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The Most Disturbing Moments In Euphoria Season 2

Ever since the second season of "Euphoria" kicked off in January — after a nearly one-and-a-half-year long delay — the show's creator, Sam Levinson, has been under fire. Although the series' ratings exploded with its premiere, his writing and creative decisions have been constantly criticized by viewers in the last eight weeks. The basis for these criticisms is the excessive and frequent depiction of drug use, nudity, and violence in Levinson's drama.

It's no secret that the show's portrayal of its teen characters is a much bolder and darker approach than what we've seen on television before. After the debut season, Levinson has taken it up a notch, which caused controversy all over the internet and among certain cast members — who vocalized their dissatisfaction in various interviews. These eight episodes delivered some truly unsettling and disturbing moments.

Here, we gathered most of these instances that include spoilers from "Euphoria" Season 2. So, only dive in if you're up to date with "Euphoria" or don't mind learning about essential plot points.

This article contains discussions of drug use and addiction.

Fezco beats up Nate

"Trying to Get to Heaven Before They Close the Door" is a hectic ride that jumps between characters to show us what happened in their lives since the last time we saw them. The main event is the New Year's Eve party, where everyone shows up — including Fez (Angus Cloud). There, he meets Rue's (Zendaya) former best friend, Lexi (Maude Apatow), and starts flirting with her. It's a sweet moment between the two, considering Fezco's naturally violent life. But thanks to Levinson's ability to gradually build suspense even in the most unassuming scenes, we sense that something is brewing under the surface. Fezco has a plan.

We know that he's overly protective when it comes to Rue (Zendaya) — he considers her family. He knows that Nate (Jacob Elordi) is a threat to her and Jules (Hunter Schafer). Hence, after a verbal warning, he decides to take action to get the message through. He walks up to Nate and acts like everything is okay between them. Then he suddenly jumps him and starts pounding his head with brutal force. It's a brief but vicious and gory scene, where the camera doesn't shy away from the stomach-turning details. It's easily one of the most unexpected and disturbing moments of the season.

Cassie takes a ride with Nate for the first time

Before we get to the ominous party, Nate bumps into Cassie (Sydney Sweeney) in a parking lot and offers her a ride. Feeling low due to her recent breakup with McKay (Algee Smith), she agrees to go with him. Once they hit the road, Nate turns up the music while chugging down beers and the tension rises rapidly. The vibrating sexual chemistry between the two is undeniable.

The sequence becomes more distressing as Nate speeds up and keeps looking at Cassie with a devilish smile. We expect something tragic to happen — knowing Nate's erratic and often raging behavior — as we watch them on the edge of our seats, waiting for a disaster. But the catastrophe we anticipate happens internally, in a much more dangerous way: The two begin to fall in love with each other. That's probably the worst thing for both of them — we later witness the consequences of their destructive romance and how they hurt the people they love because of it.

Faye shoots heroin in the back of a car

After an unsuccessful attempt to stay sober, Rue spirals back into her drug addiction. Through her friend and dealer, Fez, she ends up meeting Faye (Chloe Cherry), who's the girlfriend of Custer (Tyler Chase). She's a user without a doubt and demonstrates that fairly quickly in her first scene. As Fezco, Ashtray (Javon Walton), and Custer are about to pitch a deal to a drug lady called Laurie (Martha Kelly), they leave the girls behind in the car. 

After introducing herself and chit-chatting with Rue, Faye doesn't waste much time getting high again. Rue freaks out a little when she sees what she's about to do, but Faye comforts her, saying: "It's just heroin." Not the response she hoped to hear. Although the depiction of drug use in TV shows and movies isn't that shocking these days, it can still hit hard — especially in a situation where the stakes are already high.

If you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Cal revisits the gay bar after 25 years

In Episode 3, we learn about Cal's (Elias Kacavas/Eric Dane) past and how he fell in love with his best friend, Derek (Henry Eikenberry), when they were teenagers. After they graduate from high school, Derek insists the two should go and celebrate together. He knows a place when they will serve them alcohol: a gay bar out of sight. The two get drunk and, for the first time, express their feelings to each other before summer ends and they attend different colleges.

In the following episode — which takes place 25 years after that night — Cal decides to revisit the same bar and relive his memories. He drinks heavily, puts a song on the jukebox, and starts dancing with one of the customers. Then he begins imagining what it would be like with Derek, which makes him emotional. He asks the guy he's dancing with to wrestle — just like he and Derek did back in the day — and even though he refuses, Cal keeps insisting and eventually gets thrown out of the place. 

Levinson's depressive yet heartfelt direction recreates a painful memory we can relate to. It's one of those scenes that uses music and visuals in a perfect combination to channel a character's internal suffering, in a way that goes beyond words.

Cal reveals his secrets to his family

In "You Who Cannot See, Think Of Those Who Can," we witness Cal exposing what he hid from his family for decades. After he's thrown out of the bar, he goes home drunk and confesses his most sacred secret to his loved ones — but right before that, he urinates on the floor in the foyer. His wife and two sons come out of their rooms to find out what's happening. When his wife asks him what's going on, Cal looks up at her and starts laughing hysterically. Then he says, "I think I'm lonely." He continues by telling them how many men he had sex with and that he was living a double life for too long — which ends now.

Then he tells his son, Aaron (Zak Steiner), that the pornography on his computer is disgusting, and he's got a problem. Then he turns to Nate to admit that he's the biggest regret of his life. In a matter of minutes, he destroys the image of the perfect family he tried building. There aren't many emotionally more upsetting situations than realizing that all you thought of your husband and the father of your children was nothing but a lie.

Rue lashes out at her mother and sister

"Stand Still Like the Hummingbird," the fifth episode of the season, might be the most intense one Levinson has ever made. It focuses entirely on Rue after her mother finds out she's doing drugs again. Once she tells her daughter that she got rid of the suitcase full of opiates, Rue completely loses it. She lashes out at her in a furious fit. She shouts how bad a parent her mother is and that she has no idea what she's done to her. The scene is one of the toughest cold opens in the series, one that portrays the ugly side of drug addiction. The camera exposes the cruelest details, and the actors involved give their absolute best as well — especially Zendaya.

Witnessing a teen going through withdrawal symptoms is never an easy watch. Every word, every kick, and every shout cuts deep emotionally. Undoubtedly, it's one of the most disturbing moments of the season — and it's also an extremely important one. Although the depiction is raw and brutal, the scene emphasizes how crucial it is to pay attention to a teenager's mental health state as a parent and try to make the best decision ... even if it hurts like hell.

If you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Fezco and Ashtray interrogate Cal

In "Ruminations: Big And Little Bullies," Cal wrongly assumes that Fezco has the disc with all of the sexual encounters he's secretly recorded. He parks outside of Fez's house to keep an eye on him. However, Ashtray spots him and takes him into the house, holding a shotgun to his head. They begin interrogating him to find out what he wants from them. The whole situation is a misunderstanding. Cal tries to threaten the boys, but he's in no position to scare them — Ashtray quickly makes him understand that by hitting his forehead repeatedly with the gun.

It's physically uncomfortable to watch a 12-year-old beating up a man in his 50s. Cal is helpless and can't even defend himself. Even though he's a twisted and deviant guy, it's hard to justify the beating he gets. Eventually, Cal realizes that he's talking to the wrong person to get his disc back. Fez and Ash let him walk out on the condition of keeping his son, Nate, away from their lives.

Cassie gets drunk at Maddy's birthday party

One of the season's major conflicts is Cassie's secret relationship with her best friend's (Maddy) ex-boyfriend, Nate. Once she falls in love with him, the guilt eats her up inside. Her internal suffering comes to a tipping point when all the girls are celebrating Maddy's birthday at Cassie's place. She begins to drink excessively and almost loses total control when Nate shows up at the house and completely ignores her. Later on, when everyone is chilling in the hot tub, Cassie decides to join them. That's when Maddy and Nate get into an argument about their relationship status while Cassie silently observes the fight. Then she suddenly throws up on the girls and freaks out everyone.

The whole scene is pathetic and disgusting on many levels. It's depressing to see how Cassie's love for Nate makes her miserable and devastated. On the other hand, though, her moral dilemma is valid because she's sleeping her best friend's ex. There isn't a good way out of this for either of them, and they will have to face the consequences of their actions very soon.

Jules meets Nate in his car

In Episode 6, "A Thousand Little Trees Of Blood," Nate goes to Maddy's home to retrieve the disc that has the recordings of his dad's sexual encounters — including the one he had with Jules. He takes a gun with him to make sure that she won't resist. We expect that anything could happen, as does Maddy. The way he forces her to give back the disc is one of the creepiest moments of the season. Although he psychologically terrorizes her, there's very little violence involved.

In the next scene, when he calls up Jules to ask her to meet him in front of her house, the tension is already pumping. When she joins him in the car, Nate is drinking and has that wild look in his eye we all know too well by now. Surprisingly, he makes a confession and apologizes for hurting her before. It seems like he really means it, but that's not necessarily a reassurance when it comes to him. Jules is aware of this, too. That's why she hid a box cutter in her sleeve. After saying sorry, though, Nate gives back the disc to her and shares his genuine feelings. The whole encounter feels off. Seeing him being kind, sincere, and ashamed of his actions makes this conversation even more disturbing than anything violent we saw him do before.

Rue disrespects Ali

After pitching a potentially lucrative deal to Laurie, Rue walks away with a suitcase full of drugs and, ironically, she heads straight to a NA meeting. When she walks in, Ali (Colman Domingo) spots that something's off about her. Once the meeting is over, he asks her what's in the suitcase. Rue lies and tells him that she doesn't want to hear another lecture about how her life would be better if she stopped doing drugs. When he insists, Rue mumbles "shut the f*** up," which upsets Ali. He says that he always accepted her for who she is — "the good, the bad, and the ugly" — and doesn't deserve to be disrespected. Then Rue makes a horrible remark on Ali being an awful parent, and he goes berserk — for a good reason.

Although Season 2 attracted the most attention via on-screen violence and nudity, it can also be equally cruel mentally and emotionally. Ali is the only person that truly understands and accepts Rue, despite her flaws. Thus her insensitive comments cut deep, because we know their relationship up close — including all the desperation, vulnerability, and depression they shared with each other before. Even though we're aware that she's relapsed, it doesn't make it easier to watch how she berates all the people who love and support her the most.

The police chase Rue

In Episode 5, Rue escapes her family and gets chased by the police while suffering from severe withdrawal symptoms — abdominal pain, nausea, fever, and muscle weakness. To get her next fix, she lies to his friends, breaks into random houses, and steals jewelry, cash, and other valuables to pay off some of her debt to Laurie. She almost gets run over, causes several accidents, and crashes house parties but manages to get away without getting caught. She's as desperate and destructive as a drug addict can get.

Although it's immensely entertaining to watch her ruin half the city, Levinson doesn't romanticize her addiction in the slightest. Eventually, she'll have to face the repercussions of her actions and the most unbearable withdrawal symptoms imaginable. And in the end, she seeks help from one of the worst and most dangerous people possible.

If you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Rue suffers from withdrawal symptoms at Laurie's house

After the chase, Rue ends up at Laurie's home, trying to settle what she owes her. The old lady seems understanding and caring, but her priority is clearly the business. She appreciates that Rue brought jewelry, but she tells her that she'll need to pay the whole amount in cash. If she can't come up with it, she might have to compensate her in another way — the luck of being a woman, she says.

Eventually, the most excruciating period of her withdrawal catches up with Rue. She spends the night there and begs Laurie to ease her unbearable pain. As she gets worse — vomiting, shaking, running a fever — she even agrees to take morphine intravenously. If there's one thing that "Euphoria" depicts without any glorification, it's drug abuse and addiction. Watching her go through these extremely severe stages of withdrawal is not just disturbing but alarming, too. Any teenager or young adult who's considered taking drugs will think twice before they touch any substance in the future after seeing this sequence — and those who already did will empathize with Rue for going through the suffering.

If you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Ash's last moments

Although the finale might not have been what viewers expected, it had its moments. "All My Life, My Heart Has Yearned for a Thing I Cannot Name" focused more on the emotional hardship the characters faced this season, and less on sensational shock value. Even so, it managed to surprise many of us with Fezco and his brother's storyline.

Once Fez realizes that Custer betrayed him, Ash is right there to take him out — literally. Ash stabs Custer in the neck. Fez makes sure that Custer dies quickly. After that, he tells Ash that he will sacrifice himself instead of him going down. But his little brother has other plans. He digs up all the firearms he can find in the house and locks himself into the bathroom before the SWAT team arrives. Fez begs him to come out and surrender, but he refuses to do so. Eventually, he wounds one of the SWAT members with a shotgun and gets killed by another right after. It's a tragic scene that scars Fez for life, who will probably spend some time in prison the next season. But that might be the least of his worries, as he just lost the most important person in his life.