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Zendaya Says Season 2 of ‘Euphoria’ Will be “Hard to Watch”

It’s time to break out the glitter eyeliner and crop tops because Euphoria season two is back! Ever since the juicy series graced our screens in 2019, it has made waves in pop culture for its nuanced approach to topics like addiction, sexuality, and domestic violence from the teen perspective. Its star Zendaya made history when she became the youngest person to win an Emmy for Lead Actress in a Drama Series after her portrayal of Rue Bennett, a teen recovering from substance use and searching for her place in the world. 

It’s been quite some time since Euphoria’s intense finale aired in August 2019, and despite the pandemic delaying production plans over the past year, season two is just a few days away. Zendaya herself has called the new season “devastating” and potentially “hard to watch.” Here’s what you need to know about the season two premiere.

Season 2 of ‘Euphoria’ will finally be released in January.

The new, long-awaited season of Euphoria will premiere on January 9, 2022, and will feature ten, hour-long episodes. Although only the first episode of Euphoria season 2 will be available on January 9, episodes will be released weekly live on HBO or HBO Max at 9 pm ET every Sunday. If you’re new to the Euphoria fandom or need a refresher on season one, you can catch up on all of the episodes here just in time for the January 9 premiere.

The Season 2 trailer teases romance, conflict, & Rue on the run.

On November 23, HBO released a brief teaser for season two. The clip opens with Rue (Zendaya) laying on her bed singing along to Frank Sinatra’s “Call Me Irresponsible,” as her voiceover plays in the background. She can be heard saying, “When you’re younger, everything feels so permanent. But as you get older, you begin to realize nothing is, and everyone you love could drift away.” The moody monologue quickly fades into a chaotic montage of a police raid, Fez (Angus Cloud) fighting, and a scene where Rue is running from the police. It then cuts back to a kitchen scene where Rue spits a drink back into her cup after her sister, Gia (Storm Reid) asks, “Rue, are you high?” 

One eyebrow-raising moment in the teaser is when Cassie Howard (Sydney Sweeney) — Maddie’s best friend and Nate’s girlfriend — appears to ride in the passenger’s seat of Nate’s car as he gazes at her romantically. (Nate is played by Jacob Elordi and Maddie by Alexa Demie). Sweeney even tells Newsweek that her character has a “crazy” storyline in season two. Will Cassie and Nate become the new East Highland “it” couple? And more importantly, what would that mean for Cassie and Maddie’s friendship? The plot thickens.

The official season two trailer, released on December 20, expands on the teaser and gives some pretty major hints as to what’s in store for the new episodes. Rue is seen reluctantly walking into a support group session, followed by scenes with love interest Jules (Hunter Shaefer). In the trailer, Kat Hernandez (Barbie Ferreira) appears to be navigating relationship troubles, and Cassie explodes during a teary moment in which she yells, “You guys can call judge me if you want, but I do not care! I have never, ever been happier!” Sprinkled throughout the season two trailer are various vignettes hinting at violence, cops, drugs, guns, and intense arguments. Rue strolls around at night carrying a mysterious suitcase and one scene depicts her running through a busy street while her sister cries, “Mom, go get her!” Given that the trailer closes with a New Year countdown and the sound of a gun cocking, season two is bound to be a dark and thrilling adventure.

New characters are joining the ‘Euphoria’ cast.

While many of Euphoria’s lead actors will return for season two, there are a few new faces joining the cast. Singer-songwriter Dominic Fike is confirmed to join the show, and based on the season two trailer, it appears his character might be a part of Fez’s crew after he is seen wreaking havoc at the local corner store where Fez and Ashtray (Javon Walton) conduct their business. Actress Minka Kelly, known for her role on the NBC drama series Friday Night Lights (2006-2009), has also been confirmed to join the cast along with two additional newcomers (not featured in the trailer): actor and rapper Demetrius ‘Lil Meech’ Flenory, Jr. and Kelvin Harrison, Jr., known for his roles in Ender’s Game (2013) and 12 Years A Slave (2013). 

spoiler alert: Before you watch, brush up on the ending of Season 1.

The first season of Euphoria ended with the characters dealing with the harsh consequences of their own decisions. Jules and Rue planned on running away together in hopes of continuing their uncertain romance, only for Jules to leave her hanging. At the school dance, Nate and Maddie try to make each other jealous by bringing separate dates after they get into a heated argument. Spoiler alert: Cassie has an abortion and breaks things off with McKay (Algee Smith), Kat and Ethan (Austin Abrams) take a huge leap and finally admit their feelings for each other, and Nate and Maddie seem to discuss their violent and toxic relationship. Finally, Fez tries his best to pay off the drug dealers’ blackmailing — which takes a turn for the worst with a high-end robbery. 

It’s safe to say that Euphoria knows how to keep us on our toes. In season two, will Maddie confront Nate and Cassie’s suspected romance? Jules will definitely make a return, but what does that mean for her and Rue? Will Ethan and Kat return as a power couple? Based on the trailer, it’s safe to assume that Rue will have to deal with the difficult consequences of her relapse, but what will that mean for her life, love, and friendships? Tune in this January to find out.

Rachel is a contributing writer for Her Campus under the Culture and Entertainment verticle. Her articles cover trending topics, including new releases, fan theories, and pop culture news. She has been a part of the Her Campus community since 2019, when she started as a charting member of the Her Campus St. John's University chapter. Rachel was also the chapter's President from Fall 2020 to Spring 2021. As president, Rachel managed the divisions of the chapter, gave weekly updates on progress, and led chapter meetings and events. In 2021, Rachel graduated from St. John's with a Bachelor's degree in Journalism and a minor in Business Administration. Rachel has freelanced in Digital Marketing and Copywriting since graduating. As an aspiring multi-media journalist, Rachel enjoys exercising her writing skills on various digital platforms. You can catch Rachel trying out new makeup trends on TikTok, watching her favorite shows, or listening to music in her free time. She is passionate about connecting with people through music, lifestyle, and cultural conversations.