|This article is about the Netflix Series character. You may be looking for the book character, whose surname is Cooley.|
|“||She just wanted attention. And leaving those tapes... That's a fucked up thing to do! No one deserves that.||”|
|— to Clay about Hannah's death and The Tapes, in "Tape 2, Side B"|
Marcus Cole is a recurring antagonist of 13 Reasons Why.
He serves as a major antagonist of season 1, a supporting antagonist of season 2, and a mentioned character of season 3 and season 4.
He is one of the few main characters, not to appear in season 3 and season 4.
He is portrayed by Steven Silver.
His whole life, his father told him that people will always judge him and know who he is by looking at him.
Throughout the Series
Zach Dempsey is the only one who stays behind.
 He gets blackmailed by, unknown to him, Tyler Down and Cyrus, with a video they found of Marcus getting a lap dance at the Clubhouse. They used it to force him to wear a dress at a pep rally, which he turned into a joke so he didn't have to be embarrassed. Tyler and Cyrus also used the video a second time to force him to state that Bryce is a rapist and he no longer associates himself with Bryce while he made a speech before the Liberty Tigers first game. With Chlöe Rice, Bryce's parents, fans and friends sat in the audience, he received a shocking reaction, he runs into the school, being scared at the shockwaves he may have just created for Bryce. The Principal covers it up as a prank and tries to get things back on track. Marcus was suspended due to this outburst and is not seen for the remainder of the series.
Marcus's Mistake (Reason #6)
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Marcus is Hannah's sixth reason for why she committed suicide.
At Rosie's Diner, Marcus keeps Hannah waiting for over an hour. When he does show up he brings his friends and begins his date with Hannah, sitting on the opposite side. He manages to almost get Hannah to forgive him for being late and switches side to sitting right next to her, as he begins flirting and touching Hannah's leg although she doesn't want him to, she sees him keep looking back at her friends and realizes it was a dare to try and see if she was easy and that he doesn't care about her at all. Hannah begins to get upset but Marcus continues to sexually harass her until she pushes him out of the booth, angering him and making him leave.
|“||You'll do anything to keep up your perfect reputation.||”|
|— Alex to Marcus.[src]|
Marcus is shown to be an intelligent but also extremely cruel, arrogant and selfish person. While he appears to be a model student at Liberty High, Marcus is shown to truly only care about himself and, like Courtney, appears to be concerned only about protecting his "perfect" reputation and is willing to resort to extreme measures to ensure this by hiding Hannah's tapes and also covering up Bryce's crimes in order to protect himself and the others on the list. He even appears to be willing to use Bryce like a scapegoat to minimize the damage to himself and the others responsible for Hannah's suicide. He is willing to cause harm to others to protect himself and the others on the tapes by intimidating Clay and framing him for being a marijuana user. He is somewhat manipulative to as he reaches out to Clay a few times and invites him to social gatherings though it is shown he is only doing this to distract him from the tapes as much as possible.
Like some other boys at Liberty High, Marcus appears to be somewhat of a bully and disrespectful towards girls as he is shown ridiculing Hannah and the only reason he took Hannah out was to find out if she was "easy" and assumed she wanted to date him and attempted to sexually assault her in public. He is shown to have a hot temper as seen after Hannah pushed him away. He appears to show little if any remorse for what he did to Hannah and claims that by killing herself she only wanted attention and that her leaving her tapes behind was a screwed up thing to do. During his deposition, he only admits that he may have hurt Hannah's feelings, though he claims it was not intentional. It is possible that the only reason he admits this much is because other students, including Zach, saw this exchange and it might come up, as Zach seemingly agreed to tell the truth at Monet's when they discussed it.
In the second season, Marcus has not changed his ways, and still prioritizes himself above the truth. After getting a scholarship to Harvard, and afraid to screw it up, he lies on the witness stand and claims Hannah only went out with him to see if he could get her close to Bryce. He is shown to be crueler than he appeared to be in the first season, as it is revealed he did not get Hannah as any of his matches, and only called her because of a bet he made with Bryce. After being rejected, he lied to save his reputation and told Montgomery and Scott that Hannah only wanted people to think she was a slut because she enjoyed the attention, which led to more rumors about Hannah. When confronted about this, he lies to Bryce and claims he did it so if Bryce is asked if he raped Hannah, Marcus' story could provide the claim that Hannah liked him. This attitude causes others to plot against him, and because everyone realizes he is lying for himself, no one wants to help him, not even Bryce. This self-centered attitude eventually leads to him getting suspended after calling Bryce a rapist, and he is not seen again, leaving it unknown if he learns anything from his mistakes.
We don't see Marcus again after Season 2, implying that he was caught for his actions and was suspended or expelled, making his efforts to keep his record squeaky clean to be futile. Courtney mentions in a flashback that she is student body president due to Marcus' actions. However, it is worth noting that he was a senior in the first two seasons, and Season 3 mainly takes place in the year after, so it is also possible he simply graduated. The details remain a mystery.
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Marcus and Courtney are both members of the honor board, and throughout the series are the most willing to cover up the tapes. They appear to get along most of the time. The only time their interests don't exactly align is when Courtney finds out Marcus framed Clay for drug possession, though she quickly agrees when Marcus explains his reasons. However, in the second season, after Courtney admits her mistakes while Marcus refuses to, their relationship takes a turn for the worse. After Clay leaks the tapes, revealing Hannah's side of the story, Courtney shows Marcus no sympathy. It is also shown that she knew he was going out with Hannah on a bet and disapproved of it. In Season 3, she mentions the reason she is now student body president is because Marcus was "a sexist pig who likes strippers", implying she does not respect him anymore.
Marcus appears to be friends with Alex, Justin, and Zach, as he is shown hanging out with them at Bryce's house and they talk about covering up the tapes. He also brings Zach to his date with Hannah and rides in his car in Tape 1, Side A. However, they eventually disagree on how to handle the tapes, like Alex, and eventually, Zach, wants to admit the truth, while Marcus does not. It also appears that Alex does not respect him, as he mentions at the honor board hearing that the board, including Marcus, is "so honorable" and at Monet's, tells him that he will do anything to preserve his reputation.
Marcus and Bryce appear to be friends in public, and Marcus is shown at parties at Bryce's house. However, despite this, Marcus is willing to use Bryce as a scapegoat to protect himself. In the second season, their relationship falls apart after Marcus lies on the stand and claims Hannah was interested in Bryce. He claims he did this to give Bryce footing in the trial when questioned, which Bryce seemingly believes. However, when Marcus is blackmailed by Tyler, Bryce offers him no help. Marcus later calls Bryce a rapist at a public event, which leads to Bryce ending their friendship.
Marcus and Tyler despise each other. Marcus frequently excludes Tyler from discussions about the tapes, and when he does show up, rarely takes his opinion into account. Marcus even threatens Tyler when they find out about the subpoenas, warning him that he will make what happened to Clay look minor. Tyler, in turn, dislikes Marcus. He tells Marcus that he has incriminating photos of him (possibly planting weed in Clay's bag), and later Marcus' picture is shown on Tyler's "hit list", implying Tyler may want to kill him as revenge for bullying him. In the second season, after Marcus lies on the stand, Tyler publicly causes a paint explosion that covers Marcus in paint, also writing 'HYPOCRITE' on Marcus' car with that same paint. He and Cyrus later force Marcus to wear a dress to the pep rally, though Marcus manages to make this look like a publicity stunt and later force him to call Bryce a rapist in front of the whole school, which causes Marcus to get suspended.
Marcus and Clay at first had a cordial relationship, even after Clay learned Marcus was on the tapes. However, Marcus frequently attempts to silence Clay, and his attempts become more extreme as the series progresses. At first, he only invites him to parties at Bryce's house, then plants weed in his bag, getting him suspended. He also tells the others that he doesn't care about what happens to Clay's record as long as the tapes don't get out, showing his selfishness. It is unknown how Clay feels about Marcus personally, or if he knows Marcus planted the weed, but it is likely he dislikes him for his remorselessness over his role in Hannah's death. He even said it's "all their fault" to the whole honor board, including Marcus, following a fight between Alex and Montgomery, and said numerous times to Marcus that he wouldn't stop listening to the tapes.
Marcus and Hannah had an extremely poor relationship. After Alex included Hannah's ass on the best/worst list Marcus was shown among the other jocks following her and staring at her ass and ridiculing her. However, when the time for Valentines came, Marcus appeared to have feelings for her and wanted to take her out for a date which after some charming pressure, Hannah accepted. She even revealed that she always kind of liked Marcus. However Marcus kept her waiting at Rosie's diner for nearly an hour and when he finally did show up, he brought his whole gang of buddies along. While he apologized for making her wait, Marcus' true intentions for taking Hannah out were gradually revealed after he sat next to her and began inappropriately touching her, and looking to his gang of friends sitting behind them and this made Hannah realize that the reason for the date was for Marcus to prove that the rumors about her being easy and a slut were true. An angered Hannah called Marcus an asshole and pushed him out of the booth, making him angered and he then left. His actions completely frightened Hannah. The two rarely interacted much after this incident and Marcus never showed any remorse for his actions when Hannah was alive.
Marcus shows absolutely no remorse for Hannah's death, nor his actions towards her and openly tells Clay that nothing that happened to Hannah was any different from what other girls experience in every high school, despite the fact she was raped and bullied and claims she killed herself just for attention and is disgusted at the fact that she left her tapes behind, claiming no one deserves that. Marcus does all in his power to make it seem like he and the others at Liberty High cared about Hannah by putting up anti-suicide posters and a memorial for her. He wants her tapes silenced at all costs to protect his "perfect" reputation as well as the others on the tapes and is willing to do whatever it takes to ensure the tapes remain a secret, even if it includes harming and manipulating others. At his deposition, Marcus only reveals that he may have hurt Hannah's feelings during their Valentines' date and completely excludes the fact that he humiliated her and attempted to sexually assault her in public.
- "Yeah. I'm the New Girl" (mentioned)
|“||Nothing anyone did to her (Hannah) was any different than what happens to every girl at every high school. She just wanted attention. And leaving those tapes...That's a fucked up thing to do! No one deserves that.||”|
|— Marcus to Clay standing outside Tyler's window.[src]|
|“||My whole life, my father told me, people at school would judge me. People will assume they know who I am, just by looking at me. And that the deck is stacked against me. When you're faced with that, when you're without power, on the outside, you have tough choices.||”|
|“||It's easy to hide, to, give in to the pain. Like Hannah did, she started to believe that she was less than. To believe that a life of privilege and position, was only for other people. But the truth is, privilege is a trap all its own.||”|
|“||And we do ourselves no favors by keeping our heads down. By hiding. You have to find a way to hold your head up.||”|
|“||But, Dad, like, what if they ask things that they didn't ask before? Like, what if they ask me to, you know, name names?... Some of the other kids, they called out, friends of mine.||”|
|“||You have to find a way to belong in this world, you have to find a way to be strong.||”|
|“||When you feel left out when you feel like this high school world is against you. It can be vulnerable and frightening. I wouldn't want anyone to feel that way. Which is why I signed up for Dollar Valentines, which is why I invited Hannah out.||”|
- Courtney: "Do you even like Hannah or are you just trying to get with her?"
- Marcus: "Yes, I do like her. And, I made a bet with Bryce."
- Courtney: "What is your deal?! I mean, some days you're this serious person with legitimate plans for this world. And the next you like this stupid guy, it's like one day you're Hillary, the next day Bill."
- Marcus: "Yeah, and which one was President? Like, you do what you gotta do to get on in this world. Especially if you want to ever get something done."
- Courtney: "Yeah, that doesn't mean you have to be friends with Bryce."
- Marcus: "Yeah, it does."
- ― Marcus and Courtney[src]
- In the books, his name is Marcus Cooley, but in the adaptation, his name is Marcus Cole.
- He is Liberty High's student body president.
- He and Sheri are the only people on the tapes not seen at the Winter Formal.
- He, Sheri and Tyler are the only people on the tapes not seen at the Spring Fling.
- He got accepted to Harvard.
- His Instagram is prezmarcuscole.
- See also: Category:Images of Marcus Cole
- Sheff, Nic (writer) & Alvarez, Kyle Patrick (director) (March 31, 2017). "Tape 3, Side B". 13 Reasons Why. Season 1. Episode 6. Netflix.
- Tyler, Hayley (writer) & Moncrieff, Karen (director) (May 18, 2018). "The Second Polaroid". 13 Reasons Why. Season 2. Episode 4.
- Yorkey, Brian & Moore, Kirk (writers) & Morris, Michael (director) (May 18, 2018). "The Third Polaroid". 13 Reasons Why. Season 2. Episode 7.
- Marye, Felischa (writer) & Morris, Michael (director) (May 18, 2018). "The Little Girl". 13 Reasons Why. Season 2. Episode 8.