experts, fat activists, and gender non-conforming writers—just to name a few of her distinguished guests—to get us thinking about perspectives that may expand our perception of ourselves.

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Under the Influence with Jo Piazza
under the influence with jo piazza podcast
Courtesy

The best thing about podcasts, IMO? Their commitment to explaining worlds that I wouldn’t have otherwise encountered. Under the Influence, a new podcast hosted by Jo Piazza, takes us deep into the realm of mommy influencers, whose hustle is rife with anxiety, racist pay gaps, and the suggestion that they're using their children for profit.

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Deeply Human
deeply human podcast
Courtesy

This podcast from the BBC and American Public Media seeks to explain human thoughts and behavior with the help of professors and experts. Rapper and musician Dessa hosts the half-hour series, with episodes about topics like lying, dating, and pain.

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Welcome to Your Fantasy
welcome to your fantasy podcast
Courtesy

Did you know that the world of the Chippendales–ya know, the male exotic dancers of the 1980s–was full of greed, deceit, and even murder? Host Natalia Petrzela guides you through the inception of the seedy business that exploited women’s lib for piles of cash to their eventual fall from grace.

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