Dating can be a bit of a crapshoot. You may meet people who are constantly on their phone, people who literally only talk about their pet chinchilla or people who could be a loving, supportive partner for decades to come.
It doesn’t get any easier when you add in dating apps and websites, such as Tinder, Bumble, OkCupid and FarmersOnly.com (probably not many college students use that last one). And with people looking for different arrangements ranging from a one-night stand to “let’s get married next week,” finding someone can be like finding your way through an impenetrable fog.
Thankfully, there are podcasts out there that are guaranteed to help people find the way toward happiness, sex or whatever they’re seeking.
Well, probably not.
But there are a lot of fantastic conversations happening on podcasts about love, dating and everything orbiting around the topic. Here’s a few I took a look at this week:
A lot of college students have or have had a Tinder account at some point in their lives. It’s become such a part of the social fabric that people refer to “swiping right or left” on other things in their lives not even associated with Tinder or dating.
This show is the official branded podcast for Tinder, produced by Gimlet Media. It’s about dating, hookups and how it all relates back to the dating app, of course.
For how potentially bland this podcast could be, it’s surprisingly creative with it’s content. In a recent segment for the podcast, the host, producer Jane Marie, take over listener’s Tinder accounts to match them with people and record the audio of the dates.
The conversations are authentic and really enjoyable to listen to, almost like one is talking with friends about who to swipe left or right on. One almost forgets it’s a branded podcast, which is a great sign.
My only critique is that this show can seem a bit like The Bachelor, with lots of drama. That’s not necessarily a bad thing depending on what one wants to listen to, but don’t expect intimate, deep conversations while listening to this show.
Rating: 4 out of 5 earbuds
I’ll admit it — this is a podcast I’ve been listening to for a while, but I felt like I couldn’t just not mention it. For anyone who is familiar with the New York Times column “Modern Love,” this podcast is an adaption of that column, produced by Boston’s public radio station WBUR and hosted by producer Meghna Chakrabarti.
The podcast uses voice actors, some of them relatively famous, like Jake Gyllenhaal, to read back some of the more emotional “Modern Love” columns, set to music and sound effects throughout. For the most part, it makes for a really intimate listen.
For example, I didn’t expect a story about a dying goldfish to tug at my heartstrings, but it sure as hell did. Afterwards, the editor of the column, Dan Jones, breaks down the meaning of the column and sometimes even talks with the people who wrote it.
This podcast considers all forms of love — not just romantic. It pulls off the narrative of each story well, in a classic public radio style that’s hard to mess up.
Rating: 5 out of 5 earbuds
This show isn’t directly related to dating, but it instead encompasses the stories of the close connections people make with each other that can end up being a relationship.
Hosted by award-winning producer Lea Thau, the podcast dives deep into stories of heartbreak and love, but not necessarily in the usual places people would expect. The combination of quality interviews, well-fitting music and immersive sound effects create amazing stories that had me hooked for an entire hour at a time.
This podcast may not teach a person how to start a conversation on a first date, but it may clarify how to be a friend, partner or lover.
Rating: 5 out of 5 earbuds
Liam Niemeyer is a senior studying journalism in Ohio University’s Honors Tutorial College. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those of The Post. Looking for love? Let Liam know by tweeting him @liamniemeyer.