The Love + Radio podcast is one of WBEZ’s edgiest enterprises. Over three seasons and more than half a decade, Nick van der Kolk has carved out a space akin to Errol Morris in the audio world. After his season two episode “The Wisdom of Jay Thunderbolt” won the top prize at the Third Coast International Audio Festival in 2011, WBEZ became a finanical backer of the experimental podcast.
While the content of the podcast is far darker and explicit than anything else we produce, it is compelling to hear first person accounts of questionable life choices. Like the best of cable dramas, Love + Radio features stories of conflicted characters- every one of them at least somewhat morally ambiguous.
In the new episode, titled “Jack and Ellen” listeners get a detailed first hand account of a young woman who practices pedobaiting- defined by Urban Dictionary as “the act of pretending to be a sexually active minor online in order to lure (‘bait’) pedophiles.” If that weren’t enough of a moral grey area, this woman also blackmails those who fall for her scheme and lives off those profits.
If you’ve read this far, you probably know this is content intended for adult audiences. Fans of HBO dramas should be fine with this episode.