There might not be any more tapes to listen to, but 13 Reasons Why isn't done telling Hannah's story. From the looks of the first photos from 13 Reasons Why Season 2, the show is looking for justice — not just for Hannah, but all those who were affected by her death. Specifically, this season of 13 Reasons Why is focused on sexual assault, specifically tied to Hannah and Jessica, both at the hands of Bryce. They say a photo is worth a thousand words, but these photos seem to signal just one: intense, which is exactly how things are going to be this time around.
Entertainment Weekly was the first to give a look at the new season of 13 Reasons Why by sharing five photos that reveal a bit of what fans should expect when it returns May 18. In one shot, Jessica is seen in court holding up photos of herself with the words "A Drunk Slut" scrawled on them. Last season, Jessica learned that she had been sexually assaulted by Bryce while intoxicated, and this season she will be dealing with the fallout. That includes taking the stand in the trial between Hannah's parents, played by Kate Walsh and Brian d'Arcy James, and the school district, who they blame for their daughter's death.
What this photo reveals is that someone is harassing Jessica, and it's hard to believe that this isn't connected to Hannah's tapes or the trial. Now, Jessica knows the truth and that could mean trouble for her and other characters looking to do what's right.
Like last season, this one seems to include a new mystery: Who is trying to keep the students of Liberty High from revealing what they know?Entertainment Weekly reported earlier this month that Hannah's parents' trial will play a big role in the season. "Liberty High prepares to go on trial, but someone will stop at nothing to keep the truth surrounding Hannah’s death concealed," a Netflix statement for Season 2 revealed. “A series of ominous polaroids lead Clay and his classmates to uncover a sickening secret and a conspiracy to cover it up.”
This season, Hannah will still be around — hence the photo of her speaking with Clay — but other characters are going to get a chance to tell their side of the story. One character that will be interesting to hear from is Tony, who is seen crying on the shoulder of Caleb, one of the new characters joining 13 Reasons Why this season. It doesn't look like moving past the events of last season is going to be easy for Tony.
This season also won't be going easy on guidance counselor Mr. Porter, who was one of the last people Hannah talked to before she took her own life. He's also heard every one of Hannah's tapes. Creator Brian Yorkey told The Hollywood Reporter that Porter will "be coming to terms with the way that he let Hannah down and will be determined not to let any kids down in the future."
Yorkey also said:
"His story is one of the most compelling to me. We’ll see a man who is determined to reach every kid who needs to be reached and help every kid who needs to be helped, whatever it takes. I think he will probably go out of bounds a bit in the other direction, trying to be helpful in the best way that he knows."
In one photo, Porter is seen threatening Bryce, holding him up by his neck against the wall. Will he be an integral part of making sure Hannah and Jessica get justice for what Bryce did?
Yorkey told THR that this season will explore how Jessica comes to terms with being sexually assaulted. "I once read something online where someone said, 'Well, Jessica told her dad she was raped, so her story is over,'" Yorkey said. "I remember thinking that right there is reason enough to do a season two, because her story is just beginning."
He said that Jessica's story will show how to "go from being a victim of sexual assault to being a survivor of sex assault." To get there, though, it's clear from these photos that it's going to be an emotional journey for everyone involved.
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, call the National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline at 800-656-HOPE (4673) or visit online.rainn.org.