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SUCCESSION S4 Premiere: “The Munsters”

by Travlis Hallingquest
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The first episode of the final season of HBO’s SUCCESSION begins eerily like the pilot episode. We are at Logan’s birthday celebration, and the normally irritable man is in even rarer form. In the pilot, Logan did not exhibit the brashness we are accustomed to until Kendall left a business deal without closing to attend the birthday party. It was then Logan decided to forego retirement and did not name his successor. Logan needed a “killer” and Kendall and none of his Succession_S4Ep1-300x194other children did not have the chops to helm Waystar. “THE MUNSTERS” has Logan surrounded by his board of directors and a horde of random people, but his core children are not present. The likable but delusional Connor (oldest child from Logan’s first marriage) is present but only physically. Connor holds less than 1% of potential votes for the presidency of the United States, but he is plotting his campaign at his father’s party. Kendall, Shiv, and Roman are on the opposite end of the country, attempting to start up a new media company.

The three-hour time difference between the locations of the three Roy children and their father is a lowkey but important plot point. The Manhattan party is transpiring in the evening and much of the time Logan is in the dark. Kendall, Shiv and Roman are in sunny Los Angeles. Despite their loss of company control from the events of last season, the sunlight represents the rekindled relationship between the three. Shiv and Tom are not surprisingly estranged, and Tom calls to inform her that he met with Kendall’s ex for business and pleasure. Shiv is angered by both reasons, but the former reason alerts the kids that their father is once again trying to acquire PGM. PGM was once a thorn in the side of Logan and he wanted to buy the company to spite the rival owner.  Shiv and Kendall (with the backing of investors) want to outbid Logan to spite their father.  The normally loose-cannon Roman is the only person that wants to acquire PGM solely for strategic purposes. This family is metaphorically guilty of incest. Everyone just wants to fuck each other over. 

Succession_S4Ep1Pic2The odd but genuine relationship between Tom and cousin Greg continues to grow. The two go out on escapades seeing women and frequenting bars. When Greg confides that he had sex with a date in one of Logan’s spare bedrooms, Tom tells his buddy he must tell Logan because the old man has cameras in every room and he reviews the footage each night. We do not see this conversation between Greg and Logan, but Greg says that Logan was disgusted but gave him a wry smile. Greg is nearly escorted out by Colin, the head of security. The interaction between Colin and Greg is cordial, this is a stark contrast to their first encounter. In the pilot episode, Greg has been violently pushed away when he approaches his uncle, for Colin had no idea the tall and lanky person was a Logan family member.

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Audience viewership and critical acclaim of SUCCESSION would seemingly warrant more seasons. However, HBO and showrunner Jesse Armstrong want to go out on a high note. No need to have a sublime series lose quality due to unnecessary episodes. “THE MUNSTERS” though sets the mark that SUCCESSION will indeed end on that high note for audiences. Albeit the series will most likely end on a low note for many of the Logans. The kids draw first blood this time, by outbidding their father for PGM. Logan shows his hypocrisy by being angered by his kids fulfilling his “killer” requirements. The old man wants his kids to be ruthless if it fulfills his intentions.

 

Succession_S4Ep1Pic4-300x201In one of the series’ most comical but dark moments, Logan asks his board of directors to cheer him up by roasting him. Karl and Frank, his COO and CFO respectively fail miserably. Greg is up to the challenge and asks Logan “where are your kids on your birthday?” Logan is unphased and asks where Greg’s deadbeat father is. Tom and Shiv meet the following night after the PGM bidding war. Now we see Shiv after sunset, the darkness representing the state of her marriage. Tom wants to talk about all that has transpired since his betrayal last season. Shiv avoids the conversation. The two lie next to each other on the couch and hold hands in silence.

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SUCCESSION Sunday nights of HBO. It returns on April 02, 2023, at 9 PM ET. Don’t miss the final season! 

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