“Euphoria” Review: A Look Into the Drama Halfway Into Season Two

Euphoria season 2 had its debut on Jan. 9. Fans have noticed a lot of red flags in the plotline and suspicions about feuds with the director are arising. Source: MEGA

If you haven’t seen HBO’s Euphoria, first, I highly suggest that you indulge yourself, and second, here’s a recap, but it may include spoilers. Essentially, the show follows the isolated lives of high school students battling drug addiction, abusive relationships, strict parents, and the normal hustle and bustle of the high school atmosphere. In a way, the show glorifies the use of hardcore drugs. 

The actors of the show are supposed to be portraying 17-18 year old students, however the ages of the main lineup range from 22-29. This already sets an unrealistic example due to the way that the actors look, and the actions they’re doing don’t seem attainable.

On Jan. 9, the highly anticipated season two made its initial debut. The season is halfway released now and fans have a lot to say about it. In contrast to the first season, some of the characters’ plotlines have been affected due to personal issues actors have with the director. In specific, fans have been speculating major issues between actress Barbie Ferreira and director Sam Levinson. 

An article published on Jan. 20 from Radar Online described how the actress was spotted walking off set after an argument with the director. To add to the fire, she wasn’t present at the red carpet event for the season debut on Jan. 5, and this raised a lot of suspicion. 

Upon the release of episodes, it’s apparent that there was a rift between the two of them. Instead of having more interesting plotlines, Barbie’s character, Kat is only in a number of scenes and in most she’s upset with her body image and the way that people perceive her. During one scene, Kat is found in her bedroom and crying about herself before going out with her boyfriend. The director then had a dozen different women appear from the corners of her room and repeatedly scream at her to “LOVE YOURSELF!” This isn’t an appealing way to discuss body image and despair on television, and the director wasn’t entirely sensitive with his choices.

Aside from body image issues, there is an alarming amount of nudity in the show, which is unlike most television shows released today. Actress Sydney Sweeney, who plays Cassie is found half naked in almost every scene she’s in. As a woman in today’s society, this is controversial due to the femininity of her character toggling the audience’s attention in a swift manner. Memes are floating around the social media app, TikTok about the actress’ nudity contract with the director and if he’s abusing his power.

The “Euphoria aesthetic” alludes to a mannerism of glitter and drugs. Although the show follows high schoolers doing sketchy activities, this is perfect for their age. If the show were to take place in a college or adult setting, the parental figure’s grasp would be lost and their actions wouldn’t have as many consequences, since they seem to drive misbehavior.

Each episode in the first season followed a different character to get a deeper look into their world. A fan favorite character, Maddy, portrayed by Alexa Demie, is shown deep in a toxic relationship with her on again off again boyfriend, Nate Jacobs, played by Jacob Elordi. 

Although she is aware that her relationship is bad for her, she’s unable to leave because she’s so in love with Nate. This is a good example to show on television to shed light on how women may arrive in negative situations and why they’re still in them. 

The main plotline of the show follows Zendaya’s character Rue through drug abuse and hard relationships. As new episodes have come out each Sunday night (and I’ve been watching with my roommate, Meg), viewers are seeing more complex ideas than the originally intended plot. I highly suggest you watch Euphoria for yourself on HBO. 

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About Samantha Salerno 49 Articles
Samantha (Sam) Salerno is a third-year performing arts major who has a passion for writing. This is her third semester on The Oracle. She spent the majority of her summer working for the publication, Fire Island News. You can reach her by emailing salernos2@newpaltz.edu.