'13 Reasons Why' season 3: Killing off Bryce Walker was the best decision the show made following Hannah Baker's exit
With Hannah gone, the shift in narrative needed a really captivating and equally shocking impetus to keep fans hooked, and what better way than to give them the cathartic relief of killing Bryce!
The premise for season three of Netflix's hit controversial teen-drama '13 Reasons Why' is that Bryce Walker is dead. And while pretty much everyone on the show, from his former best friend to his mother had solid incentive to kill him — there's no denying that killing the heinous rapist played by Justin Prentice off. And that was the best decision the show could have made for season three.
Firstly, the narrative is sure to take a shift this season with the prime protagonist of the show so far, Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford) not returning. With the character gone, after her suicide and the titular "reasons" behind it laying the foundation for the first two seasons, the show needed an equally shocking impetus to drive the storytelling forward. And what better drive than to kill off the character whose crimes and audacious, smug nature of getting away with them led to severe hatred and anger in the hearts of the show's fans!
In season one, it was revealed that Bryce raping Hannah was one of the contributing factors to her taking her own life. Hannah's tapes she left behind that were released in the weeks following her suicide also revealed her harrowing account of hiding in the closet of her friend, Jessica Davis (Alisha Boe), while Bryce sexually assaulted an intoxicated and almost passed out Jessica on her bed.
Season two revealed that Hannah and Jessica weren't Bryce's only victims. They were one of the many other girls whom Bryce would take to his personal "den" aka a shed-type lounge behind their school building, get intoxicated, before proceeding to rape them while they were passed out — leaving no memory of the accounts in their mind. Bryce's brazenness was even documented in polaroid that he kept as mementos of all the girls he had tricked that way, and season two saw these photos come out publicly.
But while Jessica and a fair few of the other girls found the courage to testify against him, Bryce's girlfriend Chloe — one of the similarly abused girls — decided to lie. Thus, Bryce walked off with a three-month-probation which was pretty much a "slap on the wrist", as Prentice told The Hollywood Reporter.
The fate he got away after the torture he put so many girls through was nothing compared to his crimes, and that led to a wave of disappointment in fans who believed Bryce would have been punished way more severely.
Prentice shared with the outlet, "I don't know that death necessarily is a just punishment. I think that's up to the viewers," and while Anne Winters, who plays Chloe on the series assured us through an interview with Us Weekly that we are going to see a "more redeemable" side to Bryce, it goes without saying that nobody is unhappy with the fate the vile character — who doesn't shy away from abusing and threatening his own mother — gets this season.
With Hannah gone and Clay (Dylan Minette) having finally let go of her memories, the makers surely needed something gripping to captivate the fans, and what better storyline than to give Bryce walker the ultimate punishment of a life cut short! So far we know Bryce gets murdered with a gunshot, and needless to say, fans are praying that his death was just painful as the pain he put those girls through, for a cathartic relief of sorts.
'13 Reasons Why' season 3 premieres on Friday, August 23, only on Netflix.