Popular show returns amid controversy

Sophie Laurence, Staff Writer

“13 Reasons Why” was one of the most popular Netflix Series in 2017. In the show, Clay Jensen, played by Dylan Minnette, is left 13 tapes recorded by Hannah Baker, played by Katherine Langford, about all the reasons she committed suicide. The show brings up many sensitive topics, such as bullying and suicide, and it caused much controversy in the entertainment world.
Some sources, like Business Insider, believe that the series is ‘dangerous’ and ‘glorifies suicide.’ According to Carrie Wittmer from Business Insider, “Many mental-health experts, concerned parents, and teachers are saying that it glorifies suicide, and could be a dangerous lesson for teens who could be going through the same things as Hannah.”
After the release of the show, there was a 26% increase for the Google search ‘how to commit suicide.’ Research professor John Ayers from San Diego State University made a comment about this statistic to CNN, saying, “While ’13 Reasons Why’ has certainly caused the conversation to begin — it’s raised awareness, and we do see a variety of suicide-related searches increasing — our worst fears were confirmed… That is, thousands of people, thousands more, are searching online about ways to kill themselves.”
On the other hand, some people believe that the show does a great job of raising awareness of such topics, and there are statistics to support that. According to CNN, the Google searches for ‘suicide prevention’ increased by 21%, and the searches for ‘suicide hotline number’ increased by 21%. ‘Beyond the Reasons’ is an episode consisting of interviews from the cast and crew of the show about what the series means to them and why they portrayed certain topics the way that they did. Kate Walsh, who plays Hannah Baker’s mother, made a comment in the episode about the topics that are brought up in the series, saying,”These are all things that need to be discussed, and we need to educate both young men and women.”
Even though there was much controversy and debate over the first season, Netflix announced that they will be releasing another season in 2018. The showrunners and directors have not announced an exact release date at this time, but people suspect that it will be released in late March, around the same release date of season one. According to Thrillist, we can expect to see the same core cast, including Hannah. Netflix tweeted a screenshot of a Note, captioned “What we know about @13ReasonsWhy season 2- so far” on May 9, 2017. The image shows five bullets about their knowledge of the show, including,”We will explore ‘The ways we raise boys into men and the way we treat girls and women in our culture-and what we could do better in both cases,’” and “Bryce will hopefully get what’s coming to him.”
If you or someone you know is depressed or experiencing suicidal thoughts and/or actions, please get help from The National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or