Who is Tellis in Succession?

Daisy Phillipson
Kevin Changaris as Tellis in Succession

The chaotic Succession Season 4 finale sees Tellis popping up yet again with some “expert” advice – now that the show is done for good, fans might be wondering: who is Tellis in Succession, and what role did he have to play in the Roys’ last hurrah?

Just as he did with Peep Show, Jesse Armstrong shows what it means to build a good finale with Succession – no fan service or pandering to the hopefuls among the fans. It might be bleak, but isn’t that what the series is all about? A futile struggle for power, one where blood certainly isn’t thicker than water, and “killers” are winners. 

In our review, we wrote: “What did we expect as Jesse Armstrong, the architect of the most brilliantly bleak ending of any British sitcom, closed the curtains? Anyone expecting a traditional, triumphant happy ending should feel a little silly right now, because Succession delivered a pitch-perfect, hellish conclusion – we should be angry, and that’s the point.”

In Season 4 Episode 10, the last ever episode of the HBO series, amid the burgeoning final battle for Waystar Royco, Tellis makes an appearance – or, at least, his voice does. So, here’s everything you need to know about Tellis. Warning: Succession finale spoilers ahead!

Who is Tellis in Succession?

Tellis, played by Kevin Changaris, is a financial advisor working for Kendall, Roman, and Shiv, having first appeared in the premiere of Succession Season 4, “The Munsters”. 

In the episode, Tellis relays messages to the Roy siblings about the PGM deal, becoming increasingly frustrated as they can’t make a decision. Eventually, he tells them Nan is looking to lock in a bidder and wants to talk with Shiv, “nano-a-nano.”

As the deal gets closer, we get to learn a little more about Tellis’ insights – in that, he doesn’t seem to have many, other than a few buzzwords. When Kendall, Shiv, and Roman give him a call and ask whether $8.5 billion will work, he replies: “I don’t have the precise composition of our consortium, but we know the asset and I think we can get there.”

“You jerking it to your yacht catalogue, T?” says Roman, to which Tellis replies: “Er, this is exciting guys!” Kendall sarcastically interjects: “Thanks Tellis, that’s a great insight.”

When they hang up, Roman quips: “He’s going to bill us 200 mil for that strategy advice.” But the hilarity doesn’t end there – after Shiv chats with Tom, they give Tellis another call in the hope of getting some sound advice about whether it’s worth it to bump the price up even more. 

And here’s what Tellis has to say: “It’s getting toppy, but it would be great to be the preferred bidder here… it’s worth what the top bidder will pay, I guess.” A clearly unimpressed Roman responds: “Wow, I really wish I went to Harvard Business School like you, T. It is intimidating talking to an intellectual giant like yourself.”

Despite his inability to offer up anything useful to the trio, they once again call on him in the finale as they plot to kill the GoJo acquisition and take over Waystar Royco. 

After accidentally roasting Shiv, Tellis gets back to stating the obvious. “What about leadership?” asks Shiv, to which he says: “You need to present a coherent plan to the board, including your leadership candidate.” 

They then try for some specifics, asking if it’ll work as a trio. After dancing around the answer, Tellis eventually says: “I think it hasn’t been great for credibility, the incredible f*ck brother band wagon.” 

He explains that they need to look like a united front, and not a “cop-out at the fudge factory,” and if that sounds familiar to you, it’s because its a callback to Vaulter’s “Sh*tshow at the F*ck Factory” headline in Season 1.

Tellis has proven to be a bit of a fan fave due to the laughs he brings with his hilariously obvious asides, with one writing on Twitter: “Tellis has the best job tbh just getting paid bags of money to say the most common sense advice.”

“Tellis the useless Investment Banker who went to HBS is a low key great Succession character,” said another. A third suggested he’s their “favorite new character,” while a fourth went as far as to suggest he get his own spinoff. 

Succession Seasons 1-4 are available to stream on HBO and Sky now. Check out our other coverage below:

Season 4 cast | Season 4 release schedule | Season 4 runtimes | Is Succession based on a real family? | What time does Succession drop? | Episode 1 | Episode 2 | Episode 3 | Episode 4 | Episode 5 | Episode 6 | Episode 7 | Episode 8 | Episode 9