I’ve reached Peak Underwood

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Antagonists Frank and Claire Underwood

With the newest season available on Netflix, the Underwoods are less a pair of anti-heroes and more the antagonists of their own show. Season four of House of Cards gives us more of the ongoing antics of a trio of psychopaths: Frank and Claire Underwood; and their attack dog Chief of Staff, the bootlicking Doug Stemper; and surrounds them with a gaggle of people either crippled by their own corruption and moral compromises, or else compliant sheep, like the Vice President.

Spoilers follow.

I found myself cheering for Lucas, knowing he’d fail, because his assassination attempt came too early in the season to have the possibility of succeeding. I even found myself tempted to cheer for the vile Governor Conway. Tom Hammerschmidt is really the character I wanted to succeed. He’s the only protagonist I really thought might have a chance. And he does strike a possibly mortal blow to the Underwoods, who cross over into cartoon supervillainy by the end of the show.

I know that House of Cards is supposed to be some dark funhouse mirror on what happens in Washington when powerful people set their sights on a goal. But with the real life possibility of an impending Trump presidency, I don’t know that I need a fictional series about these horrible characters. I don’t want another season of them terrorizing everyone around them and having things break their way. If House of Cards isn’t about the Underwoods’ downfall, I don’t know that I will be tuning in for more House of Cards.

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