The Euphoria Effect: Media impacts teen lives today

    Ever since this generation watched Barney sing about loving strangers and Barbie sing about her glamorizing lifestyle,  kids have always been influenced by the media and what we see. This goes on until adulthood due to minors being life size sponges. As kids grow, of course, they develop their own sense of thought, but it specifically hits harder during our teenage years. 

    Seeing the new Hit show, Euphoria, which debuted and hit the charts on June 16 2019, has prompted the ‘effects of teen media on teens’ conversation to be brought up. The show is based on a seventeen year old Rue Bennet who suffers with addiction,mental health and grief of her father who passed away. The show takes Teen drama to a whole new level introducing Death, Sex, Exciting outburst and Overdosing, all in the pilot. Due  to how big the show was talked about and praised about its accuracy, its relatability and its glamorization of  trauma  , the show has instantly become a hit and had much anticipation for its sequel season which had 2.4 million viewers Sunday night January 9th. The show itself is a hit and has made history already due to its distinctive difference to other coming of age tv shows , but they’re lots of eyebrow raisers that make the show look very suspicious with its intent towards their audience 

    Starting off, the show is targeted toward teens and it highlights the special activities teens partake in specifically in high school. Most of the cast is made up of adults with the youngest adult cast member being 18 playing a 13 year old, the reality of adults playing children is regular and has been being done forever but the glamorization of mental health and drugs being stereotyped to teens is where the problem begins to take place. The level of difference that euphoria has to its peer shows is very high, which makes the details of the show very noticeable.  

    Steering into the main problem in the show is the “Glamorization” of drugs, sex and violence, this is a big problem with a lot of teen dramas to date but euphoria has created a fan base that religiously is based of their liking for the shows realness. But is this really real? Are us teens actually seeing reality when we watch shows like this? The Drug Abuse Resistance Education program aka The D.A.R.E program has spoken upon the claims of the glamorization stating”Rather than further each parent’s desire to keep their children safe from the potentially horrific consequences of drug abuse and other high-risk behavior, HBO’s television drama, Euphoria, chooses to misguidedly glorify and erroneously depict high school student drug use, addiction, anonymous sex, violence, and other destructive behaviors as common and widespread in today’s world.” The program goes to further explain “It is unfortunate that HBO, social media, television program reviewers, and paid advertising have chosen to refer to the show as ‘groundbreaking,’ rather than recognizing the potential negative consequences on school-age children who today face unparalleled risks and mental health challenges.” This goes to allow me to say that while Euphoria is a diverse, industry changing coming of age TV show, The mark that the show is leaving may not be the one we should be praising. 

    Now that the show is in its second season hopefully the writers can steer the show in the right direction joining both reality and teen drama to hopefully get the message across without killing realistic demands that teens are faced with. The show isn’t all horrible as fans like Sadie Walsh states in her critique. “From the beginning to the end, the cinematography that the show had created was incredible”, so therefore maybe us fans can chip in and create that reality because at the end of the day Teen media is always going to affect teens.