The worst thing about 13 Reasons Why is its fanbase
Bullying people for not liking a show about bullying people…?
We live in an era of rabid fan culture. It's impossible to just enjoy something, be it an album, a TV show, or a celebrity. You can't just be a fan — you have to be a stan.
Some of the worst, most sensitive fans are those of the book-turned-TV series 13 Reasons Why. Viewers obsessed with the Selena Gomez-produced Netflix series have become deputized warriors in the fight against backlash.
To 13RW stans, it doesn't matter that professional, medical mental health groups — read: people who have spent their lives studying and practicing mental healthcare — have condemned it as a potential catalyst for copycat suicides and glamorization of self-harm. The professionals are immediately slammed as stupid, unaware "haters."
— JENe sais quoi (@UnCoolGrlJEN) April 27, 2017
People who say 13 Reasons Why shouldn't be watched and loved are a special kind of idiot. Especially when they haven't seen it.
— xo ↞✞ (@marylandxsmiles) April 15, 2017
Funny how a lot of people who watched 13 reasons why say you shouldn't bully people but most of them were actual bullies in high school.
— xoxo, bri♡ (@ayeeebreeezzy) April 18, 2017
LMAOOOOO 13 reasons why fans talk about watch what you say to people then will drag someone who doesn't like the show in the same breath
— faith i guess (@ziamplease) April 18, 2017
And it's not just mental health professionals. It's impossible to offer any criticism of the show without being hit with a wave of backlash and accusations of "not understanding" what the show was about. You're immediately dismissed as an "idiot" right after being told that the words-have-consequences trope is the point of the show. Makes sense.
Not even celebrities are immune to the vitriol. Singer Zara Larsson tweeted that she felt the show romanticized suicide, and was drowned in hateful, dismissive comments.
Can we agree that Zara Larsson is a men hating bitch with a bad taste for disliking "13 Reasons Why"? Good. pic.twitter.com/nySRKSj08t
— President Carter (@DelReyEurope) April 21, 2017
Y'all say 13 Reasons Why taught you that words can drive people to hurt themself then you tell Zara Larsson to kill herself wheres the logic pic.twitter.com/4DJjUXI8wA
— sammie || PINNED PLS (@jiminreflection) April 17, 2017
— ㅤㅤㅤㅤ (@TheGloryBritney) April 17, 2017
Why tf Zara Larsson is acting so extra? First Taylor Swift now 13 reasons why? She's over smh
— Anahi? (@Camilizer_Anahi) April 17, 2017
One of the most common tweets/comments/posts about the series centers around surprise that people who spent their school days bullying are now fierce advocates of the show and "watching what you say." A quick scroll through Twitter reveals that this is a common thread for tons of teenagers:
You know. It's really fucking painful to see the people that bullied me in school watch #13reasonswhy and say bullying is wrong.
— queenlexi;? (@BasicallyImLexi) April 28, 2017
@ half the ppl who bullied me then talked about 13 reasons why and how suicide is never the answer and ppl who bully are bad ppl like lmao https://t.co/4QwRN5JFaJ
— yikes (@JuliaaConner) April 26, 2017
Cringey that the people who bullied me relentlessly in HS are emotionally invested in the "message" of 13 reasons why. ?
— Jessie Vincoli (@Jjvinc6) April 24, 2017
The people watching 13 Reasons Why are the same people who bullied me throughout high school ?
— lexerz (@AlexaAbadee) April 22, 2017
If you're supporting 13 reasons why and you bullied me in middle/high school I just wanna say fuck you
— kattie not kattie (@yo_kattie) April 21, 2017
Some of u that are all 13 reasons why stan bullied me in elementary school so if you're all nice now I would like an apology
— maui wowie ? (@Mallorypforeman) April 20, 2017
Now that 13 reasons why came out all the people who bullied me and made me hate my life in high school are posting about anti-bullying ?LMAO
— Jo (@JoAnnaMangus) April 20, 2017
The biggest question about fans' blinding, all-consuming devotion to 13RW is just…why? As a viewer of every episode and a depressed person with (ding ding ding) suicidal ideation, aren't my thoughts and criticisms valid? Why try to shut down a dialogue rather than listening to affected people telling you what the show gets right and wrong?
Fuck you if you're so petty you're spending your time tweeting abt how 13 Reasons Why sucks and doesn't serve a purpose. Don't watch it then
— Katlyn Rose (@h8lyn_) April 18, 2017
As so many 13RW fans love to push, yes teen suicide should be discussed, but a discussion can't happen if only one side is permitted to speak.