You’re none of them.
Why did you click this link? You already knew that. You know who you are, and it’s not one of the fictional characters on HBO’s drama sensation Succession. You still are who you have always been and who you will forever remain: you. For better or for worse. Breathe. Accept this.
You are not Logan. You are not Shiv. You are not even that guy that Fisher Stevens plays who just sort of showed up at one point and then never left. You are the one who watches them, their silent witness, laughing and holding your breath and shaking your head in wonderment at their cruelty. And then, when the end credits roll, you must turn off the television, shut your laptop, and live your life. Because you are you. You are no one but you.
I don’t even need to ask you any questions to know. You don’t need to pick a dream house, or a vacation destination, or a favorite color, because the fact that you’re here, in our universe, reading this, means that you are not one of the imaginary Roys or one of their imaginary associates or adversaries. You’re you.
Do you bear a vague surface-level similarity to any of Succession’s SAG Award-winning ensemble? In all likelihood, of course you do, provided you squint hard enough. But you don’t need me to tell you that you might be like Kendall if you have a complicated relationship with your father. You’re well aware that if you have a hard time standing up for yourself, that could be considered sort of Tom Wambsgans-esque. Pretty tall? Greg. Such comparisons are facile, though, and ultimately reveal nothing.
No, you were searching for something deeper by coming here. There’s a roiling inside of you; you wanted it distilled. There’s solace in finding yourself reflected in an avatar as simple as a television character. By tying your identity to someone with a prescripted personality and one singular narrative arc, you thought you could trick yourself into believing your life has the same level of purpose and structure. But I can’t give you this satisfaction. Your life is not being scripted by Jesse Armstrong and a team of highly skilled television writers. Your life is chaotic, random, inconstant. You must make your own meaning. This is the project of living.
But by the same token, you have a freedom of fluidity that the characters of Succession do not. Your personality is not fixed. If Logan were to suddenly start treating his family with humility and compassion in one episode, viewers would criticize it as sloppy writing and inconsistent characterization. But you—every day, you wake up and choose anew who to be. You can change whenever you want. Whenever you’re ready. There is nothing written about you in a show bible dictating who you are. There is nothing stopping you from radical transformation. This, right now, could be the moment, for no plainly telegraphed reason or dramaturgical justification other than that you decided to.
For this reason, and many others, you are none of the characters on Succession. Take this not as a disappointment nor as a comfort. It is merely true. Absolve yourself of the need to judge, to analyze.
Perhaps, despite their flaws, you have affection for the characters on Succession in a way you are unable to have affection for yourself—did you think that identifying with one of them would convince you that you are, in fact, worthy of love? You are. You are, and it has nothing to do with whether you are sort of Connor-ish. You could go through your whole life without ever cussing someone out in a comical, baroque tirade, and you would still deserve empathy.
Interesting. You’re still reading. So you’re stubborn. And you put up with me being sort of condescending to you, so you’re either patient, or you don’t quite have the status to just tell me to fuck off.
You are: Gerri.