When Netflix’s controversial “13 Reasons Why” returns, it will be with a new question that will plague the continually traumatized students of Liberty High. This time, instead of examining the reasons for Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford) killing herself, the series will investigate another death – the mysterious murder of star athlete and bully Bryce Walker (Justin Prentice), who raped Hannah before her suicide.
This new murder-mystery twist will once again ignite tensions within the school as motives will be questioned and fingers will be pointed. Bryce was popular but he was also loathed and feared, and in the trailer that Netflix released Wednesday, one fan favorite will become a prime suspect.
Here’s Netflix’s official description for the season:
Who killed Bryce Walker? Everyone has their reasons… The secrets at Liberty High run deep, and in the aftermath of the Homecoming game all of the friends have something to hide. As the mystery of his death engulfs the town, there are numerous suspects in focus. But were any of them truly capable of murder? And who is the new girl? Police are determined to get to the truth, but with a web of secrets and lies this tangled, will anyone be found guilty?
“13 Reasons Why” has courted controversy from the beginning for glorifying Hannah’s suicide and even including an extended scene depicting how she killed herself. Despite an outcry that such graphic treatment of her death – while also making an ongoing mystery of why she killed herself – romanticized suicide, Netflix had stuck by creator Brian Yorkey’s vision… until recently when they removed the scene in which Hannah kills herself. In Season 2, a trial examined the still-simmering tensions at Liberty High that caused her death and inspired another student to almost become the next school shooter in yet another controversial storyline.
In its third season, the entire production – with its slick production, attractive cast, and dreamy soundtrack – still remains an addictive viewing experience that romanticizes death. The new murder mystery twist only capitalizes on this lurid trend. On a show built on sympathy for a traumatized teenager, now switching that sympathy to her assailant is baffling. Who killed Bryce Walker? Who cares?
Watch the Season 3 trailer below:
“13 Reasons Why” Season 3 will be released on Friday, Aug. 23.