'Euphoria' Special Part 1 'Trouble Don't Last Always' Preview: Could Ali's insight help Rue unite with Jules?
'Euphoria' fans have been speculating about that Season 1 cliffhanger for a year now. Did Rue relapse or didn't she? Some think that fantasy musical number meant she definitely had. But there are some who think it was a giant fake-out on the part of the show creators.
Now, Part 1 of the two-part special might finally give the resolution we have been wanting for so long. The episode airing first seems like it will be a two-hander between Zendaya's Rue and her mentor, Ali, played by Colman Domingo. The first look images and trailer certainly seem to suggest this.
The setup for the episode involves Rue in a diner in a foggy state reliving that painful scene at the train station where both she and Jules decide to leave together but Rue chickens out at the last moment. Jules argues about it being Rue's idea before leaving her all alone on the platform as she boards the train for New York. We also hear Rue's self-accusatory voice in her head saying, "Maybe I deserve it".
Her mind is in such a free fall that she doesn't even realize that Ali, who she has been so anxiously waiting for to turn up, has already arrived in his car and is now sitting across her. "Rue, why'd you call me?" says Ali as he sinks into the booth opposite her and Rue looks up with oceans of stories in her eyes.
While the trailer and most of the first look pictures show her and Ali in the diner, obviously some time has passed since her "musical" relapse. In the poster for the episode, we see her in her own bed in a deeply depressive state.
So the chances are that after taking drugs to cope with Jules's departure once, Rue went back to sobriety but is still struggling to stay sober as she nurses a broken heart. She is in the same situation she was in when she first talked to Ali -- without Jules or drugs to help her coast. The best thing about this is that Ali, as a former addict, has always given Rue the honest and straightforward advice she needs.
He was the one who asked her if she was substituting the high of drugs with the high she got around Jules. So who else but Ali could give her the advice she needs at this low point?
Kudos to the creators for choosing the diner for this intense conversation at "3 in the morning", where the world is sleeping. It circumvents the awkwardness of shooting in a pandemic that allows for limited locations and small crews. But it also gives the feeling of intimacy between these two characters isolated from the world as they grapple with soul-searing truths at that time of night when there is just that hint of melancholy and loneliness. There is a grand canon of great late-night diner scenes on film and TV that 'Euphoria' seems to be capitalizing on and is spot on for this "special".
Rue is definitely feeling lonely and seems to be sinking into self-blame, but Ali might just give her the insight she needs to face why she freaked out about leaving for New York with Jules or why she relapsed. He could also help her see that going to New York to meet Jules could be a good idea. It will help with her feelings of abandonment. And as fans, we are all for a Rue and Jules reunion during the holiday season.
Meeting Jules could also be the quickest way for Rue to realize that Jules leaving wasn't a reflection on their budding relationship but rather a way to get away from Nate and Cal and the town that didn't get her. New York is where Jules found freedom and while she wants to share that with Rue, her need get away is stronger than being with Rue. Once Rue gets this, she might not go down the self-hating spiral of depression and another relapse.
Tune in to the early late-night premiere of a new special episode of HBO’s 'Euphoria' on Thursday, December 3, at 9 pm PT and December 4 at 12 midnight ET.