HBO’s “Euphoria” returns with amazing soundtracks, mind-boggling visuals and personal plotlines


Photo courtesy of HBO Max

The candor in “Euphoria” about teenage experiences makes it one not to miss

Sasha Karasik, Reporter

I opened my computer to HBO Max at 8:55 p.m. and watched the clock meticulously, as I knew HBO would be overwhelmed by viewers trying to watch the season two premiere of “Euphoria.” As soon as the clock hit nine, I clicked play, got cozy and began watching. 

“Euphoria” is an Emmy award-winning TV show starring prominent actors including Zendaya, Sydney Sweeney and Hunter Schafer. The first season was released on HBO in June of 2019, and since then has been a massive success. The series follows a group of teenagers navigating their lives and figuring out their identities through love, trauma, drugs, violence and sex. After an over two-year hiatus, the show is finally back with its first episode of season two. 

Right away, the episode took a graphic turn. Throughout the entire episode, there were explicit scenes of nudity, violence and drug use. However, these moments are orchestrated in a way that doesn’t feel as if they’re only there for the shock factor. Other shows might add gory details in their fight scenes or other scenarios to intrigue the viewer with the quality of the special effects while still having poor storylines. 

“Euphoria” uses uncensored scenes to add to the realness of the plot. The explicity doesn’t make the viewer want to stop watching, but rather pulls you into the reality of the story even more, making you forget it’s a made-up scenario. This bluntness gives season two of “Euphoria” an authentic feel.

The entire episode revolves around the main characters catching up during a New Year’s party. Like the season one premiere, a party setting with the same high-energy, intense feeling is used to introduce the characters. However, it does so in a way that does not feel like a carbon copy of the old premiere.

Every shot is done in a way that makes the viewer appreciate the amount of effort put into the show. The number of background details, the ways in which the camera turns, the use of creative lighting and even the camera-quality all culminate to make the show unforgettable. The entire season was filmed using Kodak Ektachrome film.

The creators and producers of the show pay such attention to detail that they completely abandoned digital filming for season two of “Euphoria,” and worked with Kodak to rebuild parts of their factory just to be able to create the necessary amount of film to shoot the entirety of the season. The film creates rich, saturated colors and is able to capture skin tone far better compared to other films. It gives the show a worn-out, vintage feeling.

The new debut is set up in a way that not only continues the viewers’ emotional connections with the characters, but strengthens them. The new episode doesn’t feel like it just picks up from where last season left off. It doesn’t make the watcher feel as if they have to rewatch certain details to understand what’s going on. Instead, it feels like all the characters took a break with you and are all getting familiar with you and each other again. I love how while watching, you feel like a part of the story, as if you and all the characters are old friends catching up.

So far, the second season definitely seems like it will live up to what the first season delivered. This first episode was able to continue the energy of the first season without completely mimicking it. Despite still being the same storyline, it doesn’t feel like more plot was added just because of the demand. It truly feels like a fresh, new season. 

“Euphoria” is a great show for anyone who loves amazing soundtracks, mind-boggling visuals and extremely thorough, personal plotlines. The nearly two and a half year wait was completely worth it. I’m excited to see what happens next in the rest of “Euphoria,” season two.