Kerry’s Awkward News Anchor Clip In ‘Succession’ Was Inspired By Laura Ingraham And Tomi Lahren

(WARNING: Spoilers for Succession Season 4 Episode 2 “The Rehearsal” below.)

As Logan Roy‘s assistant, Kerry Castellabate (Zoë Winters) has significantly climbed the ranks on Succession to the point where she’s now dating the family patriarch/perpetual battle axe. In the latest episode, “The Rehearsal,” Kerry made her most ambitious move yet: Trying to land a spot as an ATN anchor.

Unfortunately for Kerry, she’s not very good. Her audition tape is an awkward and comical disaster, which results in some back door scheming by Logan and Tom (Matthew Macfayden), who inevitably sticks poor Greg (Nicholas Braun) with the task of telling Kerry she’s not ready for primetime. It does not go well for Cousin Greg as the extremely perceptive Kerry sniffs out what’s happening and threatens to pick him apart like “string cheese.”

In a new interview, Winters opened up about her research before shooting the botched audition tape, and it apparently involved watching a whole lot of Laura Ingraham and Tomi Lahren. She was particularly interested in Ingraham’s off-camera behavior and Lahren’s blatant attempts to turn on the “charm,” which is not Kerry’s strong suit.

“I watched a lot of Laura Ingraham when the camera cuts, mistreating people, getting different information in her ear than she is from the prompter,” Winters told Variety. “Tomi Lahren has this very loud, heightened, fast way of presenting. I just took little bits and pieces from conservative political commentators. I didn’t want her to be good. I wanted her to be trying.”

As for Greg’s note that a non-existent focus group didn’t like what she was doing with her arms, Winters credited the writers for hilariously reacting to her audition tape performance, but it also made her self-conscious for a bit.

“I knew it was just them being funny,” Winters said. “But I definitely thought for maybe a day and a half, ‘How do my arms hang? Are they seeing something here about the way my arms hang?'”

The final season of Succession airs Sunday on HBO.

(Via Variety)