Saturday, April 1, 2023

TV Quote of the Day (‘Succession,’ on a ‘Rotten Cabal’)

Roman Roy [played by Kieran Culkin]: “There's just something about betraying our father that just doesn't sit well with me.”

Kendall Roy [played by Jeremy Strong]: “He's a central player in a rotten cabal that has basically eaten the heart out of American democracy.”

Roman: “ ‘Rotten Cabal’ is a good name for a band.”— Succession, Season 3, Episode 2, "Mass In Time Of War," original air date Oct. 24, 2021, teleplay by Jesse Armstrong and Jamie Carragher, directed by Mark Mylod

So now the fourth and final season of Succession is at hand. Once the series ends, fans like me will not only miss its backstabbings and other assorted plot twists, but also wisecracks like the one above from Roman, as well as the unusual verb forms used by its characters and so many others in the business world (from this same episode, Kendall’s “You aren't Judasing, are you, Greg?”)

The media family that inspired this acclaimed satire, the Murdochs, are finding it harder these days to, as Kendall (again) put it, “clean-slate this.”

This week, Delaware Superior Court Judge Eric Davis not only expressed doubt that powerful patriarch Rupert Murdoch would have trouble traveling to testify in the trial arising from Dominion Voting Systems’ lawsuit against Fox News, but also found that the evidence in the case “demonstrates that is CRYSTAL clear that none of the Statements relating to Dominion about the 2020 election are true,” and that Fox’s behavior constituted defamation per se.

The speed with which mendacity can ricochet around the world has grown exponentially, disrupting the media, politics, and even everyday life increasingly damaged by falsehoods about public health and climate change.

The law, despite its agonizingly slow pace and manifest shortcomings, may be the only institution in American life that can still hold accountable “the rotten cable” represented by the Murdochs’ News Corp. and the political grifters so long in league with it.

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