What podcast was in Amazon’s Super Bowl ad with Forest Whitaker and a talking toothbrush? Criminal.

Jo Herrera
Feb 1 · 2 min read
Criminal podcast host Phoebe Judge sits at a recording station. Photo by Liz Clayman.

Whether you love the actual sport or not, American football’s biggest game of the year dominates the start of every February. This year though brought a big surprise just a week before the game: the voice of Phoebe Judge, host of the true crime podcast Criminal, would be featured in a commercial for Amazon Echo and Alexa. Just a few days later, Amazon had even dropped their ad on YouTube and the comments started rolling in.

So what is it like hearing your voice in a major commercial? And how cool and weird is it to see it play from a toothbrush in actor Forest Whitaker’s mouth? We sent all of our burning questions to Phoebe herself and here is what she had to say.

When did you first find out your voice would be in a commercial airing during the big-game-that-shall-not-be-named-for-legal-purposes?

Phoebe: We found out last week. The advertising agency who made the commercial reached out to us and asked if we would be willing to let them use a clip. We were happy to be included.

What was running through your mind at that moment?

Exciting! It’s not every day that a podcast is in the Super Bowl.

You were expecting the ad to air Sunday, but Amazon released it early. What has the response been like from fans of Criminal?

Really nice. We have been hearing a lot from fans who have already watched the ad. A lot of people are making jokes about what other products they would like (or not like) to hear my voice in.

What do you hope this moment means for the show?

Oh I think it is exciting for the show, but I also think it is exciting for all podcasting. ‘Podcast’ seems to have become a household word.

Do you have a smart speaker of your own?

Not yet, but I think I’ll get one now!

What’s it like watching and hearing your voice on a commercial, especially on the biggest day for advertising in the United States?

My team, the Chicago Bears, did not make it to the Super Bowl this year, so this is my excuse for being really invested in the game.

We’re going to assume Forest Whitaker is reading this blog post (fingers crossed). Anything you want to say to him?

Hi, Forest! I am a big fan of your work.

Anything else you want to tell Criminal, sportsball and/or tech fans out there?

Keep listening!

Radiotopians: check out the the ad for yourselves and tell us what you think by tweeting at @CriminalShow and @Radiotopia.

PRXOfficial

PRX is a non-profit media company shaping the future of audio by producing and distributing content, building technology, and training talent.

Jo Herrera

Written by

PRXOfficial

PRX is a non-profit media company shaping the future of audio by producing and distributing content, building technology, and training talent.

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