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|“||This is beyond just us now. This is the whole school. If we fall, you go down with us. (Clay: Maybe I don’t care.) Maybe you should.||„|
|~ Justin threatening Clay.|
Justin Foley is the secondary antagonist in the 2007 novel Thirteen Reasons Why. He also serves as the secondary antagonist in the first season and appears as an anti-hero in the second season of the 2017 Netflix adaption. Justin is a part of Hannah Baker’s Baker's Dozen and the subject of Hannah Baker’s first and ninth tapes from her list of reasons why she commits suicide. Justin and Hannah dated in the beginning of the school year until Justin began spreading false rumors of him and Hannah hooking up on their first date when in actuality they only kissed a couple times. His second tape revealed that he allowed Bryce Walker to rape Jessica the night of Jessica’s party and did nothing to stop him.
He is portrayed by Brandon Flynn.
Justin was shown to have a tumultuous home life. His mother became a neglectful drug addict with a rotating set of dangerous and violent boyfriends, including Seth, who strangled Justin on screen and was implied to have abused him in the past. While talking about his absence, his coach mentions that he suspects Justin has been abused, thus his long stays at Bryce's pool house. Despite being brought up in an unhealthy environment Justin was one of the popular kids in school and a member of his high school’s basketball team. During his freshman year, he dated a fellow student named Kat, who unfortunately was moving and through a going away party at Hannah Baker’s house, the new girl in town. A party that was attended by Hannah Baker. When he and fellow teammate Zach arrived at the party they began rough housing on the lawn while the sprinkler system was on. Kat, Hannah, and fellow classmate Clay Jenson witnessed them rough house on the front lawn while the sprinkler system was activated, but after seeing how soaked they were Kat denied them entry to the house. Unable to enter the party, Justin and Zach left for the night but not before Justin gave Hannah a charming smile that quickly won over Hannah who became immediately infatuated with him. Once Kat moved away she and Justin ended their relationship and Justin and Hannah began a flirtatious relationship that’s quickly blossomed into romance. Hannah began lead Justin on a wild goose chase to keep him interested in her. She began by luring him onto the bus, got his number, ditched him on the bus, and told him she’d call him. As the bus drove off he called out to Hannah as to where the bus was going as she responded that she does not know as she doesn’t take the bus.
Later that day Hannah calls Justin so as to schedule a date but are interrupted by Hannah’s mother who wanted her to finish her homework before she used her cell phone. In a way to deceive her mother the two use the excuse of homework to get her to leave them alone. Not convinced her mother is not listening in on their conversation, she tries to use a math problem as a way to meet up with Justin.
Justin was described by Kat as a sweet idiot who enjoyed goofing off with his friends and still had a good heart, but as the story progresses he shows himself as anything but kindhearted. Possibly due to the years of abuse he had been subjected to and the influence Bryce Walker had over him, Justin became a selfish, arrogant, and cruel bully who manipulates everyone around him for his own amusement and personal gain.
Justin is also quite irrational and short tempered and can best be described as a coward for his actions towards everyone. While he did genuinely fall in love with Jessica Davis, he still willingly let Bryce Walker into her room, knowing full well what Bryce would do to her, showing that while he is nice to the people close to him, the only person he truly cares for is himself and no one else. However his selfish nature came to an end when he realized he had gone too far, showing a remorseful side to himself for the first time in the series.
While he did change his mind about Bryce he was already too late to stop him as Bryce physically overpowered him and locked the door so Justin could not interrupt him again. While Justin could have done more by simply asking for help he simply walked downstairs ashamed and feeling powerless. His reason for hiding the truth from Jessica may have been because he had not cared for someone the way he cared for Jessica before and did not know how to help Jessica the right way.
|13 Reasons Why Villains|