The Netflix original, 13 Reasons Why, has received its fair share of negative feedback. However, this series has been heavily criticized for its portrayal of suicide, rape, and sexual assault. Many mental health experts have called for the series to be taken down. With the announcement that the show has been renewed for its 3rd season, many people feel as if the show should be cancelled for its explicit content. While I agree that the ways in which the production team presents certain scenes is extremely explicit, the topics that 13 Reasons Why is discussing are important. Here are 6 Reasons Why "13 Reasons Why" is important.
1. The language
High school is filled with expletives. If you can think of it, it's said in high school. 13 Reasons Why is one of the first series that doesn't hide behind this well known occurrence. Kids say bad things. Pretending it doesn't happen is just basking in ignorance. 13 Reasons Why used expletives, and they used them well.
Kids are bullied. It happens. The show specifically focuses on the many different types of bullying that occurs in high school. From slut shaming to physical altercations, bullying in all forms is displayed. Although hard to watch at times, diving into your uncomfortableness, will hopefully make you intervene when you or someone you know experiences similar situations.
3. Drugs and alcoholGiphy
High schoolers party. When parents are out of town, parties are thrown. 13 Reasons Why doesn't hide behind this concept. Instead, they expose the party culture that many high schoolers experience. The series also exposes some of the consequences that comes from using drugs and alcohol.
4. Exposes consequencesGiphy
Throughout the first two seasons, the series detailed how every action of a character contributed to Hannah's suicide, whether it was intentional or not. Showing kids and adults that every action can have damaging consequences will make them rethink some of their actions, good or bad. Everything we do affects someone else, and it's time to start teaching future generations the impact they can have on others.
5. The problems with school administration
You know what a high schooler fears most? Having a school administrator involved in their problems. High schoolers are scared to come forward and explain a difficult situation to a staff member. As seen in the series, sometimes, the school does nothing. 13 Reasons Why puts school administrators on blast. School Administrators should watch the series and see if they can make changes at their own school. No school is perfect, but accepting wrong doings is the first step to making a change. Do it for your students. They need change. They need change now.
6. Opens dialogue
Rape. Sexual Assault. Slut Shaming. Mental Health Awareness. Victim Blaming. Suicide. 13 Reasons Why is one of the first television series to really start a conversation about these topics. Yes, the show has caused extreme controversy on the internet, but isn't that what the world needed? To talk abut these things? These discussions between parents, friends, and peers are essential. If we all keep pretending that these things don't happen, we're indulging in ignorance. The only way for society to change is to continue talking about these things, and 13 Reasons Why is forcefully making these conversations happen.