The Parents Television Council (PTC), an organization aimed at protecting “children and families from graphic sex, violence and profanity in the media,” has issued an urgent warning to both parents and schools regarding the content in the second season of Netflix’s “13 Reasons Why.”
The fictional series follows a high school student, Hannah, who is downtrodden by bullying and betrayal, before she eventually commits suicide. Weeks after the teen’s tragic death, a fellow student who had a crush on the girl discovers recordings made by her inside of a box…explaining the 13 reasons why she chose to take her own life.
The second season of the series depicts a lawsuit taken out by Hannah’s family against the school, who they say failed to protect their daughter. Viewers learn later in the story that there is “a pattern of coercive and predatory sexual behavior by the ‘jocks’ against many female students at the school,” according to the PTC. The administration of the school is thought to take the side of the said jocks, depicting a failure against the well-being of the other students.
In a disturbing scene in the second season’s finale, a group of boys sodomize a fellow male student with a broom handle. The victim then plots a revenge by planning a mass shooting at a school dance, but the plan is eventually thwarted.
The second season debuted on Friday, the same day when eight students and two teachers were allegedly gunned down by 17-year-old Dimitrios Pagourtzis at Santa Fe High School in Texas.
The council has called on Netflix itself to pull the entire series, citing potentially harmful content.
“We’re issuing an urgent warning to parents and schools about @Netflix’s #13ReasonsWhy Season 2 and urging the company to pull the series entirely because of the potentially harmful content,” the PTC said in a tweet.
We're issuing an urgent warning to parents and schools about @Netflix's #13ReasonsWhy Season 2 and urging the company to pull the series entirely because of the potentially harmful content. https://t.co/tdMrXilYc9
— Parents Television Council (@ThePTC) May 21, 2018
“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. 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,” PTC President Tim Winter said in a release published on PTC’s website.
Though a Los Angeles premiere of the second season scheduled for Friday was cancelled, the series can still be viewed on Netflix.
“There is abundant evidence that Netflix realizes just how dangerous this program is and is capable of being, and yet chose to move forward with releasing the season anyway,” the PTC stated. “While we hope there will be no real-life consequences, after reviewing season two, we’re only left with grave concern for children who watch the show.”