As an executive producer on the project, Gomez is tackling the claim that the show glorifies suicide, though she only just recently commented publicly on the backlash.
In an interview with the Associated Press, Gomez said, “We stayed very true to the book and that’s initially what Jay Asher created, was a beautifully tragic, complicated yet suspenseful story, and I think that’s what we wanted to do.”
“We wanted to do it justice,” she explained, adding that the backlash is “going to come no matter what. It’s not an easy subject to talk about, but I’m very fortunate with how it’s doing.”
What Gomez didn’t say is whether she understands the controversy, whether she sees the points a lot of critics are making about the harm the show could do for young adults who are already contemplating suicide. For those teens, 13 Reasons Why should definitely be avoided. A school system in Canada is going so far as to ban talking about the show on school grounds and sent a message to parents warning them against the show. But while it’s clear that Gomez is sticking to the message in her project, she’s also staying pretty PC about commenting on the heavy topics in the series.
Gomez has had her fair share of struggles growing up in the spotlight, so I’m surprised she chose to stay quiet on this issue for so long, especially with the show’s stance against bullying. Of course, her experience is hers and hers alone to share.