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Netflix Show Brings Suicide Awareness

Jack Selig, Staff Writer

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House of Cards in 2013, Daredevil in 2015, Stranger Things in 2016. There is always a show on Netflix that is the rave. This year, the show 13 Reasons Why is extremely popular with Netflix enthusiasts and cable television traditionalists.

“There are some things about the show that are really cringey in a cheesy way,” AV tech teacher James Paul said. “However, the parts that are controversial are cool, because a lot of the underlying theme is that suicide is everybody’s fault.”

Junior Abby Henson enjoys the show because of the relatability.

“I felt bad for the main character, and that is what kept me watching it,” Henson said. “The show made me and probably other viewers be more aware about what they say to different people.”

The show is about Clay Jensen, a boy who returns home from school one day to find that he has received a mysterious package in the mail. The package contains cassette tapes that reveal why a girl named Hannah Baker committed suicide.

“Every episode leaves you with cliffhangers,” sophomore Luis Lara said. “You want to figure out the next step in what led to Hannah’s suicide.”

The show was originally a book that was written by Jay Asher in 2007.

“I am worried about if people will be able to separate the show from reality,” Paul said. “If viewers can’t do that, I think they will get the wrong message.”

Junior Katherine Chambless believes the message is important.

“I think the show conveys a good message,” Chambless said. “Being mean to people really impacts them, and viewers of the show should learn that.”

Educators and mental health experts criticize the show, saying it romanticizes suicide. However, Paul believes the show does a good job promoting suicide awareness.

“In suicide, everybody wants to blame everybody else, and nobody takes the blame themselves,” Paul said. “The show conveys that message extremely well.”

Lara believes the show has relevance in today’s society.

“People know suicide happens, but they don’t know all of the effects,” Lara said. “It makes people realize that you can do something to prevent it.”

 

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