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“Close to 30 penises flash onscreen". People want Foxtel's new teen drama, Euphoria, banned.

New TV series Euphoria hasn’t even aired yet, but it is already attracting controversy for its graphic scenes full of sex, drugs and nudity.

The HBO teen drama, which follows a group of high school students “as they navigate love and friendships in a world of drugs, sex, trauma, and social media,” will stream in Australia on Foxtel from Monday.

Among the show’s actors are former Disney-star Zendaya, Australian actor Jacob Elordi, and Grey’s Anatomy’s Eric Dane. Its executive producer is Drake (yes, the rapper).

Check out the Euphoria trailer below. Post continues below video.

Video via HBO

Some media watchdogs have expressed concern over the content of the series, which is said to be extremely explicit.

Esquire reported the first episode alone shows a statutory rape scene involving a young trans female character and an older man, plus a drug overdose by the show’s lead, played by 22-year-old Zendaya, and a sex scene involving choking.

The Hollywood Reporter said in the second episode, “close to 30 penises flash onscreen” in a scene featuring dozens of naked high school students. (This was originally supposed to be 80 penises, but producers trimmed down the shot).

US censorship advocacy group the Parents Television Council has called for the show to be pulled before it airs, expressing concern that “HBO, with its new high school centred show ‘Euphoria‘, appears to be overtly, intentionally, marketing extremely graphic adult content – sex, violence, profanity and drug use – to teens and preteens”.

euphoria tv show zendaya
Zendaya plays the main character Rue, a recovering drug addict. Image: HBO.
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The group's president Tim Winter told Fox News that although HBO said this show was intended for adults, showrunner Sam Levinson's claim that 'parents will freak over this show' was "a demonstration of who he is targeting... HBO is now internationally marking this content to children".

Levinson has said many of the scenes were taken directly from his life and personal experiences as an addict.

Another conservative media review organisation, Movie Guide, has called upon its readers to sign a petition demanding HBO pull Euphoria, which it describes as "vile beyond belief".

The content lead to actor Brian 'Astro' Bradley, 22, quitting the series after filming scenes for the pilot episode. The Hollywood Reporter said he was uncomfortable shooting scenes that weren't in the original pilot script and suggested his character would experiment with homosexuality in future episodes.

HBO's programming president Casey Bloys has acknowledged Euphoria is "not for everyone", but said the show will open adult eyes to the challenges of growing up in 2019.

"It's not sensational to be sensational," Bloys said. "It may seem boundary-pushing, and the idea of putting them on TV may be, but somebody lived them."

Though the controversy has called HBO's decisions into question, the network is probably rubbing its hands together ahead of Euphoria's release on Sunday in the US (Monday in Australia).

There's no doubt the controversy has created more buzz about the series, and we're willing to bet a lot of people will tune in just to see if its really that bad.

And for the show's creators, that's a win.

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