13 Reasons Why showrunner talks school shooting storyline


13 Reasons Why debuted its second season last Friday on Netflix and has already caused a lot of discussion on social media concerning one of the storylines from the new season.

There are spoilers here for part of the second season of 13 Reasons Why, so follow through at your own risk.

The first season of 13 Reasons Why caught a lot of flack due to the fact that some critics claimed they glorified suicide. Others believed that the very hard to watch suicide itself might trigger some who have been through the situation before.

With that said, adding a storyline that involved an attempted school shooting was bound to cause some backlash, and that it did. On social media, people spoke out about the fact that the show used the theme despite the recent school shootings in the United States.

However, there were others who defended the idea that a show like 13 Reasons Why should address something like this.

The fact of the matter is that there are too many school shootings in America right now and the solution isn’t to push it under the rug and ignore that it happens. Shows like this are there to shine a spotlight on the problems (suicide and school shootings) and then maybe people will step up and do something to try to find a solution.

That is something the creator of 13 Reasons Why understands as well. Brian Yorkey spoke to The Hollywood Reporter and addressed the concerns about the thwarted school shooting in the second season of the show.

"“It’s very much about trying to understand Tyler’s character and how a troubled young man might be driven to consider this very difficult choice. We’re much more interested in understanding that character’s journey than we are in seeing it end in the worst way possible.”"

Whether or not 13 Reasons Why found a good balance when tackling a controversial issue is up to the individual viewers. While some might feel triggered when watching the suicide in season one, another person might be horrified enough to reach out and try to help a loved one they realized was in need of assistance.

While some might feel that season 2 of 13 Reasons Why is “glorifying” or “exploiting” the recent rash of school shootings, others might see it as a rallying point to step up and try to make a change in the world.

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At the end of the day, that is what the creators of 13 Reasons Why said that they want to happen.

"“As with all things with the show, our hope was that we could honestly represent the experience; that our viewers might, through the experience, learn more and start more conversations about those issues in their own world.”"