True crime is a staple genre of podcasting. It has always found eager listeners and enthusiasts at all times. Cold is arguably one of the best true crime podcasts on our radar, and will likely continue to remain so.
Cold is eerily mysterious and deals with a real-life situation – the disappearance of Susan Powell and the immense dark days she experienced before that. This is a wild story that has made the rounds of media speculation and an entire host of investigative journalism content, before ending up in a podcast form.
The backstory of the podcast is an account of Susan Powell, a woman from Utah, who went missing in 2009. She is presumed dead, but her body was never found. Josh Powell, her former spouse who was suspected to be responsible, has also never been convicted. Eventually, it was proved, with a lot of obsessively recorded journals, recorded thoughts and emails, and even Susan Powell’s will, that Susan had gone through a lot of abuse. The records also revealed the darkness that shrouded the entire family.
It doesn’t have a ton of episodes but each episode is crafted well, with a significant number of sources, interviews with eyewitnesses and people who knew the family. It is easy to go astray with this huge array of narratives, chock-full of information. But host Dave Cawley carefully streamlines the flow of information. He is an investigative reporter, adept at making complex stories easy to digest. This makes the episodes not just engaging, but thrilling. Dave dives deep, really deep and pieces together a complex puzzle.
The interactions between Susan, her husband Josh Powell, and father-in-law Steve Powell might be disturbing to some. The sound engineering is spot on, as it creates the perfect ambience for the podcast.
What happened to Susan Powell is still a matter of speculation, but Cawley has his own, quite plausible theory (episode 18) about what had passed. His two cents, that he contributes here, are what we feel adds tremendously to the value of the podcast.
With such a heavy load on its shoulders, the podcast has no room for levity. Nonetheless, it is an entertaining, chilling listen and a perfect blend of speculation and research.
Cold is truly a gem of a listen. Listen