Podcasts needs a major upgrade.
No, it needs to go back to where it was in iOS 12-ish. It's been overthought and downgraded since then because Apple wants to emphasize the podcast discovery aspect of their own app versus paid ads within podcasts. Just like they want to de-emphasize apps being discovered through ads with ATT/SKAN.
Except while they've continued to generally make the App Store experience better (since it only serves as discovery and storefront, not the actual thing you use to interact with installed apps) they've continued to make actually listening to your podcasts more and more of pain in the butt.