Culted Community Talks: The Idol was anything but idyllic 

Culted Community Talks: The Idol was anything but idyllic 

by Ollie Cox
4 min

HBO’s The Idol, created by Sam Levinson, Abel Tesfaye (The Weeknd), and Reza Fahim, had lots to live up to. It could have captured the cultural zeitgeist, becoming the next binge-worthy series to stream for when episodes of the teen drama Euphoria and RuPaul’s Drag Race weren’t on air. However, Levinson – who was behind both Euphoria and The Idol – received quite the opposite level of praise for his latter work that starred the likes of Lily-Rose Depp and Troye Sivan. Need we remind you?

Fast forward to this week, and the show has been cancelled after one season, thanks to its widely-criticised representation of sensitive topics and an often-questioned storyline that was accused on more than one occasion of crossing the line between thought-provoking and straight-up triggering. 

What had the potential to deal with the sexual exploitation of women in the music industry in a sensitive, informative and compassionate way ended up being a catastrophic dose of car crash TV. With the news announced that one unfinished series was all the world could stomach, the Culted community had something to say. 

HBO / @culted ©

@psicomorphosis kept things simple, thanking the big man upstairs for ending the show, writing: “Thank God.” Another disgruntled viewer thankful to a higher being was @vaiiiiiiishnavi, who went a step further: “Thank f*ck for god sake.” They weren’t the only viewers whose wishes had been answered by the news of the cancellation; @losersgottawin followed up with “God has heard our prayers.”

@mia.jyoti.ananda was disappointed after the success of Levinson’s previous work: “Kind of a tryhard Euphoria. It could have been done waaaay better. Not sad it’s not being renewed, not even two star actors could lift it.” Other users, including @victor_mayanglambam, were quick to point out some of the widely criticised themes of the show. “Totally sex-driven.”

HBO / @culted ©

The show’s roll-out wasn’t without its own bumps in the road, as @barlavulva_shostakovich was quick to comment. “Good. Even the PR was off-putting.”

HBO / @culted ©

It wasn’t all bad, though, @1juicebae “Actually liked the show,” going on to add: “I hate that the masses didn’t see the vision and understand the truth in this show. The real weird behind the scenes cutthroat Hollywood bs & facades .. It was well written, actors [were] great, music score a 10… I’m sad there won’t be a 2nd season.” 

HBO / @culted ©

Whatever you think of The Idol, it undoubtedly rustled some feathers, both with the topics it addressed and how it went about doing so. What do you think? Will you miss the show? 

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