Euphoria is a 2019 teen drama airing on HBO created by Sam Levinson that stars actor Zendaya. It is an adaptation of the 2012 Israeli miniseries of the same name. It follows several teenagers as they navigate the struggles of the modern world, including topics like sex, drug use, high school dynamics and social media.
Euphoria first aired on Israeli television in 2012. It was originally created by Ron Leshem, Daphna Levin and Tmira Yardeni.
On June 1st, 2017, Deadline announced that an American adaptation of the Israeli drama Euphoria was in development, with Sam Levinson writing the production and serving as executive producer alongside Leshem, Levin, Yardeni, Hadas Mozes Lichtenstein, Mirit Toovi, Yoram Mokadi, and Gary Lennon. Rapper and recording artist Drake was also revealed to be an executive producer as well. On June 5th, 2018, the casting for the series was announced, headlined by actress Zendaya. On May 11th, 2019, the first trailer for the series was released, gaining over 5.9 million views on YouTube. However, this trailer has since been deleted. A reupload (shown below) was posted by YouTube channel ONE Media two days later. It's received roughly 4.2 million views over two years. The first episode of the show aired on June 16th.
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Euphoria met with mostly positive responses from critics, receiving a score of 67 on Metacritic. Richard Roeper raved about the series, who after watching one half of the series, wrote, "If the second half of this story is as compelling as the first, this will end up being one of the best series of the year." Others were less thrilled with the storytelling but praised the look of the show. Hank Stuever of The Washington Post wrote, "The (show) is mainly a puzzle: beautifully shot, artfully composed, nevertheless unsettling and needlessly cruel. To really get the show, one must shed any notion that a teenager can be happy or satisfied — even in moments of chemical or sexual ecstasy. The show defies any notion that stories are something that build toward a moral or a theme or even a central idea."
The show has quickly developed a passionate fanbase online, with fans making jokes about the series immediately after the first episode. User @mjhollands posted a clip from the series praising Zendaya's comedic acting chops, gaining over 180 retweets and 690 likes (shown below, top). User @Skinnyfer posted a humorous video meant to represent the themes of the show, gaining over 50 retweets and 240 likes (shown below, bottom). Jokes about the first episode of the series were covered by Pop Buzz. A discussion thread about the first episode posted to /r/television gained over 210 points.
Euphoria (2019) pic.twitter.com/SVTCyb0D2A— ✨ken✨ (@skinnyfer) June 17, 2019
Euphoria High School
Euphoria High School refers to memes and tweets that reference the outlandish nature of the high school experience portrayed in the show. The students and characters in Euphoria are often dressed provocatively and engage in activities associated with adult discourse, like sex and drug use. Memes about this contradiction started on Twitter in 2019 but picked up in abundance in 2021 on platforms like Instagram and TikTok.
For instance, the first tweet about this meme concept was posted on June 19th, 2019, by Twitter user thatdevinfield. His tweet (shown below) received 166 likes over the course of two years.
The most notable trend, however, was popularized on TikTok in early 2022 where creators "changed into uniform," essentially putting on something more provocative and revealing that reflects the high schoolers on the show. The first user on the platform to do this was TikToker ellio_spaghettio, who posted his video (shown below) on January 7th, 2022. It received roughly 4.1 million views and 756,700 likes over the course of four days.
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