‘Euphoria’ is the show everyone is talking about. In the June 16 series premiere, Zendaya’s character Rue gets out of rehab and there’s a last-second twist that will leave you shook.
Euphoria follows Rue (Zendaya), a struggling teen addicted to drugs. She was diagnosed with OCD, ADD, and general anxiety at a young age. Her doctor also said there was a possibility she was bi-polar, but it was too early to tell. Rue was prescribed a number of drugs and fully admits that she doesn’t remember much from when she was 8 to 12. The world moved fast and her brain moved slow. She was in a fog.
“At some point, you make a choice about who you are and what you want,” Rue says. She explains the reason behind why she uses drugs as her escape: “And then it happens. That moment when your breath starts to slow, and every time you breathe, you breathe out all the oxygen you have. Everything stops — your heart, your lungs, and finally your brain. Everything you feel and wish and want to forget, it all just sinks. And then suddenly, you give it air again, give it life again… and then over time, it’s all I wanted. Those 2 seconds of nothingness.”
That chase for nothingness lands Rue in rehab the summer before junior year. Rue is totally honest about her addiction. “I had no intention of staying clean,” Rue admits. Rue then goes to see her pal Fezco (Angus Cloud) to get more drugs. On her way, she sees Jules (Hunter Schafer), who has just moved to town. Jules, a trans girl, moved to the suburbs with her dad after her parents got divorced. She’s messaging men on an app and agrees to meet up with one named DominantDaddy on the app.
Rue crosses paths with Nate (Jacob Elordi) while getting her next fix. When talking about Nate, a hotshot football player who is the definition of The Worst, Rue references “sh*t with Jules.” So you know things go down. Nate is prepping for his pal’s end of summer party and trying to get over his ex-girlfriend, Maddy (Alexa Demie). Maddy is getting ready for the party as well and attempting to move on from Nate, who constantly criticized her when they were together.
When Rue returns home from getting drugs, her mom demands to know where she’s been, with her sister, Gia (Storm Reid), watching the fight from a distance. Her mom wants to drug test her now, so Rue has to scramble up a plan. She goes to great lengths to pass the drug test. She runs to her friend’s house to get fresh urine and tapes the container to her leg before running back home. Her mom talks about the time Rue overdosed. Gia was the one to find Rue unconscious and choking on her own vomit.
“I know a lot of you probably hate me right now and I get it. If I could be a different person, I promise, I would,” Rue says. “Not because I want it but because they do. And therein lies the catch.” Rue manages to pass the drug test without letting her mom know how and she heads out to the party after telling her mom she’s spending the night at a friend’s house.
Jules heads out as well to meet DominantDaddy, whose real name is Cal (Eric Dane). “Looking back on it, she probably would have been better off going to McKay’s,” Rue notes. Jules goes to the motel to meet up with the man from the app. She tells him that she’s 22 years old and visiting her grandparents. Cal tells her that she’s beautiful. “I’m envious of your generation, you know,” he tells Jules. “You guys don’t care as much about the rules.” They strip down, with Cal going full frontal, and have rough sex. It’s all over quickly. When Cal finishes, he just gets up and walks to shower. There’s no emotion. Nothing. While he’s in the shower, Jules picks up Cal’s phone and sees a picture of his family.
McKay’s first name is Chris (Algee Smith). He really likes this girl named Cassie (Sydney Sweeney). Before the party, his friends are calling her a “whore” and teasing him about Cassie. Nate shows him leaked naked photos of Cassie. Nate, still extremely angry over how things ended with Maddy, tells Chris to “f**k her like the whore that she is and kick her ass to the curb.” Seriously, Nate is terrible. But Nate gets into Chris’s head. When he’s hooking up with Cassie, he immediately gets rough and starts to choke her. She yells at him to stop. Chris immediately backs off and says he thought she liked that. “Don’t do it again, unless you ask me first,” Cassie tells him.
At the party, Maddy and Nate are trying to make each other jealous. Maddy decides having sex in a pool with a guy she just met is the thing to do. Meanwhile, Kat (Barbie Ferreira) is downstairs drinking and smoking with a group of guys. She’s a virgin and is on a mission to have sex before junior year starts. She decides to have sex with a guy from another school at the party.
Rue runs into Fezco. He gets real with her. He admits that he missed her while she was away at rehab. He wants her to know that this “drug sh*t is not the answer. ” She opens up about how she got involved with drugs in the first place. When she was taken to the hospital after a panic attack, the doctor gave her liquid valium to calm her down. “When it hit me, I thought, this is it. This is the feeling I have been searching for my entire life for as long as I can remember because suddenly the world went quiet. And I felt safe in my own head.” This is her way to cope with life. She’s well aware of the consequences, but she’s made her choice.
Nate gets word about Maddy having sex in the pool and goes to see it for himself. Everyone is filming it. When she embarrasses him, he storms back inside and starts screaming in the kitchen. He sees Jules, who just minding her own business, and corners her. He asks her who she’s friends with at this party. “Nobody who looks like you is minding their own f**king business,” he seethes in her face. “I know what you are.” He threatens her and Jules goes into protective mode. She grabs a knife and he quickly backs off. She points the knife at him. He claims he was just joking with her. She slices her arm right in front of Nate to scare him.
Jules leaves and Rue follows her. She asks Jules if she can come home with her. Rue helps Jules clean up her cut. The next day, Nate goes home and walks inside. On the wall are family photos. His dad is none other than DominantDaddy! “Remember when I said things got weird,” Rue says. “So, yeah.” In the morning, Rue and Jules are lying in bed together. Rue asks Jules, “Wanna get high?”