Euphoria has been called the “most shocking teen movie ever!”
For example the second episode of the Euphoria showed dozen of teenage boys standing stark naked in the locker room, with one of the leading characters, Nate standing in the middle. The scene shows Nate trying to avoid looking at the frontal genitalia that surrounds him.
After this scene aired on HBO, horrified parents complained to the Parents Television Council, stating that the images in this series are too graphic for it’s targeted audience, teenagers.
Euphoria is written and directed by Sam Levinson, the same director of Assassination Nation. This new hit TV show is designed especially for Gen Z. The first season has only eight episodes that show the world from the eyes of a drug addicted teenager named Rue (played by the former Disney star Zendaya).
The show was renewed for a second season before the release of the first episode, which claims to be even more provocative than the first season. Euphoria has all the makings to transform itself into the biggest television series with hot young actors such as Hunter Schafer and Alexa Demie, plus an excellent soundtrack. Plus, let’s not forget all of the complaining adults, making every teenager want to watch this show even more.
Levinson, 34, is one of the youngest directors and writers on the Hollywood scene and is using Euphoria as a forum to tell his own story about drugs, sex, social media and anxiety. He spent most of his youth in rehab and halfway houses fighting addiction until he was 19, when he finally was able to clean up his life.
HBO reached out to Levinson to direct a remake of the original Israeli series Euphoria, but basing it on his personal experiences to make it more relatable to the North American viewers.
He wants to capture the insecurity and vulnerability of the uncomfortable teenage years without focusing on feelings, because what teenager understands their feelings. Zendaya plays the part of a high-school drug addict perfectly without causing the audience to judge her but to relate with her fragility.
But does Euphoria push its graphic content too far? The series 13 Reasons Why was critically judged when it aired its very real suicide scene two years ago. We are in a modern era of edgy teen series that push each drama to its limits by stepping over from them being fiction to non-fiction. Euphoria is taking television to a whole level of boldness by showing us what life really is like for teenagers today.
Showing the world how teenagers are exploring their sexuality, facing peer pressure, addiction and gender issues. The 30-penis scene makes a mockery out of the sexist world we live in that generally accepts women’s nudity but is ashamed of male nudity. Also, showing how Nate, the high school jock has inherited his dad’s nepotism towards sex and genders.
The first episode left viewers speechless as Jules (Schafer) who plays a trans-gender teen who was raped by her new boyfriend, McKay (Algee Smith). McKay assumes that Jules likes rough sex from a sex video he watched of hers. Many critics called this scene delightfully intoxicating.
Zendaya felt the need to warn her fans that this hit TV series is only suitable for “Mature Audiences” by posting a warning on your Instagram account. She recommends that only those who are over 18 years should watch the show, or if they are younger with permission from their parents. Some of the scenes are very emotional.
The truth is that directors and producers are constantly looking for new ways to shock their audience, as we are becoming immune to what used to be considered taboo.