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Who dies in 13 Reasons Why season 4? Theories and clues for all the contenders

Season four begins with a death – but which Liberty High student is in the casket?

Published: Friday, 5th June 2020 at 5:20 pm

The popular but controversial Netflix series 13 Reasons Why returned to our screens today and true to form, the show began season four by killing off yet another Liberty High student. The question is – who is in the casket?


Episode one of the show's fourth and final season started by showing viewers a funeral, whilst giving very few clues as to whose it is away. We know for certain however that the deceased is a student at Liberty High, as confirmed by the vicar delivering the eulogy.

"We have said too many goodbyes, grieved too long, Liberty High has endured enough traumas and tragedy and the loss of another classmate senior year is more than children should be asked to bare but Liberty is not alone," the vicar said.

"Too many High Schools today are forced to reckon with tragedy, too many of our young people are not making it to graduation and we are doing too little to make change," she continued.

"And we must ask not only how we can make change, but what we have done to shape their world this way. How are we responsible? What burdens are we placing on our young people? What tools are we keeping from them? How did we get here again?"

We're not even shown the faces of the mourners at the funeral, so at this point, the character who met their untimely end could be any student at this point.

This isn't the first time that the show has started with a funeral, with season three quickly revealing the death of Bryce Walker – the school jock and a serial rapist. While viewers spent most of last season working out who the murderer was, perhaps this season we wont be told who actually died until the last episode.

Until then, we've made a few educated guesses as to whose fate has been grimly sealed from the offset of season four...


Is Clay dead in 13 Reasons Why?

Credit: Netflix

It's clear that Clay is starting to unravel under the pressure of covering up Bryce's murder and framing Monty (who died in prison).

Season four opens with a monologue from Clay, who says: "It comes down to one question, will you survive high school? Will I survive? Because I know too many people who didn't."

After the funeral scene, the episode immediately cuts to Clay's night terror, which could be a potential hint that it is, unfortunately, Clay who ends up dead.

Our main protagonist begins to hallucinate by seeing Monty everywhere and also appears to start suffering from panic attacks, indicating the fragility of his mental state. Could Winston's arrival at Liberty High send him over the edge?

Does Justin die in 13 Reasons Why?

Credit: Netflix

Although episode one sees a sober Justin return from a rehab centre, having battled his heroin addiction, being back in Crestmont – a town he associates with guilt and the loss of friends – could result in a relapse.

We also watch as Justin breaks up with Jessica as he says the relationship isn't good for his sobriety – the break-up could potentially act as a catalyst for another overdose.

Is Winston dead in 13 Reasons Why?

Winston 13RW

Winston, the ex-boyfriend of Monty de la Cruz, moves to Liberty High for his senior year with the purpose of investigating who actually killed Bryce and why Monty was framed for his murder when he was with him the night it happened.

As the gang's paranoia heightens with his arrival at their school, is it possible that one of them may snap and kill Winston to keep him from revealing the truth?

Is Tyler dead in 13 Reasons Why?

Credit: Netflix

Season four begins with Tyler visiting the police station after his guns, which were disposed by Clay and Tony last series, were found and traced back to him. Although Tyler told Clay that there was nothing to worry about as Alex's detective dad was helping him through the interview, the other members of the gang – specifically Jessica – aren't convinced. Is it possible that Tyler is killed by one of them after he gives them up?

Alternatively, the stress of his police interview could cause Tyler's mental health to deteriorate once again. Last series, the student photographer was in a very dark place after being assaulted by Monty and attempting a school shooting, leading him to contemplate suicide. Could the events of this season send him back to that dark place?

Is Zach dead in 13 Reasons Why?

Zach Dempsey (Credit: Netflix)

While Zach may seem like a rogue choice for the character in the casket, we see in episode one of season four that something isn't right when he turns up to Justin's welcome home party intoxicated.

In the trailer for series four, we also see Zach being beaten up by someone, while the show's creator teased that this series will see his character develop in an unexpected way.

"I will say that in season four we take Zach places that I had not expected until we really got into the room and delved into his story," Brian Yorkey told Entertainment Weekly.


Who actually dies in 13 Reasons Why season 4? 

If you don't want to know, stop reading now... but at the end of season four, the truth is revealed.

Sadly, it's fan-favourite Justin Foley (Brandon Flynn) who died at the end of 13 Reasons Why.

He had been battling a drug addiction throughout and when he collapsed at prom, everyone suspected a relapse.

But the tragic truth was revealed: he was living with HIV and AIDS, something he contracted while selling himself for sex when he was homeless.

The disease had become too much for his body to recover from and he died in hospital.

Season four of 13 Reasons Why is now available to stream on Netflix. 

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