There were a lot of interesting developments on Succession Season 2 Episode 3, and they played out against one of the most absurd scenarios ever to air on television.
If you pay attention to big business, you know how often an organization can get corrupted from the top down.
Logan treats everyone like dirt from his wife to his kids to his board members, and what they all have in common is they’re all willing to eat each other alive to stay in Logan’s positive light.
A light that doesn’t shine on any of them.
Kendall’s personality has entirely collapsed after trying to compete with his father, and everyone who has witnessed his fall from grace knows they’re only a simple twist of fate from standing right next to him.
It was obvious that everyone sees Kendall as the spokesperson for Logan because when he “gauges the room” about what could be an unmitigated disaster, they all turn tail and pretend to jump on board.
Everyone is horrified at what losing the favor of Logan Roy will mean to them.
Look at Frank. He lost favor with Logan when he backed Kendall’s takeover. Unable to pick himself up from the disaster, when Logan beckoned, Frank returned.
Frank claimed he doesn’t know why he returned, but when you’ve operated next to a man as powerful as Logan, everyone else pales in comparison.
And who wants to work with a past Waystar Royco employee when Logan’s pull isn’t that easy to escape? It wouldn’t be easy for Frank to land on his feet again.
Logan’s power is almost absolute, and when he sets his sight on purchasing their only rival in the news business, everyone agrees that it’s a very bad move but nobody wants to point it out.
The company retreat seems like the right time to bring it up, but the only person who would probably have the balls to do it wasn’t invited. Shiv wa left in the states dealing with Connor.
With Shiv left out of the Hungary hunt, she set Tom on her mission to stop Logan from trying to gobble up Pierce.
Tom is everybody’s fall guy. From Shiv to the board, if there’s something to air to Logan, they push him to the gallows.
Ironically, he’s also the only person who is legitimately on Logan’s side and believes merging with Pierce is a good idea.
Tom was the unexpected highlight of “Hunting,” as Matthew Mcfayden revealed layers to the characters we haven’t seen before.
Tom has been reeling in light of Shiv’s impending succession to the throne. He’s questioning everything and wondering why his interests are always the ones that have to give.
Tom overplays his bravado every chance he gets because he wants to be seen as one of the guys. He’s loud and crass in his quest for acceptance as if that’s the key to success.
But we’ve seen a different side of Tom since Shiv shared her secret with him. He believed that they were a team and their plan was to get him to the top of Waystar Royco.
Rattling Tom exposed his softer side. He was openly hurt during dinner at Roman’s house on Succession Season 2 Episode 2 when Shiv started making fun of his clothing.
Being the butt of a joke didn’t sit well with him especially at the hand of his wife.
He was equally concerned when Shiv, Gerri, and Carl wanted him to raise the Pierce issue at the retreat because they thought he’d be the least bitter pill for Logan to swallow.
But what he did for Greg during one of the most humiliating experiences we’ve yet to witness turned Tom into a standup guy.
Greg’s discussion with the biographer was nothing, but it didn’t keep him from tearing himself up inside that he was the cause of Logan’s rage.
He was scared to death that his world was going to crumble around him once Logan discovered he talked to the biographer. Greg chose to confide in Tom because he needed to know he was going to be OK.
You need to put that in a locker, and don’t tell anyone. And pray that you can trust me because you just gave me a valuable piece of capital. Greg! Buddy! Trust no one. Ever.
Of course Tom rode him for that and even threatened to hold it over Greg.
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But when push came to shove, Tom underwent manipulative social torture rather than allow Greg to get caught up in Logan’s trap. He sucked up the pain and took some of the heat off of Greg.
They shared a very touching moment that secured their relationship as the most precious on Succession.
It’s a real shame that Shiv is such a cold-hearted bitch because if she was honest with Tom instead of yanking him around, she might find she has married a decent guy.
Instead, Shive is so wrapped up in pleasing her father and gaining control of Waystar Royco for her personal gain that she’s ruining her marriage.
What is unclear is why she ever married Tom in the first place. She thinks very little of him. She treats him like dirt. And when he appears at all vulnerable, she throws her infidelity into his face.
Like everyone else, Tom worries that falling out with Shiv will effect his status with Logan and Waystar Royco, so it’s not as if he’s an innocent victim. But now I have to wonder how much of who he is now directly resulted from his connection to Shiv.
I’m not sure any of the Roy children would have been able to stand up for Greg the way Tom did.
Look at Kendall and Roman. They’re like gladiators fighting to the death for their father’s affection. It’s pathetic.
Kendall remains the most cunning of the two. Roman tries to play on Kendall’s level, but after what Kendall suffered, he’s a force to be reckoned with.
Kendall outmaneuvered Roman when they were discussing the biographer, and that opened Roman to protesting a bit too much about the secret phone call he took in front of Kendall.
Roman’s desire to look good in Logan’s eyes made him reveal to Pierce that they were going to make a move. How desperate do you have to be to lay your hand on the table like that?
Then there is Connor. The only of the Roy children who dances to the beat of his own drummer might do that because he’s so out of touch with the real world.
If Logan was worried Roman and the others don’t see the world clearly using a gallon of milk as his guage, then what must he think of Connor?
Shiv: Connor, you know what they do to rich people in jail.
Connor: Yes, they let them out early to mitigate the risk of litigation.
When you have all of the money in the world at your disposal, you can buy your way into and out of situations, but as we see all the time in the real world, even the most wealthy can finally get caught.
Succession is only going to get crazier before the season ends.
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What did you think of “Hunting”? Rest assured that if I can’t do the episode justice in my own words, I managed to capture the words of those you love in the Succession quotes section, so be sure to visit.
Hit the comments and discuss. Did your opinion of Tom change?
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Until next time…
Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She’s a member of the Broadcast Television Journalists Association (BTJA), enjoys mentoring writers, wine, and passionately discussing the nuances of television. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.