We are 7 episodes deep into Season 1 and HBO has landed themselves yet another gem. I am always weary when I step into the cinematic glorification of corporate dominance, but HBO has matched Showtime’s ‘Billions’ brilliance with the inaugural season of their new series simply titled, ‘Succession’.
The similarities of the two shows are uncanny. Each takes a deep dive into the lives of corporate moguls and their families. The show’s image, and its musical scores are comprable, and the power and captivation of actor Brian Cox (Logan Roy) successfully matches the on-screen presence of Paul Giamatti and Maggie Siff who magnificently kept me so engaged as Chuck and Wendy Rhoades on Billions. Even the title of the shows are reduced to one.bold.word.
So what makes ‘Succession’ so great? What stands out to me are the actors, the writing and the cinematography. They even seem to have taken some pages out of network hit “The Office” as far as the camera work is concerned. The show’s have absolutely nothing to do with each other which makes the usage of this zoom effect all the more interesting. You’d have to pay very close attention, but its there and cleverly used with most proper timing. Oh yes, the theme song, which I prefer to refer to as a “musical track” as opposed to using the word ‘song’, is pretty good too (it’s very good, that’s my sarcasm kicking in) and makes its way into the on-screen drama repeatedly through out the first seven episodes of the season.
My next focus are the actors. While Brian Cox breathes life into the series as billionaire business mogul Logan Roy, Sarah Shoov and Kieran Culkin (yes, that is Home Alone’s brother) provide more than enough support and talent to keep you further engaged and entertained. Sarah Shoov (Shiv Roy) and Kieran Culkin (Roman Roy) who respectively play 2 of Logan’s 4 children put both the ‘dys’ and the ‘function’ into uniting the ever affluent, yet even more dysfunctional family. But the biggest surprise comes from actor Jeremy Strong (Kendall Roy) who at first, I thought was a poor excuse for not being able to book Giovanni Ribisi. Thankfully, Jeremy sits into his role as a very convincing portrayal of what the supposed successor of ‘daddy’s multi-billion dollar empire’ might grow up to be like – smart, inexperienced and exponentially as insecure as he is pompous.
Watch ‘Succession’ today. You have 4 days til the season finale. This show will be back. You can take it to the bank. #hipeRATED