Warning: This article contains spoilers for Succession season 4 episode 9.


The penultimate episode of Succession season 4 has proven to cause quite the stir among fans, not least because episode 9 was home to some pretty staggering moments for the Roy siblings.

Episode 9, entitled Church and State, saw Kieran Culkin's Roman struggle with his own emotional breakdown while delivering a eulogy at his father's funeral. It came after their Uncle Ewan (James Cromwell) had delivered a staggering portrayal of Logan in his own speech, finally revealing a tragic family secret.

Because of Roman's inability to continue with his eulogy, Kendall (Jeremy Strong) steps in for his brother – but the actor has revealed that Kendall very much has his eye on the endgame.

Speaking on the Succession podcast after the episode, Strong referenced Game of Thrones saying: "It’s kind of like a Dracarys moment for Kendall."

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Of course, fans of the other HBO hit series will know that "Dracarys" is the command used by the Targaryens on their dragons to mean 'dragon fire'. Essentially, it's a call for the deadliest weapon to be unleashed and has been used in iconic scenes by Emilia Clarke's Daenerys and, more recently, in House of the Dragon.

So, could Kendall be prepping for the ultimate dragon fire-breathing moment?

Strong said: “Starting from the end of episode 6, really, I think he can see the endgame. A lot of things happen in the ninth episode. Him feeling blamed for the election and his culpability in making this kind of Faustian bargain, really, he’s compromised himself utterly, and he knows it. I think he’s in turmoil. The real moral jeopardy that we see in the previous episode.”

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He continued: “But [his ex-wife] Rava [Natalie Gold] calling him on that and taking the kids out of the city, and then Jess also defecting. In a way, his assistant Jess, I mean she’s such a fantastic character and Juliana Canfield is a brilliant actor, and I love that they gave her this great scene. But she is in a sense one of the only people that Kendall has left. Everyone else is gone.

"Shiv has a relationship with Tom [Matthew Macfadyen]; other characters we see in relationship with people. And Jess is sort of the one place that Kendall feels safe, so for it to come from there is a real mortal wound for Kendall. He keeps pressing on, but he’s really, I think, unseated by that a bit, which only sharpens his need to get what he wants. So I think he’s just doubling down.”

The fact that Kendall takes over from Roman's eulogy mishap is also another indicator of the drama, Strong explained. He said: “The hinge of the episode, really, is Roman kind of shitting the bed in his speech and Kendall taking the mantle and, it’s another triumph. He’s moving from strength to strength, in a sense, and the room feels it. And he feels [it].

"They joke about the coronation demolition derby, but it is his father’s funeral and simultaneously Kendall’s coronation. I leave that church, there’s been a profound transformation from the way I walked into that church to the way I leave that church. And the sort of hatching plots with Hugo, there is just a determination in the character. I think more and more we see that he is Logan Roy’s son and that Logan is his middle name.”

All eyes are on the hit series to see how things will wrap up for the Roy siblings – but who will triumph as the successor of Waystar Royco? We'll just have to wait and see.

Succession airs on Sky Atlantic and NOW with previous seasons available to watch on Sky and stream on NOW – sign up for Sky TV here.

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