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TV Review – House of Cards

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Politics is ugly. Now let me tell you something that you don’t know – Netflix has entered uncharted territory by producing a new series with big stars (Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright lead the cast) that you can only find on the streaming service. 

“House of Cards” is one of those shows that makes you feel like you have to take a shower after watching. It explores the seedy underbelly of something that we unfortunately can’t do without – politics.

Kevin Spacey is Francis Underwood, a high ranking Congressman and master manipulator. His game is all about favors, blackmail, and revenge.

If you like TV shows that go behind the scenes of things that we don’t normally get insight in to – House of Cards feels like a voyeuristic secret that we’re being let in on. But it also leaves you wondering, is this really how things get done in Washington?

I enjoyed the show from the standpoint of being able to lift the veil on processes that most of us never get to see, the fantastic acting of Kevin Spacey, Robin Wright, and their supporting cast, and the lush directing and cinematography.

What I didn’t like though, is the feelings that it left me with – that the political machine is nothing but wheeler-dealers who are only out to advance their careers. It doesn’t matter who we vote for, they’re only in it to advance their own personal agendas. Whether this is in fact the way DC really is or if it’s just exaggerated for entertainment, I probably don’t want to know.

I was also somewhat disappointed by the lack of anyone to really root for. There are so many despicable characters that it’s really hard to find a good guy to get behind. Even the “good guy” who you want to get behind, a young Congressman from Pennsylvania who falls into Rep. Underwood’s spiderweb of manipulation, has his own demons and failures that make it hard to really root for him in the long run.

All in all, it’s a fascinating and engaging look behind the beltway, and Netflix has changed the game by allowing us to watch as many or as few episodes of the whole first season as we want. I’d like to see at least a good guy or two who can get you emotionally invested in the show, but I’ll definitely stick around for the next season just hoping to see Underwood get his comeuppance at some point.

Have you seen “House of Cards”? If so, what did you think? Tell us in the comments!

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