13 Reasons Why TV Show Review

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Number of times watched (including the time before this review): 1

Rating (out of five stars): 1

Warning: this review gets personal. If you do not care, leave now. If you do not want to read a very angry review of 13 Reasons Why, leave now.

When I was in grade six (age 11-12), I almost committed suicide. It’s not exactly something you ever forget. There is a feeling of indescribable hopelessness that comes with losing the desire to live. It is something I wish on no one, especially not the people who caused me to get into that frame of mind. I will live with the memory of this feeling for the rest of my life and I’m one of the lucky ones; I didn’t go through with it. I thought about how scared my little sister would be when she walked in to our shared bedroom to see me dead, and the hopelessness was replaced with an absolute certainty that no matter how bad it got, I would live to spare my family the absolute heartbreak of losing a child and a sister, and fear that it had gotten bad enough for my thoughts to drift towards suicide. That day is how I know with absolute certainty that the bullying I received in elementary school was worth the nights I cried myself to sleep. I was bullied from grade 1 to the end of grade 9, when I finally switched schools. I still fear running into them in public. I am no longer suicidal.

I learned later, last year to be precise, that at least since that day, I had depression. I still have depression. If you read my Crooked Kingdom review, I am talking about having the worst relapse I have had since that day in grade 6 in the first paragraph. Why have I told you my life story? So no one can say I do not understand what Hannah went though, and therefore I cannot hate this show, because I really hate this show. Maybe hate is a strong word, but so is suicide.

I have read the book 13 Reasons Why twice, and I haven’t really had a problem with it. I related to Hannah’s feeling that the little things build and matter, but other than that I didn’t find it all that powerful. I’m happy for you if you did, but as someone who almost ended up like Hannah, it should have had more of an impact.

Show Clay Jenson is an obtuse Jerk (currently mentally using stronger language). In fact all of the characters are horrible people, parents, and authority figures. At least in the book Clay was kind of a good person, but I honestly have no idea what show Hannah is talking about when she says how Clay is different from the other guys, because I saw little to support that. They also had to give the kid who is on the tapes twice a sad backstory to “soften the blow”, which was just pathetic. The group of kids who were on the tapes had meetings (as what I have dubbed “The Tape Club”), which were just plain weird. They planted drugs on Clay and theorized how to “off” him. It was a bit extreme.

I sat there watching this show about a girl committing suicide as a person who almost went through with it herself and all I could think about (excluding the 12th tape) was how over-dramatic this girl was being. One of her reasons for killing herself was losing a friend she had had for a few weeks. I had no friends for most of my life, and in all two years I have had “friends”, I have only found one good one that I know in person who actually lets me speak, and cares about what happens to me. I wanted to stop watching then and there, and I had only completed two episodes. If a girl who almost killed herself finds the suicidal girl in your show over-dramatic, you have done something very wrong.

The filler between learning about what was on the tapes was pretty terrible. Clay was a jerk, villains got backstories and then planned to kill Clay, and half of them were in denial. The episodes did not need to be over 50 minutes long.

Overall, 13 Reasons Why missed the mark entirely, and I’m going to go study for my vectors midterm while my blood finishes boiling. I’m not going to try and find the positives. This thing could actually hurt someone like me who isn’t in the right frame of mind.


5 thoughts on “13 Reasons Why TV Show Review

  1. Wow. Just wow. First, I’m so sorry you went through that. Bullying is a horrible, horrible thing, and I don’t think people realize just how evil and mean it can get (a lot of people I know just don’t understand it). I’m so sorry it got to that point, and I want to thank you for sharing this story because it shows strength and courage. And it makes me realize just how disastrous a show like this could to do. I’ll definitely be skipping it now, because what you said is horrendous, and maybe the book if it’s anything like this. Thank you again for sharing your story!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I have to keep this part of my life hidden every day, and as a brutally honest person, it’s really hard to do, so it’s really freeing to have finally shared it in a little more detail.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I really commend you for sharing that part of your life. I’m so sorry you were bullied and that it got to that point, and I hope this depressive episode is as short as possible and you feel better soon.
    I don’t know how you were able to watch the whole thing. As soon as I heard how it was handled I felt sick to my stomach. It’s disgusting that what could have been a great show for awareness was angled in such a way. I saw those “Welcome to your tape” memes and I just got so mad that it became a sort of joke. I never liked the book (I don’t even remember it anymore, just that it left a bad taste in my mouth) and all the reviews I saw just cemented that I will never watch or promote such damaging content. I don’t know how the creators could choose to create something that excludes those who need reassurance that depression can be overcome.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you.
      I was able to watch the whole thing because I wanted to watch it all before reviewing it, and I really wanted to review it. I also had it on in the background, and more listened to it than anything. The whole thing makes me so angry. The way they handled mental illness, how they ignored expert opinions about the suicide scene, and especially those “Welcome to you tape” memes. I even had people in my Calculus class tell my teacher how they liked it because it was graphic. I think I didn’t mind the book because I didn’t know I was mentally ill when I read it, and I hadn’t done much research.

      Liked by 1 person

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