With few exceptions, the hit HBO series “Succession” has followed the “Seinfeld” model of “no cuddling, no learning,” as the ultra-privileged Roy siblings seek to replace their late father, Logan. (Brian Cox), at the top. of the Waystar Royco media empire.
For some reason — despite their narcissism, recklessness, and staggering lack of personal growth — we really care what happens to them and their lackeys anyway. Who will emerge victorious? And at what personal cost?
Now, with the 90-minute series finale airing on Sunday, we look like we’re about to get some sort of answer, as the long corporate deathmatch draws to a close. But before that, the show still has a lot of questions to answer.
Can an oversized conclusion even cover them all? Here are several that we would like to see addressed.
What will America decide?
Hoping to help secure their own leadership positions, Kendall and Roman Roy (Jeremy Strong and Kieran Culkin) led Waystar’s right-wing news network ATN to call for victory for the far-right presidential candidate. Jeryd Mencken (Justin Kirk), who indicated he would. crush the GoJo case. But those burned ballots in Milwaukee mean the election is still contested, and Democratic candidate Daniel Jiménez (Elliot Villar) still has a shot at the White House. How long will the countdown go on? Will we see a resolution?
Regardless of the outcome, Waystar’s top brass are vulnerable. If the Roys’ motives for triggering Mencken’s election are revealed, ATN may not survive. (Again, real-world parallels suggest this.) Perhaps no one is as vulnerable as Tom, who as leader of ATN could once again risk becoming the sacrificial lamb, a a fate he barely escaped during the company cruise. scandal line.
The finale may require a significant time jump to wrap it all up. As for the lasting damage of the assault on American democracy? This can be difficult to analyze for a single TV episode.
What will the board decide?
Logan once said that life was “a fight for a knife in the mud”. If his kids want to control any company that comes out of the Waystar-GoJo negotiations — getting it back from tech mogul Lukas Matsson (Alexander Skarsgard) — they need to step up, fast (and bring a gun to this knife fight). ).
None of the Roy siblings have a stable position or solid defenders. Kendall thought supporting Mencken would ensure his later help in stopping the sale of GoJo, which would help the Roy children keep the business going. But Mencken looks set to ignore that promise. Mencken also doesn’t seem to respect either co-CE Bros: Roman lost the change he had after he collapsed at Logan’s funeral. (Mencken calls him the “Grim Weeper.”) Kendall has lost his with his obsequious approach to negotiation.
As it stands, Mencken is considering approving GoJo’s acquisition of Waystar if an American general manager is attached, and neither brother would be on Matsson’s shortlist. Their sister, Shiv (Sarah Snook), thinks she’s online, but Matsson hasn’t accepted that. If all Matsson wants is a useful pawn, he could look to Tom (Matthew Macfadyen), who is hardworking and flexible in his loyalties, or Greg (Nicholas Braun), who will be easy to manipulate.
Regardless of the outcome of the deal, there’s no guarantee that Matsson and the council want a Roy family member. They have plenty of reasons not to. Given all the family bickering and rash decision-making, the board might decide to install someone with real experience — maybe Gerri (J. Smith-Cameron) or Stewy (Arian Moayed).
Are Shiv and Tom recoverable?
In other words, is the Shivorce disabled? In other words, can Shiv ever have it all – a top career And a functional family? Whatever she does, she may need to pick goals and commit. She’s so busy flip-flopping on her various positions that it’s hard to know where she really stands.
For example, is Shiv really that repulsed by Mencken? Or do his values only lean to the left when they don’t interfere with his personal gain? Does Shiv only want the GoJo deal if it allows her to become GM, or will she support him under another direction? Shiv assures Matsson that her impending motherhood is no problem — the way she describes it, she might as well put the child up for adoption. But does she really want to follow in the footsteps of her neglectful and abusive father?
Shiv must make these decisions—about who and what parent she wants to be—before she can consider reconciliation with her ex-husband, Tom; otherwise, their relationship will be doomed by its toxic dynamics, but the game of business and politics is at stake.
Will Kendall’s past crush her?
In every season finale so far, Kendall has had to come to terms, on some level, with the drowning death of a waiter he helped cause at his sister’s wedding. News of his involvement has yet to be made public; if or when it does, it will be a doozy, although at this point “when” seems more likely than “if”.
His brothers and sisters know the truth; he confessed to them at the end of season 3. Cousin Greg is also aware of a few details since he was the one who put Kendall in touch with the waiter. And Marcia (Hiam Abbas) and her son, Amir (Darius Homayoun), who were present the day after the accident, are a threat to Kendall’s alibi.
And then there’s Logan’s former bodyguard, Colin (Scott Nicholson), who helped cover it up. Perhaps that’s why Kendall was so concerned in Episode 9 to learn that Colin was in therapy — and felt the need to let him know he knew. We haven’t heard much lately about the podcast investigating the curse of the Roy family, but we must remember that no matter what confidentiality agreements are in place, secrets can get out.
Where is Greg going?
Cousin Greg, aka the Disgusting Younger Brother, sold his soul a long time ago, and it allowed him to meet some of the most important people in the world. But do any of them respect him? (We can answer this ourselves: no.)
Perhaps their – and our – contempt for Greg is part of the “succession” point: he defines failure upwards. At first his disarming sweetness made him a good audience substitute, his mediocrity a good source of comic relief. But then he began to master the skills essential to this rarefied world of relentless ambition, including blackmail, perjury, and treachery. Now he is invited to all the parties, even though no one really seems to want him.
This season, he’s taken it to the next level by helping facilitate ATN’s premature election call. If it all blows up, it seems unlikely that he’ll go down with Tom, not least because he’s known where the bodies are buried from when Tom ran the cruise division.
If Matsson is successful, he might see the benefit of having a Roy ally who isn’t as controversial as Kendall, Roman or Shiv – a Roy he can control. At the very least, Matsson and Greg do better photo ops together, both being well over 6ft tall. Leadership positions were decided on less.