The Zendaya-starring teen drama Euphoria will continue to frighten adults for another season as the provocative series gets an early season 2 renewal from HBO. The news comes midway through the series’ first eight-episode season, one that has already elicited plenty of controversy for its frank (and heightened) depiction of drug use, sex, and extremely online lifestyles of its central high school-aged characters, including Zendaya (Spider-Man: Far From Home) as the recently out of rehab Rue.
The series hails from creator, writer, and director Sam Levinson, who adapted Euphoria from an Israeli property of the same name. Levinson’s credits include Assassination Nation and the HBO Bernie Madoff drama The Wizard of Lies, which was directed by his father, Academy Award winning filmmaker Barry Levinson. In addition to courting controversy, Levinson’s series has been praised for its filmmaking style and visually striking cinematography, as well as its performances, particularly Zendaya and newcomer Hunter Schafer who plays Rue’s new friend and potential love interest, Jules.
In an official release from HBO, the news of Euphoria’s season 2 renewal was announced by Francesca Orsi, executive vice president of HBO programming. In the statement, Orsi had this to say:
“Euphoria creator Sam Levinson has built an incredible world with an extraordinary cast led by the supremely talented Zendaya. We are so grateful that he chose HBO as the home for this groundbreaking series. We look forward to following these complex characters as their journeys continue through the challenging world they inhabit.”
Euphoria is no doubt garnering plenty of attention from its various controversies stemming from the aforementioned depictions of drug use, sex, and violence, but also an episode that featured many shots of full-frontal male nudity. But as the buzz around its various provocations subside, Levinson’s series has remained consistent enough in both its storytelling and filmmaking styles to make it worth watching for reasons that go beyond controversy or the desire to be scandalized (or outraged). At just eight episodes long, the first season is wisely not overstaying its welcome, and it is certainly being helped by the lead-in audience of Big Little Lies season 2. It will be interesting to see how Euphoria does in its sophomore season without the help of Reese Witherspoon and the Monterey Five.
Euphoria continues Sunday with ‘’03 Bonnie and Clyde’ @10pm on HBO.