‘Succession’ review: Brothers Murdoch



Written by By Staff Writer

A drama series that followed the Murdoch family patriarch, 80-year-old media mogul Rupert Murdoch, as he tries to dispose of his troubled family and conglomerate, will have its second season premiere on Sky in the UK on Saturday.

“Succession” is the story of the rapid passing of the family business, established by Sir John Casson, in 1899, as the global media corporation Twenty-First Century Fox is set to be split up by the Murdoch family later this year.

Executive producer Aaron Korsh says Rupert Murdoch has given him an endless list of ideas, as seen in the final scene of season one, which shows a solemn and sombre Rupert Murdoch in a hotel with his close personal confidante Fiona Shaw, recalling one of the family members he’s asked to represent the enterprise.

“My favorite scene in the entire series is the one at the end. Rupert and Fiona are in the same hotel room, and I’m trying to tell him what to do with the company,” Korsh said. “He’s given me this endless list of stuff that he’s asked me to do, so I just kept going with it. He said ‘what you should do is bring Brian Burke (former top Disney executive) in,'” Korsh said.

“It was incredible to see him interact with Fiona. He and Fiona actually met for a period of time in 1997, but this was a reunion for them. He’s not just handing his company to Fiona, he’s also telling Fiona his own story and drawing on that in the most intimate way. He’s 100% allowed to take this one last possession, with Fiona at his side,” Korsh said.

“It was a really nice emotional moment for me to bring it to life. To my mind, that was such a beautiful and touching scene,” he said.

“Succession” is also notable for how quickly Fox News has evolved from being the less-trusted half of the Murdoch empire to being a top news show among cable news viewers, and its recent hires, with Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham, among others.

Korsh said that hiring the show’s writers allowed for the Murdochs to be dealt with at different periods of their careers. He said that said this allowed the show to incorporate some of the Murdochs’ upcoming eras.

“Sean (Hannity) is like a member of the family now. Laura (Ingraham) is also doing something that she never had the opportunity to do before. When we were filming the first season, they both found themselves taken over by their children, literally. The thing that really broke me as a writer in the first season was we didn’t have to explain how that was possible,” Korsh said.

Korsh also said that it was great to see the Murdochs do a live debate in the second season. “It brought it so much more to life. It was hard to know if it was really happening because it was real,” he said.

The second season of “Succession” will be available on Sky Atlantic, NOW TV, NOW TV On Demand and Sky Go on Saturday.

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