(LOS ANGELES) — Netflix announced Monday that it has edited the controversial suicide scene from the season one finale of 13 Reasons Why, more than two years after it first aired.
“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,” Netflix said in a statement obtained by ABC News. “As we prepare to launch season three later this summer, we’ve been mindful about the ongoing debate around the show. So on the advice of medical experts…we’ve decided with creator Brian Yorkey and the producers of 13 Reasons Why to edit the scene in which Hannah takes her own life from season one.”
Yorkey also issued a statement in which he agreed with the decision while explaining the scene’s original purpose.
“Our creative intent in portraying the ugly, painful reality of suicide in such graphic detail in season one was to tell the truth about the horror of such an act, and make sure no one would ever wish to emulate it,” he said. “No one scene is more important than the life of the show, and its message that we must take better care of each other.”
13 Reasons Why is based on a 2007 young adult novel of the same name. It tells the story of 17-year-old Hannah Baker, who commits suicide and leaves behind audio recordings for 13 people she says were part of why she took her life. The nearly three-minute-long scene in which Hannah takes her life is the one Netflix has edited out of the series.
Netflix initially responded to backlash over the scene in May of 2017 by strengthening and increasing its warnings to viewers about the show’s content. Although the streamer said it consulted with mental health professionals while making the series, some mental health advocates expressed concern that it could lead to a “copycat” effect of suicide.
Netflix created a companion website for the series, 13ReasonsWhy.info, that provides suicide prevention resources and information on crisis hotlines for over 35 countries.
(The number for the The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255.)
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