Report: Sarah Koenig Has Worries About Reception to New “Serial”

Instead of focusing on one story, season three will tell several narratives about the criminal justice system.

"Serial" podcast creator Sarah Koenig attends the 2015 Time 100 Gala at Frederick P. Rose Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center on April 21, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images)
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The first two episodes of season three of Serial are available today, and Sarah Koenig is worried you won’t like this season as much as the first, according to The Daily Beast. Instead of telling one story over several episodes, Koenig used this season to tell several stories that she hopes will teach listeners about the criminal justice system as a whole, and show the institutional racism that plays into nearly every case, reports The Daily Beast. The whole season is set in the Cuyahoga County court system in Cleveland.

“You walk in that courthouse and it’s instant,” said Koenig, according to The Daily Beast. “You’re like, oh my God, look at how many of these defendants are black. Look how almost all of the judges are white. It’s very stark. This is something we know about our system. We know about the inequities, we know that it discriminates, we know that if you are black or Latino your chances of having a worse outcome are definitely greater at every phase. All of this has been reported, and reported well in a lot of cases, so I didn’t want to pretend that we didn’t know that.”

This season, which includes Cleveland-based reporter Emmanuel Dzotsi, comes four years after more listeners than anyone could have anticipated became obsessed with the murder trial of Adnan SyedSerial’s second season then focused on the capture of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl by the Taliban, but was not as well-received as season one.

As for season three, Koenig says,“I’m not worried about people not coming along because it’s not one spectacular criminal case. I’m more worried about getting people to come along with me on anything I make. I’m always worried about that, regardless of the topic.”

Koenig told The Daily Beast that she always asks herself, “Is anyone going to give a shit besides me?” Answering her own question, she said, “I don’t know, maybe! I hope so, we’ll see.”

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