House of Cards: Season 3 (2015)
Critic Consensus: Season three introduces intriguing new political and personal elements to Frank Underwood's character, even if it feels like more of the same for some.
A drama about a ruthless congressman and his equally ambitious wife who navigate the corridors of power in Washington, D.C.
as Francis Underwood
as Claire Underwood
as Lucas Goodwin
as Jacqueline Sharp
as Raymond Tusk
as Christina Gallagher
as Linda Vasquez
as Edward Meechum
as Janine Skorsky
as Rachel Posner
as Garrett Walker
as Gillian Cole
as Catherine Durant
as Remy Danton
as Doug Stamper
as Adam Galloway
as Tom Hammerschmidt
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In the Season 2 opener, Frank threw Mara under the train. In the Season 3 opener, Frank urinated on his father's headstone. Now there's a piss-poor encore - and yet, a perfect harbinger of the dilution to come.
The third season of House of Cards comes up with some formidable foes for Frank Underwood.
House of Cards is still playing with a full deck and the only imperious King and Queen it needs in Frank and Claire Underwood. Squint just a little and perhaps you'll see Richard Nixon and Hillary Clinton.
Everyone in House of Cards has an agenda - a secret twitching in the attic. The thrill, and the horror, may lie in the degree to which we catch reflections of real life in its dark, cool contours.
The series is a high-octane soap opera, and glorious as that, and that alone.
Audience Reviews for House of Cards: Season 3
Still a gripping show, to be sure, but the third season of House of Cards ultimately represents a step down for the show's previous bold, audacious, and amoral nature. Quite simply, it seems to have lost a bit of its edge. Instead of a character study of Underwood and the chilling dynamic he has with his wife and those of his subordinates, the third season focuses on a flawed man struggling to hold on to power with good, albeit self-serving, motivations. Instead of utterly corrupting Underwood, the highest office has instead spurned a lighter, and slightly less cunning Underwood. At times it does seem to boarder on a more mature West Wing, but its narrative shortcomings are overcome by the continual brilliant performances and expert direction and production values.
In season 3, Underwood's reign began to crumble in the threat of a ambitious attorney general. It explored the relationship between Frank and Claire closely. Thank goodness the breaking of the fourth wall was used less this season, the first few episodes were actually quite terrible in my opinion (e.g. including pussy riots) but it got more interesting as it went on. Fans would not be disappointed.
I always figured that the right way to do S03 of House of Cards was to witness Underwood's empire crumble before him and be a little more cynical and comical because o fit. In certain aspects, that's what we get but this season was a big step back on the quality of the first two seasons and it barely has any of the dark humor that preceded, excluding the escapist fun this show previously had. The direction, writing and acting from Spacey and Wright are still spot on, but the way secondary characters are handled leaves much to be desired. There's no sense of momentum to any storyline going on and I barely cared for any of them. Even Doug's story which takes on forever to unfold, held promise but quickly started to be a nuisance. Only to have that awful conclusion. So many contradictions... Are you trying to get the viewer confused? That's a good thing if handled well but this was just poorly executed. We also seemed to had a very interesting escalating conflict between the USA and Russia with two very charismatic presidents, to, once again, be left out to dry, not offering a satisfying enough conclusion.
There were many other characters who were ditched way too soon and for what? To get a bunch of new ones which are practically the same, but on a new skin? Blhergh.
Get a grip, House of Cards. You have much to prove next time.
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