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On Psychiatrists’ Advice, Netflix Deletes Graphic Suicide Scene From ’13 Reasons Why’


Netflix has removed the controversial graphic three-minute-long suicide scene of main character Hannah Baker from its original series ’13 Reasons Why’. Scene appeared more than two years ago in the season 1 of the series. Netflix said any pirated clips that feature the original, unedited scene will be monitored and issued take-downs.

Netflix in it’s official statement said, “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. As we prepare to launch Season 3 later this summer, we’ve been mindful about the ongoing debate around the show. So on the advice of medical experts, including Dr. Christine Moutier, Chief Medical Officer at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, 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 1″

Show creator Brian Yorkey said, “”It was our hope, in making 13 Reasons Why into a television show, to tell a story that would help young viewers feel seen and heard, and encourage empathy in all who viewed it, much as the bestselling book did before us. Our creative intent in portraying the ugly, painful reality of suicide in such graphic detail in Season 1 was to tell the truth about the horror of such an act, and make sure no one would ever wish to emulate it. But as we ready to launch Season 3, we have heard concerns about the scene from Dr. Christine Moutier at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and others, and have agreed with Netflix to re-edit it. No one scene is more important than the life of the show, and its message that we must take better care of each other. We believe this edit will help the show do the most good for the most people while mitigating any risk for especially vulnerable young viewers.”

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) & American Association of Suicidology (AAS) welcomed the Netflix’s decision to remove the scene on advice of AFSP’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Christine Moutier & other psychiatrists in the expert panel. Dr. Moutier, a renowned Psychiatrist, has been professor and dean in the UCSD School of Medicine. She also served as co-investigator for the Sequenced Treatment Alternatives to Relieve Depression study (STAR*D Study), a large National Institute of Mental Health trial on the treatment of refractory depression.

Dr. Christine Moutier, MD

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Director Dr. Joshua A. Gordon said, “I’m encouraged by Netflix’s decision to omit graphic suicide scene in ’13 Reasons Why’. NIMH sponsored studies showed increased suicide rates in young people following the show’s release”.

In April 2019 NIMH funded study published in Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry titled “Association Between the Release of Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why and Suicide Rates in the United States: An Interrupted Times Series Analysis”, concluded in its findings that ’13 Reasons Why’ was associated with a 28.9% increase in suicide rates among U.S. youth ages 10-17 in the month (April 2017) following the show’s release.

Psychiatrist around the world have always raised concern over the potrayal of suicide & psychiatric illnesses in movies and it’s role in increasing the stigma around illnesses and getting help. In India, last month an upcoming Bollywood movie producers agreed to change its name from ‘Mental Hai Kya’ to ‘Judgemental Hai Kya’. It was only after Psychiatrist all over India strongly condemned the title of the movie and Dr. Mrugesh Vaishnav President of the Indian Psychiatric Society approached the CFBC and the producers of the movie through the Gujrat High Court.

Netflix is the world’s leading online streaming service with over 148 million paid memberships in over 190 countries. It’s content includes TV series, documentaries and feature films across a wide variety of genres and languages. For a monthly charge, subscribers can play, pause and resume watching, all without commercials or commitments. You can watch the series on Netflix here.

“13 Reasons Why” Trailer

’13 Reasons Why’ is based on a young adult novel by the same name written by Jay Asher in 2007.

Above image is an affiliate link to purchase the novel ’13 Reasons Why’ by Jay Asher

It is the story of a young high school student as she descends into despair brought on by betrayal and bullying, culminating with her suicide.
It follows teenager Clay Jensen as he returns home from school to find a mysterious box with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker—his classmate and crush—who tragically committed suicide two weeks earlier. On tape, Hannah explains that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Through Hannah and Clay’s dual narratives, 13 Reasons Why weaves an intricate and heart wrenching story of teenage life that deeply affects viewers.

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