Another entertaining entry to an explosive season.
Succession is one of the best TV series ever to hit the small screen, and its last season continues to live up to that impressive legacy with another scorcher of an episode. In our Succession season 4 episode 1 review, we noted how a Roy family war was kicking off, as ATN and PGM became the future battlefields and weapons of mass family destruction.
And in the latest entry to the show, episode 2 -titled ‘Rehearsal’ we see plenty of drama as alliances break, backstabbing ensues, and deals are threatened to the extreme. In short, business continues to get messy and personal, resulting in another wildly entertaining outing for the HBO comedy series. Warning spoiler’s ahead!
The new episode starts where the last left off. Kendall, Shiv and Roman have purchased Pierce, Logan is fuming about it, and Shiv and Tom are moving forward with their divorce. The only issue is that despite technically setting up separate factions – Logan is still involved with his kids’ lives as Shiv finds out that her father gave Tom some legal advice for their divorce proceedings.
Tom has called every divorce attorney in New York and effectively blocked Shiv from receiving quality counsel from home – a move that she recognises as a classic ‘dad’ business strategy. Sarah Snook brilliantly plays Shiv’s feelings of betrayal, and it is very clear that she is now out for blood and is going to try and hurt her dad in retaliation by any sneaky means necessary – such as going to the Waystar shareholder board.
Speaking with Sandy’s daughter (Sandi Furness), Shiv lets a group of shareholders who aren’t happy with Logan’s GoJo deal know that she is considering their position. If she and her siblings join the gang opposing the sale, they can block it and force Logan to try and negotiate for more money. Yes, it may interfere with Shiv’s new Pierce deal, but hey, emotions come first for the Roy children.
On the other side of New York, Logan is on the warpath at ATN. The Pierce deal has obviously set fire to his competitive spirit, and he is out to usher a new age in at the company. Hovering around the bullpen like a shark, Logan points out to Tom that the outlet is barely working and is lacking fighting spirit. So like any effective general – he decides to rally the troops by delivering a speech on a makeshift podium of printer paper.
Logan lets all of us know that ATN is going to be meaner, more radical, and less ‘politically correct’ in the future. Brian Cox’s heated speech to the employees is terrifying, and really we know that Logan isn’t going to back down – especially since (if the GoJo deal goes through) all of his attention will be focused on ATN. Logan’s new vision for ATN and the potential shareholder problems with GoJo act as this episode’s main plot points.
Disgusting Brothers Greg and Tom have a secondary subplot this time around – they must tell Logan’s new beau and assistant that she won’t make the cut as the ATN new news anchor. In a hilarious diversion from the tense Roy family war, the two try to let Kerry down easily since they can’t upset Logan’s new love interest either. (we love a good bit of awkward conflict).
However, as these narratives play out, Succession expertly sets its main focus points on a minefield of other family issues with a time limit. The GoJo deal is set to go through in 24 hours, so Kendall, Shiv and Roman need to make their decision ASAP. However, the three can’t calmly discuss the issue as it is also Connor’s wedding rehearsal dinner – which Willow has decided to run away from, too (yikes).
While the three comfort their brother by taking him to the most normal place we have ever seen them at over the course of four seasons ( a bar), more fuel to the fire is added once Kendall gets a call from GoJo CEO Lukas Mattson.
Lukas tells Kendall that he knows about the shareholders’ meeting and point blank says that he won’t buy the company at all if they push back. Kendall (forever a wildcard) is tempted by the prospect of screwing over his dad royally and not selling the company at all – making him align with Shiv and potentially throwing Pierce out the window.
Now, I know that all this double-crossing seems confusing, but bear with us because it gets even juicier. Tensions reach a peak once Logan and the kids finally meet up for a long-overdue chat about their relationship. In an effort to save the deal, Logan meets with his kids and is surprisingly heartfelt, honestly telling them why he iced them out and how his feelings were hurt when his birthday present (which he received all alone) was hearing that they bought Pierce from under his nose.
However, Shiv and Kendall aren’t having it. Luckily for Logan and his deal, Roman seems pretty receptive. Roman, at this point, is the only one out of the three who is actually focused on business. He doesn’t have divorce beef or long-time resentment for his dad and is also picking up on Shiv and Kendall’s bullshit decisions.
The episode ends with Shiv and Kendall effectively saying they are joining Sandi’s team to block the deal. While Roman and Logan meet up for a secret chat. Logan offers Roman a position leading ATN news for his new vision. An ATN that doesn’t hold back on the insults sounds right up Roman’s street, and as Logan pointed out – Roman definitely isn’t cut out for the less sensationalised values of Pierce.
So, it is all very exciting, isn’t it? It looks like Kendall and Shiv’s insistence on revenge over business has pushed Roman back to Logan. And with Roman on his dad’s side, the GoJo deal will likely pass, meaning that Shiv and Kendall’s Pierce news will be facing off against Logan and Rowan’s ATN. Succession season 4, episode 2 is tense, and funny, and will keep you hooked as we wait for its follow-up.