EUPHORIA — AN ANALYSIS OF THE SECOND SEASON FIRST EPISODE

Brought by Jordi Casanova (script consultant) & Jesus Fragoso

With the new year, we’ve had the delight of seeing the return of Euphoria for a second season. Following the good reception you had to our analysis with Blanca Escoda of the mini-series I May Destroy You, we brought Jordi Casanova (journalist, script consultant, camera assistant and location) to study the first episode of the second season of Euphoria with Jesus Fragoso (Communication team at Filmarket Hub).

Of course, warning to all of you who haven’t seen the first season: SPOILERS AHEAD!

A PRE-PANDEMIC COMING OF AGE TV SERIES POST-PANDEMIC CONTINUATION

The series is written and directed by Sam Levinson, it has catapulted Zendaya as one of the most upcoming actresses.

Euphoria is a choral teenager series, with a good dose of drama, drugs and unplanned pregnancies. As Jordi says: “I hope no one’s high school years resembled these ones.”

The season starts a few days after the last episode. For the spectator, the feeling is a bit strange. Between the first and the second season, a pandemic has rolled by…It feels as though a decade has passed and the way I think doesn’t function in the same way. Add to that, the fact that the characters haven’t changed, nor their motivations, Jordi explains. Retaking the plots from 2 years past is difficult due to the story’s soap opera’s nature, but that’s what we expect from a high school tv series, Jesus says. However, it is proof of how well constructed the characters are and how easy it is to empathize with them that I quickly got sucked into this new season, Jordi adds. Without question, it’s a fresh take into the generation it portrays — generation Z — and why not, it’s sexual fluidity.

INTRODUCTION

The first episode takes place during the New Year’s Eve party and spends a good portion of the episode on the back story of Fezco — the town’s drug dealer and one of the most popular characters among the audience. This “parenthesis” falls in line with the narrative tendency to explain the “genesis” of evil. Jesús observes We’ve had Cruella, in Joker or in Malefica […] movies that show us their humane side and how society, life, their environment has led them to become who they are.

This micro-story within the episode takes us to a young Fezco in his early childhood. We’d say sweet but we see Fez growing up in a mob family, brought up by a grandmother that taught him that in life, you have to take justice into your own hands. Additionally, we learn the true family ties between him and Ash, his foster brother, as well as the origin of his name, due to his tendency to play with his grandmother’s ashtrays.

ACT TWO

The episode develops during the New Year’s party and follows the different characters of the series. A collage of plots during the same night and party that is a recurring classic resource on teenager’s fictions originally pinned on American Graffiti and other cult works such as Dazed and confused from Linklater.

MAIN THEME

The first episode establishes the basis of the theme that, from what we can see, will be the backbone of the season: Am I a good person?

In fact, Cassie, who in this episode has an affair with the ex-boyfriend of her best friend, is the first to verbalize it. I don’t know if I’m a good person.

The theme reappears during a conversation between Lexi and Fezco around religious faith and morality. This is how Fez defends how he can be a drug dealer and a Cristian at the same time: my Uncle Carl got diabetes from eating too much McDonald's. You don’t see anybody going after their ass.

Kat, in another hand, affirms she’s in love with Ethan because he’s a good person. However, she doesn’t seem really attracted to him.

The episode ends with Fezco giving Nate a brutal thrashing, another character with important psychological-emotional baggage.

Additionally to touching profound moral dilemmas, in this season I expect to see an increase in violence, Jordi Casanova predicts.

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