Succession spin-off? Roy family could move to Dundee and bid to take control of the Beano – Susan Morrison
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Ah farewell, perfidious Clan Roy. Over four truly epic television seasons, Succession gave us a family beyond Kennedy-level dysfunctional, and no one ever pretended they were just a normal bunch from New England. Think Happy Families with the MacBeths, only with fewer witches, although many of Succession’s women behave as though they could do a shift around the cauldron.
It’s been a blast, guys, and we in Scotland should say thank you for putting us front and centre in this saga. When we sat down to watch it, we, that is the Yorkshire husband and I, only vaguely knew that Brian Cox was actually in it. In any case, this being about an American media emperor not a million miles away from a certain Australian media giant, we assumed that Mr Cox, a magnificent actor, would sport an appropriate accent.
But Brian Cox played Logan Roy with just a thin veneer of a man who had lived most of his life away on foreign shores, until his temper went. Then his American gloss burned thin, and a raging Scot with an accent that could seer paint off a Volvo at 50 paces peeked out. Scots are familiar with this, those expat relatives who sound Australian or Canadian, but you can still hear the rolling R if you listen.
Of course, Brian Cox also revealed to the world our special Scottish superpower, which is weapons-grade swearing so powerful only trained adults should use it, like tenth-dan, black-belt judo.
Succession kept Scotland in its script. At one point, his older brother Ewan excoriates Logan for being a twisted terrible monster. Like Lady Macbeth unsexing herself to become a killer, Logan has shorn away everything that made him human. Ewan calls him “ex-Scot”. Nice to see being Scottish as something to aspire to for once. Dundee got an entire episode to itself, which I liked. Too often the city by the Tay is overshadowed by her noisier Central Belt sisters.
There was a starring role for the V&A, and a council estate. Logan Roy is driven to create his empire because, we are assured, his early years were spent in terrible poverty, beginning in Dundee. When the clan visited the dreadful deprivation of Roy's childhood home, people throughout Scotland looked at the screen and said, “that’s no a bad wee hoose”. Indeed it was not. Mind you, probably is a slum to a billionaire. Where does one land the helicopter?
I’m willing to bet that somewhere in Dundee there are plans for a Logan Roy walking tour, and good on them if there is. It's always a weird thrill to see ourselves on screen. Even the fake ones.
I will never forget my father’s undisguised glee when it was revealed who kept the USS Enterprise moving. A Scot, albeit one with an accent that needed a tune-up from Brian Cox. No matter, the man who really got things done on that starship was a time-served man.
Ach, they were a miserable bunch, the Roys, but Scotland will still claim you. The last episode saw the family ripped to bits, but here’s a thought, lads, come home and launch a bid to seize control of the Beano. Kendall Roy versus Lord Snooty and Desperate Dan. Now, there’s a boardroom battle we’d like to see.