The Netflix hit show 13 Reasons Why has become a fan favorite for teens and young adults but the new network released a statement that the series will be coming to an end.
“We’ve heard from many young people that 13 Reasons Why encouraged them to start conversations about difficult issues like depression and suicide and get help—often for the first time,” Netflix said in a statement Tuesday. “We’ve been mindful about the ongoing debate around the show. So on the advice of medical experts, including Dr. Christine Moutier, Chief Medical Officer at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, we’ve decided with creator Brian Yorkey that Netflix has slotted June 5 for the fourth and final season of 13 Reasons Why.”
Fans and cult followers were outraged and took to social media to voice their concerns.
“Just when we find something that really speaks to us as a generation and what we are going through they cancel it… thanks but no thanks Netflix,” said one Twitter follower named @Natxoxo23.
The show which focused on hard-hitting teen topics, such as suicide and depression has received heavy criticism from parents and people of the mental health community.
The show saw a major shift after newcomer Felischa Marye was hired as a staff writer but she did not receive official writing credit until season 2 episode 208, which is officially titled “The Little Girl.”
Marye received has received heavy criticism for pushing the envelope with her heavy dialogue and provocative topics.
Last season Marye stepped into the role of writer and story editor, where she served as the lead writer on the most debatable episodes to date; episode 308 titled, “In High School, Even on a Good Day, It’s Hard to Tell Who’s on Your Side.”
The episode discusses a vivid scene where the character Clay, who is suspected of killing the main character Bryce describes being sexually assaulted by fellow classmates.
“I was in the bathroom when I got back from my diversion program. Monty came in and he was mad about the field and he smashed my head on the mirror and on the sink. And then, he and Taylor and Kenneth, they held my head in the toilet. And Monty he got a mop, and he pulled my pants down, and he put it in me. And he pushed it in my hole, and in and out until I was bleeding, and they left me on the floor.”
The episode proved to be a turning point for the show with multiple parents and members of the mental health community coming forward to criticize the episode.
Netflix has not directly responded to the pushback on the episode but it leads us to believe that this was the turning point for the show’s demise.
Unfortunately, Hollywood is not ready to shine such a vivid light on the issues that young people are facing in public even if they are going through it in private.
According to America’s Health Rankings, youth suicidal ideation, attempt and completion are on the rise. Far more adolescents have suicidal thoughts or attempt suicide and survive than those who die by suicide. Results from the 2019 Youth Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System show that 18.8% of high school students seriously considered attempting suicide and 8.9% actually attempted suicide.
It’s clear that we need hard writers like Marye and directors like Yorkey to continue to speak the truth and highlight these issues.
As for Netflix, it seems that they have once again folded to the pressures of society.