Still from Euphoria Season 2.

The Long-Awaited Release of ‘Euphoria’ Season 2 Is Finally Here

Just as it was beginning to seem like the show's hiatus would never end, it returned with a bang on HBO and HBO Max.
January 18, 2022
6 mins read

After the two-year-long wait, the coming-of-age series we’ve all been craving is finally back. “Euphoria” is the “Skins” of this generation and it has returned with its second season.

The TV show’s rise to fame began when it was released in June of 2019 on HBO Max. Anyone and everyone was discussing the show, from memes on Twitter to makeup inspirations on TikTok. If you weren’t watching it, your friends were probably bugging you to start. I know mine were. Once the pandemic began, I finally had time to catch up on all my recommended shows, “Euphoria” being one of them. It’s one of those shows where even if you don’t love it at first, it grows on you; even if you don’t enjoy one aspect of it, the experience of watching is still enjoyable. It has so many compelling qualities, including those found in the familiar teen stories we all know and love.

Immediately after finishing the first season, fans were ready for whatever was next. Unfortunately, the pandemic pushed back filming dates for the next season. There was a considerable hiatus after the first season’s finale in August. However, the extended break and quarantine gave time for even more fans to become enthralled with the show’s story. To ease the pain of waiting for the whole new season, the creators decided to release two stand-alone episodes that were filmed with a limited cast and crew.

These stand-alone episodes followed what happened right after the finale of the first season. It also gave us two different perspectives; one episode was told from the perspective of Rue (Zendaya) and the other episode was told from Jules’ (Hunter Schafer) experience. This was such a great idea because it not only held over fans until the next season, but it also gave us more insight into characters we already love. If you’re planning on watching the new season but forgot almost everything that happened in the first, like me, you can catch the recap here.

The Season 2 premiere of “Euphoria” was released Sunday, Jan. 9, and episodes are being released weekly, so while we unfortunately can’t just binge-watch the entire thing, it’s probably for the best. This premiere attracted 2.4 million viewers across both HBO and HBO Max. According to IMDb, the “Euphoria” premiere was, “the strongest digital premiere night performance for any episode of an HBO series since HBO Max launch and a series-record more than double the Season 1 premiere.” The digital audience of the show this time around was more than nine times larger than the Season 1 finale and 10 times larger than both releases of the stand-alone episodes.

In the first episode of the second season, “Euphoria” wasted no time in reminding viewers of its iconic color aesthetic and providing another addicting soundtrack. As an audience, we are also thrown right back into what took place previously, which is nice and refreshing considering many series these days like to drag out the dramatics of cliffhangers. Based on the first episode alone, the rest of the season appears to be just as promising.

Some viewers have argued this season has begun with too much violence and nudity, believing that the show’s producers only used these aspects for guaranteed shock value. Others dispute this by explaining that these aspects are what make the show so raw and honest. This isn’t the first time a teen show will include the world of drugs, sex and violence. I’m sure it won’t be the last and it shouldn’t. Sure, creating shows with this kind of explicit content might feel like a lot, but I’d rather watch a show that is willing to address these important topics rather than ignore them altogether. To understand what this season will include, make sure to catch a glimpse of the Season 2 trailer.

The series alone is brilliant, but one of my favorite things about watching a popular show like this is the community built around it. I love having shared experiences with strangers, even if it’s just ones over the internet. Especially with the pandemic, social media has been the only real place we’ve been able to connect with each other over the past two years, whether through Twitter exchanges, Instagram pictures or never-ending memes. Speaking of, the “‘Euphoria’ Season 2 out of context” memes have already begun and fans are living for them.

Although the season’s premiere episode was only released a few days ago as of writing, there are already so many posts that are giving me and everyone watching the laughs we’ve been needing. There’s just something about being included in an inside joke with millions of other people that is truly refreshing. BuzzFeed has even compiled the best of the best in 37 EuphoriaSeason 2 Premiere Reactions That Perfectly Sum Up How Wild The Episode Was. For as many posts and opinions there are already out there, I was pleasantly surprised at how few spoilers were present. It was nice being able to see people’s thoughts without having everything absolutely ruined for me.

Considering the number of viewers that tuned in for the first episode of this season, it looks like people will be sticking around to watch. Based on the first episode of this season alone, it looks like the show’s success will only continue to grow. This first episode has definitely answered questions that we’ve been holding onto over the last two years but has begun creating even more new ones. This season seems like it will be just as exciting and intriguing as the episodes that came before. Make sure to tune in on Sundays on HBO at around 9 p.m. to keep up with this groundbreaking series. And if you still haven’t hopped aboard the “Euphoria” train, check it out. It’s not something you’ll regret seeing.

Tori Barney, Columbia College Chicago

Writer Profile

Tori Barney

Columbia College Chicago
Creative Writing

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