9 episodes

A charismatic Russian woman arrives in the US on a mission to improve relations between the two countries, and she soon makes some powerful friends. But who is Maria Butina? And who is she working for? As Maria gets closer to the rich and connected she also attracts the attention of the FBI. In the politically charged world of US-Russia relations, everyone has secrets and almost nothing is what it seems. From Wondery, the makers of The Shrink Next Door and Dr. Death comes SPY AFFAIR a story about deception, appearances and betrayal. Hosted by Celia Aniskovich.

Spy Affair Wondery

    • True Crime
    • 4.0 • 1.3K Ratings

A charismatic Russian woman arrives in the US on a mission to improve relations between the two countries, and she soon makes some powerful friends. But who is Maria Butina? And who is she working for? As Maria gets closer to the rich and connected she also attracts the attention of the FBI. In the politically charged world of US-Russia relations, everyone has secrets and almost nothing is what it seems. From Wondery, the makers of The Shrink Next Door and Dr. Death comes SPY AFFAIR a story about deception, appearances and betrayal. Hosted by Celia Aniskovich.

    What to Listen To Next: American Scandal

    What to Listen To Next: American Scandal

    Every scandal begins with a lie. But the truth will come out. And then comes the fallout and the outrage.

    Scandals have shaped America since its founding. From business and politics to sports and society, we look on aghast as corruption, deceit and ambition bring down heroes and celebrities, politicians and moguls. And when the dust finally settles, we’re left to wonder: how did this happen? Where did they trip up, and who is to blame? American Scandal, takes you deep into the heart of America’s dark side to look at what drives someone to break the rules and what happens when they’re caught.

    wondery.fm/AmericanScandal

    The Maria I Know | 7

    The Maria I Know | 7

    Celia chats with Aricia Skidmore-Williams and Brooke Siffrin of Wondery’s Even the RIch podcast about her relationship with Maria, the making of the series and the one question she never found the answer to.  

    Listen to new episodes of Spy Affair ad-free by joining Wondery Plus in the Wondery App. - https://wondery.app.link/spyaffair

    Support us by supporting our sponsors!

    Talkspace - Get $100 dollars off your first month at talkspace.com when you use the code SPYAFFAIR.

    NetSuite - Schedule a free product tour at Netsuite.com/SPYAFFAIR.

    Best Fiends - Download Best Fiends for free.

    Daily Harvest - Use code SPYAFFAIR at DailyHarvest.com for $25 off your first box.

    Green Chef - Go to Greenchef.com/90spyaffair and use code 90spyaffair to get $90 off, including free shipping.

    Thomas Lee Sheets - Get a 30% discount when you use code SPYAFFAIR at thomasleesheets.com.

    Klaviyo - To get started with a free trial of Klaviyo, visit klaviyo dot com slash listen.

    Truth is in the Eye of the Beholder

    Truth is in the Eye of the Beholder

    Patrick gets closer to the highest office in the land than Maria ever did as tensions in Washington DC reach breaking point.  

    Listen to new episodes of Spy Affair early and ad-free by joining Wondery Plus in the Wondery App. - https://wondery.app.link/spyaffair

    Support us by supporting our sponsors!

    Talkspace - Get $100 dollars off your first month at talkspace.com when you use the code SPYAFFAIR.

    NetSuite - Schedule a free product tour at Netsuite.com/SPYAFFAIR.

    Best Fiends - Download Best Fiends for free.

    Daily Harvest - Use code SPYAFFAIR at DailyHarvest.com for $25 off your first box.

    Green Chef - Go to Greenchef.com/90spyaffair and use code 90spyaffair to get $90 off, including free shipping.

    Thomas Lee Sheets - Get a 30% discount when you use code SPYAFFAIR at thomasleesheets.com.

    Klaviyo - To get started with a free trial of Klaviyo, visit klaviyo dot com slash listen.

    • 47 min
    The Byrne Ultimatum

    The Byrne Ultimatum

    As the walls close in on Maria, Patrick believes he holds information that might turn Maria’s case around. But will it be enough?




    Listen to new episodes of Spy Affair early and ad-free by joining Wondery Plus in the Wondery App. - https://wondery.app.link/spyaffair

    Support us by supporting our sponsors!

    Talkspace - Get $100 dollars off your first month at talkspace.com when you use the code SPYAFFAIR.

    NetSuite - Schedule a free product tour at Netsuite.com/SPYAFFAIR.

    Best Fiends - Download Best Fiends for free.

    Daily Harvest - Use code SPYAFFAIR at DailyHarvest.com for $25 off your first box.

    Green Chef - Go to Greenchef.com/90spyaffair and use code 90spyaffair to get $90 off, including free shipping.

    Thomas Lee Sheets - Get a 30% discount when you use code SPYAFFAIR at thomasleesheets.com.

    Klaviyo - To get started with a free trial of Klaviyo, visit klaviyo dot com slash listen.

    • 47 min
    Loose End

    Loose End

    Maria meets Patrick in his hotel to share some good news and some troubling news. Patrick advises her to talk to Uncle Sam but as political tensions rise in Washington DC, it’s not clear who is friend and who is foe.

    Listen to new episodes of Spy Affair early and ad-free by joining Wondery Plus in the Wondery App. - https://wondery.app.link/spyaffair

    Support us by supporting our sponsors!

    Talkspace - Get $100 dollars off your first month at talkspace.com when you use the code SPYAFFAIR.

    NetSuite - Schedule a free product tour at Netsuite.com/SPYAFFAIR.

    Best Fiends - Download Best Fiends for free.

    Daily Harvest - Use code SPYAFFAIR at DailyHarvest.com for $25 off your first box.

    Green Chef - Go to Greenchef.com/90spyaffair and use code 90spyaffair to get $90 off, including free shipping.

    Thomas Lee Sheets - Get a 30% discount when you use code SPYAFFAIR at thomasleesheets.com.

    Klaviyo - To get started with a free trial of Klaviyo, visit klaviyo dot com slash listen.

    • 45 min
    Hello, Uncle Sam

    Hello, Uncle Sam

    Patrick invites Maria to a party but he has an ulterior motive. Maria is enjoying American student life but a knock at the door will spell trouble for her and Paul.

    Listen to new episodes of Spy Affair early and ad-free by joining Wondery Plus in the Wondery App. - https://wondery.app.link/spyaffair

    Support us by supporting our sponsors!

    Talkspace - Get $100 dollars off your first month at talkspace.com when you use the code SPYAFFAIR.

    NetSuite - Schedule a free product tour at Netsuite.com/SPYAFFAIR.

    Best Fiends - Download Best Fiends for free.

    Daily Harvest - Use code SPYAFFAIR at DailyHarvest.com for $25 off your first box.

    Green Chef - Go to Greenchef.com/90spyaffair and use code 90spyaffair to get $90 off, including free shipping.

    Thomas Lee Sheets - Get a 30% discount when you use code SPYAFFAIR at thomasleesheets.com.

    Klaviyo - To get started with a free trial of Klaviyo, visit klaviyo dot com slash listen.

    • 45 min

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5
1.3K Ratings

1.3K Ratings

ruby mary l ,

How can we discount this story?

Too many parallel events in today’s woke world to discount everything about this story.

tired and confused ,

Not critical enough

This podcast started out interesting and brought a lot of details to light I missed from the news. But it allowed a lot of conspiracy theories to be talked up and completely failed to approach the Russian side of things. Butina was accused of being a Russian spy and zero consideration was paid to Russia itself. The fact that the hosts were completely unaware of this angle was frighteningly apparent when they parroted Butina’s line to “trust no one and do your own research.” Something we think of from Q-Anon but is actually a long standing information tactic from the Russian government. The fact that the hosts took this completely at face value is insane. Finally, while it may have been recorded before, the story should have dealt with Butina's behavior back in Russia including her *insane* visit to harass Alexei Navalney in prison by yelling at him about how "great Russia's prisons are" and how he should be thankful he wasn't in a US one. This woman was allowed by the Russian authorities to harass a man they just tried to kill for propoganda purposes.

Meanwhile, Wondery seems to think she's a really nice girl who's just misunderstood. If only we would "question more"

Craig D.C. ,

Entertaining & Interesting But Feels Like Propaganda

This is a really interesting and entertaining topic. However it feels incredibly one sided and sympathetic to the subject. Allows and engages with conspiracies and you would easily assume this was funded/supported by RT or other Russian ‘useful idiots’

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