TV & Movies

13 Reasons Why 13 Reasons Why Is Almost Science Fiction

13 Reasons Why

After watching the complete first season of 13 Reasons Why, I’m convinced it’s a science fiction show. It’s not in your face, but there are a thousand little details (or at least thirteen) that feel at least inspired by the classics of science fiction. Like maybe the writers of the show were dreaming about jetpacks a lot while writing it or something.

Also, I should point out that I’m not completely serious. Though maybe I am a little bit. Gallows humor, while often crass, is just as valid a way to deal with intense emotional issues as keeping a journal or recording a bunch of cassette tapes. So maybe this is gallows humor.

Please note that I wouldn’t have written this list if 13 Reasons Why were based on a true story. I mean, come on, I’m an animal, but I’m not a monster. Also, if the world is okay with Hannah Baker having an official promotional Instagram account, then the world should be fine with a silly little list.

So here are my reasons for thinking 13 Reasons Why is courting the science fiction genre.

13 Reasons Why

1. The main plot revolves around retrotech.

2. The purpose of Hannah’s tapes is very similar to the purpose of the Speaker For The Dead in the Ender’s Game universe.

3. The show is mainly concerned with the psychological effects of certain social behaviors. Not all science is about robots or jetpacks or even robots with jetpacks. I mean, the best ones are, obviously, but many of them actually aren’t.

4. The viewer constantly experiences time travel.

5. At one stage, Hannah’s mother tries to decrypt a pictograph code. Stuff like that belongs in X-Files, not a teen drama. I mean, sure – her mom basically just looked at a picture she drew and wondered what it meant. However, due to the ambiguity inherent in the English language, my sentence is still factually correct.

6. The name Hannah is a palindrome. Palindrome is the name of the semi-spherical “law cage” in the upcoming science fiction novel that I only just now decided to write about a post-apocalyptic society peopled solely by descendants of Sarah Palin.

7. Tyler looks kind of like the guy from Kick-Ass. If you squint. Sideways. Sideways is the name of a film about wine. Wine is only able to exist due to SCIENCE.

8. Barbara from Stranger Things doesn’t appear in the majority of episodes (which we know is true because she doesn’t appear in any of the episodes). This is clearly a reference to Stranger Things itself, where she also doesn’t appear in the majority of episodes. Possible crossover confirmed?

9. Someone had a SodaStream, that’s retrotech. No, they didn’t “also grasp at straws,” and I’m quite sure that I don’t know what you mean by that.

10. Someone had a non-Internet fridge. That’s retrotech. Surely. I mean come on, it’s 2017. FRIDGES SHOULD BE ROBOTS BY NOW. WITH JETPACKS.

11. The phones weren’t supposed to be retrotech, but they were by the time I finished watching the show. Because I had to keep stopping for ages. Because the subject matter was so intense. No joke here, just an observation.

12. Due to exhaustion, I fell asleep during Episode 7. I had a dream that I lived in a world ruled by the Gorn. You know, those lizard dudes from Star Trek. Captain Kirk fought one in the desert that one time near that rock from Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey. You know the one. Anyway, I’m counting this one and you should too.

13. Consider the following sentence: “This is the story of a drug dealer who one day snaps and spends the rest of the show using his knowledge of chemistry to fight against a corrupt government and avenge the death of his daughter.” I’m certain you’ll agree that this totally sounds like something that Philip K. Dick would write.

Sure, by “drug dealer,” I mean Mr. Baker, Hannah’s Dad, who snapped at his wife that one time. And by “knowledge of chemistry” I mean “the ability to mix chemicals together so that he can sell the mixtures to people to get money for lawyers.” And by “government” I mean “government with a lower-case g,” meaning an administrative body (in this case it’s the school system). This “government” is corrupt, because the School Counsellor clearly lies to the Principal at one stage, which is a form of corruption, right?

Also, is 13 Reasons Why a prequel to Breaking Bad? MIND BLOWN.

No, I’m not serious.

Liam 'Paddy' Padmore is old enough to know better, but young enough to blog about it anyway.

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