House of Cards (S4)…An Underwood Presidency

Hello everybody! As with each of the preceding seasons, it is time we checked out season 4 of House of Cards!

HOUSE OF CARDS (S4)

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DIRECTOR:   Carl Franklin, Jodie Foster, James Foley and Robin Wright

STARRING: Kevin Spacey, Robin Wright, Michael Kelly, Michel Gil, Molly Parker, Gerald McRaney, Mahershala Ali, Sebastian Arcelus

GENRE: Political, Drama

YEAR: 2013- Current

COUNTRY: United States

After recovering, Doug rejoins Team Underwood to take out Heather Dunbar in the Democratic Nomination. Frank may win the nomination to go against the potential Republican candidate. Meanwhile Claire has left Frank. So Frank must find a way to rekindle his marriage or will her leaving be his downfall? Also near the end of Season 3, Doug had attacked the only loose end to Frank, Gavin Orsay. Will Gavin want revenge on Doug and take actions against Doug and Frank? How will Frank handle Claire’s movement? And at last, who will be the new president?

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I have been waiting for you for a long time…House of Cards. I wasn’t overly thrilled with season 3, since it felt like much of a set up season. How did season 4 do? Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed it, easily renewing my love for House of Cards. I was surprised with the sheer amount of newcomers this season, luckily most of them hit it out of the park. I mean it should be expected…you are on freaking House of Cards. Unlike season 3, season 4 had quite a handful of callbacks to events in previous seasons, establishing a more solid campaign than Frank Underwood’s political career. Lastly I have to mention Robin Wright…damn she has the best performance in the entire season. I used to hate you Claire…but now that you are as deceiving as your husband I love you. Unfortunately, the easiest way to describe season 4 without any major spoilers is that this season is INTENSE.

House-of-cards-peter-russo-zoe-season-4For the most part, season 4 is perhaps the best season since season 1. Unfortunately though, nothing can be perfect. While Robin Wright absolutely nailed every scene throughout the season, I thought it was an odd choice primarily focusing on Claire. While I understand that it makes rather interesting content (I mean, I enjoyed it) and it further’s Claire’s character, I would have taken a different approach that was evidently decided on in the season. Claire…go smoke a cigarette for the both of us. Just remember you don’t need no man.

PROS:

  • Newcomers performances.
  • Robin Fricken Wright.
  • Intense and uncomfortable scenes.
  • Intriguing story.

CONS:

  • Primarily Claire-focused.
  • Could have taken a different approach.

SCORE: 9.0 / 10

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House of Cards Season 3: Frank Underwood A Bad President?

Hello everybody! House of Cards is back for a third season. If you want to check out my reviews of the previous seasons, check them out here Season 1 and Season 2.

HOUSE OF CARDS (SEASON 3)

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DIRECTOR:   Carl Franklin, Jodie Foster, James Foley and Robin Wright

STARRING: Kevin Spacey, Robin Wright, Michael Kelly, Michel Gil, Molly Parker, Gerald McRaney, Mahershala Ali, Sebastian Arcelus

GENRE: Political, Drama

YEAR: 2013- Current

COUNTRY: United States

The season chronicles the first few months of Frank Underwood as President. The new President faces immense pressure from the start of his term, as betrayal and opposition grows inside his party. Determined to leave a legacy not be a “placeholder” president after assuming the office, Underwood makes ambitious moves to march towards election in the 2016 Presidential Elections.house-of-cards

Doug Stamper recovers from his injuries by Rachel Posner, although struggles with alcoholism. Gavin Orsay helps Doug to find Rachel in exchange for lifting the ban on his passport, however, the findings he delivers is of a body reported as a Jane Doe but with matching fingerprints to Rachel. Distraught, Doug entreats his brother, Gary Stamper, to stay with him for the following two months. After fleeing to Venezuela, Gavin reveals he gave Doug false information and that Rachel was alive, and said he would reveal her location if he helped a compeer get out of jail.

Doug tracks down Gavin and brutalizes him for the information, then sets out to find Rachel, who is working odd jobs to pay for a false identity. Doug captures Rachel and drives into the desert with the intent to kill her, but Screen Shot 2014-02-22 at 5.31.23 PMreconsiders when she reveals she’s abandoned efforts to uncover Frank Underwood’s crimes and reveals her new identity to him. He releases her, but vacillates again and is last seen burying her body before returning to work for Frank Underwood as Chief of Staff after Remy Danton resigns, presumably jaded by the treatment Frank showed Jackie Sharp during the presidential debate.

Meanwhile, First Lady Claire Underwood is named the United States Ambassador to the United Nations and faces a crisis in the Jordan Valley, where Frank Underwood and the United States are pitted against the cunning President Petrov of Russia. Tensions rise between Frank and Claire, which culminates in Claire stating her intentions to leave Francis in the season finale.

The third season marks the possible end of the series, which it better not end on this note. This season was incredibly slow, while the series is not known for its fast pace it still could have picked it up just a bit. Story-wise, it was interesting enough to keep me binging five or six episodes a night. Towards the end of the season, it felt that it was trying to wrap up everything in a nice little bow. The main and supporting casts’ performances were phenomenal as usual, making the example the House of Cards is the cream of the crop.screen_shot_2015-02-14_at_2.25.02_pm

I was so excited for House of Cards to come back for its 3rd season. I do want to say that if what I heard is true (this is the last season for the series) then I will be severely pissed at the series creators.I wish that they incorporated Doug at least more of his character into the main story, and to forget about Rachel and Gavin. They should have either killed him off or given him a new story arc, we are tired of this cat and mouse game. While we did see Claire becoming more involved in the presidency, I wish she didn’t leave. She should have become to manipulative behind-the-scene first lady, suits Robin Wright’s character and style.

PROS:

  • Main cast performance.
  • Supporting cast performance.
  • Interesting story.
  • Pacing.

CONS:

  • Claire Underwood arc.
  • Doug’s entire story.
  • Cliffhanger.

SCORE: 7.8 / 10

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