Debuting earlier this year on Netflix, 13 Reasons Why became one of the most talked about shows of the year, for reasons both good and bad. The show centered around a teen who killed herself due to traumatic bullying experiences, leaving behind cassette tapes that gave the reasons that caused her to take her own life. During an interview, the show's star Christian Navarro revealed that, sadly, he was once a bully in school.
The star revealed that his bullying was a preemptive measure, as he thought his height would see him bullied mercilessly.
The actor revealed to Pop Sugar, "It's no secret now, especially in light of the MTV Movie and TV Awards, that I'm not the tallest guy. So growing up, I was bullied. In middle school I was bullied. But I learned pretty quickly that, if you bully, you don't get bullied. So I was a bully in middle school. But then I got to high school and cut all that nonsense out."
Changing schools around this time allowed him to make some serious life changes and allowed him to leave that bullying life behind.
"People didn't like me. Right? If you're a jerk, people don't like you," Navarro confessed. "We all want to belong to a community, so I figured the best way to do that was to stop being a jerk. Be nice, start listening to people, be empathetic. It's worked out for me."
In a positive light, the show has addressed how destructive online bullying can be, but has drawn criticism for romanticizing suicide or making it seem as though that's a valid form of revenge.
"I did an interview recently, and the woman interviewing me said, 'I understood the controversy until I watched it with my child,' and I thought, 'What a perfect rebuttal to the blowback.' That's what we made it for; for people to talk about it," Navarro said of the criticisms. "And if that scene, particularly, forces people to broach that situation and talk to their kids about where their kids are at in high school and mentally, how they're dealing with their friendships and what's going on...if people are talking about it still, and more conversations are being generated, I think we've done our job."
The show was popular enough to gain a second season, which confused many audiences, seeing as the main character has already died. The show will instead explore the lives of different characters and their perspectives as they experienced events leading to Hannah's suicide.
Navarro confirmed, "Season two, I think we'll see a little more exploration of the other characters' perspectives of these events (from season one) and then the ongoing events. The trial. I think it will have a lot to do with retribution. And justice is really the word that everyone keeps throwing out there. Justice for Jessica, because I think that would be a shame if we didn't tie that up somehow."