Does Deputy Standall Know Who Killed Bryce In '13 Reasons Why'? It's So Cryptic
This post contains spoilers for Season 3 of 13 Reasons Why. Following the mystery of who killed Bryce Walker, Season 3 concluded with the truth about his murderer. Despite several false leads and suspicions, Ani managed to frame Monty de la Cruz in the killing in order to protect Alex, who pushed a beaten Bryce to his death. Her plan worked, but as Alex's father, does Deputy Standall know who killed Bryce in 13 Reasons Why? The show left the question unanswered, but it definitely points toward him knowing the truth about his son.
Alex (Miles Heizer) is no stranger to troubling moments, having tried to kill himself at the end of Season 1 and struggling to recuperate in Season 2. As Season 3 began, he initially faded into the background as the investigation of Bryce's (Justin Prentice) death kicked off. Later episodes then revealed that before Bryce died, Alex was taking steroids to bulk up, which led to him partnering with Bryce for a string of sketchy activities before his death.
Given this fleeting catch-up with Alex, imagine fans' reactions when the show revealed that following Zach's (Ross Butler) brutal beating of Bryce, Alex was the one to fatally push the jock off the pier. Accompanying Jessica (Alisha Boe) to her arranged meeting with Bryce, Alex initially wanted to help him get home after Bryce gave Jessica a tape of his confession. But as he started bringing the injured jock to his car, Bryce grew fiery, vowing revenge against Zach and accusing Jessica of setting him up. This turned out to be Alex's last straw with Bryce.
Aiming to protect Alex and get the police off of Clay's (Dylan Minnette) back, Ani framed Monty (Timothy Granaderos) for Bryce's death. During her interrogation session with Deputy Standall (Mark Pellegrino), Ani pushed back at the police not having enough evidence to tie Monty to the crime. As an accomplice hid Bryce's tape to Jessica in Monty's football locker in order to further frame him, Ani's conversation with Alex's dad turned personal.
Deputy Standall told Ani there were tire tracks consistent with his wife's car at the pier, undoubtedly hinting at his fear that Alex had been involved. Recognizing what he was getting at, Ani insisted Alex would've been there to help a friend whose life Bryce destroyed, and technically, she wasn't wrong, seeing how Jessica was one of Bryce's rape victims. Still voicing his concern over blaming the wrong person for Bryce's death — despite all but saying he knew his son really was the killer — the deputy then revealed to Ani that Monty had been killed in his jail cell.
"Let the dead bury the dead, Deputy Standall," Ani told him.
Alex's dad followed her advice, and his later actions definitely suggested he knew exactly what he was doing. After telling Alex about the closing of Bryce's case, Deputy Standall brought up his son's near-fatal gunshot wound in Season 1, saying, "I wished that bullet was in my head, not yours. You understand?"
It was subtle, but Deputy Standall's statement meant he wanted to protect his son and reduce as much of his pain as possible, and though their relationship had been strained at times, he wanted his son to know he loved him. He even doused bleach on what appeared to be Alex's clothes from the night of Bryce's death before setting them on fire. Being in a law enforcement position, the deputy is obviously risking a lot by presumingly covering this up. But while so many of 13 Reasons Why's adults often seem MIA when their kids need them most, Deputy Standall has made it clear that loyalty to his family is his top priority.
Season 3 of 13 Reasons Why is currently streaming on Netflix.