You know, sometimes I write a quick blurb about a movie or a television show that I watch before I write a review on here, just to see what kind of responses I get. Boy, am I glad I did it with 13 REASONS WHY SEASON 2. What was supposed to be a small critique about a show (basically saying that even though it in no way triumphed over the first season but was still very good in parts and ultimately was successful) that I think captures the actual realism of teen life withof course a splash of Hollywood tropes cooked in, almost turned into a debate on whether or not this show glorifies suicide, until I deleted all the comments that tried to do it. Why was I deleting comments? Because the people said that the show glorifies suicide actually hadn’t even watched the fucking show. If you watch the show and still think that, and can have evidence to back that up, that’s fine, but don’t say it does one thing just because you heard family, friends, students, etc. etc. etc. talk about it. Be a judge yourself and actually watch it, so that your opinion is valid and you can back it up with facts. In the long run, I don’t think a show of this caliber would even be let on the air if it tried to glorify a risky subject matter such as suicide. Doing that would be out right distasteful. I think the show is a huge cautionary tale on how dangerous suicide is and why it is never the answer if you are down in the dumps, depressed, and feel it is the only way out. The show screams, “GET HELP!” It shows not only how suicide effects your family, but your friends and the community around you. I know the fucking title says ’13 reasons why’ Hannah Baker did it, but if you care to actually watch the show, those reasons are all genuinely knocked down with the fact that there really wasn’t a good reason at all to do it. It doesn’t give validity to the why. Yes, the why is very painful to watch, even depressing, but it doesn’t say that yes, Hannah Baker made the right decision by killing herself. If you are reading that message from the show…I don’t know what to tell you. Especially Season 2. Season 2 gives a definite conclusion on Hannah Baker’s story/suicide, and the realistic attempt at saying whether she was in the wrong, whether the school was responsible, and whether her friends/enemies were responsible. Watch the show and see for yourself. It doesn’t glorify suicide, its message is pure anti. Hell, even click on the links where the producers even say they aren’t trying to glorify all that mess, that the whole thing is a cautionary tale. You can’t say that all these creators/producers are lying.
Plus these are fictional characters. Is this getting through to you at all? Anyway, here is a review of what I thought of Season 2 as a whole, without trying to convince you that it doesn’t glorify suicide:
The first season of this show is near fucking perfect. I didn’t have a child then, so I finished all the episodes in two days and I was captivated, shocked, saddened, yet had a little bit of hope that its beautiful message would reach a lot of people. And even though a lot of us didn’t want a Season 2, like myself, because the entire first season completely covered the book it was based on, due to the day and age we live in with ratings and money, money, moooooney….MONEY! And the fact they let several threads dangle, you knew there was going to be a season 2. And since last weekend, season 2 has been upon us. Is it as good as the first? Absolutely fucking not. HOWEVER, at times it does get pretty fucking close. If I were to give the first season an A or A+, I’d give this second season a B+, and certain episodes even a A-. Here’s a couple of reason(s) why it isn’t as good as the first season:
1. Fucking Ghost Hannah: If there was anything that the writers did completely wrong this season in not honoring the original material when going into unknown waters trying to write a sequel to the novel, it was the inclusion of Ghost Hannah Baker. Well, she isn’t exactly a ghost. Basically if you put it into simple terms, Clay can’t let go of her and her suicide so much that he creates her as a figment of his imagination, and instead of talking to himself or the audience, he talks to her throughout the season. The only thing that keeps this plot thread from completely ruining the entire season is Dylan Minnette’s performance as Clay. I know that Katherine Langford was the one that got all the recognition the first season with a Golden Globe nomination, but I dare says that Dylan’s performance as Clay is so much more complicated and better. He isn’t a perfect person, he has a couple of faults, but he is one of the most relatable characters in teen drama I have ever seen and I wish critics and everyone would give him a little bit more attention. After halfway thru the season, I got used to him talking to ghost Hannah, because the writers I think realized how stupid it was, and it happens less and less and less. Thank God.
2. Until Clay gives his testimony, the first half of the season is extremely fucking slow. But once Clay goes on the stand (this isn’t really a spoiler, you knew the show couldn’t get away with him not going on the stand), the show is as captivating as it was in the first season and at some points even surpasses it, such as when Derek Luke, who plays the counselor, goes on the stand.
3. Some of the dialogue is a little too preachy and spelled out things a little too much at times. And honestly, that’s probably because they had to expand of the book since this was going into unknown territory and the writers can’t literally create the same dialogue magic that the novel did.
And those all my complaints. Basically just Ghost Hannah was the main problem, and since that was in there nearly every episode, it drug it down a bit, but the rest of it was just as heartbreaking to watch as the first season was. The acting all over the board is still superb….*sigh* yes, even Katherine Langford as Ghost Hannah.
In the end, if you don’t think you can handle the show, don’t watch it. I get that some of you can’t or don’t want to. My review isn’t trying to convince you to. There are some things that are too hard to watch for some people, and I get that. Especially the last episode in both seasons. There are two scenes, that I won’t spoil here, one in season one episode 13 and one in season two episode 13, that might upset some people. It’s harsh, but that is what the filmmakers are trying to convey, it’s a harsh fucking world. And we need to take a deep look into how we can make it better.
But you can’t say the show glorifies suicide when you haven’t even watched the show. That’s just being ignorant. If you’ve watched the show and have facts to back it up, I am more than willing to listen, but if you hear from the grapevine that the show is something, and you haven’t even bothered to take a look yourself, sorry to say, your opinion to me is invalid.
Sorry for the harsh critique here. This one is once in a blue moon for me. I love 13 Reasons Why. If you don’t, that is perfectly okay. But don’t go saying shit if you haven’t even watched it yet. That’s just getting yourself into trouble. Just like I can’t say Overboard or Mamma Mia 2 is absolute shit. I haven’t seen either of them yet. I can say it looks like shit therefore I won’t see it, but I can’t say it is shit yet. Get what I’m saying?