'13 Reasons Why' Comes Under Fire Over Graphic Rape Scene In Final Episode

Daniel Welsh

This post contains spoilers for the second series of ’13 Reasons Why’.

As you may recall, the first series of Netflix’s ‘13 Reasons Why’ was heavily criticised over its depiction of suicide, in particular a scene in which the lead character took her own life, which sparked a lot of conversation over whether it had crossed a line with its graphic content.

Prior to the second series’ debut, it looked as though those in charge had learned their lesson, particularly when it was revealed that each episode will now feature a video featuring the show’s cast, serving as a trigger warning.

However, with more viewers now nearing the end of the show’s second run, it would appear this is not the case, with ‘13 Reasons Why’ once again facing criticism over its graphic content, this time relating to a sexual assault.

Devin Druid as Tyler in '13 Reasons Why'

The scene in question comes in the 13th and final episode of series two, after Tyler Down (played by Devin Druid), falls in with a new crowd of punks, who take a liking to his jaded attitude.

Things quickly take a downward turn for Tyler, though, as towards the end of the episode, he is followed into a bathroom and sexually assaulted with a mop by the group he thought were his new friends.

Many who have either watched or heard about the scene have been expressing concern on social media in the past few days, claiming the moment in question is gratuitously violent and could be unnecessarily triggering for survivors of sexual assault:

There are some viewers who have continued to praise ‘13 Reasons Why’, though, saying the graphic content helps deliver a realistic portrayal of the horrors of sexual abuse, and points out each episode does have both a content warning at the beginning and advice for those affected at the end:

Following the scene, Tyler plans to bring a gun with him to the school dance, with the intention of shooting his fellow students, but is stopped by his friends.

A premiere event for the second series of ’13 Reasons Why’ was cancelled earlier this week out of sensitivity, following the Santa Fe High School shooting, which took the lives of 10 victims.

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