The cast of Netflix original series 13 Reasons Why is being fleshed out for the show’s second season, with four new names now attached to appear in the next slate of episodes. 13 Reasons Why season 1 became a hit earlier this year, adapting the young adult novel of the same name by Jay Asher and tackling usually-taboo topics of bullying, suicide and rape in graphic detail. Though controversy has swirled around how some of the scenes were presented to viewers, the show was renewed back in May.
Focusing on the story of Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford), season 1 delivered the details of how the young teen would take her own life after being forced to deal with bullying throughout her high school life. Before killing herself however, Hannah would record a series of cassette tapes and leave them behind for those she deemed responsible for her decision, demanding that they each listen to her ’13 reasons’. Though the entirety of Asher’s novel was told in the first season, the roster of characters that viewers got to know throughout those episodes will be making a return in season 2.
Thanks to the details provided about four new characters (via Deadline) joining the show in 13 Reasons Why season 2, we now have a better idea of whose stories we may be delving deeper into this season. Jake Weber (Medium) and Brenda Strong (Supergirl) have signed on to play Barry and Nora Walker; parents to rapist Bryce (Justin Prentice) and well-respected members of the community. Criminal Minds alum Meredith Monroe will play Alex’s mother Carolyn, while R.J. Brown (The Carrie Diaries) is stepping into the role of Tony’s boxing trainer Caleb. They join the previously-announced 7 new additions to season 2.
Bringing Bryce’s parents onboard means that we should be seeing the character face some consequences for his criminal actions in season 1. He was a guy who felt no remorse about raping girls, but when the first season wrapped, we hadn’t yet seen any justice dealt out. Whether or not his parents will stand by their son however remains to be seen; being described as “pillars of the community” however, we wouldn’t be surprised if they tried to brush the entire ordeal under the carpet. Alex’s mother will of course be dealing with her son’s own attempted suicide, while Caleb should be providing some comic relief, with the character described as having “a warm smile and a wry sense of humor”.
Bringing some new faces on board will certainly reinvigorate the show - and with the plot now being completely original and away from anything Asher wrote in the novel, they could provide some stellar moments that will be new to both long-time fans and those who have recently joined the ranks. There are plenty of predicted paths that 13 Reasons Why season 2 could go down, but now these additions could bring something entirely different to viewers.
Then again, with so many stories still ongoing from the first season, it would be a shame for the series to get bogged down with inconsequential sub-plots and filler content. Hopefully, the new cast additions will help rather than hinder tell the next part of the 13 Reasons Why story.
13 Reasons Why season 2 is expected premiere on Netflix in 2018.