• Lukas Kendall

Succession


I love this demented show.


I love the cast, the glamour, the sick humor.


I actually didn’t watch it at first. It looked annoying. Done by dummies, it would have been insufferable. But it is oh-so-smart.


It’s really just The Godfather—which was King Lear—starring Rupert Murdoch. It’s a palace show, with the family bonds giving emotional weight to the business scheming. It seems very Jewish, and it’s amazing how much empathy it generates for people who are, by their own admission, destroying the world.


If there are five actors who less look related to each other, you’d be hard-pressed to find them. But each one is so brilliant that it works.


Kudos to Sarah Snook (Australian) and Matthew Macfadyen (English) on pitch-perfect American accents—especially since, I presume, they are often improvising, which is incredibly difficult to do in a non-native accent. (Far too often, this is the result of British actors in American dramas. I love Dominic West, but he’s the worst offender!)


Last night’s episode clarified something that I had not fully understood: this is a parallel universe, with a fictional president. The Roy clan converges (there’s always some reason for them to converge) to pick the next Republican nominee, and settle on a charismatic right-wing monster played by Justin Kirk—who I found grating on Weeds but is terrific here, slightly older and grayer and very funny in explaining how he shamelessly draws from any populist dictator in history...including “H.”


For a show that could be (and actually is) quite repetitive—it’s like a sitcom, says The New Yorker—the writers do a brilliant job of raising the stakes and keeping the momentum moving forward.


And the score is fabulous. I do, in fact, watch the opening credits just for the interplay between the theme and the visuals—like when the theme recaps on the shot of the elephant.


Smack in the middle of season three, this seems like peak Succession. I love it!

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