Based on the novel of the same name by Jay Asher, 13 Reasons Why, is a Netflix original show with 13 episodes, all of which were uploaded on the website on 31st March 2017.(Reasons to watch 13 Reasons Why)
The series revolves around the suicide of a girl named Hannah Baker. One day after her death, one of her classmates, Clay, receives a box containing some tapes. Curious about their contents, Clay plays them to find out that the tapes contain 13 reasons why Hannah had decided to end her life. Each of the reasons turns out to be an individual from their high school whose actions pushed Hannah into depression, eventually leading her to commit suicide.
The book had been lying around in my Amazon wishlist for more than a year, and therefore I decided to binge watch the series at once and finished it in a couple of days. Sure, it is a very well made and captivating show. But more importantly, it is an extremely important show which everyone needs to watch immediately in order to be aware of the importance of mental health.
# Reasons to watch 13 Reasons Why
Depression is not something to be overlooked
This is something all, especially students, should know and understand. Depression is a very serious phenomenon and can happen to people of any age group. Although it is often overlooked, it is less trivial than it seems. The signs are easy to spot and equally easy to overlook. However, much like the characters in the show, you might not really understand how many of your friends or relatives might be struggling with clinical depression. If you notice the signs in someone you know, the best option would be to not misinterpret them and provide both, personal and professional help.
Slut shaming needs to stop, IMMEDIATELY!
Slut shaming- that’s how it all began. Hannah’s first tape was about Justin, who had leaked an otherwise innocent picture of Hannah and branded her a slut. In the following tapes, Alex, Bryce, Marcus, and to an extent, even Jessica continued to do so. Therefore, it would not be wrong to presume that it was one of the driving factors to cause her suicide. Slut shaming does not only spread irrelevant rumours about a person, it also damages their self-esteem, sometimes permanently. And there’s nothing worse than your best friend abandoning you for believing something which isn’t even true! This problem is still prevalent in high school students. Slut shaming has an extremely adverse impact on one’s self-image. It can push you into isolation and self-harm, not to forget the drop in your confidence.
Invading one’s privacy isn’t cool, after all!
It just adds up to the rumours. What Tyler did to Hannah and Courtney, (and Clay did to Tyler) can never possibly be forgiven. In today’s age, especially due to the advent of social media, stalking has become frequent. But the question remains, do we really perceive its consequences? The feeling of constantly being followed, knowing that someone out there is tracing every move of yours- is simply terrifying. Feeling unsafe and insecure can take a severe toll on your mental health.
Poetry is extremely personal. And once we confide into someone, it shatters us if that person does not maintain confidentiality. That is exactly what Ryan did to Hannah. To use her piece (although anonymously) in order to popularize his magazine was a bad move on his part. What was even worse was him not realizing his mistake. This highlights how we unknowingly affect others negatively. This was a hard blow to Hannah’s confidence and made her distrust her talents. Once she started feeling futile, she sank deeper into depression.
When someone asks you for help, HELP!
Even after everything, Hannah gave herself a second chance. She visited her school counsellor Mr Porter for help. But it was all in vain. She had to return disappointed from the one who was trained in this and could actually help her. He suggested her to forget everything and move on with her life, neglecting the pain she was facing. And only after Hannah understood that there was no door open for her, no helping hand, no way to recover herself- she made the decision. So, simple as it might sound, when someone asks for help, try to help them. If you can’t, refer them to someone who might. Do not throw others into despair just because it does not concern you.
Even more significantly, 13 Reasons Why teaches us that we are a survivor. We have all been there, have gone through some of the things Hannah had to, but we were strong enough to not let go. It makes you believe that you are capable of more than you are aware of. It restores your faith in yourself. And that’s why, we suggest you should go and watch the show, right now!
Or, you can also read the book!
Happy binge watching! 🙂