What Did Roman Mean About Bloodline in Succession?

HBO’s ‘Succession‘ revolves around the Roy family’s conflict over who will take over their father’s business empire, Waystar RoyCo. In season four, the death of Logan Roy speeds up the succession war, with Kendall, Roman, and Shiv all making their own plays for power. The series finale sees the siblings deliberating over an important choice, the consequences of which will change everything. During this heated scene, Roman makes an off-handed comment about the Roy family’s bloodline, angering Kendall. If you are wondering what Roman means, here is everything you need to know! SPOILERS AHEAD!

What Did Roman Mean About Bloodline?

The series finale of ‘Succession’ is titled ‘With Open Eyes’ and sees Kendall and his camp preparing for the final board vote about Waystar RoyCo’s sale to Lukas Matsson’s company, GoJo. In the episode, Shiv and Kendall start off on opposite sides, while Roman seemingly has lost all interest in the business matters of his father’s company. The siblings share a few nice moments at their mother’s vacation house in Barabods and arrive at the conclusion that Kendall should become the CEO, with Roman and Shiv agreeing to vote against the deal. However, during the actual vote, Shiv takes a moment with the votes tied at 6-6.

Shiv doubts Kendall’s competency, leading to one final argument between the three Roy siblings. During the argument, Kendall exclaims that the CEO position is rightfully his since he is the eldest sibling. However, Roman argues that Kendall cannot continue the family’s bloodline, which enrages Kendall and leads to him attacking his brother. The tense and high-intensity scene has several layers as it marks Kendall’s transformation into a personality similar to Logan, complete with him physically abusing Roman like their father. It also showcases how the siblings were brought up to always fight amongst themselves and are incapable of trusting each other.

However, Roman’s remark about the bloodline is actually based on fact. Since Logan was the CEO of Waystar RoyCo, it would be beneficial for all the company’s CEO to belong to the Roy family. If Kendall is appointed as the CEO solely on the fact that he is the eldest son, the chain of succession would end with him since Logan considered Kendall’s children illegitimate. During his marriage, Kendall and Rava adopted a daughter, Sophie Roy, and their son,  Iverson Roy, was born from artificial insemination. Hence, Roman crudely points out that Kendall’s children are actually not related to them by blood.

In contrast, Shiv’s to-be-born child with Tom would be considered legitimate. The comment about the bloodline is a hurtful remark coming from Kendall’s own brother, which highlights the deep-seated differences between the siblings. Furthermore, it adds a shade of royalty to the war of succession among the Roys, drawing a clear parallel to the times when the monarchs laid claims to the throne via their bloodlines. Hence, the bloodline moment is an effective two-bladed knife that cuts through Kendall and showcases what is at stake for the characters individually and as a family.

Read More: What Happens to Greg at the End of Succession?