Euphoria Season 2, Episode 5 Recap: Padlocked Doors and Staircase Confessions

Whew, this week’s Euphoria episode was a lot. It was heavy and dark and real and raw. If you got into this show for the glitter and the teenage quarrels, you were repeatedly reminded in this episode that the show is much deeper than that. It took me a while to process this week’s episode and I’m taking a different approach to my recap. I’m echoing Zendaya and reminding you to please take care while watching and reading. There are of course spoilers but also potentially triggering mentions of addiction and sex trafficking.

Ruby Bennett

I’ve had conversations with what feels like everyone I know about this week’s episode. We saw Rue physically and emotionally destroy the entire world around her. In an anger-fueled tantrum over the loss of her $10,000 drug-filled suitcase from Laurie, Rue spews vicious, verbal venom to her mom, Gia, and later Jules—who was revealed to be the one who clued in Rue’s mom on the lack of her daughter’s sobriety. That tantrum quickly turns into a destructive rampage wreaking havoc all across the city from the Howard’s house—where we finally get the Maddy and Cassie confrontation we’ve been waiting for—to repeated attempts to enter Fez’s house and finally ends at Laurie’s ominous house—the drug empire leader Rue is indebted to. 

Whether or not addiction has affected your life personally, watching Rue set a blaze to every person, place, and thing that has ever loved her was heartbreaking. Addiction can look different for a lot of people and I think Euphoria has done an exceptional job at showing the many dynamics. Sometimes addiction looks like relapse, sometimes it looks like new relationships—even ones that aren’t conducive to sobriety. Sometimes addiction looks like robbing people you know (or don’t know) and causing yourself and others harm from your actions. Sometimes it even looks like doing things you swore you’d never do, like Rue taking morphine intravenously, and sometimes it looks like carceral punishment instead of healing support. And sometimes, a lot of times, addiction looks like people needing help finding themselves in potentially life-threatening situations. This is where this week’s episode left us, and Rue. Viewers are left to infer a lot of conclusions about what happened while Rue was at Laurie’s house and many people have been quick to deduce that Rue has been (or will become) a victim of sex trafficking at the hands of Laurie. 

There is a sick horror in people who take advantage of people struggling with addiction, under the guise of helping them. As harm-reduction tactics have become more mainstream, so too are people like Laurie, luring in people who need help most. We don’t know for sure what Laurie has done (or will do) to Rue but we know she isn’t helping. The padlocked door is a sign that nothing good is to come. 

What I Want For Next Week’s Episode

First and foremost I want our Rue to be safe. This week’s episode ended with someone off-camera entering Rue’s home, and I hope it’s her. I know we’re due for a bigger Maddy and Cassie confrontation which will no doubt give TikTok audio fodder for the ages and I am ready. I also want just one of the various internet theories about Ashtray to be true, namely, this one. Lastly, I hope you all take care of yourselves and seek out any support you may need after this week’s episode. See you right here next week for my episode six recap!