Logan Roy’s funeral sent his children spiraling in different directions in Succession‘s penultimate episode. But as the series finale looms, who has the upper hand in the fight for control of Logan’s legacy?
On the morning of Logan’s funeral, Shiv sees angry protestors outside ATN headquarters on the news — the ballots are still being counted — while Roman rehearses his eulogy in the mirror with a cocky spring in his step. (“I am the King of Dong. Bow down to me.”) As police board up store windows, Rava tells Kendall she’s taking the kids upstate instead of going to the funeral because she doesn’t feel safe. Kendall is furious, threatening to get a court order and even to lie in front of her car to stop her — but he can’t.
Shiv nudges Matsson to come clean about his fake India numbers today amid all the election chaos: “It’s just become an amazing day to bury bad news.” But he laughs her off, teasing America for only being a democracy “for about 50 years… unless you don’t count Black people.” Mencken will be at the funeral, she adds, so it might be a good idea if Matsson is there, too.
Tom is still swamped with election news at ATN, but he’s set to be “a wheel man” on Logan’s coffin, so he tells Greg to save him a seat at the funeral. Kendall, Shiv and Roman share a car to the service, and Kendall is still sulking about Rava and the kids. Their mom Caroline invited them all to “a Caribbean air clear,” but Ken says that’s “a hard no.” Then Shiv decides to tell them: She’s pregnant. Roman teases her, of course (“Is it mine?”), but the siblings all agree to “a funeral truce.”
Once they arrive, Kendall tells his assistant Jess he wants to hire a family lawyer and sue Rava for custody, but he notices Jess already set a meeting on his calendar for next week. She didn’t want to do this today, but she admits she’s ready to move on: “It just feels like time.” Kendall starts out supportive but gets increasingly irritated, finally declaring: “It’s very juvenile… it’s f–king dumb. You’re being dumb. Everyone’s being dumb.”
At the funeral, Shiv tries to talk Connor out of giving his own eulogy (“It’s long, and it’s hard to follow”), and when Marcia shows up dressed in funeral chic, Roman jokes that he’s going to “have sex with her on Dad’s coffin,” so dirty jokes are clearly part of his grieving process. Mencken arrives and gets a hero’s welcome as the presumptive president-elect, and Caroline is there, too, and instantly sees that Shiv is with child. (Her response: “Well, I never.”) Matsson is there, and he took Shiv’s advice, releasing GoJo’s India numbers while everyone’s busy with the election. As for Mencken, Shiv plans to offer him an American CEO to help sweeten the GoJo deal: “You know who would be good? Shiv Roy.” Matsson giggles… but he’s clearly considering it.
Kerry arrives, and Caroline sweetly takes her under her wing, bringing along a woman named Sally Ann, who “was my Kerry, so to speak,” she tells Marcia. They all sit together in the front row, and when Kerry gets choked up, Marcia actually reaches out to comfort her. Wow, who saw that coming?
Tom is stuck at the office, so Greg takes his place wheeling in Logan’s casket, and Logan’s children walk solemnly behind it up the church aisle. After the priest says a blessing, Logan’s brother Ewan stands up to speak, despite Greg’s efforts to stop him: “What sort of people would stop a brother from speaking for a share price?” He remembers growing up with Logan as kids, and Logan blaming himself for their baby sister dying of polio after he came home ill from school. “I loved him, I suppose,” he allows, but “he has wrought the most terrible things.”
Logan “was mean,” and not generous, and at one point decided not to try anymore, “and it was a terrible shame.” When Ewan finishes, Kendall urges Roman to tell the other side of Logan’s life story, but when Roman gets up there, he falters badly, stammering through a few words before breaking down in sobs. He helplessly points to Logan’s casket, asking, “Is he in there? Can we get him out?” So Kendall has to take his place at the church podium.
He acknowledges what Ewan said was true: “My father was a brute. He was tough.” But he also built things, like buildings and movies and amusement parks: “He made life happen.” Logan had “a terrible force to him,” Kendall says, but he had a drive to take action, and “my God, I hope it’s in me.” He gets a hearty round of applause as he sits down, and Shiv takes her turn, remembering playing as kids outside Logan’s office and getting yelled at by him. He always kept them at arm’s length, but when he did let them in, “it was warm in the light,” Shiv recalls. It wasn’t easy being Logan’s daughter or even being a woman in his world, she concedes, “but he did OK. You did OK, Dad.” Roman is still a blubbering mess as the service ends, and on the way out, Mencken offers Kendall a hearty handshake… but Hugo sidles up to Kendall and reports that Shiv has been angling to be Waystar CEO if Mencken lets the GoJo deal go through. Hmmm.
At the cemetery, the Roy siblings marvel at the grandiose family crypt Logan purchased. “He got it on a deal,” Connor reveals, adding, “I think he didn’t want to go into the ground.” They see there are slots for them in the crypt, with Connor offering, “I wouldn’t say no to a top bunk.” As they load Logan’s casket into the crypt, Shiv quips, “I’m intrigued to see how he gets out of this one.” But Kendall pulls Hugo aside and asks him to leak to the media that certain family members don’t approve of Matsson’s offer and the Waystar board is souring on the deal.
“People who say they love you also f–k you,” he declares, enlisting Hugo to be his well-compensated lackey. At the memorial, Kendall also offers Logan’s loyal bodyguard Colin a job, so he’s quietly lining up a few chess pieces on his side. He approaches Mencken to get a firm answer on halting the GoJo deal, but Mencken can only say he’ll “try to help.” Everyone is swarming around Mencken, but Shiv whisks him away to chat with Matsson, who says that his political ideology is “privacy, p—y, pasta.” (Nice callback to Kendall’s s—tshow of a birthday party.) Mencken felt he had “an ideological sympathy” with Logan, but Matsson placates him by offering an American CEO — namely, Shiv. Mencken is surprised, since he thought Shiv hated his guts, but Shiv insists she’s onboard: “My dad was flexible. I’m flexible. I know how this works.”
Tom finally shows up after fighting his way through all the protestors (“It’s getting a little Tiananmen-y out there”), and Shiv pointedly sips a flute of Champagne in front of him. When he asks why she didn’t tell him she was pregnant earlier, she says, “Because it seemed so sad, Tom.” He’s clearly exhausted and rambles about being the last one to see Logan alive and getting to say goodbye, so Shiv tells him he can go get some sleep at their apartment. She also gets a call from Matsson, telling her he got a yes from Mencken and he thinks they can make an American CEO work. Kendall sits with Roman and spills about the Shiv-Matsson-Mencken alliance, warning that “we might need to make some moves.”
Roman is still distraught, though, and Kendall says: “That’s because you f—ked it.” He blames him for botching the Mencken deal, and now they’ll need to go up against Shiv with the Waystar board. He has a plan, but Roman storms off, walking into the chaos outside and flipping protestors the middle finger and calling them idiots. He even hops a barricade and tells them off to their faces, with one protestor elbowing him in the face, leaving Roman to be trampled by the mob. He shoves away someone trying to help him up before scurrying off into the night.
Got thoughts on this week’s Succession? Predictions for next week’s big finale?