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Netflix has renewed 13 Reasons Why for a third season.
The show, which is based on the best-selling book by Jay Asher, follows the death of high-school student Hannah, who committed suicide and left behind a group of cassette tapes that explained her story and named all the people who should receive the box.
Season 2 picked up in the aftermath and the start of the characters’ complicated journeys toward healing and recovery, as Liberty High prepared to go on trial and series of ominous polaroids led Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette) and his classmates to uncover a sickening secret and a conspiracy to cover it up.
The second run was met with a decidedly mixed reception from fans, with some criticising Netflix for milking the subject material, given that Season 1 ended at the same point as the original book. Concern was also raised by many about the show’s depiction of bullying, suicide and other sensitive issues, prompting Netflix create a special site – 13ReasonsWhy.info – dedicated to discussing sexual abuse, drug use and providing resources for mental health and suicide prevention. Netflix also issued content warnings about the programme.
Nonetheless, the series has been renewed for a third season, picking up in the aftermath of a controversial plot line involving a shooting.
Brian Yorkey will return as showrunner, with Season 3 to begin filming this year, with original star Katherine Langford not returning.
“What happened to Hannah will always be the first clause of the story,” Yorkey said at a Netflix awards consideration event last week. “The rest of the story is about young people, as so many young people, maybe all young people today (learn) how to heal from the things that have hurt them… to make the world that they want it to be, not just the world they are inheriting… and above all, how to take care of each other.”
The Parents Television Council sternly criticised Season 2, following its release lsat month.
“Netflix has delivered a ticking time bomb to teens and children who watch 13 Reasons Why. The content and thematic elements of the second season are even worse than we expected,” said PTC president Tim Winter. “We would have liked to have 13 reasons for hope and redemption following the graphic suicide of the lead female teen character, but rather than providing a path forward, the season only provides cause for despondency.”
In a statement released yesterday, the PTC added that it “condemns” Netflix for renewing the drama.
“13 Reasons Why has been enormously popular and successful. It’s engaging content,” Hastings said in the company’s annual shareholder meeting. “It is controversial. But nobody has to watch it.”
The decision follows an average audience of 2.6 million viewers per minute in the USA, according to Nielsen’s opening weekend ratings analysis, with Episode 1 of Season 2 drawing 6 million viewers over three days.
Here’s the teaser trailer announcing the series’ return:
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