Up and Vanished

Reviews For Up and Vanished

I wish there was some more consistency to the format and presentation of this podcast. The episodes are all over the place- the titles are different, the intros are inconsistent... I’m not drawn to listening regularly when it’s like this. Other podcasts I enjoy more with the same quality of content present it in a better more consistent way that’s just way more digestible.
This podcast kept me on my toes. I couldn’t stop with just one episode. I absolutely loved it.
I’ll admit that I’m fairly new to podcasts. I finally caved in and decided to partake in what my husband kept insisting I do. I can’t believe how much I had been missing out in. With that said, I may not be the best person to leave a review; however, this podcast has had me hooked from the first episode. I’m shocked that so many people have negative things to say about it. Perhaps my “newbie” inexperience was attracted to the “newbie” doing this podcast but I think Payne has done a phenomenal job putting this together. From beginning to end, the story had been engaging and enthralling. I keep finding myself staying up later and later because I just can’t stop listening. Don’t listen to all the negative reviews. Listen for yourself. You’ll be glad you did.


By Jme0924
Terrible. Don’t waste your time.
You’d think the producer of a podcast would actually be concerned with the quality of the audio. The phone calls in season two are so garbled they’re barely intelligent. The ads are bout twice as loud as the other content. Hard to listen to and just gets annoying.


I’ve listened to every episode. Closure for Tara’s case, and hopefully Crystals will be coming soon. We all know who hurt Crystal, it’s painfully obvious. I just hope the police can make moves in time to charge him. Keep it up guys! Christy C.
I enjoyed the first season, albeit with a good deal of squeamishness about what could reasonably be construed as the podcaster exploiting the death of a young woman to make money. But I outright bailed on the second season. As a parent, I couldn’t find common ground with the young woman who vanished—because she had left her young child in the care of others so she could go “find herself.” It made her unrelatable and unsympathetic as a character. She didn’t deserve whatever happened to her, but ultimately I just couldn’t identify with her whole mindset, and so I moved on to other podcasts.
Say whatever you want about his style but you can’t argue that the podcaster was able to move the case forward to eventually get to the bottom of it and that was 100% because of the podcast and the attention it brought to a very cold case. The result would not have happened without the podcast.
This is my first podcast! But so far I love it. I am 11 years old and wait to find more out about Tara Grinstead!!!! 👍


By Angelpv
I’m from Georgia so the Tara story was so interesting.. I’m now on season 2 and can’t stop listening. I can’t wait for more updates on Tara’s case.
Payne Lindsey is one of my all-time favorites. Not just for the eloquent, in-depth stories he weaves, but for the gentle and caring way he investigates these stories and approaches everyone involved in such sensitive and personal matters. He is RELENTLESS about finding answers for these families and victims, bringing me to tears even. Don’t listen to the negative reviews- overly sensitive people looking for something to be upset about.
Interesting content, but the sound quality is soooo hard to understand. It should have been summarized or something because it’s frustrating trying to listen to things you can understand that may be important/interesting!
I liked this story.
Season 1 was fantastic! Maybe a little long, with all the case evidence and q & a, but overall one of the most exciting true crime podcasts out there. Season 2, however, was a total turn around. Too many episodes devoted to long phone conversations where it’s so hard to hear and strung out druggies that were so incoherent. It definitely needed better editing for length and clearer sound. Not to mention it’s hard to get into a story that is surrounded by heavy drugs and alcohol. People need stories they can relate to keep them interested. I’m not saying pick high-profile cases, just ones people can relate to, to keep their interest. Not sure if I will give it another chance or not, since season 2 was so off-putting.
The host of this podcast, Payne Lyndsey, is by far the worst podcaster. He doesn't have any experience at being either a journalist or a crime investigator, and all of his podcasts are very poorly written and produced. More importantly, there have been several instances where he's acted extremely unprofessionally, with the most notable example being shortly after the announcement of the two arrests in the first season. Payne Lyndsey right away started bragging as much as he possibly could that he was the one who solved the case, and he even made an episode that mostly consisted of random audio clips of people repeatedly praising him for solving the case. Yet, he didn't know anything about the two suspects prior to the announcement of the arrests and he had instead been focused on other possible suspects, all of whom we now know are innocent.
I love listening to crime podcasts, especially when they follow one story and manage to shine new light on a case, like in Serial, Shattered, or In the Dark. The host of Shattered recommended this podcast so I thought I would give it a try. Initially, Season 2 drew me in with Kristal’s story and the culture of Crestone. My interest quickly turned to boredom as I progressed, and here’s why.... Majority of the podcast features long interviews with several dramatic pauses, creepy music, and no real purpose or guiding direction. These interviews, rather than adding real facts to the case, often include personal opinion or gossip. They also lack a narrator to sort through all of the details provided, connect testimony from other individuals, and produce a coherent sense of what occurred. By Episode 6, I was still confused as to what happened surrounding her disappearance. I’m not sure I could call this investigative reporting, especially when compared to other podcasts. By Episode 6, I was frustrated with this and so much more. I couldn’t listen any more, even if I still had questions and curiosity about the case. Very disappointed.
I had enjoyed this series a lot and recommended, but can’t handle it anymore. Most of the episodes force you to listen to a rambling junkie while he eats and there’s NO progress. It’s like he’s winging it and trying to polish a poop. Worst of all, some of the episodes contain phone conversations that are indecipherable. The last episode was almost entirely lost on me because I couldn’t make out what they were saying and it was frustrating. I’m out.
This is Susan from Washington Listened to both seasons of the podcast Loved them both! Will tell all my friends ! I love that Payne, you are honest and to the point and you don’t put up with anyone’s crap . Thank you for all the hard work, all your time and efforts!
I couldn’t even enjoy the content because the recording quality was so bad. There are so many long phone recordings as such poor quality that they could not be understand. I found myself not knowing what was going on because of it and just gave up trying to listen.
What could be a compelling story is completely lost in the garbled static laden recordings. Seriously tried to hear the story but just can’t.
I am very much so a crime podcast junkie. As a law school student, I have particular interest in “cold” cases and salute those who want to solve them. That is what I was hoping for in listening to this podcast. After the first couple of episodes of the Tara Grinstead case, the podcast just started dragging. And as a Georgia and Atlanta native, I was especially disappointed in the production and narration of this podcast. It became overly focused in creating new episodes and dramatic interviews so that Payne could basically argue with suspects, which was very annoying and pointless. I would be much more interested in cutting to the chase and pursuing real evidence/persons of interest than circling around and around for an unnecessary amount of episodes.
The second season is portrayed and investigated much more professionally than the first season and I’m glad I listened to season two first. In Season one he openly admits to being a newb in the podcast world, so I think that might have something to do with the redundancy and lack of suspense in it, but season two is absolutely worth the listen. I’d give it five stars if season one had kept my attention better.
I thought the subject of this podcast was really interesting but SO many of the phone interviews are useless. Why bother playing them when the quality is so bad? And it isn’t just short clips...it’s minutes and minutes of some random person’s opinion that doesn’t really contribute to the story. The narrator would be better off just having someone read the conversations in a different voice like he does the police reports. I’ve never reviewed a podcast before but this was so annoying.
Very interesting case but terrible podcasting. Bad sound quality, cheesy narration of mysterious parts of the story, seems like podcaster just want to get himself famous for exploring the case without actually caring for the case. Bad.
Payne Lindsay is horribly annoying...but the stories hook you and make you want to keep listening to see what happens. The audio recordings are crap and need to be cut down to only the important information rather than ramblings of nothing that has to do with anything. The stories are interesting, but Payne makes it painfully difficult to keep listening.
Not sure if these are real cases but I don’t care. A good forum of entertainment. That’s the only way this should be taken, just entertainment.
To start, I read many other reviewers bashing the host for things from allowing ads, to asking for funding, to he is an amateur, to he talks to much about Tara’s relationships, etc, etc. seriously, you people can’t be so daft as to think that any podcast isn’t in it for money? That is the entire idea behind it is to make money from it. That doesn’t mean the author/host can’t/doesn’t care about the material. It seems to me this man has dedicated a lot of time and effort into trying to shine some light on a case that seems to have been bogged down and gone completely stagnate. Kudos sir for bringing this case back into the spotlight and trying to get some kind of justice in the thing. If you don’t want to donate to it then don’t, but to act so self-righteous like he shouldn’t be trying to make money is ridiculous. Money drives the entire podcast industry. I will admit the first couple of episodes can be hard to listen to because you are clearly listening to an amateur that has never done this type of thing on a smaller budget. The case itself is intriguing enough to stick with it though. As the show progresses he gets better and better, the production value gets better and better. Again, I do not knock him for it at all. Kudos on sticking with it and trying out something new! Taking on the challenge and achieving success! Again, thanks to this podcast the story is on the national stage and new truths are coming out. That is astounding!
I am on S1E7 and I really like the way this podcast is investigating and telling the story of Tara. I don’t have the same visceral reaction I’ve seen in other reviews, I found Payne’s curiosity and approach to even taking on the project to be completely normal—I didnt find it opportunistic in any way. I mean how do ppl think producers/film makers find the subjects for docs/film??? Don’t they have to find something intriguing and what to tell the story? I can’t wait to listen to all these episodes, such a sad story but I think it’s being told in a respectful and interesting way. I wish the eps were longer but I understand they were released as evidence was gathered so from week to week there may not be as much to reveal. Highly recommend.
Loved both seasons. Thank you for getting these stories out. Great job!
This is the best podcast ever! Payne rocks , leaves me wanting more!
I don’t normally leave five star reviews but in this case I am leaving an exception.
Payne is such a great story teller and I appreciate his commitment to justice to both Tara and Crystal’s stories.
I listened to only the first two episodes of season one and couldn’t take it anymore. As others wrote, both the podcast and investigation are incredibly juvenile in their execution - “leads” are rumors that aren’t vetted, just rehashed, there is no structure to the “investigation” or each episode’s story arc, the production effects are tacky, etc. At best Payne comes across as ridiculously inexperienced, at worst an opportunistic fame monger. Bottom line - anyone who compares this to Serial is bananas. Sarah Koenig was incredibly meticulous in her year+ long investigation, judicious about what information she was willing to introduce and with what caveats, and brilliant in her storytelling. I read in another review that Payne improves as a host, storyteller, and investigator as the podcast continues and I’m glad to hear that (and realize that Payne acknowledges in the first episode that he is an amateur in these fields). However, listening to him do this so very poorly knowing it almost certainly caused the family more pain (and generated zero investigative gain) was awful and not something I’m willing to sign up for 16 episodes of. Unsubscribe.


I don’t understand why so many people didn’t like this podcast. I have been completely hooked. And it helped solve the case! Amazing.
I did not listen to season 1, only started w S2 and I’m hooked. Whatever the complaints from 2 yrs ago were, I’m assuming they’re fixed. Thought the team did a great job w the unfolding of this cold case, but I will say the audio quality was a problem until they fixed their issue half way through, and honestly the theme song is just bad to me. I’ve listened to all of season 2 in one day!! I’m hooked.. so far!!


By lxxxxd
I like the podcast for Tara but I don’t feel like Krystal got the same attention on her case.It was very short.
Payne! Love what you do and love how invested you are in the search for finding the truth. Human lives matter and what you’ve done on these two cases are amazing. Love the show. To those that have left negative reviews move onto other podcasts. Payne is definitely make more headway especially if they are creating a documentary about Tara Grinstead on Lifetime. Keep up the good work and look forward to the future podcasts.


It’s a good story and good that Payne helped generate news coverage around the Grinstead case, but he’s definitely an opportunistic narcissist- which kind of takes away from the story. Throughout season 1 he plays clips of other media outlets praising him for his work. The editing could’ve been better too. A little over dramatic and certain parts could’ve been cut down a bit more. I found the repetition of questions and the same answer of “I don’t know” in the interview with Brooke to be quite irritating. Season 1 might’ve just had the growing pains of being a first season, but I’m not really sure if I want to stick around to hear Payne Lindsay’s self praise throughout season 2...
Season 1 was awesome, but season 2 was super lackluster. I feel like all the garbled phone calls and uninteresting interviews left me wanting way more from the pod. It went nowhere and every episode was a reiteration of the one before. Hopefully s3 isn’t a waste of time like s2.
I fell into this podcast via iPhone suggestions. I haven’t been able to stop listening. The ONLY problem I have is the audio quality of people Payne speaks to. It’s garbled. I’m trying to listen to season 2, The Circle is Small, and I couldn’t even tell you what the conversation was about. Payne himself is clear but that’s about it. I still love the podcast.
I really wanted to like a Season 2 but the main turn off for me was the poor audio quality of the phone calls. I made it almost all the way through Episode 6 and just turned it off in frustration when I could not understand ANYTHING the guys were saying in these long, rambling phone calls. I’m wondering if there would have been a delicate way to say “hey, man, can you, like, back off the microphone a bit? This is for an actual show where people need to understand you.” Or maybe there was a way to clean it up? Guess I’ll never know. Bummer.
I don’t understand everyone’s problems with this podcast. I guess there are haters on every platform. It’s a great series.
For me this podcast is a tale of 2 seasons. The first season was gripping and had a ton of great content to keep me interested with new facts each week. It was clear the producer was learning the medium and was doing an excellent job. 5 stars for season one. Season 2 is another story. In an attempt to master the podcast craft there is too much background music, too much dead space, and not nearly enough content. It felt as though the same audio clips would play each week. It felt like it was presented as new clips each week, but it sounded exactly the same and added nothing to the story. It feels like a film maker creating a documentary with movin images that add to the story and emotion. In podcast form it stretches episodes with a ton of essentially lost content. Season 2 is 1 Star for me. Which is a bummer because it had so much potential on the heels of season 1
Up & Vanished is the first true crime podcast I listened to and it got me hooked on the subject as a whole. I was constantly wanting to talk to people about the latest things going on in the cases and found myself listening deeply episode after episode. The only thing I didn’t particularly like were the Q & A sessions but they were easy to skip over. I would love more seasons done by this team!
... so much of this podcast is painfully unlistenable (or unwatchable if you’re a tweaker like Catfish). From the special effect they use to bleep out names to the entire episode that consists of one long, drawn out scratchy cell phone call, to the ramblings of a drug addicted waste of space who likely killed someone ... yeesh. I stuck with it because I was hoping for some sort of closure or pay-off. This is just not good storytelling. And it’s an important story to tell given that a woman was murdered.
Was a little unsure at first but listened thru the first few episodes of season 1 and absolutely love it. Season 1 is easily one of the craziest, most intense stories I’ve ever heard and everyone should give it a listen. Highly recommend!!
I’m a true crime junkie and I was so excited finding this podcast. The story is intriguing and the production of the podcast has been great. But towards the end of season one, and definitely far worse in season two...every few minutes there’s another ad. And the episodes are only 30-45 minutes. So 5 ads in a 30 minute show seems extremely excessive. The last episode I listened to was a 45 minute episode and there was two ad breaks before the podcast hit 9 minutes in. Too much.