Euphoria Season 2 would not have been half as much fun (nor half as much unhinged) without Cassie Howard. The hopeless romantic’s hilariously overdramatic breakdowns became the stuff of meme gold, whether she was hiding in a bathtub, dressing like an Oklahoma! extra, or screaming at Nate about how “crazy” she is. But there was a time early in the season when the actor who plays Cassie didn’t think she would even make it past the first episode. Recently, Sydney Sweeney admitted she thought Cassie was going to die back in Euphoria Season 2’s first episode.
Sweeney opened up about her fears about Cassie’s fate in an April 25 interview with Entertainment Weekly. The scene that had her worried was one of Cassie’s very first scenes in Season 2, in which her soon-to-be love interest Nate Jacobs found her crying outside of a convenience store and gave her a ride to the New Year’s Eve party. The drive took a dangerous turn as Nate started speeding while drinking a beer, with Cassie gripping the seat in wide-eyed fear.
“I thought that [showrunner] Sam [Levinson] was killing me,” Sweeney told Entertainment Weekly. I thought that I was going to get killed.”
The scene ended with Cassie embracing the danger, laughing as she spilled her beer and stuck her head out the window. Sweeney revealed that move was actually her own improvised idea.
“The hanging out the window, actually, was just me hanging out the window. It was just random and very in the moment,” Sweeney said. “But when I read it, I thought that Cassie was getting killed off. And I was really bummed. But then it turned into this weirdly sensual, dangerous connection between these two characters. And it became what it became.”
Sweeney surely wasn’t alone in her assumption. The car scene was incredibly tense, and it really did seem to be ramping up to a lethal car crash upon first viewing. Honestly, maybe a car crash would have been healthier than Nate and Cassie’s toxic relationship — but it wouldn’t have been nearly as entertaining to watch.