Something has been on my mind since Sunday evening that I am now bringing to you all. I cannot tell what the temperature is, let alone what time of year it is, on the television show Succession. The way content works now, you might be thinking that I should have written about this on Monday morning to capitalize on the 24-hour Succession discussion cycle. But I was on vacation, so here I am, begging you to try and remember an episode of television you watched 60 hours ago.
Back to business. As we know, Adrien Brody’s character, a new money billionaire/Waystar Royco shareholder named Josh Aronson was introduced on the most recent episode of the HBO show. He calls Logan and Kendall to his private island somewhere presumably in the northeast to suss out the future of the company, and whether he should remain on Team Roy in the upcoming shareholders meeting. As part of his plan, he takes Logan and Kendall on a long, meandering walk to a cliffside so they can ignore an elaborate seafood lunch on a cliff.
Now here is where we get into the meat of the question. In order to go on this walk, as has been posted about many times on Twitter, Josh puts on approximately 20 layers. He is wearing, from what I can tell, a t-shirt, a corduroy button up, a wool cardigan, a hoodie, a vest, a beanie, a scarf, and lord knows what else underneath all of that. You would think it was maybe 40° Fahrenheit. Now here is where things get interesting. Right before the trio sets out on their expedition, we see Josh’s young daughter in a bathing suit do a front flip into an outdoor pool. So what’s the deal here?
When I pointed this out on Twitter, several people were quick to tell me that rich people have heated pools. Obviously I know that already. You know what’s not heated? The outside! She has to get out of the pool at some point, and in doing so I imagine she would feel very cold in the non-heated air, if we are to take Josh’s layers as an indicator for temperature. I would like to think that even if I were a billionaire with a heated pool I would not want my child swimming in it when it was cold outside, because I was raised in an environment where I believed you could get pneumonia just by being cold and damp.
In contrast to Josh, Kendall is wearing an outfit consisting of a dusty brown corduroy jacket paired with chocolate brown pants and a thin, olive-colored sweater. He looks like a literal piece of shit. This is the kind of outfit you wear when it’s a cool 60°, which as you might note is a 20° difference from the temperature Josh is dressed for. Logan sits somewhere in between them, wearing a full suit underneath one of those quilted horse girl jackets that rich people are obsessed with.
Later in the episode, when Logan nearly passes out from exerting himself too much on the walk back, Kendall blames “too much sun” for his father’s exhaustion. Was this just a line to cover up Logan’s declining health? Maybe, but later on Roman calls Kendall and accuses him of trying to “assassinate our dad with the sun.” Kendall calls it “heat exhaustion.” Absolutely what the fuck.
Anyone who has endured an East Coast winter knows that even if you are standing directly in the sun you can still feel the cold in your bones. I don’t want to get into another “rich people have heated pools, idiot” situation, so I am cutting this off at the pass to say that I understand it’s possible to get heat exhaustion in cold weather, especially if you are wearing a lot of layers. That being said, it’s still completely unclear what temperature it is on this damn show.
In the episode’s final moment, we see that Stewie Hosseini is arriving on Josh’s private island to woo Josh away from the Roys. It’s clearly very windy outside (one point for cold), but Stewie is only wearing a suit and, here’s the kicker, loafers with no socks (a million points for temperate).
So here are my final questions:
- Where is this island that is a quick helicopter and private jet ride away from Manhattan? And why is it so cold and/or warm?
- Literally what month is it? (Remember we are canonically only about a week or so from the Roys being on a yacht in shorts and swimsuits in the Mediterranean.)
- Do rich people feel physical sensations, or can you pay to have that part of you removed so that you can wear whatever you want all the time?
- Are there any very wealthy Gawker readers who want to pay for me to get that surgery?
If Succession won’t answer the question of what the temperature is, I am willing to be brave and wager a guess myself. I think it’s 58° Fahrenheit. Kendall is dressed just right, Stewie is showing off, Josh is a freak, Logan is too old, and Josh’s daughter is in a trauma-induced fugue state from growing up surrounded by these sick, sick men. .