Succession Season Three Episode Seven, ” Too Much Birthday,” directed by Lorene Scafaria, takes place during Kendall Roy’s (Jeremy Strong) epic “rebirth” fortieth birthday party. He breaks down because his siblings Siobhan “Shiv” Roy (Sarah Snook) and Roman Roy (Kieran Culkin) are only there to court streaming giant GoJo founder Lukas Matsson (Alexander Skarsgard).
Gerri Kellman (J. Smith-Cameron) lets Logan Roy (Brian Cox) and the rest of the Waystar RoyCo inner sanctum know that after investigating the company, the Department of Justice thinks that Kendall overpromised. As a result, Waystar RoyCo will only face a fine. Tom Wambsgans (Matthew Macadyfadyen) feels mixed emotions because Greg Hirsch (Nicholas Braun) falls in love. All the Roy siblings metaphorically fight over Waystar RoyCo, leading to everybody but Roman leaving the party miserable.
Roman’s self-importance, ambition, and disregard for societal norms make him the perfect person to court Matsson. At first, it seemed like Waystar RoyCo would not even be in the running to purchase GoJo because both Lukas and Logan have ridiculous-sized egos. However, even with premium content, Waystar RoyCo desperately needs GoJo because their streaming platform StarGo can barely load up its home page.
Lukas doesn’t show up to negotiate with Logan because he doesn’t want an old-school media guru back seat driving GoJo. Instead, he sends the CFO and some other streaming platform minions to talk with the media giant. Logan, the God of media, feels disrespected. He refuses to bow down to a younger streaming God. Logan’s ego overrides concern for Waystar RoyCo.
Shiv and Roman stop Logan from blowing up the deal by attending Kendall’s birthday party. They will try to sweet-talk Lukas back to the table. If Waystar RoyCo doesn’t purchase a top-notch streaming platform, then the company will slowly die out. Both siblings want to prove that they can take their father’s seat at the table. Though only Roman bribes and intimidates his way into Kendall’s childhood treehouse, where Lukas hides. He uses depraved humor and inability to be shocked to convince Lukas to speak directly with Logan.
MATSSON: THE STREAMING GOD
Alexander Skarsgard as Lukas Matsson captures the god-like personas of tech gurus. Skarsgard is a master at playing characters who are cold, deadly, blunt, and charming. He takes control of all three of Lukas’ scenes in “ Too Much Birthday.”
During Lukas’ first scene, Kendall actively blocks Roman and Shiv from accessing GoJo’s CEO because he feels hurt that his sibling showed up for business reasons. Kendall walks over to Lukas whose hiding in the exclusive treehouse. He asks if Lukas is having fun, but the CEO doesn’t fake societal niceties. Instead, he tells Kendall that he is not enjoying himself. Kendall forces Lukas into a conversation. Kendall makes all these zany one-liners about his family during their discussion, but Lukas could care less. He rolls his eyes during Kendall’s “Dad jokes” while drinking beer.
Kendall warns Lukas that Roman and Shiv are looking for him. Skarsgard dryly says, ” Well, maybe I need to find an even more exclusive area then. Like a crawl space or something.” Kendall pushes to see what Lukas thinks about Logan buying GoJo, hoping to stop the sale. Lukas refuses to comment. He remarks that even his facial expressions are “commercially sensitive. “The line is delivered so smoothly that it’s unclear if Lukas is joking or not. Like Elon Musk or Steve Jobs, Lukas’ talent and money allow him to break all social morays. Lukas can play games on his smartphone alone during a party that outlaws cell phones.
TOM’S EMOTIONAL ROLLERCOASTER
Tom celebrates his win with Greg but feels abandoned by the end of the episode. After learning that he is not going to prison, Tom barely reacts. He smiles softly when Shiv toasts him. Tom sneaks out of the conference room and slinks into Greg’s office. He celebrates by literally flipping over Greg’s desk, repeatedly yelling “Yes!”, kicking over some files, and jumping onto a filing cabinet. Tom only lets Greg see him lose control in ecstasy. Tom tells now freaked-out Greg that they won’t be going to prison. Greg wants confirmation. In response, Tom kisses him on the forehead. He quietly leaves the office. Happy Greg stands in the middle of a destroyed office. Tom chooses to commemorate his freedom by dominating and kissing Greg rather than Shiv, reflecting their complicated love-filled relationship.
Greg asks beautiful Comfry (Dasha Nekrasova) on a date, leaving Tom out in the cold. At the start of Kendall’s party, Tom can’t stop smiling or telling people the good news. Gussied up, Greg explains to Tom that he plans to ask one of Kendall’s PR women, Comfry, out on a date. The older man warns Greg off because Comfry is way out of his league. Greg doesn’t listen. He uses the fact that Kendall is abusive to everybody, including Comfry, to get her to agree to date him to spite the big boss.
At the end of the party, Tom feels glum, and Greg beams with happiness. The pair go through the compliment tunnel where workers in the vines say nice things about the guests. Tom becomes edgier and edgier as Greg tells him about the date with Comfry. On the surface, it appears as though he doesn’t like that Greg dates a beautiful woman because it shows up his dysfunctional marriage with Shiv. Tom tries to attack one of the workers in the tunnel because he is frustrated that lowly Greg is happier than him. Tom, who Logan owes a favor to, should be over the moon. He is moving up the corporate ladder at Waystar RoyCo and yet he feels miserable. Greg has an actual life outside of his relationship with Tom, which makes Tom fearful of losing the one relationship that gives him comfort.
What will a depleted Kendall do now that Logan has won the war? Will Logan’s ego ruin the deal with GoJo? Let us know what you think in the comments below.