'Succession' Season 2 has mostly appeared to revolve around Logan Roy and his family's struggle to keep their company, Waystar Royco, afloat despite multiple financial struggles, controversies and failed acquisitions. What makes the show fascinating is the way the relationships between members of this family is portrayed.
There are sibling rivalries between Kendall (Jeremy Strong), Shiv (Sarah Snook) and Roman Roy (Kieran Culkin) and all of them want just one thing -- the throne that would give them the power to make decisions that affect change in the world.
Shiv was initially certain she would never get a chance to helm things at Waystar Royco and so she had begun to carve a path in politics. Then, one fine day, Logan told her she would be heir and it is time to get herself involved.
So, she joined the fray and became direct competition for Kendall, who was initially named heir. His plans to overthrow his father, of course, hasn't gone down well but that doesn't mean Logan has given up yet on him.
He sees uses for Ken and keeps him closer to make sure all his plans can be tracked. Over the six episodes that have aired, each one center on a conflict -- one Logan is forced to clean up but who helps him? Between Ken and Shiv, it is almost a race to top to survive and both of them are wary of each other.
They are trying to second-guess each other's tactics, thoughts and plans to upstage each other. Ken decides to support his father blindly and get his approval. Shiv, on the other hand, wants to prove herself and her worth to her father and so she tries to do what's best for Waystar.
Then we have Roman. And to be honest, his character is the most interesting of the three when it comes to how well thought out his reactions are to different incidents. For instance, in episode 6 season 2, after Shiv, Kendall and Roman return after a panel, Ken tells Shiv she was not right to go after her father.
Especially, the mention of a dinosaur (which many took to mean Logan), was way out of line, Ken exclaims. Roman, who wants to make sure his father understands what a bad idea it was to bring Shiv on-board tries his usual smart a** comments and in turn, get slapped by his father.
The siblings who compete with each other on everything and only try to find ways to bring each other down for once collectively say it's not okay to hit Roman. Especially Ken, who tells his father he better not hit Roman.
However, it seems this is something Roman is used to. Sure, there was a surprise on his face when he got slapped, but his reaction alluded to the fact that this is not the first time his father treated him so. It is this that we want to dig deeper. This relationship between Logan and Roman that is unlike his relationship with other children.
It is apparent Logan has no expectations of Roman. He even insulted his son in another episode for not knowing the price of a gallon of milk in front of other executives, who technically work for Roman, undermining his authority. Then there is the case of Logan clearly pushing Roman as far away as possible while trying to keep Ken close.
There is a clear conflict in their relationship that hasn't been resolved and is neither addressed and the evolution of this conflict would be interesting to see over the next episodes, side by side with what could possibly be Logan Roy's downfall. After all, it is important to understand the source of the frustration Roman feels, especially when he realizes that sex is something he enjoys only when it is rough, and sometimes even abusive.
His equation with Gerri (J. Smith-Cameron) is more interesting because of this need that Roman has, where he is aroused only when he is abused verbally by her and that leaves us with more questions about his state of mind.
'Succession' Season 2 Episode 7 airs Sunday at 9 p.m. on HBO.