Warning: This contains spoilers for Succession. When Sarah Snook debuted her baby bump at a premiere of HBO’s critically acclaimed amazing show about awful people, many fans couldn’t help but wonder if her character Shiv was pregnant in Succession season 4.
For those who aren’t familiar with the series, Succession, which premiered in June 2018, follows the moneyed Roy family, who own a global entertainment and media conglomerate known as Waystar RoyCo. When Succession begins, the future of their company is up in the air after family patriarch and aging founder, Logan Roy, experiences some health issues that leave shareholders questioning his fitness to lead.
His four adult children—Kendall, Roman, Shiv and Connor—waste no time when it comes to sharing their opinions on who should helm the company in their father’s place. Throughout the satirical drama, Shiv’s relationship with her husband, Tom Wambsgans (Matthew Macfadyen) is increasingly strained, and they’ve even faced with fertility challenges. As season four opens, Shiv and Tom’s marriage is symbolically over but a surprise pregnancy would certainly through a spanner in the works—particularly for Shiv’s professional ambitions.
Is Shiv pregnant in Succession?
Is Shiv pregnant in Succession? We can’t know for sure yet but there have been moments in season four that have fans talking. In episode two, “Rehearsal”, it’s the night of Connor and Willa’s rehearsal dinner ahead of the wedding they’ve been planning. The Roy siblings decide to go karaoke to celebrate but of course, a bit of Dutch courage is required. When the kids order drinks at a bar, Shiv jokes about ordering a “house red, Do I dare?” before sticking to a non-alcoholic, “club soda with a sealed lid, nothing from that tainted nozzle.”
Declining an offer of alcohol is one of the tell-tale signs of pregnancy but then again, Shiv seemingly had a lot of work on her mind, but we can’t help but feel there are no coincidences in Hollywood. It hasn’t been the only time fans have speculated about Roy-Wambsgans’ offspring, either.
In the two-part season three finale, Shiv’s mom Caroline Collingwood insinuated to her daughter that she’d be a bad mom, which leads her to go home and have spiteful sex with her husband. The next morning, the couple discuss their future fertility plans and what they’d do with Shiv’s frozen eggs. When Tom betrays Shiv in the closing episode of season three by tipping Logan off, her hand trails down to her stomach.
As mentioned, Tom and Shiv have discussed having children before. In season three, episode five, and under threat of imprisonment for the crimes WayStar RoyCo has committed, Tom confesses he’s “most horny” when Shiv is “most fertile”. She presses him on how he could possibly know where she is in her cycle. “Are you keeping a shadow log? Watching the phases of the moon to know when I’m most breedable?” she asks. “No, I just counted the days on my iCal,” he replies. “It’s not creepy, I’ve got like six more ovulation windows until all sex is prison sex,” to which he adds a baby would “keep you company” while he was behind bars.
Snook announced her pregnancy to the world on March 20, 2023, at the Succession season four premiere. “It’s exciting!” Snook told Entertainment Tonight as she touched her burgeoning baby bump. “I feel great.” Snook’s real-life pregnancy may not have any bearing on the story of Succession—we know of plenty of actors who’ve been pregnant during shows and it’s been cleverly hidden by the genius of costume designers.
Perhaps most famously, Sarah Jessica Parker was pregnant with her first child in 2002, during the filming of the Sex and the City. Of course, this would not work for the famously single Carrie Bradshaw, so Patricia Fields had to get creative and hide what she could. It didn’t always go to plan, however, especially when it came to a striped multi-colored skirt. “The skirt kept blowing up,” Parker said upon recalling what it was like filming while pregnant to People’s The Jess Gagle Interview in 2018, “I was so afraid when my skirt blew up that you would see—no one knew at work, and there was paparazzi everywhere.”
Let’s be honest, it would be a pretty explosive way to close out Succession, given that Shiv and her brothers Kendall and Roman are vying for their father’s company. On the last table read of the series, Nicholas Braun who plays Cousin Greg told Entertainment Tonight, “We were expecting it while we were making the show, but you don’t believe it till [creator] Jesse [Armstrong] says it.” He continued, “I was sad as hell [on] my last day,” sharing what it was like to wrap production on the upcoming, final episodes. “I finished a couple of weeks ago, and it was a really tough day, you know, saying goodbye to everybody. It’s been the greatest working experience in my life. So, saying goodbye to those people is really tough.”
Succession is available to stream on HBO Max with new episodes dropping each Sunday.
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