On the back of the fairly disastrous meeting with Josh Aaronson (Adrien Brody), everything is riding on Waystar’s annual shareholders’ meeting in this week’s Succession, at which Logan (Brian Cox) could reassure those with a stake in the company or leave the door wide open for rivals Sandy (Larry Pine) and Stewy (Arian Moayed) to take control. Logan, however, begins out of sorts: he wonders if he should go back into the house to have a piss and is separated from his assistant Kerry (Zoe Winters) to self-administer the pills we later learn are for a UTI.
Before the meeting begins, Sandy and Stewy want to meet Team Logan to discuss a settlement. “I’m not doing a tap dance,” says Logan, who won’t meet them but sends the others. “If we can make a deal here,” says Stewy, “we’re willing to agree to a standstill.” After Team Sandy – a very ill Sandy’s wishes are communicated through his daughter Sandi (Hope Davis) – say that they want the freedom to veto any Roy child becoming CEO, Team Logan turn it down – but not before Gerri (J. Smith-Cameron) seriously considers it, which angers Roman (Kieran Culkin).
Connor (Alan Ruck) asks his father for a “really significant role” in the company to “burnish my reputation”. Logan, who doesn’t really care, seems to grant him a senior role in the European cable division. Kendall (Jeremy Strong), meanwhile, tells Greg (Nicholas Braun) that he may have to “burn” him by throwing him to the Department of Justice because of his siding with Team Logan. Things get even worse for Greg when his grandfather Ewan (James Cromwell) tells him that he is going to give the entirety of his estate to Greenpeace. “Even my part?” asks Greg. “That was the first part,” says Ewan, who is furious that Greg has thrown his lot in with Logan’s “gang of crapulous shils”.
We suspect that things may also be going badly for Logan when he asks his bodyguard what he thinks of the proposed deal. Calling Gerri, Sandy, Sandi and Stewy request that another clause be added: that private jets be dispensed with. Logan, clearly confused and going to the toilet all the time, says, “fuck ’em” to the bafflement of his aides. Suddenly, while Frank (Peter Friedman) is addressing the shareholders, the deal is off. A farcical tone begins to seep in. “If we do come through, it is one for the memoirs,” says Tom (Matthew Macfadyen). “I mean it really is quite thrilling.”
Less thrilling for Tom, who is called on to take Logan to the toilet, is when Logan grunts for his help from within the cubicle. “You don’t need me to hold the sceptre, do you?” Tom asks. A bleary Logan thanks Tom and calls him “son”. Team Logan learn that Logan should have been taking his pills. Logan confirms everyone’s worries when it transpires that he thinks there’s a dead cat under his chair. Meanwhile, Greg asks someone on the phone if it’s possible to sue one’s grandparent “in an affectionate way”. Changing tack, he decides to sue Greenpeace.
While the President tells Roman over the phone that he won’t be running for another term because ATN’s coverage has been so damaging, Shiv (Sarah Snook) decides to accept the deal on the table, offering Sandy and co. a fourth seat if Waystar can have an extra one (for Shiv) as well. The deal done, the shareholder vote can be cancelled and documents can be drawn up. Spoiling the celebratory mood somewhat, Tom reveals to Shiv that he is monitoring her periods because he wants to impregnate her before he goes to jail (“I’ve got, like, six more ovulation windows until all sex is prison sex.”)
Further souring the mood is an impromptu onstage appearance by Kendall, who wants a moment’s silence for the victims of Waystar’s many crimes because he hasn’t been in the spotlight for a few hours. Backstage, Logan upsets Shiv by telling her that he wouldn’t have done the deal she did, shouting that she needs to stop buzzing in his ear. As if alienating one child wasn’t enough, he then tells Kerry that he wants her to permanently block Kendall’s number so that he can’t call him again.
Roy Oh Roy
- There are some truly sublime lines in this week’s episode of Succession. One of them, which is so funny that it seems to crack up even Alan Ruck, happens when Team Logan are wondering if a confused Logan can still give a speech. Shiv reports back to the team: “OK, so his moaning’s getting louder” – to which Connor says, “OK, but can he do that onstage?”
Kendall, a machine when it comes to zingy turns of phrase, calls the long-suffering Frank a “maitre d’ at the bistro of bullshit”
- A minor subplot of which we see only two glimpses involves a conversation about whether Kendall’s children can feed a bagel to their rabbit. After Kendall assures them that it will be basically harmless, he gets a call saying that the rabbit is ill. Clearly panicked, he recommends calling a doctor: “If he can do people he can do rabbits”
- An extremely unwell Sandy – barely able to move and almost unable to talk – is described horribly but wonderfully by Stewy as “the belligerent zucchini”
‘Succession’ airs every Monday on Sky Atlantic at 2am in the UK – it is repeated at 9pm