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The best conspiracy theory podcasts strike a balance between fun, information, and intrigue. A good conspiracy theory makes you think about the way the world works. It exposes the grey areas of life, the paranormal, politics, and history in a way that brings a deeper meaning to parts of life that need a little more explanation.

Of course, this can go too far. Conspiracy theories should, in theory, be entertaining first and shocking second. When conspiracy theorist starts to go for a shock-factor you get the Alex Jones and Clyde Lewis-types who use real-world tragedy for their own celebrity and, honestly, fuck those guys. A good conspiracy theory is arguing over whether all UFOs are extra-terrestrial intergalactic spacecraft or just secret military vehicles. It’s about drinking one too many pints of porter in Oregon and bantering over bigfoot for the whole night. It’s wanting to believe, trusting no one, finding all the truth out there … somewhere.

With that ethos in mind, we’ve put together a list of our ten favorite conspiracy podcasts that you should be listening to right now. To be clear, this list is about entertainment. In serious times, sometimes we need a little woo and alternative thought when we look at the world. It’s escapism at its best.

CONSPIRACY! THE SHOW

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Comedian Adam Tod Brown’s Unpops Podcast Network has a long list of great shows. One of our all-time favorites is Conspiracy! The Show. Comedy roast writer and stand-up Connor McSpadden joins Brown for hilarious deep dives into conspiracies from Elvis’ death to Ace of Base’s Nazi ties to Project Blue Book (the government’s search of extraterrestrial contact on earth). Brown’s research is always impeccable and McSpadden brings a comedy roast mentality to the mix which makes for a hilarious and insightful listen.

Start with Mirage Men. Host Adam Tod Brown is joined by comedian Laura Crawford to take a deep look at misinformation agent Richard Doty and the eye-opening documentary Mirage Men. From there, you can listen to 42 free episodes on iTunes or subscribe to the Unpops Patreon for new episodes weekly.

THE HIGHERSIDE CHATS

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Greg Carlwood’s interview podcast, The Higherside Chats, is about getting a little tipsy and talking to experts in the fields of paranormal, UFO, occult, and conspiracy about crazy shit that happens all the damn time. Sit back, smoke a big splif, and enjoy folks geeking out on conspiracy, life, and the meaning of it all, man.

There are 250 free episodes to choose from on iTunes right now. That’s a lot to contemplate. Our recommendation: Jump in at the Ras Ben episode from last June where Ben and Carlwood get into the Philadelphia Experiment, Mandela Effect, and Timeline Management Magic. It’s a great entry point to get the vibe of the show.

ALIEN THEORISTS THEORIZING

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Alien Theorists Theorizing uses comedy to explore (and poke fun at) conspiracy theories of every walk of life. The beauty of this pod is that theorists Zel, Dan, Braden, and Andrew keep things loose. They cover the usual UFO and 9/11 conspiracy theories and also go into myths and legends around pirate hideouts and cities of gold. This is a broad, funny, and engaging listen every time.

Start with Case File 88: The Simpsons Time Travelers. It’s a fun look at prophecy and coincidence of The Simpsons’ many predictions that have come to fruition. After that, take a dip into the 98 free episodes currently on iTunes.

SKEPTIC’S SCIENCE SALON

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Professional skeptic Michael Shermer has been talking about conspiracies, debunking theories, and bringing hard science into the whole conspiracy theory world for decades now. His podcast effort through Skeptic magazine, Science Salon, brings in the biggest thinkers and scientists of today to talk about, explain, and debunk myths about everything from the energy our bodies produce to chemtrails. This is the conspiracy theory connoisseur’s conspiracy podcast where fact and hard data trump conjecture and hearsay.

Start with the October 2017 episode, UFOs, Chemtrails, and Aliens: What Science Says. It’s a fantastic place to get the feel of the show and is deeply educational about those conspiracy theories from a grounded, science POV. Once you’re hooked, check out any of the 52 free episodes on iTunes.

STUFF THEY DON’T WANT YOU TO KNOW

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Co-hosts Ben Bowlin, Matt Frederick, and Noel Brown have been exploring the darker corners of the paranormal and conspiracy worlds for over a decade now. Each episode of Stuff They Don’t Want You To Know takes a fun-yet-serious look at everything from secret space travel to monsters like Jeffery Epstein to voter fraud. This is the sort of show that’ll hook you in fast and keep you listening for years.

You have the choice of 300 prime episodes to listen to for free on iTunes. Choosing a single episode as an entry point is kind of up to your taste in conspiracy theories. A great place to start is Building Disney: The Magic Kingdom and the CIA. It’s a romp through the batshit craziness behind the building of Disney World in Florida and how Ol’ Walt got around the whole U.S. government to build it.

HYSTERIA 51

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Hysteria 51 hits the perfect sweet spot of fun and informational. Co-hosts John Goforth and Brent Hand bring a welcoming attitude to every type of conspiracy theory you can think of. They invite on authors and “experts” to talk aliens, crypto-archaeology, real magic, and so much more. The whole show has the feel of gathering in your local pub with some friends and talking about enlightening, scary, and fun shit all night long.

Check out episode 103, Göbekli Tepe: Proof of an Advanced, Ancient Civilization? The episode takes a look at the mysterious Turkish archaeological site that’s upending everything we think we know about hunter gathers and the thrust of human history and technology. After that, pick and choose from over 120 free episodes on iTunes.

UNEXPLAINED

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Richard MacLean Smith created one of the best paranormal and conspiracy podcasts out there. Unexplained takes a realistic look at the parts of the world that defy explanation or, sometimes, even understanding. Smith fuses excellent story-telling with bizarre and often chilling real-life tales. This one’s a great listen that gets very addictive.

Jump in with the season three opener, We Are The Witchcraft. The show takes three episodes to explore the relationship between Jack Parson (founder of Nasa’s Jet Propulsion Lab) and noted occultist Aleister Crowley. It’s a funky and informative look at the collision of hard science and deep woo with a lot of sex. If you’re into it, check out the other 70 episodes available for free on iTunes.

THOSE CONSPIRACY GUYS

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Neil Rochford and co-host Gordo lead the devilishly fun Those Conspiracy Guys podcast. This show is an easy listen. The episodes veer from interesting looks at the RFK assassination to the existence of ghosts to more serious looks at Holocaust deniers. It’s easy to get hooked.

The recent episode about the infamous conservative retreat, Bohemian Grove, is the perfect entry point to the podcast. After that dip, you can pick and choose from over 110 free episodes on iTunes.

SASQUATCH CHRONICLES

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Okay, this one is pure fun with the perfect little hit of seriousness. Sasquatch Chronicles started out as a repository of bigfoot sightings from all over the country (and Canada). It’s still that at its core but has branched out into other crypto-zoological species sightings and even extra-terrestrial territory as well. This podcast is all about the “eye-witness” accounts that range from bombastic to very real (at least feeling very real). Plus, who doesn’t need an hour of bigfoot in their lives every week?

There are over 500 episodes with 300 available for free on iTunes. So, yeah, choosing where to dive in is pretty loose. Our suggestion is to listen to the most recent episode to get a taste. Then, go back and listen to episodes that sound interesting.

TIMESUCK WITH DAN CUMMINS

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Comedian Dan Cummins is going to take up a lot of your time. Timesuck is all about Cummins exploring the craziest of crazy stories that make up the cultural conspiracy zeitgeist. Cummins looks at the weird in the world and tells a spell-binding story around an event or idea, and it’s always a great listen.

A great spot to start is episode 116, The Pinkerton Detective Agency – “We Never Sleep”. The episode takes a seriously informative look into America’s first private detective agency. After that, check out the 150 episodes available for free over at iTunes.

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