Bowe Bergdahl

Serial finale recap: 'Present for Duty'

After three and a half months of sometimes-gripping, sometimes-infuriating storytelling, the second season of Serial has finally come to an end. But don’t expect closure. There is none. Not for the show’s listeners, not for host Sarah Koenig and the podcast’s reporting staff, and certainly not for its subject, Bowe Bergdahl. We knew there wouldn’t be going in. That’s the deal we signed up for. So all that can be asked at this point is, are you glad you tuned in?

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Sarah Koenig, Julie Snyder discuss Serial season 2 in exclusive interview

Serial concludes its deep dive of Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl on Thursday with its season 2 finale.

This season was a shift for the award-winning podcast from the makers of This American Life. Instead of digging up clues from a murder mystery unknown to most, host Sarah Koenig and company turned their lens to an incredibly high-profile situation pertinent to national security.

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Serial recap: 'Thorny Politics'

While the last episode of Serial focused on all of the behind-the-scenes work that went into Bowe Bergdahl’s release following his five years in captivity, the latest, “Thorny Politics,” looks at the fallout from that decision. In particular, Sarah Koenig and the Serial team shine a light on the unintentional political consequences on both sides of the aisle that Bergdahl’s return produced.

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Serial recap: 'Trade Secrets'

When we last left off two weeks ago, Serial seemed to be losing whatever steam it had built up so far. It had become maddeningly elliptical, occasionally glib, and well, just not as compelling as I think a lot of holdover fans from season 1 had hoped. Season 2 has been frustratingly up and down; sucking tus in one week only to make us wait and wait then push us away with the next installment.  It’s pretty much been the definition of inconsistent.

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Serial recap: 'Hindsight, Parts 1 & 2'

When we last left off (if you can remember that far back), Serial explored Bowe Bergdahl’s reasons for walking off his base in Afghanistan in the summer of 2009, which would lead to his capture and five-year imprisonment at the hands of the Taliban. We heard him talk about how he felt threatened, unsafe, and mistreated by his superiors – a situation that ultimately made him want to trek across the desert and tell his higher-ups’ higher-ups.

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Serial recap: '5 O’Clock Shadow'

Finally. After weeks and weeks of context about the war in Afghanistan, about the U.S. mission, about the enemy, we finally get some insight on the character at the center of the story: Bowe Bergdahl. It’s been a looong time coming. And I’m sure I wasn’t the only listener who was getting itchy feet, wondering if it might be time to bail on the second season of Serial.

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Serial recap: 'Meanwhile, in Tampa'

It’s been a while – two weeks, actually, since the last installment of Serial. Did you forget who Bowe Bergdahl was? Did the twisty, Byzantine fate of this season’s protagonist start to get a little foggy in your mind? Did all of the exotic-sounding foreign names and various jihadist factions from this season start to congeal like the skin on top of a bowl of bisque that’s gone uneaten too long? I’m not trying to be funny. This is a real problem. And I think this season of Serial is in real trouble.

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Serial changes release schedule to every other week

Serial junkies are getting some more time to pore over each turn of the Bowe Bergdahl case.

Host Sarah Koenig announced on the show’s blog that the show would be publishing new podcast installments once every two weeks, instead of every week. She admits it isn’t news fans want to hear, but Koenig thinks the reasoning justifies the new schedule.

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Serial recap: 'The Golden Chicken'

Last week, listeners of the second season of Serial learned that host Sarah Koenig and her team would be examining the truth-is-stranger-than-fiction case of Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl. After voluntarily leaving his post in Afghanistan shortly after midnight on June 30, 2009, he was captured by the Taliban and held prisoner for nearly five years.

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