Frank Underwood is the President of the United States.
And he is still just as vicious as he has always been.
In the third season of the Netflix original series, House of Cards, we go into the Oval Office to see how Underwood handles the responsibility of being the most powerful man on Earth, and one half of the most powerful couple in the world.
Although something has changed in this season: people are starting to stand up against him. Finding it difficult to get things done with the bureaucracy of the White House and Congress, Frank needs to go to different lengths to get things done. Only now, every move he makes is very visible in the media, and he is constantly questioned about his actions. It provides us with a new look at the way he deals with things with a ton of problems in his face.
Season 3 provides us with some continuing story lines, some of which aren’t completely necessary. I could have lived without the story of Doug trying to hunt down Rachel, to get revenge for the attack in the woods. While it really created and rounded the character of Doug, at times it felt like it was filler, as we waited to get back to the good stuff with Frank and Claire.
Some of the best scenes revolve around Underwood and his meetings with the Russian president as they try to negotiate (several times) over issues in the Middle East, a UN mission, problems in the United Nations Security Council, and with near constant manipulation of one another. It makes for good TV, and it provides us with someone who is not afraid of Underwood, and is not afraid of using his own tactics against him.
We also get a continued look at the media, this time with Frank allowing a book to be written about him that is supposed to promote his idea for America Works, an all-inclusive plan to eliminate unemployment in the country. Here we are provided with an almost sensitive side to Frank, along with perhaps the weirdest scene in the entire series, during one of his late night meetings with the author he has hired to write the book.
New competition rises for Frank, as the primaries begin before the upcoming general elections. This creates the usual back alley deals and tricks in order for him to get where he wants to be. It also exposes us to one of the better characters on the show, Jackie, played extremely well by Molly Parker.
House of Cards provides us with the entertainment that we are used to: a ruthless power couple constantly trying to expand and maintain their grip on power. This season is a little different than usual, in that Frank has now achieved everything he had wanted. He sits in the most powerful chair, so what could be next for him?
The third season is easily watchable, with a consistently strong script, good acting (highlighted of course by the lovably evil Kevin Spacey), and excellent directing. While not every part of the season is must-watch TV, the central story line remains exciting and entertaining, and we are always left to wonder how this man is able to get so many things done. He is good at what he does, and still is not afraid to stomp on whoever gets in his way.