13 Reasons Why >
13 Reasons Why, the latest of Netflix's hit shows has certainly got fans and also haters. The series, which is based on the book by Jay Asher, follows Clay Jensen, a high school student, as he must listen to a set of 13 tapes recorded by his friend Hannah Baker. Each tape a reason for why she committed suicide. The main roles in the series of Hannah baker and Clay Jensen are played by Katherine Langford and Dylan Minnette. Although Katherine has only played in 3 previous roles, her performance and portrayal of Hannah during the series was flawless, she seemed to easily convey the emotion of every scene, some of which were very distressing to witness let alone star in. Dylan also did a marvelous job at showing the effect that the tapes had on his character, causing great regret, anger and confusion, to simply mention a few of the feelings he might have been experiencing.
Many who have watched the series praise it for highlighting issues which sometimes are overlooked or made light of. The series shows that parents, carers and school staff must pay more attention to their children or students, as there can be far more going on with them than they may be telling or showing on the surface. I believe there has been times in all our lives that we have had to deal with something difficult or distressing. Instead of asking for help, most of the time we simply try not to show the real effect it is having on us and our state of mind. 13 Reasons Why is tackling these kinds of issues and behavior head on, in a way that people are actually listening and taking note of, it has made people more aware than a leaflet or poster ever will.
On the flip side of this praise, is the opinion that the series is exposing those most at risk. Some critics have said that the series "romanticizes and normalizes suicide", and many health professionals feel that explicit scenes of suicide should not be shown to any young audience. After watching the entire series I can understand some of these points, especially with the series being easily accessed on Netflix by age groups who probably shouldn't be exposed to at least 3 particular scenes. The series very graphically shows Hannah taking her life with razor blades in a bathtub, not turning away for a single second. I generally don't mind blood or gore in films, however the sight of her cutting into her veins and the blood seeping out of her arms was too much for me, even after turning away, you are spared no reprieve as you listen to her final moments. Along with two very graphic and similarly unforgiving rape scenes, the series definitely can not be accused of straying from reality.
After watching the entire series, I can say that it is raw, enthralling and really makes you think about your actions and the effect that they can have on others. I do feel that the series teaches many valuable lessons, such as what to look out for, and brings more awareness to issues rarely discussed properly or enough. I also feel younger views should not watch the series on their own, due to its complex messages and graphic scenes. I personally look forward for the next season to air.
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