You’ve probably noticed that all your friends are obsessed with 13 Reasons Why. If you haven’t watched it yet, you should get on it ASAP, because it will get spoiled for you. This article only includes light spoilers, like sprinkles on a sundae. Warning, though — the show (not this article) has very graphic, traumatic scenes depicting sexual assault and suicide, so keep that in mind if you decide to watch the show. Here are 13 reasons why 13 Reasons Why is everyone’s favorite new show.
1. It’s relatable
The writers clearly understand how it feels to be in high school — especially to be a girl in high school. Most people will find something to relate to, especially if you haven’t been bullied in school.
2. It’s darkly funny
You might not think you’d laugh watching a show about suicide, but you will. Sometimes the way to handle the darkness of life is to laugh through it. Some of the saddest moments of the show are honestly when you see Hannah at her happiest, because you know that’s how life can and should be.
3. The cast is adorable
— 13 Reasons Why (@13ReasonsShow) April 11, 2017
Pictures of the cast hanging out off-set are amazing. They are such cuties! The cast really bonded on set and became a big group of besties.
4. Clay is a darling baby boy
Clay is so precious. We must protect him. He’s so innocent and naïve (and sometimes hilariously dumb — anyone who’s gay knows what I mean). He doesn’t do everything right, and not all of the conclusions he draws from what happens are correct (he’ll probably feel differently in five years), but he’s so genuine you can’t help but feel for him.
5. You wish you could be friends with Hannah
Hannah is like so many of us — fun and happy sometimes, miserable and angry other times. She feels like she’s all alone in her suffering, but so many people go through the same thing. Everyone’s just suffering quietly by themselves.
6. The mystery sucks you in
You learn everything along with Clay, piecing the mystery together bit by bit. Many of the episodes leave off on a cliff-hanger. At the first end of the episode, you wonder who the hell Tony really is, what Clay did, and who’s the other student who died? So much is set up right off the bat and the payoff is stretched out over the season. I’m actually on my second watch right now and there are a lot of interesting clues you don’t realize the first time!
7. The soundtrack is amazing
From the very first episode, you will be hooked on the soundtrack. There’s a mix of old and new songs but everything has an ‘80s feel, like we’re all living a John Hughes movie that makes us laugh and cry.
8. The dual storylines make sure you never get bored
The show goes back and forth from the present day to before Hannah’s death (if you get confused, just check Clay’s forehead). The dual timelines are a fresh way to tell a story.
9. The acting is amazing
The actors are mostly no-names, and for some of them, this is their first project. I honestly have no idea how the producers found them. You might recognize Dylan Minnette from his role as the kid with no ears on Grey’s Anatomy, and Miles Heizer grew up on Parenthood. The acting keeps the characters multi-dimensional. Alex is one of my favorite characters, and he never becomes a villain, despite the awful things he’s done. Nobody is all good in this show.
10. You can’t help but ship Clannah – even though you know how it ends
The writing and acting is so effective that you find yourself rooting for Clay and Hannah even though you know from the very beginning that Hannah ends up dead. They don’t get together. There is no happy ending… but you still hope for it.
11. The slow dance scene alone
The dance scene is a huge part of one of the most touching episodes and every time you hear the song “The Night We Met” for the rest of your life, you’ll think about it.
12. It’s diverse af
Lots of shows add one gay character and call it a day. Diversity accomplished! I think there are five or six LGBT characters on 13 Reasons Why, including multiple lead characters. The cast is full of multi-dimensional Black, Latinx, and Asian-American characters, reflecting the schools most of us actually go to.
13. There are tons of Easter eggs for ’80s and ’90s teen shows and movies
— erika&frida (@erikaandfrida) April 6, 2017
One of the coolest things about 13 Reasons Why is that several of the adults are played by actors who became famous for teenage roles. Derek Luke made it big with Antwone Fisher, Keiko Agena starred in Gilmore Girls, and Wilson Cruz is from the ‘90s gem My So-Called Life. I think the producers cast former teen stars as a subtle way of telling the audience that adults have been there — your teen years are actually not going to last forever, and you will get through this. Life goes on, high school is not the end of the world. And you may think that the adults in your life couldn’t possibly understand what you’re going through, but they can. They’ve been there. The Easter eggs don’t end there, though – if you pay close attention, you’ll see lots of scenes with visual throwbacks to movies like Say Anything and Sixteen Candles.
Are you obsessed with 13 Reasons Why? What are your reasons why? Tweet at me and let me know @erikaheidewald!