Not perfect, but getting there.
TRIGGER WARNING: suicide, rape, and anorexia are discussed in this piece.
At the beginning of this school year, I wrote an article titled “Dear Netflix, Stop Talking About Issues You Don’t Understand” discussing how Netflix’s representation of suicide and eating disorders was overall, both uninformed and detrimental to their audience of young, impressionable teens, specifically in their original series: 13 Reasons Why. Through comments on the article and through the dialogues my piece opened up, I learned that I was not the only one with this opinion, but it was still a very controversial topic.
So obviously, when season two of the show came out, I tuned in right away, hoping that they would listen to their older audience who suggested they either avoid such topics, or instead improve upon their warnings and resources provided to their very young and real audience, instead of just trying to make relatable entertainment.
To my surprise, before the show even started, each actor introduced themselves in a short video and warned teens who may be sensitive to topics such as suicide or rape to not watch the series or to be monitored by a trusted adult when doing so. They even went as far as to mention a resource that teens can go to, www.13reasonswhy.info, which is rich with specified help pages for a plethora of different struggles viewers may be facing.
I was ecstatic to see these extra precautions, while a bit overdue, I appreciate their extra effort the second time around. By not only linking but also discussing a cite struggling teens can turn to, they not only bring about discussion but also put forth a solution. Although there is much work that still needs to be done, I look forward to seeing how they improve upon their representation of eating disorders to young teens, and the extra precaution they take tackling any touchy subject in future. Netflix, well done.