’13 Reasons Why’ Season 2 Faces Backlash Over Graphic Finale Scene

'13 Reasons Why' finale
'13 Reasons Why' finale Beth Dubber/Netflix

Warning: This story contains spoilers from the second season of 13 Reasons Why.

In the first season of 13 Reasons Why, nothing was held back. In the finale, Hannah’s (Katherine Langford) suicide scene was very graphic, causing a great deal of outrage from fans and parents who felt that it wasn’t necessary to show. On Friday, May 18, the second season was released on Netflix and fans are saying the same thing – this time about an assault scene.

After going away to receive help for his anger, Tyler (Devin Druid) returned to school with a new outlook. However, Monty (Timothy Granaderos) wasn’t over everything Tyler had done – basically, doing everything he could to get Bryce (Justin Prentice) to pay for assaulting women. Bryce told Monty to get over it, but he wouldn’t listen. Instead, he and his friends jumped Tyler in the bathroom, slamming his head against the mirror and the sink and pushing his face into the toilet multiple times. Monty then sexually assaulted him using a wooden broomstick, leaving Tyler bleeding out.

'13 Reasons Why' finale
’13 Reasons Why’ finale Beth Dubber/Netflix

To say the scene was graphic would be an understatement. But was it necessary? After binging, some fans took to Twitter to share their feelings, claiming it was more about “shock value” than anything else.

“There was absolutely no need for that scene with Tyler in the last episode. Why did that need to be written in. 13 Reasons Why is problematic and that’s that,” one viewer wrote.

Another added, “AFTER THAT BRUTAL SCENE WITH THE MOP AND TYLER, THIS SHOW NEEDS TO BE CANCELLED. Obviously the people behind this show only gives a f—k about shock value and not about rape or suicide.”

Others felt it was important. “I agree that the Tyler’s moment in episode 13 was hard to watch.. but what happened is true and some people go through that s—t, so if you think that was too much to watch, take a second and think what others have felt and no one talks about it,” one fan wrote.

Another added: “All of y’all are pissed because Tyler got sodimized in with a broom #13ReasonsWhy2 .. but this happened at my former school to a kid I know. Multiple football players raped a 15-year-old boy with a broomstick. I heard about it I almost threw up. #13ReasonsWhy needed to show this.”

Selena Gomez, who is a producer on the show, spoke out following the first season of the show, responding to the fans who thought the suicide scene was too intense. “We wanted to do it justice and, yeah, [the backlash is] going to come no matter what,” she told the Associated Press last year. “It’s not an easy subject to talk about, but I’m very fortunate with how it’s doing.” None of the writers have spoken out about the season 2 finale.

In the beginning of season 2, the cast members take turn reading a warning message. “13 Reasons Why is a fictional series that tackles tough, real-world issues, taking a look at sexual assault, substance abuse, suicide, and more,” the warning says. “By shedding a light on these difficult topics, we hope our show can help viewers start a conversation. But if you are struggling with these issues yourself, this series may not be right for you or you may want to watch it with a trusted adult. And if you ever feel you need someone to talk with, reach out to a parent, a friend, a school counselor, or an adult you trust, call a local helpline, or go to 13ReasonsWhy.info. Because the minute you start talking about it, it gets easier.”

Specific episodes, including the finale, had an additional warning before the opening credits about sexual assault and drug use.

13 Reasons Why season 2 is currently streaming on Netflix.

If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

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