A father has spoken out to attack Selena Gomez after the suicide of his young daughter, while also calling for 13 Reasons Why season two to be cancelled.
The hit Netflix show has caused great controversy since its release on the streaming service, due to its graphic depiction of suicide and supposed failure to address certain issues relating to depression among the young. Based on Jay Asher’s 2007 novel of the same name and featuring Selena Gomez as an executive producer, 13 Reasons Why tells the story of 17-year-old girl called Hannah Baker. Hannah takes her own life, leaving a box of tapes explaining her reasons why before Clay Jensen listens through them all in his attempt to come to terms with her death.
Now, John Herndon of California has called for the show to be scrapped after his 15-year-old daughter Bella took her own life after ‘binge-watching’ the show’ –
“Remember that there are teens out there that are in a little darker place and these could be your friends, your sisters,” Herndon told Radar-Online. “Selena Gomez and Netflix need to understand that not everybody’s going to understand this very well. Some people who are battling with depression, this could catch them at the wrong time, creating what is called the trigger event.”
He went on to slam Gomez as ‘clueless’, calling for her and Netflix to bring the show to an end.
“I’m still completely disgusted,” Herndon said. “Selena makes me sick. She is an extremely disturbed individual to think that this show has any kind of redeeming social value at all.”
Herndon added that the streaming service were ‘hypocritical’ for having struck off Kevin Spacey and Danny Masterson following allegations of sexual assault and harassment, but that 13 Reasons Why would remain unchanged.
“They made those decisions to make themselves look like a socially responsible company yet they are making a product about people who are hurt and how they can hurt themselves,” he argued.
The father also hit out at singer, actress and producer Gomez for so being so vocal about her own ‘life-saving’ kidney transplant operation – arguing that she hasn’t done enough to campaign for youngsters suffering with mental health problems.
“She has spared no expense rattling her own saber about her kidney transplant,” Herndon said. “She talked about how painful it was and spent significant effort getting that ‘oh poor me’ out there. That’s just disgusting.”
Gomez and Netflix are yet to respond to the Herndon family.
Earlier this year, mental health charity Headspace revealed that they’d received “a growing numbers of calls and emails directly related to the programme”, warning that it “presents the viewer with very confronting and graphic messaging and imagery inclusive of suicide method and means”.
‘Stranger Things’ actress Shannon Purser meanwhile added: “I would advise against watching 13 Reasons Why if you currently struggle with suicidal thoughts or self harm/have undergone sexual assault. There are some very graphic scenes in there that could easily trigger painful memories and feelings. Please protect yourselves.”