Alisha Boe (’13 Reasons Why’) on giving Jessica a ‘light of hope’ as a sexual assault survivor in season 2 [WATCH]

Alisha Boe “was so excited to go back to season two” of “13 Reasons Why” because she wanted to continue her character Jessica Davis’s journey of recovery from sexual assault. “In the first season you see her coming to terms,” Boe explains. “It ends with her finally being able to tell her father what happened to her. And when I heard we had a season-two pickup I was so excited … I just really wanted to see Jessica have a little light of hope.” Boe discussed portraying a sexual assault survivor during a Netflix FYSEE panel on June 1. Watch her above.

“13 Reasons Why” began as the story of Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford), a teenage girl who died by suicide and left behind audio cassettes telling the story of her descent into depression. Part of that story was her rape at the hands of her classmate Bryce Walker (Justin Prentice), who had previously raped Jessica when Jessica was drunk at a party. In season two Jessica returns to school amid rumors, bullying and a lawsuit against the school over Hannah’s death.

“I feel like it’s not a topic that is that fleshed out in movies or TV, especially for young sexual assault survivors,” says Boe. “I learned so much about the lifelong effects of survivors. People deal with PTSD and triggers … I learned how important it is to have a strong support system around you.” And she was excited to see Jessica find her way “back to the innocent girl she always was, and for her to be able to sleep in her own bed and to be able to reclaim her body and feel strong.”

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