The voice. The first thing most television viewers notice about “Dateline NBC” correspondent Keith Morrison is his unmistakable baritone and style of speaking, perfect for the true-crime TV show. Now Morrison will lend that voice to the latest “Dateline”-branded podcast from NBC.
The Thing About Pam will tell the story of Russ Faria who in 2011 came home from game night to find his wife, Betsy, dead. He was soon charged and convicted of her murder. But Faria insisted he did not kill his wife. Yet the murder set off a chain of events that left one man dead, another man implicated, and it exposed a scheme tailor-made for a true-crime podcast.
“The prosecutor said it was rage, greed—we wouldn’t be here if the answer was that easy,” said Morrison on the show’s trailer. He says the story is one of the strangest he’s covered during his 25 years at “Dateline,” telling listeners, “We thought we knew how this story ended. How wrong we were.”
NBC teamed up with Neon Hum Media to produce the podcast which includes new interviews with many of the case’s key players. In an interview with New York magazine, Morrision said he and podcast producer Cathy Singer were able to put together some details of the story that weren’t able to fit into the television portrayal of the story.
“Podcasts are a really fun new outlet,” Morrison said. “One of the frustrations of any kind of reporting is you have to leave an awful lot of stuff out. In our case, if we’re doing a two-hour story, we leave out about 90% of what we hear. With a podcast, you get a lot more time to spin all that out and live in the details and be more conversational.”
The Thing About Pam is set to debut Sept. 18. “Dateline” will air an updated episode about the case this fall to help promote the show.
The podcast isn’t the first from “Dateline NBC,” which in May released 13 Alibis. The seven-episode podcast hosted by “Dateline” producer Dan Slepian took listeners on a real-time journey into a two-year investigation of a convicted murderer serving 20 years in prison for a crime he claims he did not commit.
David Corvo, Senior Executive Producer of the TV show, told New York magazine they expect to take more stories from “Dateline” and translate them into podcasts. “Podcasts are one of the hot platforms out there and we perceive our brand to be broader than just broadcast television,” he said. “We felt like we have ownership of part of the true-crime space and we want to extend it everywhere we can”
NBC News has already announced it wants podcasting to play a larger role in its content distribution. NBC also announced it signed a deal with Megaphone to become its new hosting and ad insertion platform.