‘Succession’ Finale Theories: Kendall Takes It All, Shocking Deaths & More Ways The Show Could End

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Image Credit: HBO

It’s truly the end of an era. After 4 seasons of scheming, shocking moments, and family drama, Succession is coming to an end. Leading up to the final episode, everyone has been wondering just what will happen to the Roy kids and who will end up on top in the wake of Logan’s death.

The series finale will be a TV event on May 28. How will it all end? HollywoodLife is taking a look at the possible (and not-so-plausible) theories.

Jeremy Strong as Kendall Roy. (HBO)

Kendall wins it all at a steep cost.

As much as we’d like to try and deny it, the parallels between Kendall and his father, Logan, have become increasingly more noticeable in the last 2 seasons. When Kendall stepped in for Roman at the last second during Logan’s funeral, it was like we were listening to a younger version of Logan Roy. Kendall has tried to evolve and become a better person than his father, but he’s almost bound to the chains of repeating the past. Kendall has lived in a cycle of trauma, abuse, and ruthless ambition his entire life… do we really expect him to rise above it?

The real tragedy of the show would be if Kendall is doomed to become his father. Instead of breaking the cycle, the cycle just continues. He’ll morph into a grotesque power-hungry CEO who destroys anyone and everything that stands in his way. He’ll lose his siblings and his family, but he’ll be the king. The one who reigns over the others. He’ll no longer have to second guess whether or not his father underlined his name or crossed it out because it won’t matter anymore. We all love Kendall, but his father still has him in a chokehold.

Roman betrays Kendall.

Roman is at his lowest point, so he’s a wildcard. Roman had been riding high until the funeral when his grief overflowed and spilled throughout the church as he tried to give the eulogy. Kendall took Roman’s place at the podium, and the power balance shifted. Roman knew it at that moment.

Kieran Culkin as Roman Roy. (HBO)

When someone like Roman is backed into a corner, they’re unpredictable. Roman has one trump card left on Kendall, and it would be the ultimate betrayal. Roman (and Shiv) know the truth about the waiter’s death, and he could use it against Kendall. The show has echoed King Lear in many ways, but Succession could take a page out of Roman mythology with the story of Romulus and Remus. Romulus ends up killing his own brother. Roman likely won’t kill his own brother, but he could “kill” Kendall metaphorically by revealing the truth about what happened to the waiter.

Tom comes out on top.

Tom rising to the top would be the outcome that makes the most sense. Tom has carefully and ruthlessly played the game of power perfectly since last season when he betrayed Shiv and sided with Logan. He shepherded ATN during the election, and Mencken is likely well aware of Tom’s actions. Also, where was Tom during the funeral? There’s no way he was that busy. He was busy making moves to further himself, that’s for sure. He fits the bill for that American CEO that Matsson and Mencken want, and Tom being the chosen one would further complicate things for him and Shiv.

Kendall dies.

Everyone was worried that Kendall was going to die in the season 3 finale. Now the constant worry for Kendall’s life has transferred over into the final season. Kendall has had suicidal thoughts in the past, which has been a source of panic for viewers. There’s also been so much water imagery surrounding him, which has led many fans to think Kendall will drown or jump to his death off a bridge. Honestly, it seems a little rushed to have another major death in the final season unless it happens in the series finale’s last moments (a la The Sopranos).

Roman dies.

This seems even less plausible than Kendall dying, but then again, Roman is at his most reckless right now. The past could mirror the present with Roman becoming a Rose-like figure in Kendall’s life if Roman ends up dead. Kendall would inevitably blame himself for whatever happens to Roman as Logan did with Rose.

However, Roman is a man of inaction. He can’t finish anything he truly starts. I just don’t think he has it in him to take his own life. But he could put himself in a position to get hurt, which isn’t a far-fetched idea. At the end of the penultimate episode, Roman went out into the street to get pummeled by protesters in an attempt to feel something. Roman should be our main concern going into the series finale.

Matthew and Macfadyen Sarah Snook as Tom and Shiv. (HBO)

Shiv gets it all.

I love Shiv Roy with all my heart, but she has consistently made bad moves in the final season. Unfortunately, the world of Succession is not kind to its women. Shiv has said so herself. Given her political beliefs and the fact that he can’t control her, I just don’t see Shiv becoming the U.S. CEO. Mencken isn’t going to let that happen. Shiv deserves more but unless she has one more card left to play that we don’t know about (other than the Kendall/waiter card), I fear she’ll be cast aside once again.

The Roy kids get nothing.

Matsson is not to be trusted. He’s much more duplicitous than anyone realizes, and this deal has the ability to go down in flames. Matsson is too chummy with Mencken, and it’s clear that he loves chaos. What better way to screw with the Roy kids and show his true power than just making someone else (like Tom or Stewie) the U.S. CEO?

Greg becomes the U.S. CEO.

Stop trying to make this happen. This is never going to happen. Greg is the court jester. That’s all.

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