Eat the Rich: Who’s the most delicious on ‘Succession’?
Will it be Shiv, Logan, or Connor first in our stomachs? Get in losers, we’re eating the rich.
We are among the hive of media bloggers and journalists who obsess over the Roy family saga — whose livelihoods the characters casually discard in a glob of spit — relishing its sickening tableau of mega-wealth and power. As the third season of Succession arrives two years and one global pandemic later, it has become more apparent than ever that we are in an era of doom fully caused and exploited by the wealthy elite and billionaire class. Eating the rich is now a mainstream fantasy, a daydream for the masses. Let’s indulge this fantasy, shall we? If the revolution came, and we prepared a banquet of the wealthy, who would we eat first?
Each character in the Succession Extended Universe presents a different vantage point on the structure of American greed, corruption, and power. The staff at Mic broke down the nature of these players, ranking them across distinct categories to analyze just how edible each character really is. This is your definitive guide to Eating the Rich: Succession-Style.
I’ve heard it said that consuming the body of your enemy is to gain their power. In that case, there is no one I would rather eat from Succession than Gerri “It’s Me” Kellman. You can see wheels turning as she receives the phone call in which Logan (spoiler) anoints her as the next CEO of Waystar Royco. “It’s just interim,” she says. Clever Gerri.
“Is Gerri clean?” Logan asks his fixer while considering his successor. Well, she’s clean enough and smart enough to clean up after herself. Unlike the Roy children, Gerri never asks for power, she embodies it. She knows that power isn’t black and white, something you have or you don’t. Power is the temperature of the room, a temperature that Gerri always takes. Sure, she’s set up to fail, shoved over a glass cliff the depth of the Marianas Trench. I’m sure she’s already got a lifejacket.
But is Gerri the most immoral of the clan? Well, is it illegal to be immoral? The overlords of Waystar Royco have a chief council like Gerri around to let them know when they are bending the law and when they are breaking it. Gerri is possibly the least delicious of the group, like a frog dressed in its own poison for safety.
2/10, ingest at your own peril. Notes of girlboss with a hefty sprinkling of gatekeeping. Much like the shame of eating the ortolan, eating Gerri would be an unwise decision for anyone looking to avoid prison. —Michelle Legro
“Here’s the thing about being rich — it’s fucking great! It’s like being a superhero, only better.” For poor ol’ Tom, a man who can’t help but keep getting dumped, all that matters is the shiny proof of status that is being rich. He’s a person who is preoccupied with having gotten the shitty, second-tier panic room when there’s an active shooter in the building. He’s arguably the most detestable kind of rich person, one who simply mimics the behaviors of the wealthy power brokers above him, but has no actual convictions himself outside of the appearance of being rich. He uses everyone else below him as literal human furniture, simply because he is human furniture for those above him.
But that’s the thing. Tom is ultimately a gilded footstool in the grand scheme, whether he wants to admit it or not, and is awfully entertaining as such. It’s his negligible, empty executive spot in the hierarchy, his comically pitiable nature, that pushes him down the totem pole of edibility.
3/10, undercooked and overseasoned. Getting rid of Tom does nothing to upset the structures of corruption and power, and we’d hate to lose one of our two beloved fools early on in the feast. Nest to put him in the best panic room when the fork and knives come out. —Brandon Yu
The good son, the bad son. Of all the characters on the show, each of whom orbits around the menacing planet that is Logan Roy, Kendall has by far the most complex relationship with his father. He is at once the most submissive, the most reliable, and the most treacherous. What do you do with an individual who is both the evil empire’s most sturdy foot soldier and its greatest saboteur?
He’s the one who is the most willing to topple the boomer magnate who has long outrun his tenure, only to install himself, a reformed frat bro, and attempt to emulate a similar rule. Ironically, Kendall is primarily motivated to backstab his father in order to prove himself to him. He wants to be Logan more than anything, but it’s Logan’s ruthlessness, his callous disregard for anything that does not serve him, and his game of power, that Kendall fundamentally lacks. “You’re not a killer,” his father tells him; it’s the most reprehensible strain of the wealthy that he actually lacks, but desperately wants to prove that he has.
In fact, Kendall might be the most trusted to actually shows a shred of decency to others, or at least abstain from actively demeaning others. Then again, he’s also committed manslaughter.
4/10, bland but filling. Perhaps eating Kendall is the fairest tit for tat of all. But you also lose your greatest ally in ending the Logan Roy reign. —Brandon Yu
Once the flavorless shithead of the family, Roman is getting tastier with each passing episode. His secret spice, of course, is his proximity to greatness (Gerri) and his secret competency when it comes to making big decisions.
5/10, must be served with an aged red. Roman can be gamey on his own but paired with an older, more sophisticated dish (like the current or former CEO of Waystar) the flavor really comes out. —Michelle Legro
Compared to the rest of the family, Connor Roy comes off kind of...tame. He may not be the villain his father is, but to believe the eldest Roy son is harmless would be a woeful mistake, like those who believed Melania Trump was “trapped” in her life as First Lady.
Connor sits pretty in his ranch with his inherited wealth, never having worked a day in his life — despite his campaign video claim to “earn and give, just like you.” He feels entitled to become the leader of the free world just so he can get out of paying taxes. (As if billionaires actually pay them to begin with.) As my colleague Keith Nelson, Jr. so aptly put it during our Slack discussion, Connor “does nothing, believes in nothing, and wants everything.”
5/10, a delicious amuse-bouche. Connor won’t be the first dish anyone reaches for or plans on when eating the rich. His role as a morally objectionable member of society can easily escape notice when the rest of the Roy clan is right there. And yet, he’s dangerously entitled enough to make the menu, perhaps as a perfect apéritif, or trou normand to cleanse the palate between more flavorful courses. —Emma Sarran Webster
At long last! Marcia has made an appearance. At the end of the second season, she was everywhere and nowhere to be seen, present only in the revenge refit of a multi-million dollar yacht where Logan gathers his clan in their very best resort wear for a blood sacrifice. But Marcia is back, and she’s not getting mad, she’s getting everything.
Just a reminder: all of this <<waves hands around>> was set off by Marcia, the queen of personal security, when Logan introduced papers in episode one to quietly add her to the board and also vote in his place should something happen to him. Now at the beginning of season three, Marcia is nowhere to be seen...except on Kendall’s list of people he’s got in his corner.
6/10, slow-cooked in French wine. A generous meal from a third wife who spends with abandon. But what’s this? A razor-sharp bone stuck in the throat, slowly asphyxiating you? It was all part of Marcia’s plan. —Michelle Legro
The parasite in Amrani is a private equity investor who Kendall compares to a “vampire locus fuck” for either taking over dying companies to make a profit or being an undeservedly haughty middleman of the ultrarich. He’s a walking cliche of every morally debased frat bro with an MBA. He’s a functional alcoholic who doesn’t mind offering coke to Kendall, and a recovering drug addict who considers Stewy his “third oldest friend,” while taking advantage of that same friend’s vulnerability to trojan horse his father’s archrival Sandy Furness into the family business.
His backbone is other people’s money, like so many petulant Wall Street investors who look down on the working class from atop other people’s wealth. His deluded self-worth finds pride in seeing himself as the “dick of a swan” to Furness’s “head of a horse” in regards to their abominable union.
6/10 for the slime factor. If we’re eating the rich, Stewy would be the gooey entrails of the megarich you rip out and feed to wolves while you dine on the actual delicacy.. He’s the ingredient in the ultrarich you warn could induce vomiting from repulsion. —Keith Nelson, Jr.
Shiv is the daughter who thought she worked twice as hard as the rest of her siblings, who are she considers helpless despite their pressed shirts and Rolexes. Her potential outside of her family’s legacy makes you want to root for her. (She reads Sally Rooney, just like you!) But this air of competency is also Shiv’s downfall and the cause of her constant disappointments.
Desperate to climb to the top of her father’s list of candidates for CEO, Shiv attempts to bypass any obstacles or training; instead, she opts to act behind the scenes at Logan’s bidding. She’s a master at manipulating people. Take, for example, one of the most upsetting scenes of the show, where she intimidates a victim of Waystar Royco’s sexual abuse, discouraging her from testifying against them. Even when Shiv mishandles recruiting high-profile attorney Lisa Arthur — failing to prove herself again (!) — she still has another play in her back pocket.
7/10, serve with a side of kisses from daddy Rarely is Shiv’s individual suffering coated in the show’s dark humor, and I relish that. There’s nothing more grating than a nepotistic baby touting feminism for Daddy Roy’s gain, and therefore, her own. I’ll take a Pinot Grigio with that one. —Alex Ramos
The Roy siblings may all be objectively terrible in their own, weasley ways, but their villain origin stories point straight to the family patriarch, which is why he needs to be the first to go. As they say, the fish rots from the head.
For Logan, his adult children are pawns in his massive power game. He makes them compete for scraps of approval (the closest they’ll get to anything resembling love) and holds their lowest moments over them as collateral. Kendall’s manslaughter and downward spiral were, in Logan’s eyes, an opportunity; not to support his son or the family of the deceased, but to gain a new level of control over his second-born. When Kendall ultimately turned on him and Roman casually suggested, “maybe you chop him into a million pieces and toss him in the Hudson,” it didn’t feel all that unrealistic that Logan would heed his advice.
And we can’t forget the obvious: he’s a cruel, morally void billionaire. Logan will stop at nothing to protect his empire and ensure he’ll die with an obscene amount of wealth, hoarding it for his next generation to do in kind, the 99% be damned. He long ago lost the capacity to care about any human suffering beyond his own; whether it’s that of the cruise line scandal victims or his own family. Really, there was no chance he wouldn’t “go full fucking beast” in response to Kendall’s attack. It’s all he’s capable of.
9/10, the main course. Eat Logan first, and the whole operation just might go down as easily as the meal itself. — Emma Sarran Webster
It’s been obvious since the pilot that Cousin Greg is a shrewd and calculating player in the Roy family power struggle. Wandering around Brightstar amusement park dressed as a mascot, he gets sick and falls to his knees, puke streaming out of the costume’s eyeholes as children scream. It’s the sort of degradation that would make most people reevaluate their life choices. Maybe it’s time to go back to school? Look for a job outside the family? Not Greg. Greg calls his mother, lies to her about what happened, and decides to up his unquenchable lust for power by going straight to the top, ingratiating himself with Logan Roy at the patriarch’s birthday party.
Greg acts like an idiot because he is a sociopath playing 3-D chess against a self-destructive clan that can’t get out of its own way. When asked to destroy the evidence from cruises, he obliges, but secretly keeps some of the documents for leverage. “I’ll never tell,” he says when Tom asks where the papers are. Later, when Tom forces him to burn the documents, Greg secretly records Tom talking about what they’ve done before snatching a few pages from the flames. More recently, Greg switched his allegiance from Logan and Tom, the two men who brought him into the fold, to Kendall and his latest effort to put the final nail in his father’s coffin.
10/10 devour whole, bones and all. Greg is a craven opportunist who will stop at nothing in his quest for power, and for that, I would eat him quickly and without hesitation, lest he come up with some dopey aww shucks type plan to kill me first. —Jonathan Smith