Ok, so I was skeptical. I am one of those guys who discovers great TV shows long after everyone else. Sometimes years later. Watching any new TV series is a commitment. After finishing "The Affair" and then "Big Little Lies" I was certain, absolutely certain that nothing could engage and enthrall me in the ways these two shows did. Like many in LA I saw the billboards for 13 Reasons Why. Heard a few murmurs. But, due to the fact it was about high school kids I dismissed it. After all you cant watching everything. Then, I had my life temporarily interrupted by an attack of Sciatia--a debilitating, excruciatingly painful nerve that renders you incapacitated for at least 3 days to a week. Sucks. So, with nothing but time to wait it out I flipped on the TV looking for any diversion to take my mind off the pain and discomfort.
13 Reasons Why, adapted from the best-selling Young Adult novel of the same name is a masterpiece. It ranks with one of the finest TV dramas ever created on teenage angst. The premise, The suicide of Hannah Baker and the "13" tapes she leaves behind gives the show its clever premise. Each show revolves around one of the tapes. Australian actress Katherine Langford is Hannah. She is astounding, relaying all the emotions of everyones troubling teenage high school years. Dylan Minnett is Clay Jensen, her co-star and together they drive the plot forward moving back and forth between the present and the past unraveling the facts--and mystery surrounding Hannah's tragic and very graphic, gruesome suicide.
Nothing about 13 Reasons Why rings false, at least to me. The producers have cast such a diverse and likable cast, as well as those who love to hate that it would be hard for anyone not to find someone or something to relate to.
The show is cool, its hip, but it is also tragic and devestating--just like real life. At times it is hard to watch, but you cant look away or stop watching. You are in knee deep and you know it. You know whats coming and its almost too much to bear. By the end I was emotionally drained. I kept telling myself "its only TV" but it was more than that. It was a message to all of us young and old. "It has to get better," Clay muses in the final episode. "The ways we treat each other. Look out for each other. It has to get better somehow."
It is a quote I will never forget. And I will never forget 13 Reasons Why.
Pulp Fiction Author