Massive twist that changes all the rules
Armstrong’s decisions throughout the episode were pivotal. Viewers, like Logan’s children, learned what had happened. Gathered for the wedding of Roy’s eldest son, Connor (Alan Ruck), they received a terrified call from the plane. You never saw Logan fall, you never saw his face again, even when Tom (Matthew Macfadyen), Shiv’s soon-to-be ex-husband, held his phone to Logan’s ears so his offspring could talk to him while CPR was performed.
The first reaction was disbelief. Another near-death experience for Logan? Season three had also featured a cliffhanger that suggested a distraught Kendall drowned in a swimming pool. This time successor receded from the abyss. Not this time. It was a minute-by-minute experience marked by panic and shock. The words spoken were of tragic honesty: “You’ll get better,” Roman pleaded, “because you’re a monster.”
“Do you think there’s anything else to come after all this?” a tearful Logan had asked himself in the first episode of the season, and the answer was a resounding no. His body was a blurred shape in the background. Logan Roy was gone. No last words, no deathbed taunts. Death is a mainstay of scripted television, the break-the-glass storytelling option, but no major show has ever so coolly and completely removed an essential character. It feels unprecedented.
The focus for the remaining episodes of the show is now on the children. It makes sense. Logan Roy had always shown us who he was. He believed “money wins” and couldn’t change. The character was a constant — a terrifying, compelling constant — and he provided the gravity that kept everyone else in a painful place. Without him and Cox’s outstanding performance, the program’s boundaries willy-nilly be broken.
“I love you guys, but you’re not serious people,” were Logan’s last words to his child slash opponents, incongruously delivered in a private karaoke room after a failed advance in the previous episode.
We’ll find out if he was right over the next seven episodes. And whatever comes out of this stunning development, that’s clear successor‘s bottom line is not who wins. That was always an easy read. successor it’s about who survives. And not Logan Roy.
Each week, The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald will recap the latest episode of Succession. You can listen to our review podcast here.
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