Succession preview: Air date, time, trailer and what you need to know


Premiering June 3 on HBO, the Adam McKay & Will Ferrell-produced Succession is a drama about a dysfunctional American global-media family.

“Kim-Jong Pop” and his Family

The trailer to Succession suggests that a wealthy family isn’t necessarily a happy family. This particular family features Brian Cox as Logan Roy, the so-called “patriarch” and owner of a media empire. Then there’s Jeremy Strong as Kendall Roy, who is slated to inherit the company.

Then you have Kieran Culkin as Roman Roy, who, in the trailer, refers to his media monopolizing father as “Kim-Jong Pop.” There’s also Sarah Snook as Siobhan “Shiv” Roy, the only daughter of the family, who’s interested in politics more than media.

This show will likely deal with complicated family problems, as well as ethical issues involving media ownership. In an age where media is increasingly conglomerated, Succession is definitely timely. To blend family drama with media monopolization is a great idea.

Real Life Media Families

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Succession potentially has much to draw on, given the existence of actual media families. In the United States, this includes the Hearst Empire, started by William Randolph Hearst Sr. after he inherited The San Francisco Examiner.

Hearst famously inspired Orson Welles’s film, Citizen Kane. In many ways, Hearst revolutionized media with so-called “yellow journalism” — that is, he’s commonly accused of running sensational headlines, false or exaggerated stories, and even faked or staged photos.

For a more recent example, one might cite Rupert Murdoch’s media empire, which includes 21st Century Fox and News Corp. His family’s in on the media-grabbing bandwagon.

Then, of course, you have families linked to state-run television, in places like Saudi Arabia. Basically, there’s an endless sea of possible real-life tales to weave into Succession‘s narratives.

Potential Media Issues Discussed

It will be interesting to see how this show is done, and what questions will be dealt with. An obvious one: Should there be media mogul families, to begin with? It’s an important question, as media has a huge influence on most people’s lives.

Not only can it entertain us, but it can potentially sway the life of a country (especially in an age of so-called “social media,” where information travels more swiftly than ever before).

Can one family — or even a small group of families — possess such power in a responsible manner? More generally, to what extent should media be driven by profit, and are there alternatives to media conglomeration?

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Can one pursue money and the truth simultaneously? These issues and more can certainly be brought to light by this exciting show.

Succession was created by Jesse Armstrong for Gary Sanchez Productions. Watch the premiere on HBO on Sunday night at 9 p.m. EST.