Two years after the show 13 Reasons Why premiered, Netflix has edited the controversial suicide scene from season 1. The news comes following numerous studies linking the show to a spike in teen suicides.
You can read Netflix’s statement regarding the censorship below.
The scene airs in the finale of season 1, depicting a very graphic scene of actress Katherine Langford that caused controversy following its premiere.
The episode received quite a bit of backlash with many activists and health care professionals worried it would contribute to copycat suicides.
“It was our hope, in making ’13 Reasons Why’ into a television show, to tell a story that would help young viewers feel seen and heard, and encourage empathy in all who viewed it, much as the bestselling book did before us,” showrunner Brian Yorkey says in a statement.
“Our creative intent in portraying the ugly, painful reality of suicide in such graphic detail in season one was to tell the truth about the horror of such an act, and make sure no one would ever wish to emulate it. But as we ready to launch season three, we have heard concerns about the scene from Dr. Christine Moutier at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and others, and have agreed with Netflix to re-edit it. No one scene is more important than the life of the show, and its message that we must take better care of each other. We believe this edit will help the show do the most good for the most people while mitigating any risk for especially vulnerable young viewers.”
The scene now shows Langford staring at her own reflection in the mirror then cuts to her parents’ reaction later in the scene.
Netflix released a statement Monday regarding the edit.
“We’ve heard from many young people that ’13 Reasons Why’ encouraged them to start conversations about difficult issues like depression and suicide and get help—often for the first time. As we prepare to launch season three later this summer, we’ve been mindful about the ongoing debate around the show. So on the advice of medical experts, including Dr. Christine Moutier, Chief Medical Officer at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, we’ve decided with creator Brian Yorkey and the producers to edit the scene in which Hannah takes her own life from season one.”
If you or someone you know is struggling with mental illness, there is help to be found. Please consider these online resources and talk to your regular doctor about your symptoms:
- The National Suicide Prevention Hotline is 1-800-273-8255. You can also reach out to Crisis Text Line by texting GO to 741741.
- MentalHealth.gov – Get Immediate Help
- ImAlive – Online Crisis Network
- International Association For Suicide Prevention – Resources
- The Anxiety And Depression Association Of America
- The National Alliance On Mental Illness
- American Psychiatric Association – Finding Help
- National Institute Of Mental Health
- American Psychological Association – Psychologist locator