’13 Reasons Why’ Season Two: 6/10

Anna Fiorino, Features Editor

The second season of “13 Reasons Why” is ambitious, tackling a plethora of serious issues in an effort to foster awareness and empathy. However, it was problematic in several areas.

Above all else, “13 Reasons Why” felt indulgent. The producers incorporated as many issues as possible, assigning tragedies haphazardly to each character. In a mere 26 episodes, the show covers mental health, suicide, peer pressure, drug abuse, addiction, homelessness, divorce, rape, sexual violence, PTSD, and even an attempted school shooting.

A more realistic plot, as opposed to the unlikely, insane series of events that transpired at Liberty High School, would have relayed a more powerful message. Reducing painful experiences to soap opera plot points trivializes these narratives.

The producers of “13 Reasons Why” say they wanted to start a conversation. But, critics claim the show glorifies suicide instead of offering viable alternatives. It is difficult to not see suicide as a solution. Hannah kills herself, and everything falls into place. The perpetrators of her unhappiness are (more or less) served justice, her peers are forced to confront their own issues, and the deceased Hannah gets everything her living counterpart wanted.

What originated as a public awareness campaign of sorts was mutilated by the entertainment industry. Hannah Baker’s suicide became a game; and even the audience wanted in.

“13 Reasons Why” has been renewed for a third season.