The series, which is co-produced by Selena Gomez, is based on Jay Asher's 2007 YA best-seller. It stars Katherine Langford as Hannah, a high school student who kills herself and leaves 13 audiotapes explaining her reasons, including sexual assault, substance abuse and bullying.
The show first aired with a TV-MA rating and three episodes came with a "viewer discretion advised" warning. Mental health experts complained that wasn't enough. Several schools also sent warning letters to parents saying that "the show may be perceived as glorifying and romanticizing suicide."
Netflix announced Monday it has now added a warning before the first episode and "also strengthened the messaging and resource language in the existing cards for episodes that contain graphic subject matter," according to THR.
"There has been a tremendous amount of discussion about our series '13 Reasons Why'," Netflix said in the statement. "While many of our members find the show to be a valuable driver for starting important conversation with their families, we have also heard concern from those who feel the series should carry additional advisories...."
Netflix also directed viewers to 13ReasonsWhy.info, where they can find a crisis text line and the suicide prevention hotline. And Netflix has an aftershow, "Beyond the Reasons," that addresses some of the more serious issues raised by the series.
Series creator Brian Yorkey also defended Hannah's graphic suicide to THR: "As difficult as it is to watch, it should be difficult to watch."
Despite (or because) of the controversy, the show will likely be renewed for a second season.
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