Euphoria is an American teen television drama broadcast by HBO. Based on an Israeli TV series of the same name, the HBO series was created by Sam Levinson, who wrote and directed most of the episodes. The series has been critically acclaimed and commercially successful, with HBO having reported that the series is the second most popular HBO series ever, after Game of Thrones.
The premise of Euphoria itself is not ground-breaking. Teen television dramas are a dime-a-dozen. What sets this series apart is its unflinching, visceral and honest take on contemporary American teen life. The story premise is as follows —
Rue Bennett (Zendaya), is a recovering teenage drug addict who struggles to find her place in the world, and the story follows a group of high school students through their experiences of identity, trauma, drugs, self-harm, family, friendships, love, and sex. (Wikipedia)
Telling a lie
Plot-wise, Euphoria does a good job in following Rue’s main path by seeding several sub-plots along its two seasons, by developing solid characterisations along the way. This would include Rue’s family (mother Leslie and sister Gia), intimate lover (Jules) and close girlfriends (Maddy, Cass, Lexi and Kat) and other allies (Fez, Ali and Elliot). In addition, the story has a non-linear narrative that works quite well. The audience is comfortably able to navigate the various time-lines by way of visual cues, a definite edit to Levinson’s writing and directorial prowess.
Thematically, though Eurphoria dives deep into the world of sex, drugs and social media (no more rock n’ roll, alas), there is a clear sense that the issues of loss, loneliness, depression, social anxiety and repression fuel the dysfunction so starkly laid out in the series. None of this would be possible if the actors were not able to inhabit these characters so well. Certainly Zendaya, Hunter Schafer, Jacob Elondi, Alexa Demie, Maude Apatow et all, all deserve acclaim for their amazing performances.
Euphoria is definitely worth binge-watching. Looking forward to season 3. Highly recommended.
Now streaming on HBO Max.
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