A new season of The Summer I Turned Pretty just dropped, and while fans are excited to see their favorite love triangle back again, people can't help but wonder; how did the show get approval to use some of the biggest songs on the planet? This season has music appearances from Beyonce, Tyler the Creator, Lizzo, Olivia Rodrigo, Lil Nas X, Frank Ocean, Phoebe Bridgers, Lana Del Rey, Charli XCX, Dua Lipa, and even Taylor Swift. Not just regular Taylor, but her re-released Taylor's Version songs. Online, people joke that the budget for season 2 must be "at least $200 million," given the incredible quality of songs the show has acquired.
The show's music supervisor, Liza Richardson, has said that she wanted to create a soundtrack that would "capture the magic of the summer" and "transport viewers back to their own teenage summers." She certainly succeeded, as the show's soundtrack has been praised by critics and fans alike. How did a show with no big-name actors, targeted at teenagers, get rights to the most famous artists and their highly coveted songs?
The Summer I Turned Pretty is a coming-of-age romantic drama series based on the novel trilogy of the same name by Jenny Han. Season one followed Belly, a 16-year-old girl who has spent every summer of her life with family friends and their two sons, Conrad and Jeremiah. That summer, Belly's crush on Conrad began to feel reciprocated. Season two focuses on Jeremiah's feelings for Belly and how that complicates the relationship between the two brothers. The series has become the 2020s version of Edward versus Jacob from Twilight, except instead of vampires against werewolves, it's brother against brother.
With a more dramatic season this year and a controversial ending as to which brother Belly chooses, more elaborate song choices also come. Some of the best moments enhanced by killer songs included Belly having a sob on the way from a party as Olivia Rodrigo's Driver's License blasts, Miley Cyrus' Party in the USA at the final party at the beloved summer house, and the gang settling in for the night after Conrad caught Belly and Jeremiah locking lips with Lana Del Rey's How to Disappear playing in their silence. While we take a break from Cousins Beach, fans can expect another A-List lineup of songs in season 3.