the dundees

Succession Power Rankings: This Mite Hurt a Little

Photo: HBO

Are the Roys ever in New York City these days? Last week they were in London, the week before they were at Argestes. This week finds the family traveling back to Logan’s childhood home: Welcome to Dundee, a place that, as Logan mentions in passing to Marcia, used to have much better tap water. The Roys are here to throw Logan a surprise party honoring a piece of plastic that Marcia — quite rightly — calls a gravestone. The kids are squabbling over Rhea, Rhea is cozying up to Logan, and Logan is being kept in the dark about the latest shitshow at the fuck factory (everything that went on in cruises). Perhaps the Dundees should’ve remained a plastic award given to the staff of a small paper company in Scranton, Pennsylvania. (Roman’s girlfriend, Tabitha — quickly becoming my favorite character — is unranked this week, but can she please stomp in Logan’s office and win it all?) Here’s where we stand after “Dundee.”

The Sand in Sands

The drama around the sand in Willa’s play — apparently titled Sands — is the best thing this episode could have offered me. Who doesn’t love a little Broadway chaos? Here’s what we know about the sand in Sands: It is construction sand, not beach sand, as Willa asked for. Connor bought nine metric tons, at $529 per bag. It’s beset by sand mites. Sand stans, rise up! I’d like to see the Big Little Lies sand have this kind of impact.

James in Accounting

Cruises presents: a whistle-blower! He knows about shadow logs, NDAs, and secret payments, and he’s willing to talk. I’ve long thought the cruises thing would actually push everything over the edge, and James might be the person to make that happen. Will he go on TV? Whose deep pockets are backing him?

Shiv Roy

My daughter Shiv’s sights are set on destroying Rhea, and that is not a bad idea. Shiv is smart to play the long game: Instead of whining to Logan about how Rhea screwed her, she’s planting landmines poised to go off at Rhea’s every move. “We need to fuck her from a hundred different directions at a thousand miles an hour,” she tells her brothers. Once the family makes it to Logan’s plaque party, a plum opportunity presents itself and Shiv capitalizes: Let Rhea take the reins for a little bit, especially as the cruise shit is about to hit the Roys’ gilded fan. That’s a storm Shiv doesn’t need to weather, and she’s smart to outsource it.

Ewan Roy

Ewan Roy and Greta Thunberg, legends link the fuck up! Ewan doesn’t like what his brother has done to this planet, so he’s threatening to pull Cousin Greg’s inheritance if he doesn’t quit Waystar. But am I wrong to smell another trick under Ewan’s statement sleeves? Could his one-liners tease that he’s the deep pocket behind the whistle-blower?

Marcia Roy

“Are you regularly tested for sexually transmitted diseases?” Marcia Roy asks the woman fucking her husband. “He and I still sleep together. I don’t know what he tells you,” she finishes. This! Scene! This! Moment! Let me tell you whose husband Miss Rhea Jarrell won’t be stealing: Marcia’s! The height difference and tight shot is sensational here: Marcia will let Logan have his fun, but she won’t be trifled with. It’s been a rocky season for Marcia, with none of her plans working out as she hoped, and her being cut out of Logan’s scheming. But she knows how to hold her own: fucking with the seemingly straight-laced Rhea by confronting her directly was a chef’s kiss.

Logan Roy

Logan knows the cruise division is a vulnerability, but he doesn’t know it’s a weak spot that’s about to be poked right now. His wife is mad at him, his kids are conspiring against his new girlfriend, he’s in his brother’s crosshairs, and his company might be the subject of another tell-all interview. What does he have instead? A plaque.

Gerri Killman

Once upon a time, Gerri was Logan’s flavor of the month! And today, Gerri is getting a weirdo maybe-marriage proposal from Roman? I’ll say she’s net-neutral. She’s not intimate enough with Logan to be pushed out by the kids, but she’s still in the inner circle.

Roman Roy

He bought the wrong soccer team. He bought the wrong soccer team! Who buys the wrong soccer team? But also who else is cozy with foreign money?

Cousin Greg

Poor Cousin Greg, poor Cousin Greg’s sand-mite bites, poor Cousin Greg saying “Greg-xit.” Greg’s net-neutral too, because he didn’t gain anything, but he also didn’t lose anything. Logan pushes him to stay with “Uncle Fun” instead of “Grandpa Grumps,” and Logan is probably right — Ewan’s not going to cut Cousin Greg out of his will.

Kendall Roy

In Kendall’s favor: that rap. Not in Kendall’s favor: that rap, and also everything else. Kendall Roy saying “flava” — and in that jersey! — did rob me of months of my life. Kendall is indecisive about everything and everyone: He wanted to team with Stewy, but then “Dad’s plan was better.” He liked Naomi, but oh wait, what about Jennifer? Jennifer says “awesome” too much, though, so maybe he’ll go back to Rava? It’s all a mess. He has the most knowledge of all the Roy kids, but none of the confidence.

Connor Roy

“Watch this space.” “Sometimes I think I’ll never understand Dad until I shit outside.” “I bear no legal responsibility. You’ll have to talk to the sand supplier like everyone else.” I love all of Connor’s lines this episode. Unfortunately, he’s still … himself. Connor is hemorrhaging money on Willa’s dumb-dumb sandbox theater, and that’s the only thing on his mind right now.

Rhea Jarrell

Last week, in the key of Whoopi Goldberg in Ghost, I said: “Rhea, you in danger girl.” Where does Rhea find herself this week? In danger! My daughter Siobhan is a missile fixed on her target, and Rhea certainly will not make it out alive. She’s slippery and liked by Logan (they’ve been going out to dinner four nights a week!), but Shiv and her brothers have spent their whole lives training to oust this kind of personal attack. They are setting her up for little — but important — failures: mentioning Logan’s sister, pitting her against Marcia, pointing out her politics, and that she doesn’t drink. Rhea is squirming, and I personally love to see it. With Shiv squarely positioned against her, Rhea goes around to every brother cooing compliments in their ear. Baby, it’s too late for that!


Oh, Jennifer. At the beginning of this episode she was an actor with, according to Connor, an “unbelievable gift for … pretending.” By the end of the episode she’s gone to Dundee and back, and all she’s done is kiss Kendall and say “awesome” a lot. A shame! At least she still has Sands.

Correction: An earlier version of this post referred to Sands’ sand mites as a “little Off Broadway chaos.” However, a Vulture reader pointed out that Sands is being performed at the Ethel Barrymore Theater — meaning that, due to the theater’s size, Sands is a Broadway production. Sands’s sand mites are a little Broadway chaos, then. Vulture regrets the error and looks forward to an invitation to Sands’s opening night.

Succession Power Rankings: This Mite Hurt a Little