Netflix's 13 Reasons Why is a powerful story that dissects a myriad of underpinnings of teen suicide and of a society missing all the earmarks of a troubled soul before they do something that everyone regrets.

"The series is based on books by Jay Asher of the same name, follows teenager Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette) as he returns home from school to find a box with his name on it lying on his porch. It's a box of cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford) who committed suicide two weeks prior. On tape, Hannah unfolds an emotional audio diary, detailing the thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Through Hannah and Clay's dual narratives, Thirteen Reasons Why weaves an intricate and heartrending story of confusion and desperation that will deeply affect viewers."

The series has an 8.2/10 on IMDb, and stars Katherine Langford as Hannah, Dylan Minnette (Scandal, Saving Grace) as Clay, Christian Navarro (Vinyl) as Tony, Alisha Boe (Teen Wolf, Ray Donovan) as Jessica, Miles Heizer (Parenthood) as Alex, Ross Butler (Riverdale), Derek Luke (The Americans, Empire), Kate Walsh (Grey's Anatomy, Private Practice, Fargo) and so many more.

This Netflix series is a brave and daring show that tackles present-day, real world issues that society, at times, tends to dodge for a myriad of reasons. The show tackles the story from the perspectives of a group of high school students in a small town and sometimes, their parents perspectives too.

We follow Hannah Baker, a troubled teen who finds herself on the receiving end of peer harrassment from the in-crowd at school, the star jocks and the people who associate with them.

Hannah ends up committing suicide, but before doing so, she makes 13 cassette tapes explaining why she kills herself, and each tape focuses on one individual and their part in how that person failed her or caused her to feel like she did. How each one contributed to the ovlerall feeling of dread that Hannah developed.


Each season (there are two) starts with a warning that this is not the show for those feeling inadequate and that there are resources out there for those who feel alone.

The show addresses suicide, rape and bullying, along with other issues such as peer pressure among the lesser kids who hover around the alpha males of the school. We watch how teens can or can't communicate with their parents, peers or other trusted adults.

The thing is that in a few cases (characters) someone can feel so dark about things, but feel comletely inadequate in communicating what they're feeling, to anyone, that they effectively isolate themselves from any potential help. Or don't want to see it.

The series is amazingly complicated and compelling as we watch the 13 episodes, each one, a tape, as it weaves the story between two narratives, Hannah's from a few weeks prior and Clay, who is experiencing the tapes and with each one, learns of the convoluted failures of his classmates, and through the season, slowly comes to realize exactly who's fault it is why Hannah killed herself.  Everyone's.

It's compelling and gripping, seeing Hannah so close to help and not recognizing it, while those around her never see the subtle clues or signs.

Throughout the season, we're given little teaser nuggets about each character, leaving us to keep an eye out for developing moments from these nuggets. They're well done, subversive and yet so obvious.

The casting was done well, each actor portraying their character rather exceptionally.

The show sucks you in, keeps you in suspense, and even when you know something, sometimes, keeps you wondering when or if that 'something' will develop into the story.


At the end of each episode they share a link that has suicide prevention resources. In a few different shorts, the showrunners talk about getting help and what not. (IMO) To be honest when you get into that dark spot, you don't always see the help that's out there. The dreadful truth is that humans have this amazing ability that we self define ourselves because "we are what we focus on," and that focus sometimes prevents us from looking up. Some get lucky and actually do look up and see what's going on with themselves, while many do not.

Meanwhile, for those of us left behind after someone we know commits suicide, we wish we could have seen the signs, or realize we did see them and did nothing. Yet the signs or symptoms of someone in trouble can be seen in so many people around us, how do we pick and choose? How do we know who is really on a dark place and who is acting out?

I'm just saying.


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