13 REASONS WHY Season 3

  • 07 Sep - 13 Sep, 2019
  • Mag The Weekly

Sometimes a TV show should not continue beyond its first season. For indisputable proof, look no further than 13 Reasons Why, a Netflix drama about teen suicide that was controversial but often compelling in its first season, and should have ended immediately after that season concluded.

Instead, the first season’s success led to a second and a third that devotes its 13 episodes to resolving a mystery only tangentially related to the show’s initial concern of why high school student Hannah Baker killed herself. The question that dominates season three is “Who is responsible for the death of Bryce Walker?” That’s right, Bryce Walker: the serial rapist who raped Hannah and never faced serious consequences for the crimes he committed. Bryce Walker: Perhaps the least liked character on 13 Reasons Why. A classic rich, white, male villain. In a lot of ways, season three of 13 Reasons Why is a redemption tour for Bryce, played by Justin Prentice, who we learn via flashbacks was, prior to his death, trying to learn from his bad behaviour and become a better person, albeit with mixed results. In season three, those battles affect multiple characters and involve almost every social issue that currently may affect the youth (and non-youth) of America: bullying, sexual assault, suicide, abortion, steroid abuse, the opioid crisis, gun violence, marginalisation and the crackdown on illegal immigration. Tossing all of these serious matters into the same slow-cooking, melodramatic stew degrades the importance of each one. It also often turns what is clearly aiming to be an unflinching portrait of contemporary teen life into an unintentional comedy.

A ridiculous, maddening, overlong example of Peak TV-era television that doesn’t know how to quit when it’s ahead.

– Compilation