It may be “a breakthrough in YA storytelling,” but Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why, based on the Jay Asher novel of the same name, is also intense. So intense, in fact, that the mood on set could get very heavy between takes.
In an interview with PopSugar, star Dylan Minnette, who plays Clay Jensen in the 13-episode series, said “there was one scene … they had therapy dogs on set. There was a puppy per hour.” The production staff “really tried to help out,” he added. “The puppies helped.”
Selena Gomez executive produced the series, in which Hannah (Katherine Langford) has left behind tapes revealing what drove her to take her life. Flipping between the past and the present, in which classmate Clay (Minnette) puzzles out the truth, Reasons tackles big issues — bullying, sexism, body-shaming, rape — and connects friends, frenemies and enemies, parents and teachers.
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Following its March 31 debut, the show smashed Twitter records, prompting 3.4 million tweets, with 200,000 in just one hour alone. “I want [kids] to understand it,” Gomez told The Hollywood Reporter. “I would do anything to be able to have a good influence on this generation, but I definitely relate to everything that was going on. I was there for the last episode, and I was a mess just seeing it all come to life, because I’ve experienced that.”
Naturally, fans who’ve devoured all 13 episodes are already petitioning for a season 2. And Asher is as eager for it to happen, too. “I’m curious as well,” he explained to EW. “What happens to Clay? How do people react to what Alex did at the very end? What’s going to happen to Mr. Porter? I’d thought of a sequel at some point. I’d brainstormed it, but decided I wasn’t going to write it. So I’d love to see it.”