“13 Reasons Why” creates big splash on Netflix


The Netflix series, based on the 2007 novel of the same title by Jay Asher, premiered on March 31. (photo from YouTube.com)

Alissa Camplin, Arts & Entertainment Editor

Thirteen Reasons Why has been rocking Neflix screens since its release on March 31, 2017. According to Huffington Post, the series is actually the most talked about in Netflix history.

According to leading social media research firm Fizzology, 13 Reasons Why has seen more social media volume than any other Netflix original show in its first week post-premiere.

The series deals with important issues like suicide, death, betrayal, denial, and guilt. It portrays high school in a more authentic and uncensored way than in other broadcast networks. The bullying is harsh and often obscene, but that is not the darkest part of the story. There are elements of rape and suicide scenes that are real and scary.

The series tells the story of Hannah Baker and the thirteen tapes that she left behind for the thirteen people, or reasons, why she killed herself. The teens spend thirteen episodes piecing together a story left behind by Hannah Baker, who is played by actress Katherine Langford. The main male counterpart, Clay Jensen, is played by actor Dylan Minnette.

Most were familiar with the series prior to the Netflix release. It is based off the best-seller Thirteen Reasons Why written by Jay Asher in 2007. It was published by RazorBill, a young adult imprint of Penguin Books.

The official IMDb of the series is mostly surrounded with positive reviews. One user said, “[Thirteen Reasons Why] is a difficult, but an important… no…a necessity to watch. A refreshing and unflinching look at taboo subjects that are rarely touched upon in mainstream media.” Rotten Tomatoes gives the series an approval rating of 90% based off of 30 reviews. The average rating is 7.5/10.

Not everyone is convinced that the show is the correct way to bring awareness to mental health, though. A popular still from the series recently circulated on Twitter that shows a line where Clay Jensen says, “I cost a girl her life because I was too afraid to love her.”

An upset user replied with, “No offense, but if you want to raise awareness for suicide then you should drop the whole ‘Love can save you’ trope and actually discuss mental health.”

Rebecca Nicholson of The Guardian also said that she thought the show did a poor job at trying to attract older viewers.

Regardless of specific user views, the show had brought attention to suicide and teens. The series was credited for an almost 100% increase in the number of calls to Brazil’s suicide hotlines.

The National Suicide Prevention Hotline is available 24/7 at 1-800-273- 8255 for anyone that may be struggling with suicidal thoughts and tendencies.

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