Disclaimer: This story contains spoilers. Netflix’s first original series, House of Cards has taken the Beltway and the rest of politically-inclined America by storm. The 13-episode series, released all at once by the online streaming service, highly encouraged watching the entire season all at once. After finishing the season, I have a few observations.
Most, if not all, the characters on this show are too calculating and shamelessly self-serving to be real. That has to be taken in stride as part of the show, but there were a few moments that just felt over the top. These are the moments where my friends and I collectively yelled, "WTF?"
1. Episode 3: Claire gets spooked by an old woman in the cemetery
What did this have to do with anything? Okay, so Claire likes to run through cemeteries, so do a lot of people. They have nice paths and scenery. Out of nowhere, an old woman pops out telling her not to run there. One would think this would add up to something later in the episode, or even the season, but no. So, WTF? I guess we just all needed to become aware that Claire had to change her jogging route. Oh, first world problems.
2. Episode 6: Meacham fires his weapon in a residential neighborhood without cause
Okay, this guy claims he was a Marine. If we’re looking at his manners and the way he is constantly saying “Sir, yes sir” it is believable, but not so much when he fires his weapon outside the Underwood’s house at someone running down the street after a brick was thrown through their window. Again, there is no real reason for this part of the plot. Meacham gets fired and then re-hired and they go on as if he never tried to gun down an innocent person ... WTF?
3. Episode 6: Frank leaves Peter in the bathtub with a razor blade
After watching the entire season and seeing what Frank is capable of, this is not that surprising. At the time, though, it was a total WTF moment. Peter seeks refuge at Frank’s house after being overly inebriated. Frank’s hospitality includes opening the guest’s capillaries with warm water and thinning his blood with aspirin so that he will bleed out efficiently if that’s the route he chooses. Um, pretty sure a congressman wouldn’t be able to get away with doing that to another congressman, let alone do it in the first place. That was weird and morbid.
4. Episode 7: Claire molests the cancer-stricken security agent and Frank and Zoe celebrate Father’s Day
This episode was by far the most disturbing so I could not resist combining the two incidents. First things first, Claire. Okay, so this security agent has served Frank and Claire for some time now. He’s a good friend. He falls sick with cancer, Claire goes to visit him in the hospital. Totally normal. But then, it gets weird. The agent confesses his love for Claire and his hate for Frank which was expected, but still kind of uncomfortable. Instead of acting like a lady and thanking him for flattering her but remaining loyal to her husband, Claire reaches under the hospital sheet and touches the man inappropriately. This is incomprehensible and it disturbs me even to write about it, but it had to be included because I’m pretty sure everyone said, “WTF?”
Whose bright idea was it to put this and Claire’s friskiness in the same episode?! Anyway, Frank and Zoe have their drama, he ends up at her house, reminds her it's Father’s Day, and tells her to call him Dad. Then they start to fool around while she is on the phone with her dad. I had to fast-forward. Like, this was so weird and uncalled for. We all already know that Frank is twisted and using Zoe, and that she has severe Daddy issues. There was no need to make it any clearer. Thank you for the heebie jeebies, Netflix. WTF?!
5. Episode 8: Frank has homosexual tendencies
This totally came out of nowhere. Frank and Claire are at Frank’s alma mater to celebrate dedication of a library in Frank’s name. Several former classmates attend the ceremony. The old friends proceed to reconnect by getting drunk and breaking into an old library on campus. That in itself was unrealistic enough, but then Frank and one of the men have a heart-to-heart that reveals that they were romantically involved. This comes as quite the surprise considering Frank’s evident heterosexual appetite with Zoe. What does this all mean? We do not find out, but it is an awfully weird plot twist for there to be no follow-up. WTF, Netflix?