[Editor’s note: The following contains spoilers for Succession, Season 4 Episode 2, “Rehearsal.”]
I want to know that we are killing the opposition. They slash their throats,” shouts ATN gangster Logan Roy (Brian Cox), infuriating his version of the crew (read: white people in business clothes). “You fucking pirates.”
This week’s episode of Succession It picks up shortly after the tight, boiling show that brought us last week, upping the ante in a few ways. However, this season seems like it’s still on the ramp—we’re clearly gearing up for bigger events, and the restraint shown by Jesse Armstrong and company in “Rehearsal” is impressive. This is not to say that anything we’ve seen so far has been boring; How could it be with the consistency of insults and insults spinning in the head? But these first two entries in Season 4, SuccessionThe last dance, it felt like an ugly one.
The episode’s title refers to the rehearsal dinner for the impending wedding between Connor (Alan Ruck) and Willa (Justin Luby), the latter of which is visibly panicked at the commitment she’s supposed to make when morning comes. Meanwhile, Shiv (Sarah Snook), Kendall (Jeremy Strong), and Roman (Kieran Culkin) are caught up in their own adventures and their never-ending desire to win a run with their dad to properly support Connor at Eve’s wedding. Willa may be a runaway bride, and Connor just wants to sing karaoke, but the focus remains on Sandy, Stewie, the comparison, and everyone’s next moves.
Yes, episode 2 gives us a welcome appearance by Arian Moayed’s Stewie, whose energy with Kendall can be studied and broken down in an article of his own. When friendship/romance/rivalry falters or cracks, we get a glimpse into the true feelings that everyone in this universe works so hard to hide. The way Stewie appeals to Kendall to hear him shout his name out loud? plays! drama! feelings!
Meanwhile, Tom and Greg are busy dealing with Logan’s decision to spend more time at ATN moving forward, along with the subplot of Logan’s assistant, Kerry (Zoe Winters), as they are given a chance at a hosting gig (to some disastrous results). These execs love to deflect and prevaricate, and eventually, it somehow becomes Greg’s responsibility to let Kerry know she’s not going forward in the role. While the focus group I made up in a panic might not be real, I personally would love to see what the notes about “guns being used wrong for TV” would look like.