This season of Succession has focused on Kendall’s downfall, and “All The Bells Say” seemed like it would be some kind of final reckoning for the character. I wasn’t convinced that we’d return to find Kendall dead after last week’s pool cliffhanger, but I did think a near-death experience might force Kendall to change. Kendall, instead, writes off the event as an accident; the result of one too many limoncellos. The siblings make jokes about it and Kendall’s own parents don’t even check in on him.
Not that it matters. If Kendall has been impacted by his slip-up on a floatie, he isn’t sharing that with anyone. Kendall is still just Kendall; yelling at his kids and talking to his lawyer about posting all of his emails and messages on Instagram. Succession isn’t ready to say goodbye to Kendall and Kendall, it turns out, isn’t ready to say goodbye to Waystar Royco. Despite his posturing as the morally pure Roy, when duty calls, Kendall is there to help guide the coup he wanted at the beginning of the season.
Sadly, it’s too little too late. Even after a run-in with wedding waiters sends Kendall spiraling, none of the Roy siblings are given time to sit with the weight of Kendall’s confession. Shiv and Roman are so focused on getting Kendall in the right headspace to take on their dad, they can’t even fathom what he’s saying. Perhaps, if they had, they might’ve realized it may not be the best idea to throw your future in with a guy who seems convinced people are coming after him for the death he caused. As motivated as the trio were, their plan always seemed flimsy, mostly because it relied on a mother who barely wanted them at her wedding.
While Kendall survives to see “All The Bells Say,” it is fair to say a massacre takes place in this finale. All of the Roy children suffer incredible losses and betrayal before eventually losing the company they consider their birthright. Even Connor loses his spiritual standing as the eldest Roy. Logan has pushed his children so far from Waystar’s inner circle, they’re left scrambling to figure out what’s even going on. Roman is so desperate he even tries to push Greg for information.
But, for those of us who know Logan Roy, it was clear he was going to take this deal the second he sent Roman back to his mommy. There was nothing Shiv, Roman or Kendall could do. Like Matsson said, Logan wasn’t punching him in the nose and we’ve certainly seen Logan tell people to fuck off with more flair. Shiv and Kendall have already disappointed Logan and Roman took himself out of the running with his penis pic fiasco. Logan has no faith in his children and other than starting fresh with maca root smoothies and a new kid, he has few options for the future of his empire.
Logan spitting in his kids’ faces isn’t a surprise. As soon as Roman even said the word “love,” I knew Logan would tear him apart. Although, to be fair, it did seem like Gerri’s abandonment hurt Roman more. The entire scene where Logan reveals what he’s done is a masterclass. Kendall is barely surprised, because he knows how evil his father can be. I also wonder, since Kendall was already looking for a way out, if he was genuinely just trying to help Shiv and Roman. Roman falls to his knees, like Kendall did earlier. It’s the worst for Roman since he almost has a way back in, even if he would have to work for Matsson. And Shiv? She tries to stand tall until she realizes how her father knew their plan.
Tom Wambsgans, you beautiful Midwestern King. Throughout this season, I felt like he was scheming or planning some sort of takedown that might destroy Waystar. Instead, there’s been no act behind Tom’s loyalty towards Logan. Tom has truly never seen Logan get fucked over and he trusts that over anything else. He trusts Logan more than Shiv’s promise to freeze an egg. Shiv didn’t even consider where Tom would end up in their plan! Like Nero, Tom pushed his wife down the stairs and chose Sporus (Greg). In retrospect, it seems obvious that Tom has been helping Logan. Shiv constantly underestimates him and wouldn’t think for a moment that he’s the reason Logan knew where to send them donuts in episode two.
“All The Bells Say” features Emmy-worthy moments for Jeremy Strong, Brian Cox, Kieran Culkin, and Sarah Snook. Somehow, Cox managed to find the energy of a man half his age when he told his children that he had won. That impression of Shiv is something I’ll remember forever. “All The Bells Say” is a finale that beautifully ties together what has felt like a disconnected season. It also resets the stakes for next season in the best possible way, as the Roy siblings are forced to make their own piles of money now. Directed by Mark Mylod, it may also be the show’s most beautiful episode.
Succession has reset itself in such an exciting way, that nearly anything could happen in season four. The obvious twists this season felt like a distraction from something far more sinister: Logan being so disgusted with his children, he’d sell the very company he created.
- “Scrawny on meth or yoga.” Truly, a wonderful way to define a generation.
- Shiv wants her mommy so bad. That speech was painful. There was a wonderful parallel between Shiv’s toast and Roman coming to his father with love.
- It was kind of sweet, watching Shiv and Roman comfort Kendall about killing someone. At least they have each other.
- I hope Connor and Willa’s wedding is the finale for next season.
- Thanks for following Roxana Hadadi’s reviews this season and I’m glad I could fill in for the finale!