10 Dark Sci-Fi Audio Drama Podcasts You Should Be Listening To
How did I get into audio drama podcasts? In my day job as a graphic designer for a small company I find myself chained to a desk starring at a screen and trying to block out the world around me to get into the zone. I used to just listen to the voices in my head until I got the ok to have headphones in – safer for everybody.
After listening to the same songs over and over I finally discovered podcasts. I jumped on the bandwagon pretty early on, starting small and expanding my interests. Over the years I have found a slew of dark fiction podcasts that help me keep the spooky spirit alive 365 days a year. It’s alway Halloween in my cubical.
I had originally planned one post with my top 10, but I ended up with a lot more than 10 so I decided to break them down into categories and multiple posts. I’d hate for you to miss your new favorite pod because it was my #11.
My Favorite Sci-Fi Audio Drama Podcasts In No Particular Order
I’m adding this one as a bonus eleventh podcast because it’s relatively new (dropped in December 2018) and I just started listening, but I like what I’ve heard so far. It’s an anthology, so each episode is it’s own complete story. It has a real Twilight Zone feel to it, which I love.
I’m about half-way in and really enjoying it, I think you will too.
3 Seasons, 24 Episodes – Complete Series
Episode 1 introduces us to Wren, who wakes up in an attic, covered in blood, with no memory of what happened to her. The series follows her as she tries to find other survivors of the attic and uncover the secrets of her past.
This series is very well produced and written, it really keeps you guessing until the very end. This is a great podcast to binge on when you’ve caught up on all your other podcasts.
2 Seasons, 14 Episodes (plus some short interlude episodes) – Complete Series
This spooky little podcast had a great first season full of mystery and lots of unanswered questions. Basically a creepy, fictional version of Serial. Nearly 3 years after the last episode of season 1 was released episode 2 dropped. The answers that fans had been asking all that time were answered, but it lacked a bit of what made the first season great.
Now that it’s complete, Limetown is a nice little binge-worthy pod.
2 Complete Series, 1 Feed – The Message, 8 Episodes / Lif-e Af/ter, 10 Episodes
I stumbled upon The Message while looking for more audio drama podcasts. A fictional podcast within a podcast, this series has lots of twists and turns and an ending that caught me off guard.
A year or so later a new series showed up on the same feed and I’m so glad that I didn’t remove it because I liked this one even better! This one imagines a world where our digital selves can live on even after we’ve passed away, with dangerous consequences.
Two great sci-fi series, well written, acted and produced. Keeping the feed live on my iTunes in the hopes that more pops up from this team.
1 Season, 7 Episodes
All the episodes of Sandra dropped on the same day last year and I binged like a mad woman. If you have always been sure that Siri is a real person who is just messing with you (she told me to be more polite the other day) then this is the podcast for you.
Listen to the podcast before they ruin it by making it a tv show.
4 Seasons, 56 Episodes – Complete Series, with Bonus Episodes
Dr. Bright councils people called atypicals with super-power like abilities. Along the way we are introduced to an incredibly interesting group of characters, some with abilities and some without. Despite their supernatural attributes, these characters have relatable issues and complex relationships with one another.
A long series that wanders at times, but is solid. On-going bonus episodes separate from the main story continue to be produced.
1 Season, 10 Episodes
I’m a little leery of promoting this podcast since it’s been nearly two years since the last episode, but the first season had such an interesting mystery I had to mention it in the hopes that a second season might show up soon. Rabbits is a super secret game that somehow everyone knows about. Our host, Carly, is looking for her friend who was playing the game and disappeared.
From the creators of The Black Tapes and Tanis, keep an eye on this in the hopes of getting more seasons and more answers to the intriguing mystery.
1 Season, 14 Episodes – Complete Series
Witten by the author of The Message and Life After, so you know it’s good. A look inside a super secret facility housing and studying an extraterrestrial. There are lots of rules in this line of work, but what happens when the rules are broken?
Another binge-worthy story.
2 Seasons, 12 Episodes – Complete Series
You may have seen the tv series on Amazon Prime Video, and I’ve heard that it’s very good, but I only got two episodes in. You see, Catherine Keener’s voice was in my head and I just couldn’t get myself to accept Julia Roberts as Heidi Bergman – though I’m sure she did an excellent job. This podcast examines what exactly happened to Walter Cruze and why Heidi doesn’t remember.
The sound production on this podcast is astounding, I highly recommend listening with both headphones in/on.
4 Seasons, 48 Episodes plus bonus episodes
A sister podcast to The Black Tapes, Tanis follows Nic Silver on a quest to find out what Tanis actually is. Little does he know that his research will get him a bit too close to the truth, and make him a part of the answer to all his own questions.
Still an on-going story and seems to be given much more love than The Black Tapes and Rabbits. It’s a fun, spooky mystery and trust me, you will start seeing Tanis everywhere.
1 Season, 6 Episodes
This story takes place adjacent to Tanis, and features Nic Silver and MK, but is a different tale that has no barring on the lore of Tanis. If you like the story-telling of Public Radio Alliance you will enjoy this mini-series.