Euphoria Season 2 Episode 5: “Stand Still Like the Hummingbird”

Episode 5 just gets crazier and crazier.

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Episode 5 of Euphoria drops us right in the middle of something, it doesn’t even let us breathe first. Rue is having a fight with her mother about the drugs she found out Rue’s taking. Jules told her. It’s a very emotional scene that focuses on Zendaya’s brilliant acting.

From there the episode gets crazier and crazier. It gets to places I didn’t see coming. It’s like you can dissect the episode into 3 parts. Part one is the fight, and then in Part 2, Rue goes out on the run when she understands that her mother wants to take her to rehab. While she’s on the run everything happens very quickly, and it even gets to a police chase. Those scenes made me wonder, is Euphoria messing with our heads again? Will we find out that Rue’s imagining half of this somehow? It just felt very weird and abrupt to see Rue becoming an outlaw that runs from police and causes a chain car accident and robs houses.

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But then again, she’s in a very tough spot now. Her mom threw out all the dugs that she thought were hers and now Rue’s in huge debt to Laurie. This leads us to Part 3. Rue desperately arrives at Laurie’s house. Part of me thinks it’s the drugs; she was irrational; she was in withdrawal; she was in pain. But it’s probably deeper than that. I think it’s the child in her – she’s just a child after all! – who was in a lot of pain and sought comfort while trying to make sense of it all. In her eyes, MAYBE she could talk to Laurie, MAYBE she could appeal to her senses by giving her the jewelry and convincing her it’s going to be okay, money-wise.

Laurie helps Rue’s withdrawal symptoms in a moment of pure agony for her, and in the morning, Rue wakes up to find herself trapped in the house. Laurie’s plan is to make Rue “work” for her debt – become a prostitute for her. Rue manages to escape in a really claustrophobic-horror-movie-esque scene and runs away.

By the way, a small but very relevant scene I didn’t mention is the scene at Lexi’s house, where Rue blows Cassie’s bubble and tells Maddy she saw her going out with Ultra-Douch-Nate. I wonder where this goes from here.

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This episode pretty much builds upon the terrific performance of Zendaya. She’s just so brilliant. It feels a lot like an outside-the-main-plot centric episode and I think its main goal is to emphasize the depth of Rue’s problem, drug-wise and also her getting involved with a powerful drug lord in a moment of “I’m smarter than everyone”, which she might have been, but she hasn’t thought about the possibility of losing the drugs like that. It seems like the extremely surreal moments here seem to be part of the art that Sam Levinson is creating here. What will be the aftermath of all this?

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