July 2, 2019 4:46:33 pm
We already have Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why, CW’s Riverdale and Millie Bobby Brown starrer Stranger Things to feed our lust for thrill and teenage dramas. And Steve Carell-Timothee Chalamet’s Beautiful Boy and Julia Roberts and Lucas Hedges’ Ben is Back explore in some length the psychological effects of drug usage. So what sets HBO’s latest offering Euphoria apart?
Zendaya’s character Rue stands out. It is perhaps the only thing that gives this show a different flavour. Rue suffers from bipolar disorder, OCD and anxiety issues. That is a lot of things for one person to bear the burden of, let alone a teenager who is also dealing with the loss of her father.
One fine day, she takes the drugs intended for her father and finds that empty feeling is the only feeling she can take refuge in with some sense of relief.
Zendaya is charismatic and convincing as Rue. She plays the character with sensitivity and understanding. There are also multiple sexual references, and the manner in which the students navigate the various paths of sex, peer pressure and academics is represented in detail.
But Euphoria comes into its own only when the focus is on Rue, her eccentricities, her constant inner monologue and her battle with the demons of depression.
The cinematography is trippy. Colours have been used generously to show the audience what the protagonist is feeling or going through at a certain point. The supporting cast is yet to be fleshed out fully, but that is forgivable since we are only two episodes in.
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