Succession isn’t really that gay on the face of it. Canonical queer characters are rarer on the show than actual empathy, and you just know that Logan Roy would have disowned any of his kids in a heartbeat if they’d turned out to be a fruitcake.
Good thing he’s dead then, because I’m here to tell you that they’re all fruitcakes. Yes, even Connor. Or at least, there’s enough subtext going on to throw the Kinsey scale for a loop. Kendall alone could swerve it off a bridge and plunge it straight into the nearest body of water. That’s how queer he is.
No one really talks about being queer on this show though and that’s because every character on Succession is absolutely terrified of intimacy. In the ultra-conservative world of Waystar Royco, gay stuff lurks in the back rooms, in the hidden files, in the jokes and banter between apparently straight men. It’s not discussed directly, but it’s always there, just off-frame. Kind of like Roman’s so-called “wife” who vanished after season one.
As Them put it recently, Succession is “either one of the gayest straight shows or one of the straightest gay shows ever made.” Whichever way you look at it, that’s something worth celebrating, so we racked up all the gay numbers to bring you the gayest things that have happened in Succession so far.
A Handy Alliance
Kendall’s sad bi energy first caught our attention early on when his childhood friend Stewy asked if he wanted to head to the bathroom with him like they used to “back in the day.” It turns out he just wanted to do drugs together, but did Kendall’s bestie have to shake his fist like that as he said it? Yes. Yes he did. Are you really friends with someone if you didn’t give them a cheeky handjob in college?
When Greg met Tom
The greatest love story never told, AKA Tom and Greg, first began with the line “Would you kiss me? If I asked you to? If I told you to?” Yep, Tom really did say that to Greg, and in their first conversation together, no less. Frankly, Shakespeare could never, and fans have been waiting for the Disgusting Brothers to do disgusting things with each other ever since.
Sporus and Nero
When it looked like Tom might be heading off to jail — “sucking off ogres for phone cards” — he began to tell Greg about Nero, the Roman emperor who castrated and married a man named Sporus who he even dressed up in women’s clothing. Frustrated by where they’ve both ended up, Tom then said the immortal line, “I’d castrate you and marry you in a heartbeat,” which probably sounded a lot better in his head to be fair. It’s no wonder that fans have recut Tom and Greg’s gayest moments to make the queer romcom we both need and deserve.
The Devil Wears Burberry
It’s both ludicrous and capacious. Yes, we are of course referring to Tom’s scathing takedown of Greg’s date AKA “Bridget Randomfuck” and her Burberry tote bag. “What’s even in there?” asks Tom. “Flat shoes for the subway? Her lunch pail? It’s gargantuan. You could take it camping. You could slide it across the floor after a bank job”. Find me one straight man who could come up with that. Just one. Oh wait, you can’t.
When Three Become Two
As the most “liberal” of the Roy children, Shiv’s obsession with Rhea “fucking” her (over) read as pretty queer to us, but what clinched Sapphic Shiv’s arrival in the gay hall of fame was the scene where she and Tom tried to open up their relationship. The disappointment Shiv felt when she realized that their threesome with a woman was turning “into a [straight] twosome” with just her husband was palpable. Let Shiv bump peaches just once before the baby comes. I beg of you!
Connor seems as straight as they come, but that’s the beauty of Succession. Everyone has at least a little bit of gay in them, and his popped out near the start of season four after Willa left him alone at their wedding rehearsal dinner. At that point, Connor did what any depressed, suppressed queer person would do and headed off to karaoke where he sang a sad Leonard Cohen song. Sure, it’s not giving Cher in a literal sense, but gays love karaoke! And what’s more, his speech about learning to live without his family’s love is sadly quite relatable for huge swathes of the LGBTQ+ community, regardless of how Connor actually identifies.
Matsson vs. Kendall
When Matsson told Kendall that his “numbers are gay” at a now legendary party in season four, it momentarily threw our sad bisexual for a loop. “That’s kind of homophobic, man,” replied Kendall, and he’s right. Say it with your whole chest, Kenny! But between his bisexual Tarzan and his bisexual Eric in True Blood, Alexander Skarsgård is absolutely allowed to use the word “gay” as a slur, LGBTQ+ rights be damned!
Let’s Get Physical
Don’t worry. I didn’t forget Roman, and I didn’t forget his gym training sesh either. How could I ever forget that stern himbo trainer and the firm way he holds Roman in place? Or how desperate Roman is to impress him in between grunts of – shall we say – gratitude? Roman’s working something out, that’s for sure.
Push It Good
Look, there’s a reason why Logan thinks Roman is a bit fruity, and that’s because he is! In another life, he’d be drinking iced coffee and walking fast like the best of us, but sadly, that’s not how Roman’s story goes. Instead, his repressed longing for some man-meat simmers through almost accidentally, like when he negotiated with Jeryd Mencken in the bathroom that one time. “I think you could use our push,” said Roman, to which Jeryd replied, “I think you could use mine.” You’d be forgiven for thinking this was actually a Sean Cody film because the lust is pal-pa-ble. “There’s a thing here, right?” asked Roman at one point. You’re sure right there is. Now jump that guy’s bones and use it!