13 Reasons Why (Thirteen Reasons Why): Season 3 – Summary, Review (with Spoilers)

13 Reasons Why Title Card
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Season 3 of 13 Reasons Why presents the question of whether a serial rapist and someone who nearly shot up a school, not only deserve to be redeemed but can be.


Network
Netflix
Creator(s) Brian Yorkey
Genre(s) Drama, Mystery, Crime
Good If You Like
  • Teen Drama
  • Murder Mysteries
  • Complicated Romances
Noted Cast
Clay Dylan Minnette
Jessica Alisha Boe
Alex Miles Heizer
Justin Brandon Flynn
Bryce Justin Prentice
Ani Grace Saif
Zach Ross Butler
Chloe Anne Winters
Casey Bex Taylor-Klaus
Principal Bolan Steven Weber
Tyler Devin Druid
Tony Christian Navarro
Caleb R.J. Brown
Nora Brenda Strong
Winston Deaken Bluman
Harrison Raymond J. Barry
Amara Nana Mensah
Monty Timothy Granaderos
Cyrus Bryce Cass
Mackenzie Chelsea Alden

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Plot Summary

In season 3 of 13 Reasons Why, while we have moved on from Hannah, the people involved with her death don’t necessarily move on. Yes, her name is barely uttered, but with Bryce not being brought to justice, there remains bad blood. Which isolates him in ways that doesn’t necessarily make him lash out, at least against anyone in particular. If anything, as he tries to start over at a new school, and finds his reputation precedes him, he tries to make amends. Which is a huge struggle considering what he has done, formerly with a callous grin, in the past.

But he isn’t alone in trying to heal his reputation. After Clay stopped him from shooting up the school, Tyler is put on a schedule where nearly everyone, from Jessica to Alex, are supposed to monitor him. Which, in the long run, seems to give him a sense of belonging that allows him to find some sense of normalcy.

However, Bryce’s attempts to redeem himself, and Tyler returning to a stable mental state, that all goes to hell when Bryce is found dead and is noted to be murdered. Thus leading to all the characters we know, including a new one named Ani, having to figure out a way to protect each other and keep the truth from getting out of their tight-knit community.

Major Arcs

Clay

It appears Clay did legitimately let Hannah go, but has moved onto Ani in the process. Someone nerdy, can be a bit much like him, but also has some of Hannah’s traits. Which brings out Clay’s jealous side as he feels rejected time and time again, showing that while he wants to be seen as the hero, it requires him often fighting off his own darkness. One that, from outside this group he created, makes him seem very dangerous and the prime suspect for Bryce’s murder.

Jessica

After being forced to admit what happened to her in a public forum, Jessica is still trying to navigate healing and regaining a sense of control with her body. Which makes her joining a group of other survivors, as well as taking the jocks to task a good outlet for her. However, it is getting back with Justin, sexually, which renews her. If only because something with Alex just no longer clicks. Yet, with Justin, she can feel pleasure again, and while there lingers Justin’s part of her rape, there is something beyond that which keeps him attractive to her. Though, despite Alex feeling rejected, he and Jessica still hold each other’s secrets, shame, and the FML club sacred.

Alex

In season 3, Alex plays a bit of a backseat role. He does have his own drama, mostly caused by Jessica dumping him, and him trying to get stronger, but one would submit he is significantly downgraded.

Justin

From getting back on the football team, drug addiction, Bryce’s murder and living with the Jensens, not to forget Jessica, Justin has both literal highs and drastic lows. Most of which he handles like a skittish dog who, thankfully, is given quite a bit of patience and care.

Bryce

While Bryce isn’t given jail time, the isolation he experiences is quite similar to that. His mother barely looks at him, most of his old friends, outside of Monty, won’t speak to him, and even when he transfers schools, life is hell. Which, originally, leads him just to drink and break things, but then Ani acts as a catalyst for him changing. For with her being new, curious, and having a penchant for trouble, she is drawn to him. This attention pushes Bryce to want to be seen as he believes he sees her and off the back of her admiration he tries to make amends.

This, during the time he is alive, is an uphill battle as he uses his privilege for a good while dealing with everyone suspicious of his intentions. Yet, previous to his death, it seems he was on the right track. However, one moment of becoming lost in that rage that helped him gain his old reputation ended up being his undoing.

Ani

One could say Ani became the new Hannah. She is the one who presents everyone’s narrative but twists it in such a fashion to make everyone seem almost new. Though, at times, she reminds us of both the best and worst qualities of many characters. Be it Clay’s obsession, Jessica’s courage, Justin’s desperation, and more. However, there comes a point she goes beyond an observer recounting what she has seen and heard. Eventually, she causes drama. The type which, one could say, contributed to Bryce’s end.

Zach

Like Alex, Zach takes a step back. He does strike up a friendship with Chloe, Bryce’s ex, and takes a leadership role amongst the football team, but an event in the season may have ended his career. Making it so his main role this season is controlling the culture of the football team, being a good friend to Chloe, and hemming and hawing about being part of Clay’s group. Both in terms of protecting Tyler and dealing with the investigation of Bryce’s death.

Tyler

After the events of season two, from being assaulted to nearly shooting up a school, Clay locks down on Tyler like he was his little brother and best friend. He has everyone watching him and while Tyler does get perturbed by this, the sense of belonging it gives him, especially after losing Cyrus and his crew, makes him feel whole and loved. Also, Tony teaching him how to fight makes him feel safer than ever.

Tony

With his parents deported, all Tony has is Caleb, Clay, and the people Clay associates with. But, even with them in his life, Tony’s secrets make things hard on everyone. Whether he is trying to help them or they are trying to help him.

Monty

Monty becomes the season’s villain with him trying to continue the culture Bryce put into place and his reign of terror. However, between Zach and others, Monty finds himself unable to become the king Bryce was. Also, thanks to someone named Winston, so begins an attempt to even show Monty just needed social niceties to not be a d**k.

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