Following the explosive events of the Succession season finale, a bloody yet relieved Roman Roy (Kieran Culkin) is seen sitting down to a bar where here he’s notably served a martini, the favorite drink of his seemingly lost lover Gerri (J. Smith-Cameron). It’s a quiet scene that sees Roman smile down at the drink, leaving an ambiguous ending to the youngest Roy sibling after suffering years of abuse from his family. However, one line could’ve sent things in a more definitive direction.
In a new interview to discuss Succession racking up an impressive number of Emmy nominations, longtime series director Mark Mylod opened up about his thoughts on the characters’ post-finale lives. He also revealed Roman’s cut line from the finale that series creator Jesse Armstrong previously teased, but never divulged.
The line we cut I am happy to share. He walked into the bar where, in our head there was a barman he already knew from fairly regular visits, and the line was, “What up, motherfucker?” Which was a bookend to the very first line of dialogue that we heard Roman speak back in season one, episode one. I imagine that Jesse’s intention there was to show the cyclical nature of Roman’s journey. That for all that illusion of evolution, on some level those four seasons over which we followed Roman was some kind of fever dream, and he finds himself right back where he started.
While the finale gave Roman a more open ending, Mylod is also of the mind that the youngest Roy is pretty much doomed, emotionally, thanks to his father’s abuse.
“I feel that character has a lifetime of wearing a mask,” Mylod said. “It’s a false setting to slip behind it and pull up the drawbridge, emotionally. His long-term happiness or contentment, I don’t feel optimistic about that. His ability to connect in any meaningful way is so torpedoed by his upbringing that I fear for any emotional connection of meaning. But I don’t fear for his physical well-being. I think he can wear that mask so efficiently, it probably feels like the real him sometimes to be that witty, deliberately offensive court jester.”
Succession Seasons 1-4 are available for streaming on Max.
(Via The Hollywood Reporter)