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One Year Returns for a New Season

Slate’s history podcast is back to tell seven stories from 1986.

Text on a color-blocked background that reads: One Year: 1986.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photos by Getty Images Plus.

Each episode of One Year explores a story you may have forgotten, or one you’ve never heard of before. Looking through the lens of a single year, host Josh Levin asks: What were the moments that transformed politics, culture, science, religion, and more? And how does the nation’s past shape our present?

As The New York Times put it, “One Year takes [Slow Burn’s] forensic historical lens and zooms both in and out, attempting to capture a year of life in America by focusing on its distinctive icons, manias and controversies,” resulting in episodes that “resonate uncannily with the present.”


The third season of One Year covers 1986, a year when the Space Shuttle Challenger exploded, the mystery of Al Capone’s vaults got solved, and a sea lion named Herschel caused chaos in Seattle. The first episode, out today, looks back at No Crime Day—basketball star Isiah Thomas’ audacious plan to transform Detroit. Josh spoke with Thomas about how No Crime Day day came to be, and whether his grand experiment succeeded or failed.

You can listen to this episode and the rest of the season on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Be sure to follow the show now so you never miss an episode, and join Slate Plus to get ad-free listening and bonus content.