Who Killed Bryce On '13 Reasons Why'? It's The Question At The Heart Of Season 3
When 13 Reasons Why last left off, Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette) and company had just barely stopped Tyler Down (Devin Druid) from staging a mass shooting at a school dance. Tony Padilla (Christian Navarro) pulls up with a getaway car and the gang drives Tyler away to safety, effectively preventing him from being captured by police. But the Season 3 trailer doesn't really resolve anything from that cliffhanger. Instead, it poses a new question and sets up the central mystery of Season 3: who killed Bryce on 13 Reasons Why? The show has even set up a mobile website called whokilledbrycewalker.com as a promotional activation for Season 3, where you can swipe through potential suspects to see if you can solve the crime yourself.
As far as viewers know, Bryce (Justin Prentice) was perfectly safe at the end of Season 2, so it looks like the series is setting up an off-screen murder between seasons. The Season 3 trailer plays the steady sound of sirens as it cycles through images of a police investigation, Tony suspiciously closing the trunk of his hot rod, newcomer Ani Achola (Grace Saif) scrubbing blood out of a shirt, and finally, Bryce's classmates gathered around his casket at a funeral as his mom begs them for answers.
A second trailer for the show goes into a bit more detail exploring who could be responsible for Bryce's death. But the truth is, since he's been the prevailing villain for the past two seasons, virtually everyone has a motive. Ani points out that Jessica Davis (Alisha Boe) has one of the strongest, as the person who Bryce hurt most. Her rape is arguably the event that sets Hannah Baker's (Katherine Langford) spiral in motion. Zach Dempsey (Ross Butler) argues that Bryce was killed with a gun and Tyler is obviously armed, with a history of instability and his own rape trauma. But viewers also get a glimpse of Justin Foley (Brandon Flynn) out on the streets with a gun (though that looks like it could simply be a drug deal). Even Clay's mom is seen questioning her son's involvement after police begin considering him a suspect.
Clearly, it could be anybody's crime. In addition to Clay, the trailer sets up other suspects by showing them in various scenes with police: Tony is shown cuffed in an interrogation room; Zach and Alex Standall (Miles Heizer) are seen walking through a police station looking grim; and of course, plenty of new characters get introduced this season, too.
One of those characters, Ani, seems like she's working in some sort of investigative capacity of her own. Deadline reports that she's "a shrewd outsider" who "[steers] the group through an investigation that threatens to lay bare everyone’s deepest secrets." Could she somehow be responsible? She is offered up as a potential suspect on whokilledbrycewalker.com.
The question could fuel endless speculation, but the only way to know the answer for sure is to watch Season 3 unfold. My guess is, the series will dangle a few promising false leads before finally revealing the truth.
13 Reasons Why Season 3 is now streaming on Netflix.