The 7 Greatest ‘Succession’ Characters, Ranked

“Succession” has become a massive hit with its HBO Max viewers for its phenomenal storytelling and ability to capture complex characters.

The series centers on the Roy family, the owners of Waystar, a global media and entertainment conglomerate. Younger members of the family fight for control of the company after their father, Logan Roy (Brian Cox), experiences unexpected health complications.

Throughout the show’s seasons, creator Jesse Armstrong has done an excellent job portraying such privileged and narcissistic characters and making them likable by showcasing their imperfections. Following the series finale, here are the greatest characters of the show:

 7. Gregory

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In the earlier seasons of “Succession,” Gregory (Nicholas Braun) was the most innocent of the entire Roy family. He was just a nervous young man trying to move up in the world while working at Waystar. This personality made many viewers sympathize with his character and at times, root for him to come out on top. As the series progressed, Gregory’s innocence soon turned to greed, as he was sucked into the toxic work environment revolving around money, manipulation and power. For instance, he tried to sue a charity for receiving his grandfather’s inheritance instead of him and repeatedly squealed at the Roy siblings to try to get on Logan Roy’s good side. With these developments, Gregory seems like all the other Roy siblings and Waystar staff members who are trying to attain power in the company.

 6. Kendall

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Kendall Roy (Justin Strong) is ignorant, hot-headed and completely lost. He is a complex character that has many fans rooting for him during his lows, but later finding him almost intolerable during his highs. For example, moments, where Kendall is ill-mannered toward his ex-wife Rava (Natalie Gold) regarding their children, are unbearable to watch. However, when we see moments where Kendall is experiencing depression we readily sympathize with his character. His complexity is what makes Strong’s character appealing to the viewer. You are waiting to see what he will say or do next, which leads many fans to cheer him on to become the person on top. 

5. Roman

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Similar to Kendall, Roman (Kieran Culkin) is also complex. He’s a wounded character that only seeks his father’s approval and validation of the work that he is doing. Often, he doesn’t get that validation, which damages his self-confidence. To hide his lack of confidence, Roman uses humor to display a strong ego. Though sometimes his humor is funny through his quick-witted remarks, when viewers get to see Roman’s vulnerability his character is more enjoyable to watch because of the understanding it offers of why he acts the way he does. 

4. Jess

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Jess (Juliana Canfield) is probably the most overlooked character in the series, as she is only Kendall’s assistant. Although Jess plays a small role in the series, her personality outshines most of the “Succession” characters. She has hard-working and down-to-earth qualities, which the rest of the cast tends to lack. She tries her best to keep up and fulfill Kendall’s requests, which are often bizarre, last-minute and almost impossible. Her work ethic and dedication often get taken for granted by Kendall. However, in the final season, viewers finally get to see Jess stand up for herself and quit her job. This scene was a pivotal moment for Jess as viewers don’t normally get to see her confront Kendall about his behavior. It was further notable because she spoke at such length, which is atypical for her character. As a fan, watching her speak up for herself made her character all the more likable.

3. Willa 

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Willa (Justine Lupe) is one of the few characters that isn’t a part of the Roy family or Waystar staff. She is mainly known as Connor’s girlfriend, now wife, and has remained somewhat of a mystery since fans know little about her. But despite that, Willa has flourished into one of the most intriguing characters of the series. This is mainly because in the scenes that we do see Willa take part in, she always has the best responses/reactions to the Roy family that are amusing to watch. For instance, one of Willa’s most iconic lines, “Well look at us both, right?” is a clap back at Marcia’s (Hiam Abbass) snarky comment about how far she’s come since she’s met Connor. I wish we had gotten to see more of Lupe’s character. 

2. Gerri

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Unlike most of the “Succession” characters, Gerri (J. Smith-Cameron) doesn’t partake in belittling and harming others to advance her career and tries her best to avoid those situations. As a viewer, I commend her for avoiding those circumstances and not letting the toxic work environment get the best of her. Gerri is also incredibly smart and the backbone of the company. She knows the business’s ins and outs and knows how to lead the company when they get into hot water. Without her at Waystar, the company would crumble. 

1. Shiv

Courtesy of HBO.

After watching season four of “Succession,” it should be no surprise that Shiv (Sarah Snook) is No. 1. She’s a smart, strong-willed and confident woman who doesn’t take no for an answer. Those qualities are what make her the best. She’s been burned by her brothers, her husband Tom (Matthew Macfadyen) and many others time and time again. Yet Shiv has stayed resilient and continues making business moves that nobody else in her family could make. Her power-hungry persona has most “Succession” fans rooting for her to come out on top.  

“Succession” is available to watch on Max. 

By Destiny Esparza

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