---Be Warned Spoilers Ahead----
So I know this blog is mainly focussed on books but have to share my opinions somewhere and being that the show is based on the books figured why not. I actually sat down and did a complete binge session in one weekend which I don't think has ever happened. I could not tear my eyes away from the emotional rollercoaster that is "13 Reasons Why" . I very rarely feel a show / movie does much justice to the book but this one went above and beyond. Not only did they stick with the story beautifully they also added a ton more content to make it have the ability to renew. So if it does next year will be all new. I will admit I cried so much through this show and it was hard especially a few scenes but wow it was worth it.
Lets start with the main concepts of the book. Since after all this is a book review site. Showing some of the differences as part of the main plot. Non of these though hindered from the other points throughout the book . Many changes did occur to make it a more complete shared story but these are my top 5 changes that I noticed right away.
1. She dies by bleeding out instead of overdosing.
This was a big change but I think it has to do with the overall story for the show. Her parents own a Mom and Pop Pharmacy so it would add a whole lot of other issues legally for them and that would take away from the aspect of the story being played out mainly within the high school and students. You get some side story about the lawsuit but mainly it shows the effect the tapes do to them. (It is not pretty)
2. The time frame. In the book it is done over one night instead while on the show it is done in about over a week time. Allowing you to get more stories and also add more drama (I think this is to build up for another season)
3. The show is much much more mature as far as details listed in the book . I could see a 13 year old reading 13 reasons why but really not sure they would be able to watch the show because it has some disturbing things (drugs, rape, and the suicide are extremely graphic). I think this is a book everyone should read but the show might want to wait until about 15 or so
4. Hannah and Clay's relationship. In the books they had worked together one summer but never really talked. Although Clay had a crush on her he never really said much to her until the party. In the show though they were friends (She even gave him a nickname)
5. The Characters themselves have no differences in the book. While on the show you get to really see the characters. You have the same characters but for example Courtney in the books doesn't have much to her while in the show she is Asian and Gay (trying to hide it you find out in another change instead of the back massages you get a make out session)
In this show you can humanize the characters much better too. Why they do what they do or did what they did. I will be discussing characters and their acts with the reasons and how i really loved how it came together. Not making Hannah out to be 100% innocent or the kids 100% to be blamed.
There is so much to summarize so I am just going to point out key points of the show that I loved and why I think it worked so well.
I loved how they brought the characters to life and didn't shy away from any aspect. You didn't have just typical stereotypical kids. You had everything. White, Black, Asian, Filapino, etc. Gay, Straight, different crowds, everything. Such a diverse group that really shows how America is. It was an amazing idea so it can hit home with anyone.
An example is Justin Foley I always throught he was about the same as Bryce in the book rich, handsome, and powerful. In the show though he isn't. He lives with his mom who is poor and an addict along with at times her abusive boyfriend. Not at all it gives him the right to do what he did but explains kind of how he felt that second with Bryce. Almost like he owed it to him (you have to think teenager who is kind of treated like a brother to a rich kid.) You see how much it eats at him though and all the characters (except the worst of them all).
You also see Alex how he was so excited to part of the popular crowd then realized he didn't really like them. But in high school popularity is everything. You don't want to sit with the unpopular crowd if you have a choice and you will dump your old friends (You say you won't but it happens). I went to 4 high schools so I get it and was part of many cliches. His character though throughout the show you really see the downward spiral again.
I am very fortunate to not have experienced this but have had several friends who did experience. I will admit it is such a hard topic for anyone to discuss or see or really know unless it happens to you. I know those feelings never go away. It is also very hard to prove usually it is ones word vs the others (it can be guy or girl). The way the show depicted it though was so hard. I was in tears both times but I couldn't stop. Because how the show shown it esp the scene with Hannah was so uncomfortable but watching it hopefully kids do realize it does happen and just because someone isn't fighting their more frozen doesn't make it any less rape. I think just simply asking someone before things happen make sure they really do want it. There is no question and that way you are not ruining someone. The guidelines on rape are so vague too. It kills me inside because even not having experienced but having friends who did it is a hard thing to even talk about. I hope this brings more light and possibly more light on the topic so younger people know more about it. Maybe not showing the whole shows in classrooms but there is a making of video that goes into more details. It would better help teenagers know signs and let them talk.
This is the topic hardest for me to discuss. Even writing this here on a blog that 99.9% of you do not know me is hard and the .1% that do a majority do not know this about me. This is the topic that hits home to me. Watching her deplete seeing signs might not always be so easy. During the show especially at home she keeps a smile around her family but is becoming more recluse. THE SIGNS ARE NOT ALWAYS AS EASILY TO SPOT ESPECIALLY IN MOODY TEENAGERS. (You might see changes but in HS things are constantly changing). Like I said had 4 high schools. I changed every school. Moving was super hard to me. The scene despite it being more graphic then the book (it was an overdose) just the visual was horrible. They did not pull away. The razor was gruesome to watch. I forced myself to watch and cry as it played out. I am not afraid to admit anymore I cut and a couple times pretty bad which ended me up in the hospital in high school. I luckily had work and a guidance counselor to prove wrong. Yes I had one of those guidance counselors who after I dropped out a year because of hospitalization and went back told me I would never graduate and it might be better to get my GED. He put me down at the worst moment of my life when I was trying to get it together. Although at that same school there was a teacher that I said something to (maybe not as much detail (like giving names) just the fact I was in tears and said that I think it might be a better idea to drop out) She brought me up at the same time and told me whatever doubts I had I was smart and could do it. That man gave me willpower to prove wrong the world and the teacher gave me the willpower to keep going. That is what kept me going but most people don't have a brain like me and really what he said was so horrible. She was at that school and I stayed in touch with her for a couple years. Shortly later left that school but the day after graduation day I drove to that school went to that horrid guidance counselor and told him F*** You I did it. Not my most mature moment but it felt good. I also hugged that teacher who still I wish I could tell her what impact she made on me. But Hannah didn't have that one teacher to help her. She didn't have friends she felt she could talk to. In the book Clay and her didn't even talk much and on the show he was having issues handling it. It is a lot for anyone to deal with. Teenagers have so much going on in their head and not able to be processed. A simple thing can be an end of the world like not having someone to sit with at lunch. As adults we can work at our desk and hide if we want.
In conclusion 13 reasons why is a complete emotional rollercoaster but a definite watch watch and read. Now lets see if a season 2 comes about.