Goodbye Hannah Baker, hello plot twists; here's what to expect from '13 Reasons Why' season 3
We can expect that the upcoming season will mostly take place in Liberty High School unlike Season 2, where the series took a turn for a court-room trial drama.
The series that started with suicide, rape and audiotapes undertook an even more controversial tone with its second season's subjects of bullying, male rape and gun violence. Netflix's popular drama '13 Reasons Why' took the world by storm when it first aired on March 31, 2017. Based on Jay Asher's novel of the same title, the first season was a complete adaptation that did not require a second season, so when the show was renewed, fans as well as the haters were surprised and had very little knowledge on what to expect.
The second season premiered on May 18 and the show received a rather lukewarm reception compared to its first season. Fans were quick to point out loopholes in the new season and the weirdest twist on Hannah Baker turning into a ghost was a questioned choice. The die-down was quick and the most talked about show of 2017 did not create enough buzz but the season 2 finale's cliffhanger granted the third season.
On June 6 Netflix officially announced the show's renewal with a video on social media. The release read that the production for the new season will begin later this year, with a premiere set for 2019. Similar to both seasons before it, season 3 will comprise 13 episodes and creator Brian Yorkey will return as the showrunner. Several executive producers, including Selena Gomez, will return as well.
Not much is known about the plot of season 3 but if the short announcement clip can be considered any indication, then chances are fans can expect the worst, which means an eerie, graphic and even more disturbing new season. The brief video points to a student in Liberty High opening the locker while ominous music is echoing in the background. We can expect that the upcoming season will mostly take place at Liberty High School unlike Season 2, where the series took a turn for a court-room trial drama.
In Yorkey's May interview with The Hollywood Reporter, he shot down the rumor of converting the show into an anthology series that would follow a different set of students in future seasons. “If there is a future for the show, to me, it’s about these characters, and not necessarily a new set of reasons or a new set of tapes,” Yorkey said.
At the same event where Netflix announced its third season, Katherine Langford, who plays Hannah Baker, confirmed her departure. This also means that Hannah's story is done and dusted and the last we saw her on the show was at her funeral when Clay Jensen envisions Hannah heading towards a bright light, which makes us understand that her spirit has found peace.
But season 2, on developing other characters have raised further questions and many eyebrow-raising moments. But unlike how it was in season 1, season 2 has left a good number of clues on what we can expect from the upcoming season.
First of all, is the unsatisfying ending when the screen abruptly cuts to credits when Clay has a gun in his hand as police sirens wail nearby prompting Justin Foley to question "What do we do now?" We also don't know what is going to happen to Justin's intense drug addiction even after getting adopted by the Jensens.
Let us look at the important narratives that we can expect Season 3 to address.
1. What is Clay going to do and what will happen to Tyler?
Given that the season concluded with Tyler Down's gun in Clay's hand, season 3 may just start off from there. season 2 focused on the new troubled kid, Tyler, who in season 1 had stalked Hannah Baker, taking pictures of her kissing Courtney and making the picture run viral in school when Hannah rejected him. Season 1 had ended with Tyler stocking guns in his trunk and in season 2, he actually used the guns to shoot cans with his mischievous friend, Cyrus, who later alerted the school about Tyler after which he was sent to some treatment program. Just when Tyler seems to be doing well after the retreat, he gets beaten up by the jocks of the school, who insert a mop inside him. This horrifying and traumatic incident fuels Tyler's decision to attempt mass shooting during the spring dance.
While almost at it, Clay manages to talk some sense into him and makes him leave in Tony's car. But as they drive off, police draws near and Clay suddenly realizes that Tyler's semi-automatic gun is in his hand.
Chances are, Clay will hand the weapon over to authorities when season 3 picks up or the scene can take an unexpected route as Clay may turn the situation into his favor. He may even throw the weapon behind the bushes and enter the school, where everyone else is hiding or he may even be prompted to adhere to his dark side for wanting to kill Bryce.
Yorkey talked about Tyler Down to The Hollywood Reporter. “We had a character who was obviously severely bullied, suffering from social isolation and was thinking of making a very tragic choice in addressing those feelings for himself."
“We’re very interested in continuing to follow his journey and to try to understand his state of mind and the state of his soul. I think you’ll see in the balance of the episodes that it’s very much about trying to understand Tyler’s character and how a troubled young man might be driven to consider this very difficult choice.”
Bryce has transferred from Liberty High to another posh private school. While he may be absent from the school, his story is not finished and he will be back on the football field to play against his old school. In season 2, his punishment was trivial compared to the intensity of the crime he committed. Despite raping several girls at Liberty High including Hannah and Jessica, Bryce did not go to prison and received only three-months probation. Justin Foley, on the other hand, who comes from a poor family without any of the influence Bryce’s family enjoys, received a probation sentence twice as long, despite only being an accessory to the crime, testifying for Jessica.
Now that he is still there for the upcoming season, we hope he gets the punishment he deserves.
Bryce's girlfriend Chloe refused to testify about her own coerced sexual encounters with him at the court. In the finale of season 2, we learn that she is pregnant and tells Jessica she doesn't know what to do. The show that does not shy away from taboo subjects may talk about abortion as an option for Chloe. She may also play a major role in Bryce's downfall given that she has come to fear him, while Bryce's own mother, Nora, has come to loathe her son. Chloe and Nora can find a team player in each other. Who knows?
4. Justin’s addiction
For me, the most profound moment and perhaps the most profound character in season 2 was Justin Foley. When the Jensens adopted him, his reaction and tears were so genuine that it was unnatural not to bring out some tissues. He also seems to have rekindled his romance with Jessica after making out in the boys' locker room at the spring fling dance. But Justin hasn't given up his addiction yet and injects cocaine through the center of his toes. Clay and his family thinks he has given up on drugs but looks like his addiction has gotten far worse than we expect.
We also see Justin's mother's abusive drug dealer boyfriend, Seth, stalk and glare at Justin from afar during Hannah Baker's funeral. Justin could end up becoming the victim of his past and addiction. Seth may try to take revenge on Justin for stealing his money and making his mother run away from Seth, but we feel Justin is too important a character to be threatened by someone like Seth.
5. Jessica's matter of the heart
Jessica played one of the most important roles in season 2 and she may tread on the same line of importance in Season 3. Despite falling short of a legal battle against Bryce, she told Clay, she feels stronger than ever. She starts seeing Alex and they even go to spring fling together. But as we know, her heart is for Justin, so she hooks up with him at the same event. In Season 3 she may decide who she wants to be with and maybe we all know the answer to that.
If Jessica chooses to be with Justin then Alex will likely date Zach. Why not? Zach has been with Alex through the toughest phase of his life including intimacy issues with Jessica following the traumatic events where Alex shot himself. Alex even tries his hand on live webcam but fails to be aroused. But suddenly in a heated argument with Zach, he is sexually aroused. During the finale, we saw how Zach tenderly showed Alex how to dance with Jessica with a paralytic but recovering leg. Though Zach and Alex have never expressed sexual attraction to the same sex, chances of love blooming between them is undeniable.
7. Justin's mother
There's a strong hunch that Justin's mother who hasn't been traced while Justin was in jail may have escaped her abusive boyfriend, Seth. She may start her life anew and come back to her son.
Besides these, there is a whole bunch of storylines including Tony's, Nina's, and Mr Porter's to be explored in season 3. Goodbye Hannah Baker, hello new plot twists.