House of Cards

Season 1 Episode 5

Chapter 5

19
Aired Unknown Feb 01, 2013 on Netflix
8.5
out of 10
User Rating
78 votes
2

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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Claire discovers that her own ambitions are put at risk due to her husband's stance over the education bill. Meanwhile, Zoe discovers that work and play are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • It's getting more and more interesting with every new chapter

    7.5
    If we view House of Cards' story as a pot of water, it, while being far from boiling, got to a temperature too hot to drink without getting internal burns as a result in its fifth chapter. The reasons for this are manifold:



    On one hand, there are enough shades and depths to the characters to get the audience invested after 200 minutes of the series, which is further enhanced by the talent of the screenwriters. In addition, the situations the characters are currently in and the interactions between them give the scribes a carte blanche to conjure up entertaining scenes. And last but definitely not least: there is sex added, which is, if we're being honest, rarely ever bad news for a television series.



    The plot isn't of world class proportions yet though and I'm consistently astonished at the utter uselessness of Kevin Spacey addressing the audience here and there, worst and most unnecessary as he tells us he lied to Marty Spinella mere seconds before Marty Spinella repeats it to him, using slightly stronger language. Nevertheless, House of Cards maintains a realistic and entertaining representation of modern day politics and is a highly interesting character study, especially as the number of those is ever rising.



    Memoranda:

    - What the what is up with that first scene of Francis and Claire sharing a conversation, implicitly concerning his extramarital affair? How on earth could she possibly know anything and how on earth would she be as stoical as she is about it?

    - Wass Stevens, who plays a childhood friend of Peter in this episode, not only does and says pretty much the same Al Sapienza did in a scene with Spacey just minutes before, but also completely botches it by overacting on an eyebrow-raising level. Cutting directly from Kate Mara stripping naked to Peter's kids is a hopeful contender for most awkward editing choice of the year.

    - The Apple product placement is getting annoyingly gratuitous by now I don't mind about such things as a means of acquiring the monetary needs to fulfil a series of a level as high as this one's, but the director really sticking the audience's face in the logo every other minute is something I don't approve of.

    - What a sadly gorgeous shot of Pete walking through the Congress halls all alone at night.

    - Best quote: "How did it go?" "What did you hear?" "A lot of "Well, that pretty much sums it You just have to love the chemistry between Frank and Stamper.moreless
  • Francis is crazy

    8.5
    Spoilers below.



    Francis's bluff with Peter in the bathtub shows maybe for the first time how Frank is self-confident to the point of delusion. He doesn't actually know Russo all that well, and having a congressman turn up dead by suicide in your blood-filled bathtub would sort of cause a career- or even life-ending scandal. Yet Frank lays it on the line, never doubting his narcissistic expectation that things will work out his way. He doesn't even check on Russo in the morning, just calmly prepares his breakfast with Claire.



    Also want to point out that the cold hard-nosing he gives Peter parallels the one he gave that crazy, disheveled guy a few episodes ago.moreless
Kathleen Chalfant

Kathleen Chalfant

Margaret Tilden

Guest Star

Al Sapienza

Al Sapienza

Marty Spinella

Guest Star

Wass M. Stevens

Wass M. Stevens

Paul Capra

Guest Star

Boris McGiver

Boris McGiver

Tom Hammerschmidt

Recurring Role

Sandrine Holt

Sandrine Holt

Gillian Cole

Recurring Role

Nathan Darrow

Nathan Darrow

Edward Meechum

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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