My Succession Obsession
“Obsession” is defined as the state of being obsessed with something, an idea or thought that continually preoccupies or intrudes on a person’s mind. I bring this up because I’ve recently found myself obsessing over a show: Succession.
Like many people, I’m getting into this amazingly dark dramedy late in the game. Precisely a year late. Succession premiered in June of 2018 to what I’ve gathered to be a marginally successful start that has only grown significantly with every episode.
Here the synopsis: When the family patriarch of media conglomerate Waystar Royco, Logan Roy, falls ill his four children, all with varying degrees of connection and separation from the company begin vying for prominence within the company and prepare for life without their larger than life father.
May not sound like much right? Fortunately for viewers, Logan Roy’s (played by Brian Cox, Super Troopers) children are far from above board. They’ll do anything from backstabbing family members over and over again, falling into old drug abuse habits, and conning people out of millions. And that’s just one of them.
With season two coming to a close in just a few short weeks, now is the time to get your binge one. Here are a couple of my reasons for why you should be watching Succession.
The Roy Children Are Awful
Awful in a good way? Each of the four Roy children are as varied as they can possibly be. Every single one of them makes your skin crawl and love every moment of their screen time. Connor Roy, (Alan Ruck, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off), Logan’s eldest son from his first marriage, holds the least amount of power between them. A neurotic libertarian with the insane notion that he would make a great president, he has the loftiest goals, but zero of the follow-through.
Next is eldest from Logan’s second marriage, Kendall Roy (Jeremy Strong, Zero Dark Thirty). Kendall seems like the most up to the task of taking over the family company if only he would stop shooting himself in the foot and destroying every positive thing about him. Did I mention he raps? Then there is Romulus “Roman” Roy (Kieran Culkin, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World). Romulus is truly the quintessential rich asshole with sociopathic tendencies. Last, but certain not least is the youngest and only daughter, Sibohan “Shiv” Roy (Sarah Snook, Steve Job), a political consultant who is as manipulate and untrustworthy as her clients and brothers.
You’ll Stay for the Supporting Stars
While the Roy family is a league all of their own, they would be nowhere if it wasn’t for the amazing people around them. First, Tom Wamsgans (Matthew Macfadyen, Pride & Prejudice), Shiv’s spineless, Midwestern romantic partner, who is constantly trying to find his place in the Roy family even if that means sucking up so hard to Logan. Also, you can’t hate on Mr. Darcy’s American accent and complete lack of pride. Cousin Greg Hirsch (Nicholas Braun, Sky High) a fan favorite. In hopes of getting a job, Greg finds himself a bit haphazardly in the middle of all Roy’s nonsense. And Marcia Roy (Hiam Abbass, Munich), Logan’s third wife, who is a literal force to be reckoned with. Marcia has gone from one of my least favorite characters and is quickly finding herself among my top five.
Don’t Let Anyone Fool You – This is a Comedy
Succession presents strongly as a drama with its general tone and look episode to episode. With the Roy family dynamics, this show easily could be a Shakespearean play. This is a comedy with an expensive spin. Comedy with a side of caviar and private jets. The underlying factor is that Succession is a satire, poking fun at the elite rich of America. But, more than that, it’s funny. I live for Roman’s one-liners and Connor’s complete disconnect with reality.
Not a lot of shows can get away with a fictional Bernie Sanders ala 2016’s elections and make it comical. Napolean’s severed penis even makes its own appearance. If that’s not comedy gold, I don’t know what is. Also, lest we forget, this show is executive produced by none other than Adam McKay and Will Ferrell!
Succession is the corporate version of Game of Thrones we need. It’s also further proof that unhappy families make great television.
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has a sneaky menace to it, but I can’t quite tell how intentional that is. Maybe the show is slyly trying to ingratiate these people—and possibly their alleged real-world counterparts—to a wary, resistance-weary audience to make some kind of point about our ingrained obsession and reverence for wealth and power.