Season 2 of 13 Reasons Why will introduce us to a slew of new characters — including Bryce's parents.
According to Deadline, Jake Weber will portray Bryce's father, a wealthy hedge fund manager who is also described as a "pillar of the community," and Brenda Strong will portray Bryce's mother. Could their presence be an indication that Bryce will finally face justice?
Towards the end of the first season of the Netflix series, Hannah (Katherine Langford) reveals via cassette tape that it was Bryce (Justin Prentice) who raped her one-time best friend Jessica (Alisha Boe) while Jessica was incapacitated in her bedroom. Later, Bryce also raped an emotionally vulnerable Hannah, whom he had already harassed multiple times prior to the crime.
Bryce did not face formal charges in season 1, but the season did end with Jessica tearfully telling her father what happened to her, implying that perhaps Bryce will be held accountable for his actions. With the addition of Weber and Strong as Bryce's parents, it's worth wondering if they will perhaps show up to guide Bryce through a legal battle — one I hope we see in season 2.
That's not the only possibility for their appearance, however (as much as I hope Bryce is punished for his crimes). There's also the possibility that the addition of such important figures in Bryce's life will allow us to see a little bit about how the teenager became such a monstrous figure.
During Refinery29's interview with Prentice, the actor stated that Bryce's parents likely played a role in the way he treated Hannah and Jessica:
"I think [entitlement] is a part of who Bryce is, who Bryce’s father is and the background that he comes from," Prentice told R29. "When you’re a part of a power family, in their eyes anyway, you’ve gotta do what you need to do to reach the top and stay on top."
Of course, poor parenting doesn't create rapists. Many factors went into making Bryce the way he is. However, this new casting news does suggest we'll learn a little bit more about the show's villain and that's an important thing. Because sadly, Bryces also exist in the real world.
If you have experienced sexual violence and are in need of crisis support, please call the RAINN Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).