INTERVIEW: S’laughter Podcast | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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If you’re a true crime addict you’re absolutely spoilt for choice when it comes to podcasts. The popularity of all things ‘true crime’ has exploded in recent years, due in part to the huge popularity of Sarah Koenig’s podcast Serial, and of course Netflix hit show Making A Murderer, both of which seemed to spark something of a true crime renaissance. Of course there were plenty of true crime podcasts before Serial, and many more have launched since: Sword and Scale, Last Podcast on the Left, True Crime Garage, My Favourite Murder, Thinking Sideways – the list is endless. There’s just something about the darker side of the human psyche that will always be strangely alluring. Obviously murder isn’t exactly a sunny topic, yet somehow the North East based S’laughter podcast is hugely entertaining. If you like your true crime fix served with lashings of dark humour by well-informed, charismatic hosts, then S’laughter is well worth your time.

S’laughter was started just over a year ago, by full-time teachers Emma and Lucy. “We had a shared fascination with documentaries about true crime or people on the fringes of society,” explains Emma. “We were entertaining each other regularly by discussing cases we had heard about, so we thought maybe we could entertain other people too! The beauty of the large number of true crime podcasts means that there really is something for everyone – you’re bound to find something you like. I think what we bring to the table is that we are quite well-rounded: we’re not comedians and are serious when we need to be. We also take pride in researching our cases thoroughly and bringing a wider range of UK crimes, rather than raking over notorious US murderers.”

Throwing ‘nipple belt’ into a conversation is definitely a good litmus test as to whether someone is on our wavelength

With the tongue-in-cheek tagline ‘Listening to S’laughter doesn’t make you a psycho, killing people does’, it’s evident that Lucy and Emma are very aware that what they do might not be everyone’s cup of tea. “I think it’s very common amongst teachers to have a dark sense of humour…you have to in order to survive working with children!” says Emma. “We aren’t detectives, or experts in criminology, so to make a serious podcast on the subject would lack credibility. We are however fluent in sarcasm and poking fun at each other, so it seemed natural to do it in that way. As best friends it would be difficult to get through it without having a laugh with each other.” 

If you’re the type of person who, like myself, has a favourite serial killer to discuss, (admittedly this topic of conversation can raise eyebrows), then S’laughter is for you. “The serial killer we bring up most in casual conversation has to be Ed Gein. Throwing ‘nipple belt’ into a conversation is definitely a good litmus test as to whether someone is on our wavelength.” However, S’laughter is much more than dark humour: it’s incredibly well-researched and informative, with each episode taking hours of research, and of course, it’s always inspiring to listen to a podcast led by strong female voices who aren’t afraid to be themselves. “We have never set out to shoehorn in our views, but most (if not all crimes) are possible because of an imbalance of power. It’s not necessarily always a gender imbalance, but it’s hard to discuss true crime without pointing out inequalities. Basically if you let us talk for long enough, our strong opinions will rear their heads at some point.”

You can find S’laughter on most podcast sites. Look for ‘S’laughter True Crime Podcast.’

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