House of Cards

February 18, 2014   

I have watched season two of House of Cards over the weekend. Things have gotten darker, at times shocking and even down right worrying. Kevin Spacey’s acting, main draw for me, is very engaging yet remains Machiavellian. I think he could have benefited from a better adversary or villain. The whole season 2 of house of cards is all about power and influence, the pace has gotten faster, and ruthless pragmatism, as Francis Underwood calls it, takes over realistic idealism.

The Underwoods

They pick up where they lift off last season. Francis is swore in as vice president and reminds the audience he is only three feet away from Oval Office with no single vote cast in his direction. “Democracy is so overrated.” He deals with the fall out of Russo’s death by Killing a reporter, Zoe Barnes whom he had both personal and professional arrangement from previous season. He employs a young congresswoman Jacqueline Sharp to replace him as Majority House Whip to do his bidding in congress. His wife deals with rape ordeals from her college days and confronts an Army General who did it. She woos and wows the first-lady to do her bidding, and later her extramarital activities comes to national attention after Frank falls out with Raymond Tusk, a wealthy businessman who has the presidents’ ears, much to the consternation of Frank. The games-one-upmanship between them is sometimes predictable, monotonous and a tad bit overindulgent. However, Frank undermines, sabotages, plots, connives and dismantles the administration and becomes the president as season draws to a climatic finish.


I have never been to Washington but from what I saw from house of cards, the population consist of paranoid secret service staff, politicians with dour, drab and cliched talk, a lone yet erratic president, an overzealous press, uptight hookers, a feeble and docile military, black people in the projects with nothing to do and worryingly the VP is running rings around these people, which makes his success all the more expected. May be the writers have put a lot of issues together that they turned the whole show into subplots, dill dallying between issues and characters. There is no character you could get behind like Peter Russo in Season One. May be this is just a show that’s supposed to deride all that’s wrong with Washington.


This is just my quick thoughts and may be I could go back to watch it again to write a proper review. I think the show has excellent cast with vintage acting, Spacey’s acting is adept, convincing yet deriding, Robin Wright’s unassuming, cold yet authentic, Michael Kelly’s forceful yet acceptable, so was Molly Parker whom I enjoyed watching her in The Firm. I’m really looking forward to season three of house of cards and hopefully, the writing improves.

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