1.) How did you hear about the show?
I got rid of my cable, so I basically live on Netflix. Netflix suggested it, and the little preview caught my eye.
2.) So you knew the subject matter going in, were you concerned in any way?
I think my biggest concern would be that they would try to essentially glamorize it, almost go overboard in trying to make it acceptable and relatable to teens
3.) If you’re willing to share, do you personally suffer from a mental Illness or have family/friends who suffer from mental illness?
I don’t personally suffer from a mental illness, but I’ve had some family members who have it, and I’ve had some friends in high school/ college actually commit suicide
4.) What did you like about the show?
I liked the fact that it was organized into tapes, and in a sense, that made it easier to watch. I also liked that it gave so much explanation as to why Hannah did what she did, that it showed just how many things had to build up to lead up to that final moment
5.) What didn’t you like about the show or found difficult to watch?
There were a few things. On one hand, it seemed like the people who were Hannah’s “friends” were actually really crappy people. Also, I just felt like at times Hannah went overboard in trying to make other people hurt, or get payback against those who’d wronged her. I’d want justice too, but it’s hard to justify the whole “eye for an eye thing”. Throwing rocks through someone’s window isn’t cool. I feel like she wanted to make all those who hurt her hurt, but to what end? Did she think that they would feel guilty for the rest of their lives, or worse, feel guilty enough to take their own lives too?
Also, the way they depicted the rape scenes were pretty graphic.
6. I’ve heard that both the rape and the suicide scenes were quite graphic. Do you think that helped show the brutal reality of these very real things but are often stigmatized or do you think it was too much?
I think it was graphic, but necessary. Those moments really helped you get inside her head.
7.) Do you think they reflected the material in general accurately?
Mostly. I mean, I think they went a little overboard in sexualizing the whole high school experience but everything else was pretty accurate.
8.) Do you feel like anything was missing or could have been added to really drive home the subject material?
Not particularly. I think it pretty much depicted the impact on all parties
9.) How did you feel by the end of the series?
A little disappointed maybe? Almost let down. I felt like it ended abrupt.
10.) Care to elaborate?
So from what I remember… I wish some of the characters would’ve faced more consequences. They never really mentioned how the trial ended, and how it impacted the family, the guidance counselor, etc. It would’ve been nice to know the outcomes for the students. It would’ve been nice to know how Alex turned out. I feel like the whole story, although it was about Hannah, seemed to be more about Clay, and I don’t really remember it wrapping his story up.
It just felt unfinished.
11.) Do you feel like it could be expanded in a second season?
Potentially. It would be really drawn out, though. They would have to go over the top with the shock value of things, to be like the first season.
I think having to go so overboard for those “shock” scenes would make it lose some credibility
12.) Do you think that could help or hurt the message in the first season?
I think it would probably hurt it. It would take away from the message for sure.
13.) What do you think the most important that came out of the entire story was?
I think other than the overall theme that a suicide can have an effect on everyone, it’s that actions can have a profound effect on people, and even seeing something and not acting is an action in and of itself
14.) What would you tell someone suffering from a mental illness or a victim assault if they were considering watching the show?
I would tell them that if they’re hurting, or struggling, that they’re not alone.
Be sure to catch the rest of my interviews posting Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.