Review of "13 Reasons Why" on Netflix From The TV MegaSite
 

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13 Reasons Why stars 

Review of "13 Reasons Why" 4/16/17 by Suzanne
Airs on Netflix now

This is a really great show. Usually I just watch one or two episodes of a new show before reviewing. I've been binge-watching this one. It really draws you in and makes you want to keep watching.

The show is about a young guy, Clay () who's getting over the suicide of his friend, Hannah ().  Hannah has left a series of tapes for each of her friends to listen to. As each listens, the person passes the tapes on to another person.  Each tape side is about one of the people that she blames for making her life unbearable.

We see and hear the tapes, Hannah's voice, and flashbacks to the past, through Clay's eyes. As he listens to the tapes, they start to consume his life. As he binge-listens to them, they're affecting his life, schoolwork, family relationships, etc.  He learns about all of the terrible things that people did to Hannah. He also learns, gradually, who else has heard the tapes, who is on them, and who might have helped her make them.  He seems to get more paranoid as the show goes on (with good reason).

Some of the other students at his school don't want him to listen to the tapes because they're afraid that he might spill the beans about what happened. The kids are all keeping the tapes secret from the adults...especially her grieving parents. of "Private Practice" plays her mom. The great Steven Webber plays the school's principal, who's worried because Hannah's mom is suing the school for allowing the other kids to bully Hannah.

This is a very large cast, but they all do a great job. Dylan Minnette is fabulous as Clay. His face and his eyes are just wonderful at showing his teenage feelings.  Langford is also fantastic as Hannah. Everyone should enjoy this show, with its great mystery, but especially teens.

I only have two minor gripes about the show, thus far. One is that most of these actors don't look like teens. They appear way too old to be high school students. That's a standard TV problem. I guess it's hard to find great, seasoned actors who are under 18.

The other problem is that Katherine Langford is just too beautiful to play Hannah. I don't believe that a girl that beautiful, outgoing, and bright, from a two-parent home (with parents who seem to love her and aren't dysfunctional) would kill herself. I just don't buy it. Girls like that just aren't bullied.  Bullies go after the kids who are ugly, fat, weird, socially awkward, gay, etc.  Not someone like her. Nope, I don't buy it.   They should have made Hannah a little ugly or have her wear glasses...something! It makes no sense to me, otherwise. If they had said that Hannah had a history of depression, then that would be different. They barely mention depression at all.

Perhaps they're trying to send the message that anyone can be bullied or that any teen could commit suicide, but I don't think that's probably accurate... I guess as someone who was bullied in school, I feel a little bit defensive whenever they don't show bullying in an accurate way. I do know that teen suicide has gone up, but I doubt it's because of bullying. From what I read online, it has a lot more to do with families falling on hard times, due to the economic problems.

This is based on a book by Jay Asher.  I haven't read the book.  The series was written and directed by Brian Yorkey, who has primarily been a theater writer and director.

MORE INFORMATION:

13 Reasons Why is a new series from Netflix adapted from the best-selling books by Jay Asher. It follows teenager Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette) as he returns home from school to find a mysterious box with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker (newcomer Katherine Langford) - his classmate and crush - who tragically committed suicide two weeks earlier. On tape, Hannah explains that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Will Clay be one of them? If he listens, he'll find out how he made the list. Through Hannah and Clay's dual narratives, 13 Reasons Why weaves an intricate and heart wrenching story of teenage life that will deeply affect viewers.

13 Reasons Why is directed by Oscar Winner Tom McCarthy (Spotlight), Written by Tony and Pulitzer Prize Winner Brian Yorkey (Next to Normal), and executive produced by Selena Gomez, Joy Gorman and Brian Yorkey from Anonymous Content, and Kristel Laiblin. The series is a produced for Netflix by Paramount Television.

Cast:

Dylan Minnette Clay Jensen

Katherine Langford Hannah Baker

Kate Walsh Mrs. Baker (Hannah's mother)

Brain D'Arcy James Mr. Baker (Hannah's father)

Derek Luke Mr. Porter (Hannah's guidance counselor)

Brandon Flynn Justin Foley

Justin Prentice Bryce Walker

Alisha Boe Jessica Davis

Christian Navarro Tony Padilla

Tommy Dorfman Ryan

13 x 60

Format: Drama

Series Premiere Date: March 31th, 2017


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