Our favorite despicable family, the Roys, are back after what felt like a very long hiatus. However, the team is not only back, but they hit the ground running. A corporate reshuffling took place off-screen, allowing the exiled Roy children to make a play against their father. After the devasting ending to Season 3, where have the lines been drawn? After the emotionally cold gutting they received at the hands of their father, the Roy siblings arrive ready to play dirty. Succession‘s Season 4 premiere, “The Munsters” is written by Jesse Armstrong and directed by Mark Mylod.
Succession – “The Munsters” Recap
Logan Roy (Brian Cox) celebrates his birthday with only Connor (Alan Ruck) at the party. Across the country, Kendall (Jeremy Strong), Roman (Kieran Culkin), and others work on a new company called “The Hundred.” In Kendall’s words, they are “Substack meets Masterclass, meets the Economist, meets the New Yorker.” Shiv (Sarah Snook) shows up and tells the boys she’s been taking a business call.
Shiv plays off the fact that she’s been away as if she was meeting for the new business. However, Kendall and Roman know she’s been speaking with the Jimenez brothers about working for them. Shiv tries to keep her options open, but the boys think she’s trying to snake out of it. Roman asks if she’s worried about size, and she says no. Roman worries “the idea for The Hundreds is so good, why has no one done it before?” They all seem jittery about the next steps. However, everyone agrees they’ve worked hard to build this. They’re still in on the project and want to work together.
At his birthday, Logan walks away from the party after they sing “Happy Birthday.” Kerry (Zoe Winters) steps in to ask Logan how he’s doing. He replies by referring to his guests as “The Munsters,” and shows surprise when Greg (Nicholas Braun) walks into the party. Kerry walks over to greet them. Greg introduces Bridget (Francesca Root-Dodson), his date for the evening. Kerry asks Greg to accompany her to get Bridget a drink, and berates him for bringing a stranger to Logan’s party. Greg tries to explain that Marsha always said he was fine to bring others around. Kerry cuts him off and reminds him Marsha is gone. She then dresses him down, accusing Bridget of potentially leaking info or being a hostel asset.
While Shiv, Roman, and Kendall pitch The Hundreds, Shiv gets a phone call from Tom. She steps outside, and Tom informs her he was out with Naomi Pierce the night before. Shiv does not respond well, accusing Tom of dating Kendall’s ex and sleeping with her. Tom denies it was sexual, but Shiv does not believe him. Shiv asks why Tom is with Naomi (Annabelle Dexter-Jones), and he hangs up.
Shiv goes back inside and asks Kendall where he’s at with Naomi. He’s confused at first, and Roman tells Cyrus Tellis (Kevin Changaris) to hold off the Saudis outside for a minute. The Roys begin dissecting why Tom is meeting with Naomi, and Kendall realizes another Pierce was at Logan’s birthday. Logan might be making a play to acquire Pierce and spin off ATN from the deal with GO-JO. They call Tellis back into the room and ask him what the vibes at PGN are like. When he says they’re looking for offers, the siblings ask for 5 more minutes.
Connor stresses while on the phone. He’s polling at 1% and tells Greg he’s worried about it dropping. Willa sarcastically jokes about the polling, while Connor wants to spend more on the campaign. Tom comes to tell Logan about a deal for Pierce. Nan wants nothing to do with it now, and the cousins want to sell it. Naomi has flown out to reassure the Pierce family. Logan asks Tom if he’s heard from “the rats,” but Tom denies speaking to Shiv. Instead, he asks what the future would hold for him if his relationship with Shiv were to end.
Kendall, Roman, and Shiv discuss the idea of buying Pierce. Kendall and Shiv like the idea. Roman prefers their plan to create “The Hundreds” for far cheaper. After the GoJo sale, they’ll get enough money to buy Pierce. This would force them to go all-in to make it work.
Tom and Greg talk at the party. Greg makes a joke about the two of them as “the Disgusting Brothers,” which Tom shales off. Tom then makes Greg aware everyone is laughing at him. Apparently, Bridget has not made a good impression. They joke about the size of her bag, and then she approaches them quickly. She asks Greg if they can leave, and when he asks why, she reveals she asked Logan for a selfie.
Tellis returns to the Roys, letting them know Pierce is expecting a deal tonight. Nan is open to speaking with Shiv but doesn’t think it will work. Logan remains on edge at his party. He knows he’s got plenty on his plate. Kerry tries to offer to bring the kids in, but Logan ignores it. He’s annoyed with the people at the party and sneaks out with Colin.
Shiv gets off the phone with Nan (Cherry Jones) and confirms Logan as the buyer. Nan says she’s “honor bound” to sell to Logan but is willing to listen to the kids’ pitch if they meet with her now. Kendall and Shiv again push for Pierce. Roman points out that he’s the only one who wants to set up a business without a vendetta.
Logan walks the streets of New York and grabs food with Colin. He waxes philosophical about “what a person” is, comparing people to markets. Logan becomes extremely existential during the conversation and wonders if there’s an afterlife. The two ultimately decide they don’t know.
Kerry calls Roman and asks for the trio to call Logan. When they ask if Logan actually asked for the call, Kerry hesitates. They get on a plane and fly to meet Nan. Karl rushed over to Kerry and asks her to call Logan.
Connor walks over to Willa, asking if she thinks the wedding sounds fun enough. He begins pitching dramatic, attention-seeking details (like bum fights). Willa asks what’s going on. Connor admits it would help him with the campaign by saving money on getting media attention. Willa admits she’s always wanted a nice wedding, and Connor asks her to consider it. Greg tells Tom that he slept with Bridget at the party. Tom laughs, telling Greg that Logan has cameras in every room. Greg needs to own up to Logan asap.
Logan returns from the diner and tells everyone to get out. A rival bid is in ply for Pierce, and they need the war council. Logan calls for Tom, Gerri, Karl, and Frank to join him asap.
A black SUV carrying the Roy children arrives at Nan’s house. Kendall asks for a minute with Naomi to talk personally. Before they can, Naomi asks them to wait five minutes. Logan calls Nan to ask about a rival bidder. Frank tells the other four in the group that Roman, Kendall, and Shiv are likely the other bidders. Gerri, Karl, and Frank argue about who is going to tell Logan. Greg goes to tell Logan about his indiscretion but is interrupted by Karl, who breaks the news about the kids. Logan begins lashing out, and Greg asks for a minute with him in the corner.
Naomi lets the kids know Nan is ready to see them. Greg told Logan what happened with Bridget and puts most of the blame on her. Logan sends Colin down to check out Bridget’s phone and throws her out of the party.
The three Roys meet with Nan Pierce. She tells them it’s too late, but the Roys make the pitch. Kendall starts by pointing out that Logan just wants to take the company out of spite. Shiv also points out they’ll be competitive on price, keep the values of the company, and is ready to divorce Tom. When Nan begins stalling again, Roman drops a hint of a $8 billion sale. She asks for a moment to talk it over with her family. She calls Logan, who is unreceptive to her call. Logan asks for the others in the room to roast him, and no one except for Greg does.
Tom confirms that Nan has been receiving other offers and needs to know tonight. Logan asks Kerry to join him as council, and they float $6 billion. Shiv officially pitches $8 billion. Tom passes it along that they were rejected, and Logan tells Tom to call Shiv. Naomi steps out to the kids and asks if there’s more upside to their offer. Shiv gets the call from Tom. They push him and say their high offer is $12 billion.
Roman begins sweating the numbers. He pitches for 9, maybe $9.5 billion. Kendall and Shiv think throwing in the extra money will help Nan show their good faith effort. Tellis thinks they can swing up to $10 billion.
The Roys walk in and bid $10 billion. This ends the bidding, and Logan is furious. He calls them, congratulates them “for saying the biggest number you fucking morons” and leaves. They happily drive away from Nan’s house after laughing about their dad’s response.
Shiv arrives home from the trip. Mondale the dog barks from the other room. She goes in to pick up some clothes, and Tom is waiting for her. She brings up the “disgusting brothers” moniker that got back to her. Tom, very frustrated, tries to play it off. She brings up the models he’s supposedly been sleeping with since their separation.
Tom wants to talk about their relationship, but Shiv wants it to end. He pushes to explain things. She thinks it’s simply time to move on. Shiv does not think it’ll help if they’re both crying and sad. They sit in the room with the decision to end their marriage hanging over the room. Logan calls Cyd (Jeannie Berlin) to ask why the news hour is so bad. He asks if she’s losing it as the news drones on in the background.
Episode Breakdown – Succession – “The Munsters”
It’s always exciting when Jesse Armstrong kicks off an episode with the intro. You know we’re in for a treat, from the moment “The Munsters” begins drawing parallels to the very first episode, we are off. A confused and bewildered Logan faces existential crisis after existential crisis in this episode. While the years may have changed, the faces around him feel as foreign as ever.
Just thirty episodes ago, Logan had a different wife and three children dropping everything to be by his side. Only Tom remains eager to impress. Colin, a bodyguard paid to protect Logan, has somehow become his best friend. There’s a tragedy in this, but also surprising honesty from Armstrong. For a man like Logan, who sees everyone as a mark he can squeeze value out of, the person with his hand on the trigger is the most valuable.
While Logan deals with his impending nothingness, other things stay the same. Greg wanders into the birthday every bit as clueless as years before. He may find himself with more power and resolve, but he remains naive in other aspects. On one hand, Greg might be the only one to actually push back on Logan. Yet even his feeble attempts to spar prove something we already know. Greg, for all his puppy-dog pep, is not a child of Logan Roy. He cosplays as a member of the family and cannot make up for the spunk Logan’s children bring to his life.
Speaking of which, Sarah Snook makes “The Munsters” her showcase. She delivers many of the best lines in the episode and helps frame the episode with her personal struggles. By the time she reaches the finale, with an equally terrific Macfadyen, our heart has been ripped out. The two deliver an incredible emotional breakdown that will surely be among the year’s best scenes in any medium.
Macfadyen plays the whole episode as a man trying to find his place. With Greg, everything has gone stale. The younger man has gone down a path of excess that Tom cannot follow. In fact, he seems committed to his wife. Later in the season, we may find that the stories about Tom have been true. However, it seems very likely they are not. Without Shiv, he cannot seem to get a handle on his emotions. He’s weak and vulnerable in ways we’ve rarely seen him. Even his pitch to make love to Shiv is a desperate attempt to be with her one last time. Macfadyen truly shows why Tom is one of the great television characters of the last twenty years, and his vivid portrait of grief for a relationship is stunning work.
The fallout of the Roy children upending their father will bring out some big dogs. Even the final scene, with Logan realizing that he needs to be more involved with the news business, is clearly a way to reconnect and fight with his kids. After all, their new enterprise will need steady hands, especially over the content. The wars over what is broadcast will certainly catch the eyes of the people.
“The Munsters” title continues to work on a multitude of levels. After all, in the show “The Munsters,” a family of monsters travels to a new town to build a life. However weird and odd they may seem, when they stick together, they have community. Without each other, they have less power, less connection, and fewer people to hide behind. There are monsters in the world, and they may struggle to fit in outside of their family. Unfortunately for the Roys, the divides are too deep to allow that family to come together.