After two years, a graphic suicide scene has been edited out of the first season of Netflix’s “13 Reasons Why.”
In a statement Monday night, Netflix said it made the decision in consultation with the show’s creator, Brian Yorkey, producers and “the advice of medical experts.”
“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,” Netflix said. “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.”
The statement also directed readers to a page for assistance locating crisis resources.
The original scene featured the suicide of Hannah (Katherine Langford) that animated the plot of the first and second seasons. Nearly three minutes long, it depicts her cutting her wrist in a bathtub and her lingering death, ending with her parents discovering her body. In the new cut, everything but her parents discovering her body has been removed.
Netflix did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
“13 Reasons Why” has been a success for Netflix, but has also been criticized for its treatment of sensitive issues like suicide. In April, a study in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry reported an increase in teen suicide following its release; that study’s findings have been contested.
Netflix chief Reed Hastings last year defended the show against critics, saying it’s “engaging content” during the company’s annual shareholder meeting. “It is controversial, but nobody has to watch it.”
For Season 2, Netflix added a warning before each episode and created a website to provide resources for viewers: 13reasonswhy.info. Season one premiered in March 2017, with the second season following in May 2018. The show’s third season will come out later this year.
See Netflix’s statement below:
An update on 13 Reasons Why
— Netflix US (@netflix) July 16, 2019