A trash series like “Euphoria” in Quebec?

A trashy series like «Euphoria&raquo in Quebec?

The buzz surrounding the American series Euphoria continues unabated. Its fragmented production, its shocking images, its trash side, its representation of sexuality, violence, drug use, all among so-called young people of diversity… have created a explosive cocktail that gets people talking (a lot). Would such a production be possible in Quebec? Yes.

“The popularity of teen drama[Editor's note: teen drama series] is undeniable here as elsewhere, because adolescence is a universal subject: everyone has been there or will go through it! And the school is an inexhaustible pool of narrative frameworks where questioning, experimentation and the quest for oneself accumulate, ”believes Audrey Riberdy, director and trainer at the National Institute of Image and Sound (INIS ). 

A trashy series like «Euphoria

A homoerotic musical scene in the school play in Euphoria

Without a doubt, the craze is there and suggests that a series like Euphoria could even be born here in Quebec. Our productions always seem to arrive a little late when compared to what is done in our neighbors to the south.  

“In the United States, we went from Dawson's Creek , more blue flower, to Riverdale, which renewed the genre with a very current achievement, she continues. Here, we went from Watatatow, very close to the soap opera, to Little Kings, which offers characters assumed, uninhibited within the framework of a careful, very cinematographic production. »

A trashy series like «Euphoria

Little Kings

But are Quebec audiences ready to step up to the level of Euphoria, in which trash images are presented from very frontal way, like in the episode where we see no less than 30 penises? 

“I would say yes: we have already been exposed to very raw, brutal, intense and authentic scenes filmed very realistically in I would like to be erased or Do you hear me? Same VAT, with Fugueuse (season 1), aired at prime time a gang rape that left little to the imagination,” replies Ms. Riberdy. 

A risk to calculate 

So are we embarking on the production of a remake tomorrow? Not so fast, answers Alexandre Gravel, co-founder of Toast Studio, a television production and branded content company. 

“When we fall into more raw, violent and realistic universes, we find ourselves in some cases restricting the potential audience. It is important for success to consider the potential audience that a series can have. In a market like Quebec, which is relatively small, the producer and the broadcaster must take on a little more risk.” 

If he believes that there is indeed a part of the audience who is thirsty for this kind of series in Quebec, he does not know if it is large enough to justify the granting of a substantial budget. < /p>

A trashy series like

Because the gap between the amounts spent on an American series broadcast by HBO and those on a Quebec series is very significant. 

According to figures from the Canada Media Fund, in 2018, a one-hour episode shot in La Belle Province cost an average of $455,000.  

With a budget of $800,000 per episode, Les pays d'en haut was Radio-Canada's costliest series.  

That's not much compared to the $11 million each episode cost from Euphoria Season 1. 

That said, Quebec artisans are recognized for being able to produce extraordinary results with the means at hand, says Alexandre Gravel. 

A trashy series like «Euphoria

Swapping the camera 

A Quebec Euphoria would be possible, thinks the journalist and founder of the MusiqMatch label, Chloe-Anne Touma, but on condition of diversifying the production teams.

“It is almost always the same producers, the same directors, of the same generation, who work on our TV series. You have to look for a new vision in front of the camera, but also behind it.” 

For it to work, the journalist also believes that Quebec television should put an X on her too often moralizing tone.&nbsp ;

“When we tackle tougher subjects on TV here, we do a little too much moralizing, we give the lesson. I never have that feeling in front of Euphoria. There is a way to get a message across without being preachy.” 

A trash series like «Euphoria» in Quebec?

Audacity: direction the Web 

According to Catherine Lemieux-Lefebvre, a film teacher at Cégep de l'Outaouais, the future of a Quebec series like Euphoria depends on webcasting. That's where we saw more raw series from here, like I would like to be erased

“Another example: Chloé Robichaud has managed to produce her Féminin/Féminin series and put forward LGBTQ2S+ issues in a more realistic way because it was intended for the Web,” she says. 

Unfortunately, the Internet is synonymous with even more limited budgets.  

The specialists who answered our questions agree that Quebec has the creative talent to produce a of the same quality as Euphoria. The public would also demand more and more authenticity and a better representation of diversity. The biggest pitfall, however, remains the money.  

And would the TV channels get on board? None of the main Quebec broadcasters (Radio-Canada, Noovo, TVA, Télé-Québec) answered our questions. 

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