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Euphoria shocked audiences when it first premiered on HBO. The series, which has Sam Levinson at the helm, depicts incredibly graphic content and situations and features teenage characters navigating the ups and downs of growing up. However, Euphoria star Storm Reid, who stands out in the role of Gia Bennett, doesn’t want audiences to get carried away with what the characters experience on the show.

'Euphoria' star Storm Reid as Gia Bennett as she sits on her bed in a production still from season 2.
Storm Reid as Gia Bennett | HBO/Eddy

‘Euphoria’ star Storm Reid’s role as Gia Bennett watches, helpless, as her sister relapses on drugs

Parents across the country immediately worried for their teens after watching episodes of Euphoria. The series, which stars Zendaya, Hunter Schafer, Sydney Sweeney, and Jacob Elordi, portrays today’s youth in dangerous situations. From risky sexual encounters to binge drinking and drug use, Euphoria is not for the weak of heart. 

One character, in particular, gets a front-row seat to drug use, and that’s Gia Bennett. Gia’s older sister Rue (Zendaya) relapsed in Euphoria Season 2. Rue danced around her house without realizing anyone else was home. Gia watched a very high Rue before asking her if she had relapsed. Rue denies it, but Gia is smart enough to realize the heartbreaking truth.

Reid recently sat down with NPR and talked about the tough topics the show often touches on and how she separates her character from her real life.

“I think I’m good at knowing the difference between what work is and what real life is. And I’m able to disconnect from work and back – go back into my reality. But filming season two, I think it was just so heavy and so raw. And I found moments on set or even when I would leave set where I would just – the quiet moments by myself where I would think, wow, people really go through this every day. Like, yes, we are very privileged to be on a show and be acting, but it’s emotionally taxing for us. So I can’t imagine how people who are going through these situations in real life every day right now as we speak – how they feel.”

Storm Reid doesn’t want the situations in ‘Euphoria’ to come off as enviable to viewers

While television often depicts certain situations as glamorous or even cool, the actors on Euphoria like Storm Reid have pointed out the events in the show should be seen as warnings more than anything else.

When NPR asked Reid what she hopes younger viewers take from the show, she replied, “That’s a tough one because drug addiction is very real, so I just would hate for young people to think, ‘oh, yeah, Rue is doing it, and she’s surviving.’ Or in the first episode, you see her at that party, and she does a slew of drugs. And then she feels as though she’s having a heart attack and takes Adderall, and then she’s fine. Like, those things are not OK to do. 

So I want people to know, especially young people, that Euphoria is a depiction of people giving themselves grace and making mistakes,” Reid continued. “And I think I always have to remind myself and my friends, especially being in college, even though we’re not doing crazy things, that we’re only teenagers. And we’re not going to be perfect. And we’re going to fall in love. And we’re going to be heartbroken. And we’re going to ruin friendships and burn bridges. So that’s the beautiful part of life in Euphoria.”

When to watch new episodes of season 2

Several episodes of Euphoria Season 2 still have yet to be released. Fans of the show can catch all-new episodes on HBO and HBO Max.

How to get help: In the U.S., contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration helpline at 1-800-662-4357.