Brandon Flynn Reveals the Fan Encounter That Made Him Realize ‘13 Reasons Why’ Could Save Lives
While experts are still putting the drama on blast for what they consider the irresponsible handling of heavy subject matter, teens are rallying for what they consider an honest and life-saving series.
Justin portrayer Brandon Flynn recently visited a high school drama class to discuss the show and wound up sharing an emotional moment with a fan.
Brandon tells POPSUGAR the girl didn’t even take the drama class, but she showed up just to tell him about how the show had saved her life.
"She was a victim of self-mutilation and she looked at me and cried and gave me a hug. She said, 'Thank you so much because my parents have sat down with me and watched this show and they saw such a huge connection between Hannah and me.'”
The girl’s parents used the show to connect with their daughter about her problems.
“She basically said that her parents started talking to her more and accepting that we're not just kids and that we have issues and that we have things to talk about and we have feelings,” he continued. “We're humans. That to me was like, 'Holy s—t.'"
However, many have criticized the show for its graphic portrayal of Hannah Baker’s suicide, and experts say the way the characters dealt with the death was inappropriate, too.
School psychologist Katherine Ballbach told the Journal Sentinel that the surviving kids were exposed to the trauma of Hannah’s death for far too long.
"You don't have memorials. You don't continue to expose someone to the graphic details of someone's suicide."
But teenagers disagree, and they think the show very accurately portrays life as a modern high schooler.
Milwaukee teen Sam Gorel says, "With all of the technology now it just becomes easier to spread rumors, pictures and talk to people.”
He continues, "Adults don’t understand how things have changed since they were in high school. Everything now is public, everyone knows everything about anyone, and this show depicts this more than any other show or book."
Because of that realism, some teens are finally getting the help they desperately need.
13 Reasons Why is currently streaming on Netflix.