“Living+” proves that none of the Roys can live up to their late father, but they finally get a little win that might reshape their futures.
This recap of Succession Season 4 Episode 6, “Living+”, contains spoilers.
At one point in “Living+”, Roman Roy asks Gerri to tell him he’s just as capable as his father. Flustered, she responds, “Do I have to think it or just say it?”, capably summing up the entire episode.
Lest we forget, in Episode 3, Logan Roy died, handing the keys to the kingdom – albeit temporarily – to the useless sons he hated. The idea was that they’d essentially mind the company until Lukas Matsson and GoJo swept in to gut it, and that’s still the idea now, at least if anyone asks.
But as we saw in Episode 5, Kendall has let the power go to his head. He has plans to not sell Waystar, and instead remold it in his image, and he convinced his pathetic, conflict-averse brother to do it with him. Since Matsson countered their brute-force negotiation with a ludicrous figure that couldn’t possibly be rejected by the board, Kendall and Roman now have a limited amount of time before the sale to find a creative way to feasibly tank it.
The obvious problem is that, as Geri implies, neither of them is their father.
Succession Season 4 Episode 6 Recap
What is Living+?
The titular Living+ is one of the ways that Kendall plans to sabotage the GoJo deal by increasing Waystar’s perceived value to such an astronomical figure that even Matsson’s deep pockets can’t contain enough moolah to afford it.
The initiative is a real estate development for seniors that provides not just secure living but also the latest in sports and entertainment, not to mention cutting-edge life-prolonging experimental medicine that was previously accessible only to billionaires.
It’s a ridiculous idea, but if described in the right way, it’s the kind of ridiculous idea that people with just too much money will find appealing.
What the episode is building towards is a presentation for Living+ to a crowd of investors, which Kendall wants to include a walking tour of a replica Living+ property built in one night, complete with clouds, and that he plans to deliver with Roman while both of them are wearing co-pilot flight jackets.
What does Matsson tweet during the presentation?
Inexplicably, the Living+ presentation goes quite well.
This is no thanks to Roman, who backs out at the last minute, or Shiv, who is secretly collaborating with Matsson behind her brothers’ backs after they cut her out of their plan to tank the deal, or indeed Matsson himself, who tweets “Doderick macht frei” during the presentation, working Waystar’s mascot Doderick into the Nazi phrase “Work sets you free”, which sat ominously above the entrance to Auschwitz during the Holocaust.
Why does Roman fire Joy and Gerri?
Speaking of Roman, by the way, he spends the entire episode panic-firing people, starting with Joy Palmer, one of the entertainment executives who cautions him – rightly! – that ATN’s open right-wing leanings don’t jive well with their entertainment output.
Roman fires Joy because he’s losing control of the conversation. He can’t argue his position because his position is based entirely on tokenistic power. He doesn’t have any actual expertise or real experience, so the pushback flusters him. Firing Joy is just the only thing he can do to feel like he’s in control.
It’s the same thing with Gerri, who confronts him about firing Joy. She won’t demean herself by claiming Roman is just as capable as his father, so he responds by proving it, obviously not seeing the irony.
Are Shiv and Tom getting back together?
Shiv has a weird episode, most of it spent alternately flirting with Matsson and Tom.
It’s a weird demotion to have Shiv flexing her feminine wiles rather than her business acumen, but I think we’ve already proven that her being the most capable Roy sibling doesn’t actually count for much on the basis of that pesky extra X chromosome.
Her interactions with Tom are especially weird. After she’s forced to confess that she books conference rooms for imaginary meetings so she can privately grieve, they share a moment of closeness and have sex. They later have sex again, but their conversations are still laden with tit-for-tat, nasty implications, and a complete lack of the emotional intimacy that you’d expect from a married couple.
One expects that Shiv is playing Tom, in the same way she’s obviously playing Matsson, keeping him around just in case. The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Succession Season 4 Episode 6 Ending Explained
With Kendall’s Living+ presentation a (relative) success, the landscape has changed somewhat.
For one thing, Matsson, pressured a little by Shiv, deletes his tweet. He can’t really be seen to be publicly equating his company’s latest acquisition with the most evil regime in the history of the human race.
Roman is also jealous. He backed out of the presentation at the last minute and left Kendall to it, assuming he would very embarrassingly crash and burn. Only, that didn’t happen, and now Kendall is the hero of the hour, leaving Roman – once again – on the margins.
And Kendall is very pleased with himself. The episode ends with him swimming in the ocean, which is usually a metaphor for one thing or another.
You can stream Succession Season 4 Episode 6, “Living+”, exclusively on HBO and HBO Max.