A tribute to the best dynamic on TV: Succession's Tom and Cousin Greg
Find you a friend who can tell you that Nazis are the worst…and let you throw water bottles at him…and play Boar on the Floor with…and blackmail you…and make you proud for them blackmailing you.
There were a lot of big relationship moments in Sunday's strong episode of Succession, whether it was Roman and Gerri's surprising call or Kendall and Shiv's heartbreaking hug. But, before the kinky work mom-son phone sex and sibling bonding, "Safe Room" put Tom Wambsgans (Matthew Macfadyen) and Cousin Greg (Nicholas Braun) in a locked-down room together, further solidifying their status as the show — and TV's — best dynamic duo.
Tom and Greg shouldn't be friends or even associates on paper, but as the outsiders of the Roy family, they quickly bonded over cruise ships and their hopes to find a place in Waystar. With Tom eager for allies and Greg eager for anything, the towering men (for different reasons) became an unlikely mentor-mentee pair. After teaming them up in season 1, the Succession writers smartly doubled down on the duo in season 2, with the smartest development in their relationship being Tom not just using the easily manipulated Greg, but actually having some personal and emotional investment in the now real friendship.
Greg spent the first two episodes of this season getting closer to Kendall, as both his cousin's drug delivery guy, tenant, and party host. But in last week's "Hunting," Greg and Tom reunited in "war-torn, spooky, anti-Semitic, vampiry, authoritarian" Europe, with Tom jokingly (or not) admitting to being a little jealous of Greg hanging with Kendall. Needing someone to talk to, Greg sought out his buddy Tom, who Greg can trust…"to a point." Honestly, for Tom, that's pretty big.
Tom and Greg the Egg barely escaped Hungary after a hunt for the Logan biography snitch and for the best human pig, only to find themselves dealing (in totally separate incidents) with Nazis and an active shooter situation at Waystar HQ. After the buds have a footstool fiesta on top of poor Jonah and Greg explains that Nazis are indeed the worst, gunshots send them rushing to a safe room, which they soon find out isn't the safest safe room in the building. But Greg, who doesn't want to just be Tom's sidekick underlying, decides that being stuck in a room together is the perfect time to bring up his desire to spread his wings elsewhere in the company.
"Are you attempting to break up with me, Greg?" asks an emotional Tom, who is already dealing with his wife both landing the job he dreamed of and recently taking advantage of their open relationship. Speaking of, Greg tries to ease his boss' concerns by suggesting, "I can come back. It could be like a business open relationship." Tom is not handling this news well, as his anger first prevents him from opening a water bottle and then leads him to whip multiple bottles at Greg. "This doesn't feel f—ing good, Greg!" he declares. "I will not let you do this to me. I will not let go of what is mine." Thrown into this "executive level business" is the underrated moment of Greg adorably trying to get Tom to stop by calling him "one of my best friends." <iframe class="giphy-embed" src="https://giphy.com/embed/fV2qXAelys2Fm7mvG4" width="480" height="270" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="" scrolling="no" resize="0" replace_attributes="1" name=""></iframe>
Once things have calmed down in the safe room and the building, Tom gets as close to an apology as Tom can get, while also telling Greg that he can't let such a loyal soldier go. Greg then gets as close to a threat as Greg can get, saying he wants to use the leverage that he has but doesn't want to sour things between them, revealing that he kept some documents from their cruise ship coverup. "Are you asking if you can blackmail me?" Tom says like a proud dad. He accepts the blackmail, giving Greg a promotion, more money, and a better office. "Look at you," gleefully declares Tom. "You're a f—ing slime ball. Attaboy!"
As the title suggests, Succession‘s big question is who will take over for the business from Logan. Kendall just told us that it won't be him, Shiv seems primed to be stabbed in the back, Connor becoming president doesn't look so far-fetched after you-know-who pulled it off, and Roman is Roman, so who really knows which Roy takes the throne. But, we know that we will always be in good hands as long as Tom and Greg are firing Nazis and handling all other important executive level business together. <iframe class="giphy-embed" src="https://giphy.com/embed/oxU4aYICwH4Aymx1jt" width="480" height="270" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="" scrolling="no" resize="0" replace_attributes="1" name=""></iframe>
Succession airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on HBO.