The new season deals with different pathways as Clay's mental health continues to decline. The reason for this is that friends may wrestle with difficult emotions during college admissions during that time. In the aftermath of the closure, the school was already in a state of anxiety, while a disturbing misuse of power was prompting students to take vital measures one day.
The show's myopia isn't surprising. If anything, the final season proves once again that teen viewers deserved better than what 13 Reasons Why offered, and if the show is remembered in a few years, it'll be mostly for what it failed to do.
It's not always successful, but it does have its moments, offering up some refreshing character journeys along the way. As for some of the more infuriating moments, they are, as always, elevated by an incredibly talented cast.
There's no revenge story here; no real mystery; and no one gets their comeuppance. It drifts until the shocking death, which erases most of the storyline that came before it, or at least reduces it to an afterthought.
Laves nothing to chance, wrapping up almost every major loose end in what is now surely the show's trademark: throw every possible hot button issue into a blender and mash the switch labeled "the power of friendship and de-escalation" until smooth.
The team behind 13 Reasons Why had no way of knowing that audiences would be watching this season in the middle of a pandemic. But that only makes the sadistic nature of the material that much more glaring.