Euphoria released its first season on June 16th, 2019. The hit show stars a highly influential and impressive cast. It depicts the grim reality of mental health issues in adolescents, and certain realities they face that are often overlooked. The striking cinematography and whimsical plot place the viewer in the eye of each character. Euphoria allows young audiences to relate and learn about others their age. And, it speaks to the universal emotions that its viewers experience.
The show has layers of vulnerability. It opens up conversations about toxic coping mechanisms that have often been silenced. However, it can be very triggering with multiple forms of violence depicted in the series. The show is raw and to the point. It does not tiptoe around issues involving addiction and trauma like we are so used to seeing in the entertainment industry.
There is an emphasis on the use of digital platforms and their interference when it comes to maintaining relationships. Since this age is forced to deal with the impact of social media, the conversations about the range of their experiences are relatively new. Hence, this show sparked controversy and made a name for itself.
Euphoria’s New Season
The unraveling, toxic relationship between characters Rue Bennett and Jules Vaughn has become a main theme of the show.
A 30-second teaser trailer came out on June 17th. In it, Jules (Hunter Schafer) stands in the middle of the school hallway. She is turning towards Rue’s (Zendaya) direction at the other end of the hall. As Rue sees her, her gaze turns into a soft smile as the camera slowly zooms out from her face. This little teaser comes after a long wait for Season Two. After special episodes parts 1 and 2 came out describing Rue and Jules’ perspectives, fans got a taste of each side after making their own interpretation about the relationship between the two of them.
Zendaya posted the teaser trailer in remembrance of the show’s two-year anniversary. Released slightly before the COVID-19 pandemic, Euphoria became one of many shows binged during quarantine. It became an investment for audiences. Not to mention, it was a learning experience for the younger and older generations. Although informative and freshly creative, the show sparked controversy around normalizing certain toxic behaviors in the show.
Despite this, many found the special episodes to be an engaging learning experience as they watch both Rue and Jules open up. In the entirety of Jules’ episode consists of Jules speaking to her therapist. In it, she comes to several realizations after a series of questions asking her about certain self-directed beliefs. ThePacePress wrote that “Overall, we grasp how much these characters are teens and growing into themselves, have their own intrinsic issues, and lack communication skills on serious matters – a difficult skill for someone of their age to manage.”
The unraveling of issues surrounding sex, addiction, relationship problems, and gender norms makes the show stand out in a creatively innovative way. From the cinematography, award-winning acting, and controversy, the show shines a light on issues in a way that allows the audience to be mindfully interpretative. The digital age brings light to new mental health issues that adolescents face. With all these conversations, the show can have a positive impact on awareness surrounding social media.