After finally mounting the cheap projector I bought on Amazon to my bedroom wall, I dimmed the lights, closed the shades and prepared my eyeballs for the acclaimed cinematography and “gorgeous aesthetic” of the much-anticipated second season of HBO’s Euphoria.
Unlike seeing the drama unfold on my 15-year-old second-hand TV, watching this season of Euphoria on a “big screen” has been nothing short of visually stunning. Every Sunday night, the show’s saturated color palette fills my entire apartment with unmitigated #vibes and the intimate and isolating camerawork pulls me into a dreamlike trance. And of course, the uncompromising number of raw dicks flopping around on my wall reminds me that I’m witnessing a truly groundbreaking masterpiece.
But with the season finale tomorrow, I was curious: Does the divisive HBO drama deserve all the acclaim and attention it so often receives for the sheer amount of genitalia it proudly displays? And maybe more importantly, is there any other show that’s gone overlooked as the real trailblazer for depicting doinks on TV?
To start, I figured it was worth exploring exactly how many dicks have appeared in Euphoria so far. Since its inception, the show has spawned innumerable headlines for its portrayal of peen — particularly when reports teased a scene in the series’ second episode wherein “close to 30 penises flash onscreen,” which was reportedly down from a purported 80 dicks originally intended to be shown.
Per the intrepid work of former MEL writer Joseph Longo, the real number of dicks in that scene was closer to 21, and put together, Euphoria’s first season featured a total number of 71 on-screen schlongs. The second season has mostly toned down the amount of male nudity, with four dick-depicting scenes in the season premiere, three in Episode Two, six in Episode Three, four in Episode Four, three in Episode Five and zero in Episodes Six and Seven. With just the season finale left, that dwindling number of dicks may very well hurt its chances at claiming the Most Dicks on TV Throne.
Back in June 2019, The Ringer’s Kate Knibbs wondered whether the 21 dicks shown in Euphoria’s infamous locker room scene was the most male nudity depicted in a single scene, ever. Ultimately, Knibbs came to the conclusion that it was not. Rather, the 2004 comedy EuroTrip laid claim to that feat, with 28 penises appearing about 40 minutes into the movie. But Eurotrip is a movie, which allowed Knibbs to conclude that “Euphoria did show the most dicks ever in one scene on a television show, but it did not show the most dicks ever in one scene besides porn, because EuroTrip exists.”
One could reasonably assume that by having the most dicks in a single scene, let alone roughly 30 more dicks in the rest of its first season, that Euphoria comfortably held the lead on number of penises shown on a TV show. However, a lot has happened since 2019, including an exponential rise in the number of penises on TV. According to an interview with Thrillist, special makeup effects designer Jason Collins says orders for prosthetic penises have skyrocketed over the past two years, arguably since Euphoria’s debut.
For instance, if you missed a dick or two in Euphoria, you probably caught a glimpse of one in Righteous Gemstones, the Danny McBride-driven comedy that airs on HBO directly after. You could also catch some weiner scenes here and there on HBO’s White Lotus, And Just Like That or Watchmen. Similarly, Hulu’s Pam & Tommy features a lengthy scene wherein Tommy Lee argues with his erect, animated penis about being in love with Pam.
Still, the question remains: Does Euphoria officially hold the throne for most penises depicted on TV?
I emailed Knibbs to see if there’d been any updates to her investigation, but alas, there were none. I similarly struck out with the Guinness Book of World Records. “I can confirm we do not currently monitor record titles similar to more frontal male nudity than any other TV show in history,” a rep there informed me. Meanwhile, after telling Knibbs that they didn’t track the number of penises on TV, and that doing so would be impossible, the Motion Picture Association of America couldn’t be bothered to answer my follow-up two years later. Similarly, the TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board ignored me just as they had Knibbs in 2019.
Thankfully, there was one more place to turn: Mr. Skin — or more specifically, Mr. Man, the NSFW dick-centric arm of the nude scene-spotting website. Per Mr. Man, while certain shows like Righteous Gemstones and Pam & Tommy are hot on Euphoria’s tail when it comes to garnering attention for male nudity (link NSFW), the hard data doesn’t lie (pun unavoidable). Carried over from the formal count in 2019, Mr. Man’s catalog of male nudity in Euphoria includes more than 130 videos and pictures and has become the highest trafficked category on the site. In fact, Euphoria’s featured phallices outrank the 9,954 other movies and TV shows cataloged by Mr. Man, including titans of male-nudity media like Oz, Spartacus and The Deuce. (In terms of raw numbers, Euphoria has shown over 100 dicks on screen in just two seasons — again, not counting tomorrow night’s season finale.)
In the end then, Euphoria is really only competing with itself. In the short term, that means it will keep on piling up dongs at record numbers. But in the long term, all this peen might work against it — with some intrepid showrunner creating a new series for no other reason than to beat Euphoria at its dick game. After all, as they say, records are made to be broken.