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Stream Succession Season 4 on Sky Atlantic with NOW on Mondays. Seasons 1-3 streaming
The King may have died, but the battle for power and control at Waystar Royco is only getting more desperate and dirtier.
Beyond the foul-mouthed rants, obnoxiously lavish retreats and rapid-fire, quotable insults, the central hook of HBO’s hit series Succession has been the question of who will succeed Logan Roy (Brian Cox) at the head of the media conglomerate.
Will it be the Boomers or the Zoomers? One of Logan’s children or an outsider? A mad tech billionaire who wants a new toy? Or a dependable old pair of hands who isn’t quite ready for their golden parachute?
Across the cast of characters in Succession, there are plenty of options about who might end up sitting in Logan’s chair, and fans have spent a long while on forums, Twitter and Reddit discussing potential endings for the show.
We’ve rounded up the best predictions and theories about how Succession will end…
1. Kendall finally becomes ‘the killer’
Kendall Roy (Jeremy Strong) has pushed himself to the very edge as he wrestled with his father for control of the company. But even after everything that he’s gone through, the little glint in his eye over a piece of paper with his name on it (but was it underlined or crossed out?) proved that he still craved the support and backing of his old man.
Since Logan’s death, Kendall has been on the front foot and his father’s note has reignited his desire to sit at the head of the Waystar table. Unlike brother oman, Kendall seems more than happy to push sister Shiv to one side and probably believes he can do the same with Roman when the time comes.
Could Kendall finally prove his dad wrong and become the ‘killer’, who outmanuvres tech tycoon Lukas Matsson and his own siblings to become the sole CEO of his dad’s company?
2. The King Lear ending
"I land the deal, I kill Kendall, I’m crowned king. Just like in Hamlet… if that happens in Hamlet. I don’t care."
Succession has worn its Shakespearian influences on its sleeve throughout its four seasons, as this fantastic Folger Shakespeare Library blog post outlines.
If the show is to end with a Shakespearian tragedy, King Lear seems the most likely reference point. Although we doubt the show will be quite as brutal as the play, in that rather than everyone dying, perhaps everyone will just lose.
From the children to the Fool (Hey, Greg!), the show could conclude with everyone being punished for their sins. Kendall could go to jail for his part in the waiter’s death. Roman could be punished for those pictures he sent to Gerri. Tom could bring down Shiv. Greg could bring down Tom. And Greg might just finally stop landing on his feet and find himself back where he started in Parks.
3. The Romulus and Remus ending
After that ‘pic’ scene in season 3, it feels pretty wild that Roman (Kieran Culkin) could finish up as Succession's ‘winner’ and in control of Waystar. But now that that dastardly flicker has returned to Kendall's eyes, it could be left to Roman to be the grown-up in the room.
Roman’s outburst at Matsson and his emotional response to his father’s death has somehow made the insult-firing, pill-popping youngest Roy the most endearing of the siblings.
Logan’s frequent use of ‘Romulus’ when speaking to his son has led many fans to theorise that he could end up defeating his brother and, just like in Roman mythology, go on to reign for many years.
With his father's trusted counsel Gerri (J Smith-Cameron) by his side to stick in the knife when required, could Roman start his own empire?
4. Greg Sprinkles
It would probably be the most shocking and surprising ending – and it’s one the writers appeared to be mocking with the ‘Greg?’ note in Logan’s belongings – but what if Greg Hirsch (Nicholas Braun) did somehow weasel his way past everyone to become the top dog.
From the ‘Disgusting Brothers’ to the ‘Quad Squad’, Greg has a handy knack of keeping himself in with the right people at the right time. He’s also got the wealth and connection to Logan’s brother Ewan, which could potentially legitimise him with the board.
He flies under the radar, has zero morals when it comes to backstabbing and his thirst for power and respect has only grown after getting a little taster.
Maybe everyone will be enjoying some Greg sprinkles at the end of Succession.
5. Shiv the Knife
We're halfway through the final season and Shiv (Sarah Snook) is secretly pregnant, her relationship with Tom (Matthew Macfadyen) is more twisted and toxic than ever (“Barnacle meat”) and she’s started flirting dangerously with Matsson. But most importantly, she has started making moves to take down her brothers.
Just like the Romulus-Roman theory, many viewers believe that it's the definition of ‘Shiv’ as a makeshift knife that will make her victorious in the end.
Matsson noted that Logan’s daughter was most like the patriarch, and that could prove to be an astute observation. She’s always been the smartest of the Roy children (admittedly it isn’t the highest bar), but the misogyny of others and her own hubris have so far prevented her from stepping up.
Shiv has intel on her brothers and Matsson that could potentially destroy any remaining reputation they hold. Will she wield her knowledge to seize control and slit the throats of anyone who stands in her way?
6. Matsson destroys them all
GoJo’s toxic tycoon Lukas Matsson (Alexander Skarsgård) was always two steps ahead of ‘tribute band’ Kendall and Roman at their Norwegian retreat. He even survived the three-hour screening of Calyspotron: Hibernation.
He showcased his sinister dark side as he revealed to Shiv his Hannibal Lector-style approach to flirtation. Sending blood to your staff makes Roman’s phallic photos seem relatively pedestrian!
The real question is what Matsson really wants from Waystar? Does he need it? And aside from a potentially embarrassing and terrifying sex scandal, does he have a weakness that can be exploited by the Roys?
If this whole deal isn’t just a whim for the eccentric billionaire, it seems like quite a good bet that the Roys will tear themselves apart and leave the ruins for the tech billionaire vulture to pick up.
Stream Succession Season 4 on Sky Atlantic with NOW on Mondays. Seasons 1-3 streaming.
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