Everything That Happened On The Tapes In Season 1 Of 13 Reasons Why

Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
After a year shrouded in mystery, 13 Reasons Why season 2 is nearly here. The polarising Netflix drama about the aftermath of one teenage girl’s suicide will premiere its sophomore season on Friday 18th May. And, the trailers for 13RW season 2 promise the new batch of episodes is going to be an intense, anxiety-ridden time.
One of the biggest takeaways from the few glimpses we’ve gotten of the new season is just how many people there are to worry about in Liberty High School. While the show may be centred around the life and death of Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford), the story has spun out to orbit at least a dozen other teens, and even their parents. That’s a lot of tortured, violent history to remember, especially for a show that hasn’t been on our screens for over a year.
To help you prepare for season 2, we’ve put together a detailed history for everyone you need to remember in 13 Reasons Why, from the late Hannah and our protagonist Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette) to the rest of Team Tape, the fellow students implicated on Hannah’s 13 posthumously released tapes. Keep reading for the full lowdown on what you need to keep in mind before pressing play on 13 Reasons Why volume 2.
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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
Hannah Baker

Of course we have to begin with the tragic heroine of this story, Hannah Baker. While no one person can cause someone else to die by suicide, the point of 13RW season 1 is to learn how how the young woman’s soul was so completely broken.

In the finale, we find out the final straw for Hannah, who was raped by Bryce Walker (Justin Prentice), was guidance councillor Kevin Porter’s (Derek Luke) complete failure to support the teenager during a cry for help following her assault. Rather, he immediately slut-shamed her and refused to help her because she wouldn’t name her attacker. When a clearly upset Hannah stormed out of Mr. Porter’s office, she hoped he would follow her. He didn’t.

After that awful meeting, Hannah, who had already started creating a web of the people who had hurt her and working on those individual’s respective tapes, finishes No. 13 and takes her own life.

But, all of this is in the past. In the present-day 13RW storyline, Hannah’s parents — mainly, her mom Olivia (Kate Walsh) — are fighting for their daughter through a lawsuit against Liberty High School. The Bakers feel the school fostered an atmosphere of bullying and abuse that eventually led to the death of their daughter. The series obviously proves that is true, and then some.

Towards the end of finale episode “Tape 7, Side A,” the keeper of the tapes, Tony Padilla (Christian Navarro), hands over a flash drive with all of Hannah’s recordings, along with Bryce’s rape confession (more on that soon), to the Bakers. In the last we see of the grieving parents, they’re listening to Hannah’s tapes for the first time ever, while holding the diagram of Hannah's bullies. What does this mean for that lawsuit?
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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
Clay Jensen

Clay, who had a crush on Hannah until her death and is clearly battling immense grief throughout 13 Reasons, ends the season literally covered in bruises and cuts after he confronts Bryce for raping Hannah. Bryce, the walking bag of toxic masculinity that he is, beats Clay in “Tape 6, Side B,” and then admits to the assault, claiming, “If that’s rape, then every girl at this school wants to be raped.” Unbeknownst to Bryce, Clay recorded everything

In the finale, Clay takes the tapes, and the recording of Bryce, to Mr. Porter, who is meant to be the thirteenth recipient of Hannah's lengthy suicide message. With the weight of the tapes finally behind him, Clay is free to pursue his former friend Skye Miller (Sosie Bacon), the snarky, tattooed teen who works at the local coffee shop.

Despite all the darkness of 13RW, Clay closes out the season-ender driving with the windows down alongside best friend Tony. It’s a sign that maybe, just maybe, things will get better for everyone involved, as Clay told Mr. Porter was necessary.

Unfortunately, all the teasers for 13 Reasons season 2 suggest the lives of everyone at Liberty High will only become more grim this time around.
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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
Tony Padilla

Clay’s BFF Tony serves as the most mysterious individual in all of 13 Reasons Why. Throughout much of the season, it’s unclear why Tony feels so loyal to Hannah, to the point where he’s making sure all of her tape-related wishes are accomplished following her death.

But, it’s eventually revealed Tony both gave Hannah the cassettes she would eventually record The Tapes on and he didn’t open the door for the distressed young woman when she went to drop them off. That latter detail means Tony both unknowingly brushed Hannah off in her great time of need and accidentally ignored her suicide note until it was too late. So, Tony is managing the tape process out of massive guilt.

At least he finally seems to move on from his shame by giving Hannah’s parents her tapes on a flash drive.
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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
Tyler Down

Tyler has become a major person of interest in the 13 Reasons Why world after one deeply shocking “Tape 7, Side A” scene, where it’s revealed Tyler is hiding a stockpile of weapons — including two pistols, one rifle, and what appears to be two assault rifles — and ammunition in his bedroom.

It’s suggested that after a lifetime of bullying, which skyrocketed after Hannah’s tapes revealed Tyler to be a peeping Tom whose behaviour bordered on stalking, the young man may be planning a violent, all-too-timely revenge. Especially since many of Team Tape banded together during the ordeal of the tapes being passed on, yet, they isolated Tyler even further. Clay even went so far as to capture a photo of Tyler in a compromising position and then sent the image around, in much the same way Tyler’s creepy photo of Hannah once swirled around Liberty High.

In the last we see of Tyler, he is hanging up photographs of the rest of Team Tape in a dark room. He removes one of Alex Standall (Miles Heizer), because he defended Tyler once, but, the camera lingers on Clay, hinting season 1’s protagonist might be Tyler’s greatest enemy come season 2.
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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
Bryce Walker

Bryce is quite literally the worst person in Liberty High. In the season finale, he finds out about the tapes, along with the fact Hannah informed everyone on Team Tape of the fact Bryce raped both Hannah and Jessica Davis (Alisha Boe). Ever the charmer, wealthy, privileged, constantly sheltered-from-responsibility Bryce responds, “But who’s gonna believe a dead girl, right?”

We’re left wondering how the Bakers will react to Hannah’s tape about her assault and Jessica’s assault, along with Bryce’s actual confession.
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Justin Foley

Fellow athlete Justin (Brandon Flynn) ends up being one of the most self-loathing characters of the entire series. He appears on Hannah’s tapes twice: once for taking an up-skirt photo of her that began her reputation as “easy,” and again for being complicit in the rape of his girlfriend, Jessica. Justin is obviously not a good guy.

But, due to his far less privileged background and troubled family life, Justin is desperate to protect Bryce, who financially takes care of Justin in return for blind obedience. We're given this detail to prove Justin isn't simply evil for evil's sake.

This toxic relationship starts to crumble for Justin as the tapes make the rounds, and he’s forced to come to terms with his own awful behaviour. In “Tape 6, Side A,” he finally boils over and screams at Jessica, in front of many of their shared friends, that Bryce raped her. This ruins their relationship.

Finally, by the end of the finale, Jessica tells Justin she never wants to see him again. A desperate Justin acquiesces, and seemingly leaves town for good. But, not before having one last conversation with Bryce. During this tense confrontation, Justin informs his ex-friend of the tapes and what Hannah says about him. Justin’s goodbye is a very thinly veiled confirmation to Bryce that he believes every single thing on Hannah's tapes.
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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
Jessica Davis

We’re originally introduced to Jessica, who has her own tape, because she was Hannah’s first best friend at Liberty High after Hannah’s initial pal Kat (Giorgia Whigham) moved away. Things went awry after the pair added Alex to their friend group, and Alex and Jessica subsequently began dating.

But this very high school social scuffle ends up being a minor incident compared to where Jessica’s storyline finishes. We eventually learn that Jessica, who goes on to date the aforementioned Justin, was raped by Bryce at her own party. Hannah is only aware of this horrific fact because she was hiding in the closet during the attack.

In the time following Jessica’s assault, she turns to constant drinking and partying to cope with the trauma, especially as Hannah’s tapes begin to consume everyone around her. Jessica also grows closer to Bryce, seemingly as an attempt to change the narrative of her assault.

Yet, after Justin inappropriately announces Jessica’s rape to the world, she can no longer avoid the problem at hand. In one of the last scenes of 13RW season 1, Jessica tearfully tells her father (Joseph C. Phillips) “something happened to me.” It is implied Jessica then shared her story of assault with her dad.
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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
Alex Standall

In another one of the last moments of season 1, we find out Alex, whose father is a very imposing sheriff's deputy (Mark Pellegrino), also attempted suicide, shooting himself in the head. The extremely upsetting news comes after 13 Reasons spent the entire season subtly reminding viewers Alex is deeply depressed, including the incident where he started an all-out brawl with the confusingly angry Montgomery de la Cruz (Timothy Granaderos).

Thankfully, it’s confirmed Alex is still alive. But, he is in critical condition at a local hospital.
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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
The Rest Of Team Tape

Most of the other individuals on Hannah’s tapes appear for depositions in the Baker family case. This list includes Zach Dempsey (Ross Butler), Marcus Cole (Steven Silver), and Courtney Crimsen (Michele Ang). It’s unclear if Ryan Shaver (Tommy Dorfman), who published Hannah’s extremely personal poetry without her consent, is deposed.

Sheri Holland (Ajiona Alexus), whose drunk driving actions inadvertently led to the death of the beloved Jeff Atkins (Brandon Larracuente), is not called in for a deposition. But, she does call the police and confess the hand she played in Jeff’s death (Sheri knocked down a stop sign while Hannah was in the car; a bicycle-riding Jeff was then hit by a car at that intersection due to the lack of a sign).
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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
Skye Miller

While Skye is her own wonderful, complicated person, 13 Reasons Why posits her as a second chance for Clay to recognise concerning behaviours in the people around him and actually try to help. At one point in the season, Clay notices fresh scars on Skye’s arm, suggesting she is self-harming. Skye, in one of the darkest lines of season 1, responds, “It’s what you do instead of killing yourself.”

Towards the end of the finale, Clay asks Skye to hang out and confirms he personally isn’t okay, which then leaves space for her to possibly open up too. It’s unclear what happens after this exchange, but let’s hope Clay supports Skye in seeking professional help.
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Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
Jeff Atkins

Never forget, poor, late Jeff (Brandon Larracuente) deserved better. Forever.

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