By Deepa Lakshmin
On the red carpet ahead of the 2022 MTV Movie & TV Awards Sunday (June 5), Euphoria star Sydney Sweeney was hoping the series “gets a bunch of love,” and she got her wish. The HBO drama took home Best Show, one of the night’s most coveted awards — beating out Netflix’s Inventing Anna and Squid Game, Apple TV+’s Ted Lasso, Disney+’s Loki, and Paramount Network’s Yellowstone.
Created by Sam Levinson, Euphoria primarily follows Rue Bennett — played by Zendaya, who took home Best Performance in a Show — and her complicated journey as a recovering addict. After season 1 premiered to critical acclaim in 2019, season 2 arrived in January 2022 and squeezed an unsettling amount of emotional baggage and inner turmoil into eight episodes. (Revisit Cassie vs. Maddy — the hair-pulling, face-slapping drama that won Best Fight — here.)
“Without you, this would not be possible,” Sweeney, who plays Cassie Howard, said while accepting the Golden Popcorn on behalf of the show’s cast at Los Angeles’ Barker Hangar. “Thank you for loving characters that might be hard to love sometimes… We do this for you and we love you and thank you.”
Though Rue is centered as Euphoria’s protagonist, fans have found something to love about nearly every messy, deeply flawed character in the series. From Cassie’s need for validation to Maddy Perez’s sass to Nate Jacob’s daddy issues to Jules’ impulsivity to Lexi’s introversion to Fez’s legal concerns to Kat’s relationship problems and many more — seriously, I can’t begin to sum up the amount of collective trauma these teens have experienced into a neat little sentence — each character is perfectly imperfect.
But that’s what makes them human! These beautiful, hot messes are on complicated journeys to figure out who they are and what they want out of life — and all of us watching at home just can’t look away.
The 2022 MTV Movie & TV Awards are airing live from the Barker Hangar in L.A. right now on MTV, with the Movie & TV Awards: UNSCRIPTED to follow. Find all the winners here.