Heavyweight

Maybe you’ve laid awake imagining how it could have been, how it might yet be, but the moment to act was never right. Well, the moment is here and the podcast making it happen is Heavyweight. Join Jonathan Goldstein for road trips, thorny reunions, and difficult conversations as he backpedals his way into the past like a therapist with a time machine. From Gimlet Media.

Personal Journals
Relationships
Comedy
1
#40 Barbara Shutt
In 1968, Jonathan’s mother-in-law Becky spent spent one of the best summers of her life with a woman named Barbara. But then they never spoke again. Now, over fifty years later, Becky learns something about Barbara that makes her question whether she ever really knew her at all.
36 min
2
#39 Stephen
This is the second and final part of last week’s episode. So if you’ve not yet heard the episode “Justine,” go back and listen to that first.
32 min
3
#38 Justine
Growing up, Justine’s father always told her unbelievable stories about his life: that he was a big winner on Jeopardy; an outlaw who robbed banks armed only with flowers. But now, as an adult, Justine has started to question—are her father’s stories so unbelievable because none of them are true? In the process of fact-checking her dad’s life, something surprising emerges that neither Justine nor Jonathan ever saw coming.
35 min
4
#37 John
Before he became a best-selling author, John Green was going to dedicate his life to God. Until he crossed paths with Nick. Twenty years later, John sets off to find Nick and revisit the day that changed the course of both their lives.
31 min
5
#36 Brandon
Throughout high school, Brandon was a misfit. Then one day, out of the blue, one of the school’s prettiest, most popular girls asked him to prom. Fifteen years later, Brandon wants to know: why him?
32 min
6
A Heavyweight Short: A Canadian Tale
Adam swears he met Fidel Castro in Montreal 25 years ago. But ever since, no one’s believed him. Fortunately for Adam, the one person—one Canadian—who can prove his story is Jonathan Goldstein.
17 min
7
A Heavyweight Short: The Sharing Place
Heavyweight often features grownups grappling with childhood trauma. But in today’s Heavyweight Short, Jonathan visits a place where children grapple with trauma in the present. At The Sharing Place, kids talk about things most adults can’t even face. A warning: This episode deals with sensitive topics like suicide and death.
22 min
8
A Heavyweight Short: Hallie
When Hallie was 17, she spent a few minutes with a stranger who changed her life. A decade later, Hallie sets out to find her.
16 min
9
Check In: Holiday Special
Just before the holidays, we recorded three Spotify-exclusive check ins, and today we’re excited to release one of them internet-wide. Stevie confronts her grandfather with a question she’s been afraid to ask for over twenty years, and Kalila solves the mystery of an enigmatic gravestone.
31 min
10
A quick announcement
1 min
11
#35 Rachel and Jon
Rachel and Jon are siblings who were separated as young children. Jonathan helps them confront the woman responsible... fifty years later.
44 min
12
#34 Annie
Every time Annie’s family comes to town, they exclude her from their plans. Annie needs to know why.
44 min
13
Introducing: Resistance
Heavyweight will be back with a new episode next week. In the meantime, we’re excited to introduce you to a new Gimlet show. It’s called Resistance, and it’s all about stories from the BLM movement. Jonathan talks with host Saidu Tejan-Thomas Jr., and then plays a favorite episode, about the only black man living in a small town in Nebraska.
36 min
14
#33 Bobby
How the worst McDonald’s commercial ever made came to be. And how Bobby got mixed up in it.
36 min
15
#32 Vivian
In 1995, Vivian’s uncle Helio died of AIDS. Now, 25 years later, Vivian’s on a search to find the man who cared for him until his death.
37 min
16
Why Is Mason Reese Crying?
Mason Reese was the biggest child star of the early 1970's. Recently, he posted a YouTube video of himself crying. Jonathan sets out to discover why. This is a story Jonathan made for Reply All in 2015. The new season of Heavyweight starts next week.
27 min
17
Heavyweight Check In 8
As we turn our attention back to producing classic Heavyweight episodes, we leave you with one last check in. SPOILER ALERT: This check in contains a special treat.
10 min
18
Heavyweight Check In 7
During these times of uncertainty and sadness, we bring you two stories of two women seeking the comfort of childhood. Amber and Eva are in search of their first grade teachers.
28 min
19
Heavyweight Check In 6
Milestones and cramped houses.
23 min
20
Heavyweight Check In 5
Jonathan surprises Stevie and Kalila with some special friends from seasons past who, wouldn’t you know it, are still in need of his help.
30 min
21
Heavyweight Check In 4
Stuck in new homes and old.
17 min
22
Heavyweight Check In 3
A lot of people have been feeling lonely lately. So, they've been reaching out.
29 min
23
Heavyweight Check In 2
Jonathan, Stevie, and Kalila check in, to talk about what’s been going on in their lives, and in your lives, too.
23 min
24
Heavyweight Checks In
Things are feeling strange and uncertain right now. So we on the Heavyweight team decided to record our day and share it with you.
15 min
25
#31 Marie-Claude
Jonathan’s oldest friend, Marie-Claude, had a problem in high school. At 50, she thought it was behind her. But the problem’s recently returned with a vengeance. Lucky for Marie-Claude, her old pal Jonathan’s here to help in the Heavyweight season 4 finale.
46 min
26
#30 The Marshes
After a drunken slip of the tongue, Steve Marsh and his siblings discover a secret their mother has been keeping for almost 40 years. Now, Steve wants to help his mom take action.
50 min
27
#29 Elyse
When Elyse was 21, her father, Billy, disappeared without explanation. When Elyse finally learned of his whereabouts, she was shocked by the new life he was living. Now, for the first time in five years, Billy and Elyse sit down to talk.
39 min
28
Introducing: Where Should We Begin? with Esther...
Heavyweight will be back with a brand new episode next week. In the meantime, we’re excited to introduce you to a favorite podcast of Jonathan’s: Where Should We Begin? with Esther Perel. Jonathan talks with Esther, and then plays an episode of her show.
56 min
29
#28 Dr. Muller
In his twenties, Jonathan began seeing an inscrutable, mysterious therapist. After 6 years without progress, she told him it wasn’t working out because of him. 25 years later, Jonathan wants to know if it really was his fault.
45 min
30
#27 Scott
Eight years ago, when Scott was addicted to heroin, he crossed a line he thought he would never cross. And he’s been trying to uncross it since.
49 min
31
Without Fail, WITH Jonathan Goldstein
Heavyweight will be back with a brand new episode next week. In the meantime, we bring you a special episode of Without Fail, co-hosted by Jonathan. He and Alex Blumberg interview comedian Nick Kroll.
44 min
32
#26 Beverley and Van
Ashley’s grandmother, Beverley, had a hard life and an unhappy marriage. But she spoke frequently of a man named Van. Ashley believes Van was the great unfulfilled love of her grandmother’s life. And now, she wants to know: did Van feel the same way?
44 min
33
#25 Becky and Jo
Becky and Jo were raised by a procession of eccentric babysitters, 16 in total. But their favorite was Leticia. The girls adored her… right up until the day she mysteriously vanished. Twenty years later, Becky and Jo want to know what happened.
40 min
34
#24 Jimmy and Mark
When he was only 10 years old, Jonathan Marshall was sent on a 240 mile bicycle trip. 3 days. Across 2 states. With no adult supervision. 45 years later, Jonathan can’t stop thinking about the trip. Or the little boys he made it with.
33 min
35
#23 Alex
16 years ago, Gimlet Media CEO and founder Alex Blumberg made a promise that he didn’t keep. And it’s been eating at him ever since. In this season finale, Jonathan sets out to clean up his boss’s mess.
46 min
36
#22 Marchel
Russian Ark is a cinematic masterpiece. Dozens of sets, thousands of actors, years of planning. It’s a perfectly executed work of art. Almost. In this episode, Jonathan sets off to find the one guy who ruined it for everyone.
60 min
37
#21 Rachael
Ten years ago, Rachael had a baby. She never told the father. All these years later, she thinks it’s about time she did.
34 min
38
#20 Soraya
When Soraya was in college, her favorite professor hired her on to help research a book she was writing. But when she fell into a deep depression and dropped out of school, she abandoned both the book as well as the professor who’d shown her so much kindness. Now, with Jonathan’s help, Soraya wants to make things right—with a grand gesture.
35 min
39
#19 Joey
Joey recently had a very bad day, all due to awkward misunderstandings. So now, he's enlisted the help of Jonathan "Debonair" Goldstein and Jonathan’s friend Gregor to redo the day and set things right.
41 min
40
Zoe, PJ, and Chanel
Heavyweight performed a sold-out live show in Brooklyn, NY, last June. Jonathan is joined by This American Life’s Zoe Chace and Reply All’s PJ Vogt to talk about Heavyweight stories that never made it onto the air… until now. Plus: human beatboxing, Gimlet Media CEO Alex Blumberg’s vape pen collection… and Jackie Cohen.
39 min
41
#18 Sven
Sven was on a jury that sentenced a man named Paul Storey to death. He's regretted it ever since. Then, eight years later, Sven gets an email from Paul’s mother.
32 min
42
#17 Skye
When Skye was 11, her best friends turned on her out of seemingly nowhere. Now Skye has a son who's 11, & he can’t believe his mom never asked her friends why they did it. So, 30 years later, Skye & her son set off to find out.
43 min
43
#16 Rob
Rob remembers breaking his arm as a kid. But the rest of his family says it never happened. Did he break his arm? The answer will determine Rob’s sanity.
53 min
44
#15 Dina
During a visit back home, Jonathan’s mother inadvertently admits something that forces him to question his past. In this season finale, Jonathan turns the mic around on himself for one of the more personal episodes of the series.
35 min
45
#14 Isabel
In 1999, an old suitcase was found abandoned on a Brooklyn street corner. The suitcase contained 5 years worth of love letters between a young man and young woman. In this episode, Jonathan tries to track them down.
36 min
46
#13 Kenny
Ken Carter was a Canadian daredevil who dreamt of performing the biggest stunt the world had ever seen. For 5 years he prepared, only to have his dream hijacked at the very last moment by the very last person he ever expected.
46 min
47
#12 Jesse
Four years ago, Jesse was hit by a car and nearly died. Now he wants to find the driver. And thank him.
36 min
48
#11 Christina
When Christina was in 11th grade, her foster mother made her quit playing basketball. After that, she felt like her life never got back on course. And so, she’s always wanted to ask her foster mother: why’d you make me quit?
40 min
49
#10 Rose
Over a decade ago, Rose was kicked out of her college sorority. “You know what you did,” was the only explanation she was ever given. All these years later, Rose still wants to know what it is she did.
44 min
50
#9 Milt
Last season’s episode, "Gregor," led to an unfortunate event that Jonathan could’ve never predicted. In this pre-season episode, he tries to set things right.
27 min
51
#8 Jeremy
When Jonathan was 16, he went to synagogue every morning. He even thought that one day he might become a rabbi. Things didn’t exactly work out that way.
32 min
52
#7 Julia
In grade 8, Julia was bullied so badly by a group of girls that she changed schools without telling anyone. Soon after, the girls from her old school showed up at her house and rang her doorbell.
29 min
53
#6 James
James’s father’s dying wish was for his ashes to be disposed of on the 18th hole of a fancy private golf course. That was 16 years ago. James, Jonathan, and their friend Howard attempt a golf heist to get into the club and set things right.
34 min
54
#5 Galit
Galit was Jonathan’s first girlfriend. When she dumped him, he cried a lot and then locked away his emotional vulnerability in a safe for the next several decades. In this episode, Galit sends Jonathan a Facebook message asking if he’d like to meet up.
28 min
55
#4 Tony
Years ago, Tony messed up his relationship with each of his three godchildren owing to three difficult chapters in his life. Now, childless and single in his late 40’s, and fearing he may never have kids of his own, Tony wants to win them back.
30 min
56
#3 Tara
Jonathan watched a short experimental video in college in which a little girl sat in silence while her parent sobbed. Now, Jonathan wants to know if that girl is okay.
36 min
57
#2 Gregor
20 years ago, Gregor lent some CDs to a musician friend. The CDs helped make him a famous rockstar. Now, Gregor would like some recognition. But mostly, he wants his CDs back.
44 min
58
#1 Buzz
Buzz and Sheldon are brothers in their eighties who have been estranged for decades. Buzz visits Sheldon to see if there’s still a relationship left to salvage.
40 min
59
Welcome to Heavyweight
A podcast about journeying back to the moment when everything went wrong. Hosted by Jonathan Goldstein. From Gimlet Media.
2 min