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Jeremy Strong: "Succession is a Trojan horse that talks less about capitalism than about the traumas of a family"


INTERVIEW - On the occasion of the return to OCS of the most detestable and fascinating tycoons on the small screen, Le Figaro spoke with the American comedian who gives his features to the prodigal son of the clan.

Zen, keen on readings and classics, multiplying references to Chekhov and Dante, the American actor Jeremy Strong

(The Big Short, The Seven of Chicago)

is one of the revelations of


The 42-year-old actor is the opposite of nervous, angry, self-righteous Kendall Roy. Heir constantly disappointed, in a situation of failure and flouted the satirical tragicomedy of HBO on the mistakes of the richest 1% in the world and the disproportionate economic and political influence of media conglomerates. On the occasion of the return to OCS of the saga,

Le Figaro

participated in a round table with the one who overthrows the established order and launches a family Civil War.

Read also


: any resemblance to existing characters ...

LE FIGARO - What is Kendall's state of mind after declaring war on her father?

Jeremy Strong -

When he realized his father was ready to point him out as the scapegoat and let go, Kendall went into the heart of darkness and had a moment of lucidity and clairvoyance. He said to himself, “I can be the savior of the family company. I saw so many biblical references in this scene! But such messianic aims can only end badly. You just have to look behind me where the Trump Tower stands ... For me this transformation of Kendall came with a great positive push that was very enjoyable to play. I approached his "awakening" as if he had sat like Buddha under the Bodhi tree. This act of rebellion emancipates him, alleviates him from everything in life that had oppressed him: the desire to please his father and to be named his successor,the fear of disappointing him which always ended up happening. In this third season, Kendall lives in a state of permanent flight bordering on mania.



back on OCS: bad blood can not lie

How do you explain that a series on a media conglomerate and the upheavals of its board of directors has so found its audience of faithful?


portrays the excesses of globalization on the surface. But this first level of reading is a brilliant Trojan horse:


is a universal account of a traumatized family. This series is not epic but intimate and at the level of men. Jesse Armstrong often quoted us from the Danish film


. The Roy heirs reproduce the suffering their father caused them by his absence, by his rage. In a normal household, the bargaining chip is compassion and feelings. With them, it is power. This violence, they have inherited it and they inflict it on themselves and others in a vicious cycle. Their poison is distilled to all strata of society. Ilived in Denmark and Succession often reminds me of a series called

Les Héritiers

with his exploration of internal conflicts and the tension between power and affection.

Would the Roys be less unhappy if they were middle class?

I'm not sure of it.


like the other very beautiful series of HBO

Scenes of married life

tells of the difficulty of establishing a connection and overcoming the balance of power within the family. I will always remember an anecdote about the Murdochs that inspired the Roys a lot. Every morning the breakfast table was set with newspapers from around the world. Rupert Murdoch's mother tongue was success and business. Nothing tells us that it was that of his children. Of course, they have adapted. That's what Kendall is trying to do in the shadow of this dominant father, primitive centaur. As a result, Kendall perpetuates this form of toxic masculinity. This season will show how Shiv, being the only daughter of the siblings, had to harden himself and find his place in the Roys and in the firm. All the elements are still ganged against it.


Brian Cox, the secret weapon of Succession, the HBO series set to become cult

Coming back to the satire of capitalism on which the series is based, what does



about our world and our society?

The creator of


Jesse Armstrong would not like I reveal his secret but depicting the excesses of globalization and the ravages of capitalism, the series is a commentary on the decline of empire and concepts that collapses, that 'encompasses the notion of late capitalism (which stagnates before collapsing and where the concentration and financialization of the economy prevail

, editor's note).

There is in


the idea of ​​being at the bedside of a convulsing system, in agony. It reminded me a lot of Dante, whom I reread. The Roys are in the Ninth Circle of Hell. I even tried to convince Jesse Armstrong to let me slip a quote from

The Divine Comedy


We got lost on the wrong road and we lost the right way


But we never found the right time.

Our greed and an insatiable quest for profit has made us turn our backs on our civilization.

In 2021, we are collectively in a dark wood, seeking to find our compass.

At her level, Kendall is in the middle of her life and is completely lost.

However Jesse Armstrong is a humanist: he sees however in his characters redeeming qualities even if he does not give an antidote to this poison.

Source: lefigaro

All news articles on 2021-10-19

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