The Guardian and sex tips are not necessarily two elements I would have imagined resulting in the most successful podcast. However, The Guardian’s new sex and relationships podcast, Close Encounters, is surprisingly funny and engaging.
The premise is simple. Alix Fox, journalist and sex educator, chats to members of the public on their sexual encounters. Sometimes it is as informal as a chat amongst friends, due to her excellent rapport with interviewees. In this setting, a normal person can provide more wisdom than an expert, but this means the podcast is technically not an advice show. All of this creates a podcast which feels like the ultimate, yet intrusive and informative, people watching. It is explicit, but not just for the sake of shock value. The podcasts are simply well-made respectful journalism, on some very difficult subjects.
A lighthearted and easy listen, The Guardian mildly describes it as “messy, sometimes sticky and often downright rude”. However, Alix’s description of ‘Desert Island dicks” might be closer to the mark. It is definitely worth downloading to make those approaching dark days in the library more interesting.
Image: Creative Commons 3; created by NY Photographic