Monday, December 17, 2018

What I’m Watching: House of Cards

House of Cards: Season 6, Episode 5 “Chapter 70” (C)

This show is testing my patience considerably. I found out about Robin Wright’s latest SAG nomination in the middle of watching this episode, and while I applaud efforts to continue it beyond Kevin Spacey and his legacy, I’m not at all impressed with where this is going. I don’t buy for a second that Claire would ever let herself be photographed with her face covered in tears, gloating to the audience about how she was playing into Americans’ worst fears about a female president. In this season, this show has touched briefly upon how the country responds to a woman in charge, but then it’s delved into all this obnoxious manipulation and conspiracy theories taking up way too much time and energy. The invocation of the twenty-fifth amendment is a tired device that was played out all too theatrically with underground meetings and the cabinet members bowing their heads to pray for the country, and of course Claire showed up at a crucial moment to summarily dismiss all of them. Just how easily Mark could be undone as vice-president was reminiscent of Frank’s own takedown of his predecessor, and Russia collusion being the main reason felt especially silly given what’s actually going on with Russia, the White House, and the alleged “witch hunt.” Claire triumphantly convening a new all-female cabinet would be cause for celebration is there was anything left admiring about this show, which has truly devolved into something difficult to watch. Cathy potentially still being alive is one of the last straws for me, and it’s going to be a struggle to get through the last three episodes.

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