The newest trailer for HBO’s The Idol has everything fans love and hate about creator Sam Levinson’s show Euphoria. Levinson’s upcoming foray into the seedy world of sex and drugs is co-created with pop/R&B star Abel “The Weeknd” Tesfaye, and Reza Fahim. Euphoria is HBO’s most-watched series, second only to the ongoing Game of Thrones franchise. While Euphoria focuses on teens molded by social media, ravaged by drug addiction, and coping with trauma, The Idol shifts its attention to adult characters to tell the story of an up-and-coming pop star’s burgeoning relationship with an alluring cult leader named Tedros.
The Idol will also serve as The Weeknd’s acting debut as Tedros, alongside Lily-Rose Depp, established actors like Jane Adams, Dan Levy, and Hank Azaria, and other music artists like Troye Sivan and Moses Sumney. The show has faced significant setbacks due to production issues, causing the original director, She Dies Tomorrow‘s Amy Siemetz, to part ways with the project over creative differences. Levinson instead stepped into the director’s chair. The show also went through significant reshoots after re-tooling the story to focus on The Weeknd’s character, despite several episodes being previously finished.
Released by HBO, the newest trailer for The Idol continues to emphasize all the ways that make it similar to Levinson’s other work. For those familiar with Euphoria‘s style – the cinematography, the mix of scuzz and glamour, the neon-hued lighting, the decadence, the drugs – much will look recognizable. Check the trailer out below:
The Idol Looks Even Wilder Than Euphoria
Euphoria has its fair share of wild moments, especially regarding its depiction of sex, and tends to have a propensity towards violence against women. The glimpses of sex seen in The Idol trailer look to lean more toward the kinky side, with several shots of The Weeknd blindfolding Depp’s character, and another brief shot that appears to be a sex scene with a man on a leash. That aforementioned violence is still a trend that could continue here given the subject matter, though. The dialogue in The Idol trailer does skew more towards the Hollywood satire of Levinson’s Malcolm & Marie, or Assassination Nation, which could bring more levity and outright comedic moments than what is shown in Euphoria. Relatively unexplored still in the trailer is the cult aspect, which could add another level of mysticism, danger, and mental manipulation to the show.
Love his style or hate it, the Idol trailer offers a hyped up brand of nihilism, addiction, and controlling, toxic relationships that are touchstones of Levinson’s formula. By bringing this story outside of high school, this series could get even more intense than Euphoria. More peeks into the show’s wild nature are bound to come as The Idol is set to premiere next year, but has no official release date. With Euphoria season 3 likely not arriving until 2024, fans of the show will have to sate themselves with The Idol in the meantime.
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