- Euphoria -Does Jules Have The Only Copy Of Cal's Tape On 'Euphoria'?
Nate Jacobs gave Euphoria viewers significant whiplash in "A Thousand Little Trees of Blood." Spoilers ahead. After threatening Maddy with a game of Russian roulette, Nate gave Jules Cal's tape. Despite slugging beers with a gun in the car, Nate was all sweetness when he got to Jules's house, apologizing for his past behavior and saying he meant everything he said as "Tyler" as he revealed his father had secretly filmed them together. It's hard to trust Nate, but he seemed genuine when said he didn't know of any other copies of the tape. But whether Nate was lying or not, there might be another copy of Cal's disc on Euphoria.
In Season 1, Maddy swiped the video of Cal and Jules having sex that Cal filmed without Jules's consent. But what she has done with it for the past few weeks isn't clear. Since she was (presumably) holding onto it as collateral against Nate, it seems reasonable that could she have made a copy. I'm surprised the Euphoria kids have the technology to play the disc. (Yeah, yeah, I know you can buy an external optical drive, but just saying that Apple stopped selling Macs with a disc drive in 2016.) But since they do, it doesn't seem like it would be that difficult to copy it or save it somewhere. But when Jules asks if it's the only copy, Nate seems to mean it when he says, "I mean, it's the only one that I know of, yeah."
Perhaps Nate's right to believe there's no way Maddy has another copy because she would have confessed to it when he had her pinned down with a gun. And even if Maddy does have a copy, she wouldn't want to hurt Jules by spreading the video (something Maddy actor Alex Demie confirmed to EW). But if she leaked it to the authorities, there might be a way to protect Jules's identity as a minor in a sex crime while bringing down Cal. Though Maddy might be too scared of Nate to go through with that now if that was ever her plan. And at this point with Cal out of the family home, would destroying Cal's reputation even hurt Nate?
Demie told EW that she and Euphoria creator Sam Levinson had discussed different ways that Maddy was going to handle the tape, including a version where she anonymously gives Jules the disc. "And there was a part of me that really wanted to see that happen, but I think the way it goes down keeps the story going, and it's drama," Demie said.
Part of that drama is that Nate being the one to give Jules the tape back seemingly opens up their relationship again. And who's to say he didn't make a copy? The episode presented it like Nate went right from Maddy's to Jules's house. But based on his infatuation with Jules in Season 1 — that clearly went deeper than just trying to protect his dad — he might have made a copy himself. And there's not an absolute zero chance that Cal doesn't have a backup in some form... though, he'd be the last person to want to share it.
Rue might not be the most reliable narrator, but her voiceover said that Cal was motivated to retrieve the disc to save the Jacobs family business he plans to inherit one day. But then why give it to Jules? Was he overwhelmed by his feelings for her that he legitimately just did the right thing? (As he says, "Honestly, the answer is too stupid and simple. I think it's better if we just keep it a mystery.") But does doing the right thing sound like the Nate Jacobs we all know and hate? I guess when it comes to Jules, it could be. He admits he's not a good person, but bad people still have the ability to do one decent thing every now and again.
With Jules having the tape, she presumably has the power. But first, she's going to need to process the fact that Cal recorded them having sex without her consent and that Nate has seen it. That, along with so many other factors (including Rue relapsing and lashing out at her), I can't imagine that Jules will be in a place where she'd want to take any action against Cal. So maybe she'll destroy the disc. But regardless if that's the only copy or another one exists, something tells me this isn't going to be the end of Cal's tape.
Images: HBO, Eddy Chen/HBO