House of Cards Season 4 Reaction

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Don’t you just love a good binge?  Slowly but surely the idea of a show where the new episode only comes out week by week for about a 10-20 week stretch per season is becoming obsolete.  Netflix is re-inventing television watching with it’s original shows.  Releasing all of the new season at once causes everyone to put their social lives on hold for about 24 hours so they can be one of the first people to watch it in its entirety. Welp, that’s me in a nutshell.

I don’t think older people get it. Not yet at least.  My mother for example, political junkie, NPR fanatic, I could not convince her to watch this show at all for the last 3 seasons, despite her knowing how great it was. Well, she sat down to watch five minutes of an episode.  Two and a half hours and three episodes later she finally stopped watching.

It would appear the Netflix binge is even appealing to the older generations.

But enough of that nonsense, let’s get to it. House of Cards season 4 was FANTASTIC!

No Real Spoilers will be in this recap, only broad reactions. 

hoc frank doug

I have to say I was a bit skeptical coming into this season for a couple of reasons. One was that the third season really let me down, even though I was expecting it to. I loved the Underwoods scheming to get to the top, I thought that goal is what made the show so great and I was hesitant to think there was much more that could be done once they got there. That is what the letdown of season three was to me. But season four brought it all back.

Season 3 ends with two important storylines: the conclusion of the Iowa Caucus in the Democratic Primary race, with Frank squaring off with Heather Dunbar, and the bombshell that Clair drops on Frank, that she is leaving him.

Season 4 brings us some new fantastic characters and the return of some other great ones. With this season we get Claire’s ailing mother, Leann Harvey and Will Conway.  But then we also get the return of some great characters from earlier seasons like Tom Hammerschmidt, Lucas Goodwin, Remy Danton and even Raymond Tusk.  The 4th season also marks the final season in which Beau Willimon, the show’s creator, is in charge.  Although Netflix has already renewed the show for a fifth season next year, Willimon will no longer be running it.  With this is mind, you have to know that his final season would go out with a bang.

Another topic to look at for this season was the development of Claire’s character.  Robin Wright is a fantastic actress, and Claire’s character is outstanding, but always in the background. She needed to step forward into the limelight.  As the season progresses, you can really see how she in fact is the one that pulls most of Francis’ strings. She is the true puppet-master of the Underwoods.  It’s clear to see that Claire and the slow-breaking ties that are left between her and Frank are at the forefront of this season with Claire demanding more of a role in the political fabric.

hos claire

As with all of the others, this season had many great side-plots, including the reemergence of the conspiracy story from the end of season one and beginning of season two. From the opening scene of season 4 where we see Lucas Goodwin, you could tell something was going to be up with him.  He is still just as obsessed with the deaths of Zoe Barnes and Peter Russo.

The show does a great job of tying in current events in a sick and twisted way that make it work so well for the Underwoods and their presidency.  There are strong ties to ISIS, the primary and general elections and of course, controversy.

hoc conway

The Verdict:  Season 4 is right behind Season 1 as the best House of Cards season.  It has everything you could ask for in a binge watch and if you haven’t started already, there is no way you are going to be able to stretch out watching this season. Every time you think there might be a down episode, there are one or two scenes that bring it back to life.

As I stated before, the show has already been renewed for a 5th season, and although there may have been signs of it slowing down, there is plenty of gas in the tank, with a lot of unanswered questions that fans are itching to get the answers too.

The ending is terrifying but exciting, Frank is ruthless as expected, Claire is the puppet master, Doug is loyal to a fault, Conway is a worthy adversary.  Get on board or get out of the way, season 5 will be here before you know it.

4/5 Stars. Highly Recommend. 


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