Euphoria, Hollywood’s latest attempt to troll us rubes with gratuitous displays of teenage gay, lesbian, and transsexual sex and orgies — not to mention rape and sodomy– is failing bigtime.
Just how big of a failure is HBO’s Euphoria?
So big that the entertainment industry’s media sycophants have been forced to write headlines like this one:
HBO’s “Euphoria” Reaches New Viewership High With Episode Four
“Reaches new viewership high” is designed to make it sound as though Euphoria is reaching all these amazing viewership highs — except…
Guess what this amazing new viewership high is…?
A mere 600,000 viewers.
Between cable and streaming, HBO has 40 to 50 million U.S. subscribers, so only about one percent of those subscribers are bothering to tune into the pay channel’s boring TeenageGayAnalRapeOrgyTransLesbianSexorama.
For perspective, everyone was laughing at Lena Dunham’s basement-rated Girls when it hit 799,000 viewers.
What’s more, even HBO’s most desperate act of trolling, the promise of 30 penises (down from 80) in a single scene, failed to attract even two percent of its subscribers to tune in.
Here’s a taste of the boring “envelope-pushing” HBO is offering to an America that ain’t buying:
The [30 penis] scene centers around Nate, the star athlete with anger issues and some serious sexual anxiety. All those penises are just a short aside in the story of Nate’s life, which gets a brief overview at the top of the episode. He’s not just the son of a man who has regularly preyed upon trans women and gay men, but the son who carries that secret around after discovering his collection of homemade porn featuring his father in the act. He’s the masculine heir apparent to a very broken man who expects his son to end up like him. Nate’s fucked up childhood manifests itself in equally fucked up anger and toxic masculinity. He is only attracted to the most feminine, “perceivably weak” women, and yet at the end of the episode, he’s revealed to be chatting on a hookup app with the same trans girl his father raped in Episode One.
That’s a lot to process, so let’s head back to the penises, which are abruptly folded in the crude rundown of Nate’s life. As Zendaya’s voiceover explains, “He hated how casual his teammates were about being naked. How they’d talk to him with their dicks hanging out. He made a concerted effort to always maintain eye contact during those exchanges.” It’s all a very long-winded way of turning other penises into Nate’s enemy-a reminder that his father is a serial cheater who fetishizes trans women. But outside of the context of the show, it’s a prime example of a growing trend in prestige television. The more grotesque or shocking or explicit, the more likely it will be perceived as noteworthy.
I don’t know about you, but I fell asleep right around “serial cheater who fetishizes trans women” thing.
Sorry, but nothing about this sounds shocking or provocative; it’s just tedious. To begin with, who wants to Google “trans women” to find out if that means a guy who thinks he’s a girl or a girl who thinks she’s a guy when the answer might pop up with photos no one wants to see?
How big of a failure is Euphoria?
One of the show’s stars, Zendaya (no last name), has 58 million — with a “m” — Instagram followers and nearly 16 million Twitter followers. But despite all that free social media publicity being shot out to nearly 70 million followers, less than one-percent have tuned it.
I hate to break this to Hollywood, but there is nothing sexy or attractive or provocative or interesting about victimization — even if that victimization involves 30 penises (down from 80).
Sex can be sexy. But this isn’t sex. Euphoria sounds like sociology homework or being forced to play Spin-the-Bottle with your Womyn’s Studies professor, the one who doesn’t wax her upper lip (which is probably all of them).
Actors and actresses sexually degrading themselves on screen is as tired as it gets nowadays. Trying to shock us rubes by upping the perv ante is just ZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.
You want to do something truly shocking and avant-garde, you want to put some real artistic bravery on display? Bring back some of that good old T & A. Give us another Basic Instinct or Hardbodies… Something fun and titillating and gratuitous, something for guys who just want to laugh and look at hot girls.
In this sexless, fascist woke era some sweet bewbs would be a true act of iconoclasm.
Euphoria sounds about as edgy as a basketball.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC. Follow his Facebook Page here.
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