Podcast Review & Live Event: Dr. Death

I surprisingly didn’t hear about this story until this podcast came out (and even then I was about a month behind). I’m always on the hunt for the best new podcast ( check out my Podcast Masterlist for more ) and happened upon Dr. Death on the Stitcher Current Top 100 Podcasts list. When I first read the description, my heart dropped. For one, I live in Dallas. Second, my mom had major back surgery. In Dallas. I instantly had to know everything I could about this story. 

I couldn’t be more thankful that Dr. Death wasn’t my mom’s surgeon (and that she’s recovering very well), but many other people weren’t so lucky.

Let’s take a step back just in case you haven’t heard of this podcast, or have just heard the name in passing.

I won’t toss out all the facts for you (you’ll just have to listen to the podcast for those), but Dr. Christopher Duntsch was a surgeon in Dallas who botched a BUNCH of major surgeries. Maybe you’re thinking, “I don’t know how often surgeries go wrong and I’d not like to think about this at all thank you,” as I was, but this guy was WAY out of the norm. Think sponges sewed into people, screws floating around where they shouldn’t be, and death surrounding fairly routine surgery.

Now let’s jump into the event I went to at the  Wild Detectives  this past week with the host of Dr. Death, Laura Beil. Here was the promo from the WD website:

One of the podcast sensations of 2018 hit a little close to home. The story of Christopher Duntsch, a.k.a. Dr. Death, who was a spinal surgeon in the D/FW metroplex, is one of the most horrific tales to come out of the medical industry… ever. Laura Beil, the reporter and voice of the podcast, will discuss the story and the making of the podcast with another renowned journalist and author, Skip Hollandsworth.

While I love the Wild Detectives and the podcast, I can’t say I learned much that was new at the event. Much of that can be attributed to the intense heat blasted into the building and the two hours crowded on my feet, but this event wasn’t exactly what I was expecting.

Mostly she talked about her method (not the actual podcast). I guess I can’t fault her for not bringing more case-related information to the table because of how much is involved directly in the podcast! Here are a few examples:

  • Her and Wondery’s (the podcast management company) conversations about sound effects – they’re pro, she’s against
  • The differences between print and podcast journalism
  • How she eventually agreed to do the podcast – she got on the phone with Wondery’s CEO and asked how much money they had in the bank. Apparently she’s been burned enough freelancing that she didn’t want to chance it.

I’m glad I went to get a taste of the event and I’ll never pass up an opportunity to visit one of my favorite bars/bookstores/coffee shops.

If you haven’t listened, be sure to check out the podcast – get ready for a quick binge, truth that is scarier than fiction, and a great conversation starter (if you’re anything like me). It can be found on all podcast providers.

If you’ve already listened, no fear! She said that she’s working on another podcast right now!

Happy listening!

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