What On Earth Is HBO Going To Do After “Succession” Ends?


Gabriella Madden

There’s never been a show like HBO’S “Succession,” and there never will be anything like it again. Every Sunday night at 9pm ET, I sit down on my couch, open HBO Max, and watch as the Roy family self-destructs and attempts to rebuild, over and over again. What seems tedious and exhausting on paper is an absolutely thrilling, hilarious, heartbreaking watch. Nothing makes me laugh harder than Roman’s one-liners, but nothing tears me apart like watching the siblings come to terms that their father Logan has ruined them, permanently. It’s absolutely invigorating TV, and it’s one of the best HBO shows in the past 20 years. What’s going to happen when it’s over?


Spoilers ahead up until season four, episode three. 


Undoubtedly, “Succession” is the crown jewel of HBO’s roster. It’s won the Best Drama Emmy twice in its run and is looking to take it a third and final time at the 2023 awards. Jeremy Strong, who plays former golden boy, Kendall Roy, has won an Emmy for his performance and has the whole internet talking about his acting methods and how perfectly he plays Kendall (and yes, THAT New Yorker profile). It’s a critical darling and has a wonderfully passionate fanbase with a shocking number of teenage girls for a show about familial estrangement and business deals.

The thing that really makes “Succession” click is how it seamlessly weaves in all of its themes. Yes, there’s the cutthroat business aspect of the show that delivers some of the wittiest lines on television, but there’s a deep emotional depth. Everything is so intertwined in the Roy Family, with Logan (Brian Cox) running the show both in the family and in Waystar, making his children turn against each other for a seat at the table. 

Logan rewards his kids if they do things in his interest, for his love, and what happens when they turn against him can be damning. In the season three finale, he screws each and every kid out of a critical business deal, breaking their trust, and esteem, and essentially severing the Roy family ties. But what comes next further sets the tragedy of the show in motion. 

Season four shows the Roy family at their highest highs and lowest lows. The high? Finally beating their father at a business venture. The low? Logan dying. What many thought might finally be a moment of triumph and freedom in his children’s lives was undoubtedly the most tragic and raw “Succession” has ever been. Even in death, Roman reassured his father that he would always win, Shiv worried that he’d be angry she didn’t want to see his body, and Kendall still felt that without his father, he was helpless. Not to mention how Connor’s (Alan Ruck) gut reaction was just how much Logan hated him. They are ruined forever.

In just under an hour, “Succession” turned into one of the best episodes of television, ever. The unflinching look at grief and generational trauma relied solely on three actors in one room. What Strong, Culkin, and Snook turned in were career-high performances that convey the internal battles between love, grief, anger, and betrayal the kids are fighting. What the rest of season four will explore is: will they win? Will they stand as one or will one be left standing?

Once this show comes to an end, however, there’s nothing of its caliber left. Yes, “The Last Of Us” was great, and “The White Lotus” seems to be a promising anthology series. On the other hand, there’s not a single show left that can rely as much on its characters and dialogue as much as “Succession” does, and succeed in a way that “Succession” can. “House of the Dragon” might move into that place, as “Succession” was once second-best to its predecessor “Game of Thrones.” But will viewers get sick of the world of Westeros with even more spin-offs still in development, or what happens if HOTD falls to the same fate that made “Thrones” go down in TV infamy?

Let’s look ahead to the upcoming roster. “Euphoria?” Season two was just downright lazy and was saved by Zendaya. “The Idol?” That Rolling Stone article does not have my hopes high. There are plenty of projects in development that look promising, but those are all waiting games. Plus, it’s hard to judge a project that hasn’t even been green-lit yet.

As hard as it is saying goodbye to the Roys, it’s harder saying goodbye to the best show currently on television. As enthralling as some other HBO projects are, it’s still too early to tell if they’ll reach the immortal status of Waystar Roy Co. 

Rest in peace, “Succession.” There was no reason for me to start that show when I was 16, but every day, I’m so glad I did.