‘Succession’: Roman Roy’s Obscene Photo Upset Logan for Many Reasons, Creator Jesse Armstrong Says

On Succession, Roman Roy (Kieran Culkin) doesn’t censor himself. However, he went too far in season 3 when he accidentally sent an obscene picture to his father, Logan (Brian Cox). The picture was intended for Gerri (J. Smith-Cameron), but it caused ripples of problems when Roman sent it to the wrong number. Succession creator Jesse Armstrong said there are many reasons that was a bridge too far for Logan.

[Spoiler alert: This article contains spoilers for the Succession episode “Chiantishire.”]

'Succession': Roman Roy talks to Gerri in the Italian villa
Kieran Culkin and J. Smith-Cameron | Graeme Hunter/HBO

Armstrong was a guest on The Hollywood Reporter’s TV’s Top Five podcast on Dec. 17 to discuss the season finale. When host Dan Feinberg asked him about Roman’s “d*ck pic,” Armstrong’s response was complicated 

On ‘Succession,’ Roman Roy found his father’s limits

Logan puts up with a lot from Roman. Roman always has a sarcastic remark for everything and rarely seems to take the business seriously. Although, he has stepped up since his hostage ordeal on a business trip. But, when Roman sent a “d*ck pic” to his father, instead of his secret lover Gerri, Logan had to leave the room to compose himself. Shiv (Sarah Snook) had to pull Gerri aside to put out the fire too. 

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“I bet whatever you’re going to say is kind of right,” Armstrong told TV’s Top Five. “He’s Logan. He’s that guy from that generation. It’s his son, all this stuff’s been going on behind his back and it’s Gerri. He’s like this guy who has those feelings about women. There’s a lot going on and it crystallizes around that picture of penis that he doesn’t like seeing.”

Jesse Armstrong is very interested in fans’ reaction

Armstrong acknowledged that other Succession fans will have their own theories about what set Logan off. He doesn’t want to invalidate any of them. 

“Where there’s multiple interpretations, legitimate interpretations, I hate picking one,” Armstrong said. “I know what I think, but I don’t want to say it because I’m genuinely more interested in what you think. I feel like it’s dumb, because it’s fine. Everyone else can carry on having their interpretations but because I’m an important person in the life of the show, I feel like it kills the feeling of going to the party and getting what’s happening with that weird couple over there if I was like, ‘It’s just this.’”

On ‘Succession,’ Roman Roy is more complicated than one ‘dick pic’

Whether it’s his own theory or yours, Armstrong said there’s a lot more going on between Logan and Roman than one misdeed. The d*ck pic may have been Roman’s most shocking transgression, but Armstrong hopes Succession fans dig deeper. 

“In the end, there is no ‘it’s just this,’” Armstrong said. “There’s a bunch of things. I’d like to think my answer might be in the top 10 but your answer could be in the top 20. Is that fair enough?”

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