Ludicrously Capacious: Slick Magazine’s “Succession” Watch-Along


Overview of the main players as “Succession” comes to an end. (Photography by: Sienna Schoales)

Welcome to our “Succession” watch-along! Here Sienna and Tegenn of Slick Magazine will discuss things that stand out in the final season, Season 4, airs. Expect callbacks to past episodes, the exploration of common motifs, and freak-outs as the writers have us in the palms of their hands. This article will be updated every Wednesday and Friday until the season comes to a close! 

Premiering in 2018, “Succession” is a show focusing on the media mogul Logan Roy and his four children—Connor, Kendall, Roman, and Shiv. All of whom have been drastically affected by their neglected, competitive, and over-privileged childhoods. It is a series that substitutes love with power as the Roys battle for the top stop as Waystar Royco CEO. 

Disclaimer: This is Slick magazine covering one of the largest media events of the year so spoilers are to be expected,

Episode One – “The Munsters” 

Sienna: And we’re off! Succession is back and I’m already incredibly stressed. 

Tegenn: I only feel fear right now. It’s Logan’s birthday, and Shiv, Kendall, and Roman are still trying to sell the company. Connor’s continuing his run for president, and, as expected, it isn’t going great. 

S: Yeah, I must say I was a little devastated to hear that Connor was polling around the one percent area, but that’s probably best for the country. 

T: I completely agree. That man has too many issues to be trusted in office. 

S: Speaking of the Roy siblings, Shiv, Kendall, and Roman are estranged from their father in Los Angeles. What really stood out to me is how close the siblings seem to be already. At no other point in the show is Roman even remotely close to giving Shiv a kiss on the cheek. The most contact we’ve seen from them is when they got in a fistfight in the first season. 

Kendall, Shiv, and Roman gather in L.A. to discuss the company’s future. (Photography by: HBO Max)

T: I really love seeing them get closer to each other, almost overcoming adversity together. It is sad to see this though, knowing that Connor isn’t a part of the group. He’s always seemed like the odd one out, but I think he’s just becoming more isolated. And of course, he’s the only one of the four to show up at Logan’s birthday. 

S: I loved how obvious the crew and writers made it that Logan is completely alone, even to the point where he’s sneaking out of his own birthday party to have dinner with his bodyguard, Colin.

T: Can I just say though, I really think he deserves it. 

S: Oh absolutely. The way these kids have been messed up will take more than four seasons to unravel. 

T: Logan’s been horrible the entire run of the show, and it feels justified to see him suffer for it. Poor Colin though. I think the dynamics have started to shift already, even one episode in. 

S: Speaking of shifting dynamics, it appears that Tom and Greg have switched roles in their relationship. Instead of Tom doing all the heavy lifting when it comes to workplace harassment, I was taken aback by how forward Greg has become. 

Tom and Greg see a shifting hierarchy within their dynamic. (Photography by: HBO Max)

T: The phrase “disgusting brothers” will haunt me to the day I die. It was just so jarring to see this new side to Greg. Even his behavior with Logan was insane. In seasons 1-3, Greg wouldn’t dare to look at Logan, let alone openly insult him. 

S: I disagree, actually. In the first episode of the show, Greg has the nerve to ask Logan for a job as head of the Waystar parks division. This conniving side of Greg has always existed. I just think he has the space, and confidence now that he and Tom are supported by Logan, to be as terrible as he wants. 

T: I guess. In season 1 Greg did ask for a job, but I feel like that was more desperation than anything. Now he’s speaking out just for fun, which feels completely different. He’s almost flaunting his power; it’s scary. 

S: Agree to disagree. Greg’s been Machiavellian from the start!

T: If you insist. 

S: To finish the off episode, we get this haunting scene with Tom and Shiv. I thought the entire episode was a great return, but at certain points, the writing felt like a parody. So I loved this moment of vulnerability between the both of them. And honestly, this is Sarah Snook’s chance to get an Emmy. She’s unbelievable! 

Episode Two – “The Rehearsal” 

T: As Shiv, Roman, and Kendall keep talking business, Connor is much more focused on love. It’s his wedding rehearsal, and Willa was last seen running off. 

S: I hate to see my boy suffering!

T: This season is already shaping up to be “Connor Sad Hours,” and I don’t know how to feel. I want to give him a pat on his head and tell him it’s all going to be okay. The poor man just wants to do karaoke.  

S: And his siblings won’t extend any empathy! The way Roman behaved reminds me a lot of Lady Caroline’s quote last season, “[h]e never saw anything he loved that he didn’t want to kick, just to see if it would still come back.” Roman’s willing to betray his siblings’ entire operation just to gain approval from Logan—Roman’s always going to come back. 

Roman struggles with separating himself from Logan. (Photography by: HBO Max)

T: Yeah, and the confirmation that Logan used to hit Roman? Ouch. He really can’t stop, it’s an abusive relationship, really. He just can’t quench that need to be close to his dad, even though it backfires every time without fail. 

S: Oh absolutely. Kendall airs out a bunch of grievances the siblings had with their Dad. And Logan is unresponsive to all of it. We’re left to question if Logan is really sorry for anything. 

T: And Connor’s karaoke choice had me almost in tears. It was “Famous Blue Raincoat” by Leonard Cohen, which is so morosely beautiful. It feels like a song from the perspective of a dad with a failing son, so Connor singing it is heart-wrenching. And the fact that he’s just sat there singing whilst his siblings look on, confused. He’s been going through so much, and I think he’s kind of realizing that he is alone, and nobody loves him, not even his wife-to-be Willa.

S: Oh completely agree. Connor always wanted to do karaoke but “nobody wanted to go.” But the most devastating Connor quote of this episode was “You’re needy love sponges. And I’m a plant that grows on rocks and lives off insects that die inside of me.” That’s insane

T: Connor’s gone emo?

Connor’s “love” monologue pulls on the heartstrings of viewers. (Photography by HBO Max)

S: Not so much as emo. I’d just say child neglect. He’s gone his whole life without genuine love and he’s convinced he doesn’t even need it. 

T: I don’t know. I think he’s fully aware of what he needs, he’s just accepted that he won’t get it. 

S: I also want to give a shout-out to Kerry’s ATN anchor audition. It was a bright spot in an episode that gave me a pit in my stomach the entire time. Gerri, Hugo, Tom, Frank, and Greg have the best reactions. 

T: On the subject of Greg, I feel like he’s back to “normal” now, taking orders from Tom. I don’t know if I like this move, because I thought they had set him up to be mean. 

S: I know! I hope they do something drastic with Greg again. Because as terrifying as it was, it felt like we got season two Greg back. He needs to make those moves again!

Episode Three – “Connor’s Wedding”

S: I feel like I just survived a nuclear fallout. 

T: Hear, hear! 

S: There’s so much to sift through that I’m just going to start off in chronological order. It’s Connor’s wedding day and Logan is nowhere in sight! I already felt sick at the beginning of this episode because Logan pushed Roman to let Gerri know he was planning on firing her. Sickening. 

T: Poor Roman, honestly. Doesn’t he know he’s being manipulated?

S: Yup. Like I said last episode, Roman will always come back even though Logan keeps kicking him away. This episode is an acting masterclass and Kieran Culkin starts us off in the most heartbreaking way. 

T: Yeah, and Greg is just further reversing his character development. When Greg calls him, he’s just waiting to follow his lead, and the whole “Greglettes” thing? Insane. 

S: Love the reversion to the classic Tom and Greg banter. I missed that!

T: For sure. And also, Greg seemed genuinely taken aback by it. I don’t know what direction these two are going in for this show. I think Tom and Shiv’s relationship is so complicated, and I went into this season so sure that was going to be the end for them, but I’m starting to doubt that now. 

S: I also don’t know where to stand on Tom and Greg’s relationship. Aside from episode one, Greg has not done much. 

T: Yeah. Now, obviously, there’s the elephant in the room to address: Logan is dead? 

Kendall, Shiv, and Roman embrace after the death of their father. (Photography by: HBO Max)

S: See I was thinking the same thing! Because the entire time I thought Logan was just testing his kids. Almost seeing who would have the “best” reaction in some kind of sick way. 

T: You know, it’s funny you should mention that, because the idea of his death being a trick didn’t even cross my mind. Probably because Tom’s reaction felt so real; Matthew Macfadyen’s Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) education was really shining through. In fact, his acting has been incredible all season.

S: Should go through everybody’s reactions to Logan’s death? Because I was crying for the last 20 minutes of this episode. 

T: Seeing Roman and Kendall be so vulnerable together absolutely broke me. There was something so terrible about Roman just not being able to believe it.

S: Absolutely! Roman denying the entire thing and lashing out at others was one the hardest scenes to get through. Another thing that stood out to me was Kendall saying he’d never be able to forgive Logan—even though he loves him. 

T: I wanted to throw up the entire time. Shiv turned back into a little girl, losing this “hashtag girlboss” persona she’s been holding onto since the beginning. Her reaction was very similar to her reaction to Logan’s stroke in the first episode of the entire show. I really like it, because it kind of lets the audience know that Shiv is not just a corporate robot, but a person. 

S: I’m so glad you mentioned Shiv’s persona breaking because there was something so childlike about the way Kendall held her hand before telling her that Logan was dying. The image of those two walking down the hallway will stick with me for a long time. Their eyes!

T: They were all incredible, each with their own unique reactions fitting their characters. Even Tom’s was perfect. 

S: Yes! I loved watching his persona of empathetic husband crack. Watching Tom vulnerable is so intense. 

T: When he calls Greg for the second time and starts crying when Greg asks if he’s okay? Depressing. But of course, he’s still power-hungry, taking Logan’s death as an opportunity to get ahead. 

S: Tom’s politeness has become more sinister as the season goes on. This is seen in how Shiv shoves Tom away after he embraces her. Then we get another shot from this episode that will stick with me for a while: Logan’s stretcher. There is no doubt that this is a high point for a series.

Logan’s body is taken off of the plane via a stretcher. (Photography by: HBO Max)

Episode Four – “Honeymoon States”

T: Oh boy. Oh boy oh boy.

S: The Roys are having a type of memorial service for Logan. And, as expected, there’s an immense amount of suffering going on. 

T: Everyone is gathered in Logan’s penthouse and Marcia’s back. That’s interesting. Apparently, she and Logan didn’t end on such bad terms as we thought. I don’t know though, the idea of Logan and Marcia’s phone calls terrifies me.

S: I’ll be honest, the thought of hearing those phone calls makes my blood run cold. But I’m happy to see my queen back! She’s no longer shopping in Milan “forever.” We’ll get into this later, but Marcia’s lines are brutal in this episode. 

T: On the subject of Marcia being a little…strange to say the least, she sold Logan’s house, and to Connor of all people! Is this further proof that Connor is trying to get close to people who will never love him, or some kind of power play over the rest of the family?

S: I’m not going to blame Marcia for getting the bag this episode. She sold the penthouse for millions. Connor’s just trying to get closer to Logan—I think. He’s searching for the love that wasn’t there. 

T: Even in death? The poor guy’s desperate. Once again, Connor’s not fit to run a country, he can hardly keep his life together. 

S: That will never stop me from being a Conhead. 

T: Real. Hashtag Conhead4Life. 

S: That’s what I’m saying! Speaking of shifting dynamics, Tom and Greg are falling down the Waystar power rankings. Tom’s security died with Logan. And as much as I was rooting for Tom going into the season, I liked watching him get absolutely flamed by Gerri and Frank. 

T: Yeah, it is kind of enjoyable to see him not get everything. I feel like there’s a weird back-and-forth going on between Tom and Shiv too, like a much sadder will-they-won’t-they dynamic. Their conversation on the stairs was so off-putting. I really don’t know where they’re going with those two. 

S: It felt romantic in some way. But more than anything this episode reveals that Tom and Shiv are always going to be intrinsically tied to one another. For better or worse. 

T: Exactly! Their toxic relationship is everything to me. 

S: Just as the tension in Tom and Shiv’s relationship has built up over the series, we finally have a Roy child ascending to the role of CEO! Kendall and Roman become joint CEOs after a reading of Logan’s final wishes takes place. My boy(s) did it. 

T: Or did they? I mean, there was certainly some debate as to whether or not Kendall’s name was underlined or crossed out. I genuinely think that was one of the funniest scenes in the whole show so far. I half expected the camera to pan around and show us, but I’m so glad they didn’t. What do you think, underlined or crossed out?

S: Funny? I wanted to cry. Another example of Logan building Kendall up for a position and taking it away from him. But, the optimist in me says that it’s underlined. Partly because I don’t want to go through the turmoil of his name being crossed out. I feel it’s underlined because Logan made a “killer” out of Kendall. 

T: Did he? As far as I was aware, Kendall’s just becoming more fragile. He’s no killer, definitely a coward.  

S: Kendall spent the last months of his dad’s life betraying him. If the glint in Logan’s eyes after Kendall’s numerous betrayals means anything, it shows that he enjoys Kendall standing up to him in some regard. 

T: I disagree. I think if he actually wanted to stand up to his dad, he would have spoken to him instead of hiding behind a corporate mask. 

S: That demonstrates how smart the writing is on this show. The Roy kids are fundamentally broken people because of Logan. Kendall’s worth throughout his life has been determined by how useful he is to his dad. All he’s known is the corporate mask! 

T: And he’s not afraid to use it. Kendall and Roman completely cut Shiv out of the deal, even though she’s their sister and could probably run the company better herself. I’d say “poor Shiv,” but she doesn’t need our sympathy, she needs a knife. 

S: So true! Despite this familial devastation, I was overjoyed at seeing Stewy in this episode. I was clapping and cheering so hard. 

T: I’ve missed his presence.

S: I’d like to add one last thing, Kendall going behind Roman’s back and telling the PR team—Hugo and Karolina—to leak information about the extent of Logan’s abuse is something Logan would do. Kendall’s trying to become his father. 

Episode 5 – “Kill List” 

T: In today’s episode of “Succession,” the Roy family goes on a field trip to hell. I mean Norway. 

S: I mean, Norway was beautiful. The mental state of this family is not! 

T: Being honest, I don’t really remember this episode very well. 

S: That’s okay! We get some revelations in this episode. We learn Mattson sends his ex-girlfriend and member of staff, Ebba, bags of his blood. 

T: What a strange man. I really don’t think I’ll ever understand his motives at all. What is he playing at?

S: Shiv starts playing both sides. She feigns support for her brothers’ destruction of the GoJo-Waystar acquisition—they want to keep the business in the family. But she also cozies up to Mattson and the possibility of gaining more respect from his side. She also saves Tom’s career? Even with everything going on, she gets Tom’s name off the “kill list.” He’s keeping his job. 

T: Yeah, we’re seeing yet another side to Shiv that we saw in season one with Gil. This kind of double-crossing. I really enjoy seeing her fight for herself, regardless of how dubious her morals actually are. At least she’s working towards something rather than just being big-headed like her brothers. Actually, on the subject of those two, Kieran Culkin’s acting in this episode was so good. 

S: Absolutely. Following this episode, I learned that he’s been moved to the “Leading Actor” category for this year’s Emmys. Him and Sarah Snook have been perfect thus far. 

Episode 6 – “Living+”

S: Wow. Okay, so we have the Roy siblings trying to fill the shoes of their dad. They’re succeeding, which means they’re acting more horribly than usual.

T: Those shoes are pretty big, and it’s fitting because those guys are clowns. Especially Kendall. He has completely lost it. He reminded me of a theatre director during tech week. Is that reference too obscure?

S: No because even if we, as viewers, haven’t been in the same situations as the Roys—which for everyone’s sake I hope we haven’t—the look of despair and mania in Kendall’s eyes is palpable!

T: I would be worried for him, but I think Kendall is the funniest version of himself right now. His presentation was an absolute mess, although if I was Roman, I’d accept the jacket. They looked so cool.

S: I’m going to disagree about his Living+ presentation. Was it unrealistic? Absolutely and he’s selling the false promise of eternal life. However, throughout the entire show, we see Kendall succeeding in off-the-cuff speaking. He brought energy—manic energy—to this one and that self-belief carried him here.

T: No. No way. He failed so badly. The Waystar Royco team watching as well as the audience were clearly confused and concerned. He wasn’t speaking any sense, and I genuinely think this might be the start of his downfall.

S: I wanted to root for him, but I couldn’t stop laughing when Kendall had the tech crew put a massive picture of Logan on screen. And the way he looked at Logan too! My boy is falling apart.

T: I refuse to take this man seriously, and neither does Roman, clearly.

Kendall and Roman discuss the future of the company.

S: Speaking of Roman, he’s trying to emulate Logan too! By firing Gerri and that other executive, he’s trying to assure everyone that he’s okay, that he’s “pre-grieved” his dad’s death. But every terrible action he’s done is just an attempt to bring aspects of Logan back into his life. I called Kendall “my boy,” but it’s always been Roman and I’m worried for him!

T: You know who I missed this episode? Greg. However, there was a decent amount of Tom screen time, so there’s always that, I suppose.

S: I applaud any amount of Tom screen time. Today, the happy couple—

T: Are they happy?

S: Well, “if it is to be said, so it is.” But anyways, they meet up and play “bitey” in which they bite each other’s forearms and whoever chickens out first loses. I loved it. Can’t get enough of that.

T: Ew. Should’ve been Greg.

S: Yeah. But there’s always the next episode.

Episode Seven – “Tailgate Party”

T: I’m losing all hope in Tom and Greg. 

S: Yeah no bitey! What gives? Tom just needs a good night’s sleep in this episode. And Sarah Snook needs an Emmy! 

T: That’s three on the “How Many Times Does Sienna Want Sarah Snook to Get an Emmy” show, thank you all for watching, folks. 

S: I’m sure I will be adding many more tallies to that. She’s done a fantastic job at portraying someone who is on the outside of everything. And Shiv had to turn to Mattson in order to advance her position. It’s been said in so many other Succession discussions but Shiv cannot escape her gender in this show. She’s always going to be reduced to the “token woman” for Waystar. 

T: I’m frankly surprised there isn’t more comradery between her and Gerri. Anyway, Roman’s fascist.

S: Roman has an intense and odd connection with presidential candidate Jeryd Mencken—which is grossly spelled with a “Y”—and he tries to garner up all the support for Mencken on Election Eve. 

T: There’s such a lack of family support, too. Connor gets nothing but more depression in this episode. Things with Willa don’t appear to be going great either. I don’t really understand why the marriage even happened, neither of them seem happy at all. I could potentially see them getting a divorce in the last episode if there’s a time skip of a few months. 

S: I disagree, so strongly. ConWilla forever. Also, we see some parallels drawn between Roman/Gerri and Connor/Willa. Roman screams at Connor about how he’s a joke and that nobody believes in him but Willa’s always believed in him. Just as Gerri was willing to push Roman into the top CEO position. 

T: At least their current CEO, Kendall, isn’t homophobic. That’s always a plus. Mattson saying “Your numbers are gay” was frankly an iconic and disturbing moment. 

S: I loved it. Mattson showed up to the election tailgate party in his golden jacket only to call Kendall Roy’s business numbers gay? I’m obsessed with the way his mind works. 

T: Was he wearing shoes though? That’s what’s important to me. 

S: He was! Unlike that scene on the tarmac where he walks into Shiv’s jet barefoot. Traumatizing. 

T: As much as it pains me to do so, I guess we have to talk about Tom and Shiv. The scorpion and the frog allegory is going strong I think. 

S: Absolutely. Tom gives Shiv a scorpion paperweight for no reason at the beginning of the episode. And they seemed to enjoy each other’s company. But tension kept building in between them and this eventually culminated in a fight breaking out on Tom’s balcony, as the party was happening! They say every terrible thing they’ve wanted to say to one another and—add this to the tally—it’s another acting masterclass by Sarah Snook and Matthew MacFadyen. 

T: I can’t wait to see them in the last couple of episodes. Which, I’m horrified to report, we only have three left. 

Episode Eight – “America Decides”

S: That might have been my favorite episode of the season so far! 

T: I really loved it! It had so much: Roman moments, a near Connor breakdown, and—dare I say—the return of TomGreg? They have returned to their roots, and despite what Greg says, he is still getting Tom coffee and I am so here for it. The dream team is back in action. Disgusting brothers for the win.

Greg and Tom plot what to do as election night looms at ATN. (Photography by: HBO Max)

S: There was so much going on that I think we should analyze this character by character. Because Shiv in this episode warrants her own updating article. Shall we start with, the man of the hour, Tom Wambsgans?

T: Yes, I think we should talk about him. He is the moment, and that moment is the second before a nuclear explosion. I may not be clear on what his actual job is, but I do know he’s meant to make the news run smoothly. I don’t want to be dramatic, but I think he failed at that. He was stressed, and a disaster, and nothing went well. Even though he came away unscathed for the most part, I think Mr. Wambsgans is detrimental to the state. 

S: Yeah. The only thing Tom’s good at when it comes to Waystar is knowing what people to suck up to. Things were going so wrong that he and Greg had to partake in some illegal substances—which Greg inhaled off of Tom’s hand—to make it through. It was such a bad day for Tom. 

T: It really was, a small win for the TomGreg fans, Tom quite literally has Greg eating out of his hand again, ready to do his bidding. That’s control for you, and Tom’s got it. And Tom isn’t the only one of the couple harassing Greg; Shiv is back in the game. 

S: Or, she was in the game for a brief moment before Greg used his powers of snooping. He found out that Shiv was aligning herself with Mattson on the GoJo deal and decided to let Kendall know, which effectively ruined any remaining ties she had with her brothers. There were moments that were genuinely scary for her towards the end of the episode. She was ridiculed for trying to get ahead of the brothers that turned their backs on her. Also, Kendall put her down in the same way Logan did and that’s what hurt so bad about Shiv this episode. 

T: Kendall and Roman teaming up against her was really hard to watch. Obviously, they’re all terrible people, but you can’t help feeling bad for her. She gets completely undermined by literally the closest people to her in her life. I know you don’t have siblings, but as a younger child, it’s genuinely heartbreaking to see this divide form between them all. I get along well with my older sibling, but it does hurt to see these three hate each other so much. 

S: As long as you aren’t fighting “Succession”-level battles with your sibling, I think everything’s okay. I just want to mention Roman’s relationship with presidential candidate Jeryd Mencken for a second. He’s doing all these tasks for Mencken and doing his best to instate a fascist leader into the White House. They have an incredibly interesting bond that’s grown from their original, miraculously intimate, conversation in a bathroom. Insane arc for those two. Also credit where credit is due to Justin Kirk, whose portrayal of Mencken is great.

T: I genuinely can’t imagine what it’s like to be an actor in “Succession.” It must be so weird coming home after a long day at work. I don’t know if I could be normal about it if I’m honest. I’d love to be a part of the chaos though. What a crazy show. 

Episode Nine – “Church and State”

T: When I started “Succession” Season One, I never in a million years would have thought it would make me cry. It’s meant to be a comedy, after all!

S: Oh big disagreement already. I’ve been brought to tears multiple times over the course of the show. Because it’s so tightly written, the funny parts are able to make the tragic moments so much sadder.

T: All my love to Jesse Armstrong, and whilst we’re on the subject: support the writer’s strike!

S: Absolutely. Pay the people who make our lives so much better a living wage! Pay everyone a living wage. 

T: You know who definitely isn’t paying their employees a living wage? Co-CEOs Kendall and Roman Roy! However, those two have got bigger things on their minds in this episode, mainly their father’s funeral. Roman’s opening monologue was absolutely incredible. The desperation was so cleverly hidden under the guise of coolness. He wasn’t even talking to anyone; he was just trying to convince himself. Obviously, once he gets on the phone with Kendall, he changes a bit, but when he’s alone? Incredible.  

S: Oh Roman. He never stood a chance in this episode. Like you said, the cracks in Roman’s persona have started to show and everything comes out when he’s up there at the podium giving a eulogy for his father. Once he focuses on Logan’s coffin and realizes that his dad is never coming back, he starts to lose his mind up there. He limps down the steps and he’s such a mess that he has to stand with the support of siblings. It’s so upsetting to watch and it’s another Kieran Culkin masterclass!

Roman finally faces the reality of his father’s death. (Photography: HBO Max)

T: I might be going out on a limb here, but I don’t think Roman’s pre-grieving technique worked. 

S: Yeah something tells me that was a bit of a flop. 

T: Kendall’s speech was…something. Would you disagree if I were to say his felt so much like a performance, it was almost sickening to watch? After what we saw Roman go through, it felt cheap and out of place. I didn’t like it at all.

S: It was sickening the way that it showcased that Kendall and the rest of his siblings are never going to be able to escape the cycle of abuse. He says that he hopes he possesses the same terrible will Logan had, but Kendall’s attempts at recapturing his father’s essence have done nothing but drive his loved ones away from him. This is exemplified by Kendall’s meltdown at his ex-wife, Rava, and his frantic pledge to regain custody of the kids he’s never taken care of. It was another incredible, impromptu Kendall performance. 

T: I still think he’s a disaster. I have to disagree, these performances aren’t “incredible,” as you say, but are just chaotic and meaningless. People only listen to him because he has power. Without that, he’s nothing. 

S: And that’s the tragedy of it because Kendall, and literally all other characters, are reduced to corporate shells. But in a world where appearances are everything, Kendall harnessing the power Logan had in front of a crowd that’s financially benefited from Logan’s work is brilliant. 

T: Shiv, on the other hand, had a great speech. I don’t like her as a person, but I do recognize how terrible it must be for her to be a woman in such a male-dominated world. She’s never given a break.  

S: I cried toward the end of Roman’s speech. I stopped during Kendall’s and just watched in awe, but every emotion came crashing down on me during Shiv’s speech. Especially her ending remark calling Logan her “dear, dear world of a father.” Every actor was fighting for an Emmy this entire episode. I’d also like to mention another speech, Logan’s brother Ewan gave us the Logan Roy origin story. And I’m obsessed with the camera work during that part because Ewan mentions how he and Logan would communicate with their eyes as children—all while the camera pans to Roman and Kendall looking like children, with their eyes wide open! 

T: On the subject of unmentioned details, when the siblings are visiting Logan’s mausoleum, and Roman can’t even go in? He really can’t bear to face the fact that his father is dead. I suppose there’s also the reality that he and his family are stuck together, and he can’t just escape them or run away. Try as he might, he can’t defy family ties. As he’s returning from the funeral, he gets into a pretty bad altercation with some protestors. You can really tell the light inside of him is burning low; he flings himself into the fighting, completely disregarding his personal safety. That man has well and truly lost it. 

S: It was such an amazing ending to the episode. Roman instigating fights with the anti-Mencken protestors was so fitting for him. He’s finding comfort in the physical pain the protestors are enacting on him because that’s the way Logan would show his love toward Roman. All in all, this was a devastating episode for the Roman girlies and a fantastic penultimate episode for the show. The finale could go anywhere.

Episode Ten, the Series Finale  – “With Open Eyes”
T: You know, four seasons of “Succession,” and I still have no idea what the company does. I do know, however, that I am emotionally devastated. 

S: I will be thinking about this for the rest of my life. 

T: Oh boy oh boy oh boy. Where do we even begin? Shall we start with Connor, a character somewhat absent from this episode?

S: I know! On one hand, I’m happy he got to be Logan’s only child for a bit before he died—as all the other kids were estranged, but the Conheads literally starved and died in this episode. I missed him. 

T: Me too! Connor and Willa never got to tie up their loose ends. Do I think they should have gotten a divorce? Yes. Do I think it would take months for that to happen and to put it in the finale would have been rushing it? Also, yes. However, I would’ve liked it if they ended on slightly more uncertain terms. I’d also like to take a moment to thank Mr. Armstrong for not having a time skip. That was one of my biggest fears facing this episode. 

S: At least Connor had one substantial moment this episode, and that was him and the siblings watching a video of an incredibly happy Logan during his final months. Logan looked so frail in that video. 

T: Yes, absolutely! He’s never looked so much like a 77-year-old as he did in that home video. Also, it’s a bit weird that the Roy family even makes family videos? Maybe they are just like us. Oh wait, they’re multi-billionaires. Nevermind.

S: That video exhumed a lot of warmth! 

 T: Roman’s reaction to the video though was so terrible; I could barely stand watching it. What I’ve learned about myself is I thoroughly enjoy when Shiv and Kendall comfort Roman. I think it gives you an insight into all three of the characters that you don’t get at any other point in the show. I still can’t believe that Roman isn’t the youngest. That man exudes youngest-sibling energy to such an extreme that I sometimes can’t cope. 

S: He does! Roman being comforted is such a massive throughline in the show. What I love about the writing is that we never learn the extent of the abuse the Roys have gone through; it can be as horrible as we can imagine. And it’s been shown that Roman has endured the brunt of Logan’s physical abuse—an example being Logan hitting him.

T: On a lighter note, Roman was seen wearing a seven-dollar child’s shirt.  Again with the youngest-sibling energy. He gets a little sad and heads back to his mum’s house, where Shiv and Kendall join him for some quality Roy family bonding time. And for once in the show, it really is bonding. 

S: It was so cute. We see, again, that the Roys have never grown up. They do classic childhood things like steal food from the kitchen at night and put mix-matched ingredients into a blender. It’s the calm before the storm and this time of peace will never, ever last for any of them. 

T: Roman needs a cuddle. 

S: He does!

T: Whilst the Roys have their midnight feast, Tom was pretty wrapped up in some other business, like taking his wife’s job. Good for him, climbing that social ladder of terrible person-ness. Also, an incredibly conniving move from Matsson; his entire plan rested on getting Shiv on his side, and now it’s moving forward, he doesn’t need her anymore. What an uncomfortable conversation too. I can’t believe Tom got through it without throwing up. 

S: I think it’s an excellent example of why Tom has gotten to this point in the first place. He’ll suck up to anybody, and he just lets Matsson objectify his wife like it’s nothing. He’s become this corporate husk in order to rise to the top. 

T: Greg too, has some backhanded behavior that I’m obsessed with. That one phone call to Kendall changed the entire game. Insane. That man is so subtly powerful, and you never expect it. People want to learn to look out for him. Funny really, you’d think he’d be hard to miss being 6’ 7 and all that. 

S: Yeah absolutely. I’ve grown to appreciate Greg more this season because he’s never been the kind of person to take charge and make moves. He’s a fly on the wall, and his only talent is stumbling into valuable pieces of information. 

T: And Shiv’s reaction just proves that she doesn’t really care about the people, only the power. She’s so quick to switch sides. 

S: She realizes she’s beaten and has to go along with it. I feel bad for her.

T: So the Roys go down to the beach to figure out what to do. There’s a really emotionally charged moment with Kendall when he reveals that Logan had promised him the role of CEO since he was “seven years old.” Now, I’m not the biggest Kendall fan—as we know—but I do feel bad for the guy. His whole life has been dedicated to one thing that he’s so close to losing. 

S: That was so messed up. We’ll see this come up again later in the episode, but Kendall’s entire life has been shaped by Logan promising the company to him. Realistically, I don’t know if Logan ever was going to give the company to one of them. But Kendall’s been strung along and had his dream role taken and then given back to him repeatedly over many years.  

T: And all those years lead up to one moment: the Boardroom™. Here we reunited with some old favorites, such as Stewy, a man whose presence we have been starved of this season. 

S: I was kicking and screaming when I saw him. We’ve been Stewy-baited this entire season because he appeared in promo photos for the funeral episode and yet he wasn’t even included in the final version of the episode—a big loss for Stewy-nation all around. However, what we got of Stewy in this episode was phenomenal. We got the iconic boardroom quote, “Team Ken, baby! I’m a no” and confirmation that Stewy Hosseini kisses guys when intoxicated. I missed him. 

T: Anyway, Kendall and Roman. I think that hug was further proof that Kendall is becoming Logan, even down to inflicting physical abuse on the youngest Roy boy. And the fact that Roman lent into it? Sobbing. 

S: What’s so bad about it is that I think he did that to both comfort Roman and put him in his place. Roman finds comfort in pain because it’s the only way he’s been shown love growing up. This barred Roman from forming relationships with other people. 

T: It’s saddening. Well, I suppose we can’t ignore the elephant in the room: that board meeting went well, eh? Absolutely perfect, if you ask me. 

S: Yup. Kendall’s dreams were certainly crushed by the weight of an elephant. It all came down to Shiv voting against Kendall’s bid to destroy the GoJo deal and become CEO. It was so impactful for me because no matter what Shiv is, she’ll always be an accessory. Whether it’s her brothers isolating her from business decisions or assuming her role as Tom’s pregnant wife. 

T: When Kendall, Roman, and Shiv left to talk it through and ended up yelling at each other so loudly the people outside could hear, I nearly lost my mind. Roman really pulled through with the protection though, yelling at Kendall that Shiv’s pregnant and to get off her? Finally, he does something right. Roman really ended with the devastating realization that he and Kendall are bad people. Good for him. He needs therapy. 

S: After their fight, we head back into the boardroom to see if the Roys will keep the company or not. And Kendall is outvoted, losing the company he thought he was built for. 

T: Whoops. There goes his life plan. It was really interesting how the end of the episode was framed as a tragedy when they literally became millions—if not billions—of dollars richer. However, if we’re looking at this from an overview, TomGreg won “Succession?” They did it! Greg went from doing drugs in his car to being very close to the top of that corporate ladder, and all it took was a complete disregard for any morals!

S: Exactly, Tom was just some guy from St. Paul, and now? He’s a corporate shell in a broken marriage. Victory for Tom, way to go!

Tom, the true winner, triumphs over everyone in the boardroom. (Photography by: HBO Max)

 T: Oh well, it’s been a good run. So long, “Succession,” and thank you for the good times, the bad times, and the rest of the times that can’t really be categorized as either. 

Updated June 7th, 2023 to reflect the Season Finale.