‘Succession’ Season 4, Episode 9 Recap: ‘Church and State’

First of all, this was expected. Rome was the ticking time bomb that we were all waiting to go off. Initially, I was like, “WHO assigned Roman, the child who was arguably abused the most by Logan, to deliver the eulogy?!” Then, Marina, once you reminded me that he assigned it to himself, I knew it was about to be a shit show. The stammering … the snotty nose … the way he asked, “Is he in there? Can we get him out?” Give Kieran the Emmy, NOW. When Matsson referred to Rome as “The Grim Weeper,” I audibly yelped in my apartment. What an INSANE, unhinged thing to say. I had to collect myself for the next few lines after that. And the episode ending with Roman getting trampled was … something. — Ruth

Yeah, remember no one wanted it last episode? And then HE assigned it to himself, and we were all (rightly) like: “Welp, this is gonna be a disaster!”

I’ve rewound the “Is he in there? Can we get him out?!” multiple times. I know we say “give [X Actor] an Emmy!” like, every single episode. But Kieran Culkin has had so many incredible moments throughout the show’s run, and it’s hard to imagine Roman without Culkin’s panache. And Roman’s arc during this final season has especially stood out.

One of the many things I will miss about this show is the way there are these incredibly consistent through lines. Something I think about a lot is how “Succession” is about these idiot kids trying to escape the cycles of abuse started by Logan — only to keep spinning their wheels. Even in death, they can’t escape. As you noted, Ruth, it’s absolutely not a coincidence that Roman, whom Logan abused the most, has the most visceral reaction here. And that theme of these unbreakable cycles of abuse runs through all of these characters and their “eulogies,” which we’ll, of course, get into.

It’s funny how this show almost — almost — got me feeling bad for the sibling who most directly enabled the election of a fascist president — and then had me cackling at the end when the protesters were pummeling him. This show contains multitudes. Starting with him bombastically rehearsing his failed speech and then ending with that: It’s a great set of bookends for the episode. — Marina

As expected, the biggest poser on this show is Roman — and he proved that once again last night. The whole “not your son, I’ve pre-grieved” shit was classic avoidance. Him saying that he wanted to fuck corpses and other truly inappropriate and disgusting things he said even long before the eulogy grossed me out. All I can think is that this man, this absolute asshole, also needs intense therapy. Breaking down at the podium was just the culmination, but doesn’t ameliorate any of his assholery.

I cackled when Kendall told Roman that he “fucked it.” I mean, all three of them did. Roman just did it more catastrophically. But none of them has ever been able to own up to their fuckery.

I was waiting for the camera to cut to Gerri, whose face was a perfect blend of repulsion and pity. My girl. And Matsson’s “Grim Reaper” comment was well played. None of the siblings should expect any respect from him as he, like each of them, is not a good person. They’ve all fucked each other. Business as usual. — Candice

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