In Season 1 of Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why 17-year-old Liberty High School student, Clay Jensen struggles with the suicide of his friend Hannah Baker. Things only become more intricate when Clay is given a box of tapes. Being recorded by Hannah before her death, Clay learns the cold hard truth of everything she had to deal with.
Here is the scoop on what we love about Season 1 of Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why!
In season 1 of Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why the concept of time is not linear. Throughout the season, viewers see the stream of consciousness of the main character Clay Jensen. As he listens to Hannah’s tapes, he time travels back to various memories with her. Furthermore, the viewer goes back in time to see Hannah’s own memories that do not include Clay. Therefore, Season 1 of 13 Reasons Why has a constant format of jumping back and forth from the present to the past. While the most important parts of the story happen in the past with Hannah’s tapes, what happens in the present is crucial as well. Viewers get to see how each person mentioned in the tapes reacts to them. While they all react differently, the audience gets to see how learning about Hannah’s hardships takes a toll on everyone’s mental state.
Instead of listening to all of the tapes in one sitting like everyone else, he listens to them in bits and pieces. Due to this, we get to see how he responds to each tape as he confronts each person about their wrongs. Clay is the only one who acts and changes in response to listening to the tapes. As Clay remembers and learns more about Hannah, he goes from being a shy bystander to a caring friend who stands up for others.
Coming Out Scenes
13 Reasons Why has lots of LGBTQ+ representation with many queer characters. In fact, there are two important coming-out moments in Season 1 that queer fans will enjoy.
When Clay confronts Courtney about throwing Hannah under the bus, she reminds viewers that she has a gay dad and it is the 21st Century. As a family, they received hatred, making Courtney afraid that people would assume that having gay dads made her gay. Although what Courtney did was not okay since it subjected Hannah to more bullying, it is an excellent representation of internalized homophobia. Viewers see the self-hatred Courtney faces. Luckily, most of the characters are accepting. They provide positive messages as they try to convince Courtney that her being her true and honest self matters more than what others think.
The second coming-out scene is with Tony. He comes out after Clay confessed that he thought Tony cared about honoring Hannah because Tony was in love with them. A bit frustrated with this assumption, Tony tells Clay that he is gay. Clay asks Tony how he was supposed to know, indicating that he thought he was straight. Due to Tony’s masculinity, it is safe to say that many others may have thought the same. This scene shows how frustrating both heteronormativity and stereotypes can be.
Signs and Prevention
The whole purpose behind the creation of 13 Reasons Why is to make people aware of the signs of suicide. Hannah Baker shows many of the typical signs. First, she shows signs of depression through a poem. Also, she makes a drastic change in her appearance and personality. Furthermore, she pushes those who are good for her and who care about her away, like Clay. While the series makes it clear that no one on the tapes directly caused Hannah’s death. After learning the signs, Clay realizes that while he cannot bring Hannah back to life, he can help prevent more suicides from happening. At the end of the series, Clay decides to befriend another student who is showing signs.
What Hannah Wants Vs. What She Needs
One of the struggles that the characters of 13 Reasons Why face during the first season is whether honoring Hannah’s requests is the right thing. In her instructions, Hannah wanted all 12 people to listen to the tapes in order of appearance. She only wanted the second copy to be released if someone fails to finish them and pass them on. There are some people who believe that they should be released regardless. First, there are others who have a right to know about the tapes, like Hannah’s parents. They have a right to know what their daughter was going through. Also, the tapes will help with the lawsuit and help Hannah get the justice she deserves. However, some are afraid to face the consequences of their actions. They do not want the tapes released publicly, scared they will hurt their reputation.
Season 1 of 13 Reasons Why also teaches viewers that their actions and words have consequences. While no one can predict how anyone will react to anything exactly, bullying and harassment will always cause negative reactions. That is why it is so important for friends to be kind to one another and to have each other’s backs. Many of the people on the tape agree that if they had been better friends with Hannah and stuck with her, her mental health may have been better. The series teaches that being a bystander is not okay. Clay knew that she was being bullied but never did anything. He finally stands up for Hannah by confronting the people on the tapes.
Watch Season 1 of 13 Reasons Why on Netflix.
We hope that you enjoyed this review of Season 1 of Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why! If you liked this post, make sure to check out these related articles:
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