‘EUPHORIA’: A Trip on Teenage Ecstasy

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The coming of age HBO television series, Euphoria, makes you want to place neon lights and perfectly timed indie music to all of your mistakes. The audience will catch itself falling in love with the unique characters in one scene to feeling very uncomfortable with a vividly graphic scene within a blink, every moment being brilliantly and shockingly cinematic. The show follows a group of teenagers and their erratic lives, each episode beginning with a backstory narrated by Rue. In the backstories, the audience lives through the past experiences that led the characters to the pit that they are presently in, creating a sympathetic view of them before the episode picks up where it left off. Rue, a teen with an excess amount of mental disorders, starts off the show by explaining her heavily drug addicted past, leading you to her release from rehab. 

We continue to meet more characters throughout the episodes, mostly through the eyes of Rue. The standouts like Jules (Hunter Schafer), Nate (Jacob Elordi), Kat (Barbie Ferreira), Maddy (Alexa Demie), and Fez (Angus Cloud) have their issues tied to one another in the most atypical way possible, allowing viewers to see toxic relationships, severe mental illnesses, inappropriate parental behavior, and the repression and expression of queer identity in the most realistic way possible, not leaving a single heartwarming moment untouched by an abundance of issues. 

 Director Sam Levinson and executive producer/recording artist Drake made distinctly beautiful choices in style such as music, cinema, and casting. The incredibly talented and diverse cast won our hearts within minutes on screen. The darker settings paired with neon colored lights gave the whole series a psychoactive and almost hallucinogenic aura as the audience follows Zendaya throughout her journey. The music production assisted by Drake was powerful to say the least. The series finale’s title song, “All For Us” by Labrinth was the most compelling performance with Zendaya singing the lead, giving that final cherry on top to the glittery whirlwind it leaves you on. 

With such a striking show that takes audiences through the odds and ends of drug crazes and an excess amount of graphic intercourse, you can’t help but feel a slight discomfort in the choices that these teenagers make. It illustrates a beautiful illusion of a teenage melo-drama that leaves you on edge from start to finish. 

It’s no surprise that HBO made audiences follow controversial teenage activities by removing the cliche teen drama and digging further. They showcase an array of relationships with wildly inappropriate age differences, making shocking and stunningly brilliant turns to portray how hard it is to fall in love as a teenager with someone who may actually be toxic. They also show how the misuse of drugs, intercourse, your body, and relationships can be abused through generations to cope. Euphoria will never fail to keep you in love with its essence, and you hope it never does.