In Logan Roy’s (Brian Cox) famous last words, “Today’s the day.”
In a shocking turn of events, Succession killed off its lead patriarch right at the beginning of its final season, throwing its characters into an emotional tornado with no time for processing. Logan’s death was sudden, occurring while on his way to Sweden to secure the GoJo deal. While he was presumably experiencing cardiac arrest on his private jet, Kendall (Jeremy Strong), Roman (Kieran Culkin), and Shiv (Sarah Snook) were all on a boat celebrating Connor’s (Alan Ruck) wedding, with Tom (Matthew Macfadyen) calling in from Logan’s plane to give them a chance to speak to their father one last time.
Logan’s death felt like a one-act play, moving from the kids crumbling in despair to his colleagues figuring out the best course of action. We all knew Logan was going to die; his health’s been alarmingly turbulent since Succession‘s pilot episode, but no one could expect it to happen this early on in the season, let alone with no formal send-off. While Logan’s death played out in ways we could never anticipate, there was a big clue from episode 3’s beginning warning us of what was about to come — his kids’ wedding attire.
Credit: Macall B. Polay / HBO
Succession‘s costumes have always been used as a vehicle to augment its storytelling, whether that means navigating the world of power suits for women in business or relishing in the charm of a tailored suit to separate the nouveau riche from the real deal. In episode 3, the show’s costumes once again spoke volumes about the stakes at play, with all of the kids dressed for a funeral instead of a wedding.
You’d expect a boat wedding to feature a lot of florals, fancy flannels, lax pantsuits, and anything that screams, “We’re about to get drunk on champagne while cruising the Hudson.” But instead of incorporating bold, celebratory pieces, Succession dresses its characters in all-black attire. Kendall and Roman are both wearing black suits, and while you may think that’s standard, the boys have always had an eye for dressing for an occasion, showing up in pastels or blues for Succession‘s other big family events. Shiv is the real standout, choosing a black dress paired with an oversized black blazer instead of her usual florals or beige go-to’s.
Dressing in black for Connor’s wedding was a curated decision that elevated the episode’s tension while foreshadowing the doom about to come. After all, we’ve seen the kids flex their fashion for occasions similar to Connor’s wedding, like their mom’s (Harriet Walter) wedding in Tuscany in Season 3, where they all showed up in bright pinks, whites, and browns.
The Roy kids brought the color for their mom’s wedding.
Credit: Graeme Hunter / HBO
Ill-prepared as they were for the emotional shock of their father’s death, they at least looked the part from head to toe — camera-ready for a press conference where Shiv showed up teary eyed. From episode 3’s beginning, the kids were dressed for their imminent mourning. We watch them say their last words to their dad, hold each other, and cry their eyes out, all while wearing the suits and dresses they were probably going to wear to his funeral — but to their brother’s wedding, and Logan’s death day, instead.
We should have known something dreadful was coming as soon as we saw Shiv pull up to a wedding dressed for a eulogy. Succession is a master-class in the power of details. While Season 4’s poster hinted at what was to come, episode 3’s costumes signaled a red alarm we all should have paid more attention to. Maybe keeping an eye out on Shiv’s blazers moving forward would be a good idea.