house of cards

And the house came tumbling down.

Or so it seems likely to at some stage. The title alone lends itself to the star of the show falling from the heady peaks of power, glory and notoriety, to the lowly troughs of being ‘yesterday’s man,’ once the rooster, now the feather duster.

Yet there appears little doubt Kevin Spacey is anything but a feather duster. Rather, he is an actor of great quality, proven once again tonight as I watched Frank and his wife of convenience, Claire, venture to Charleston to officially open the Francis J Underwood Library.

But in doing so, Frank finds the true meaning of ‘harmony,’ and realises that politics and the achievements therein, is but a fleeting visit through life, like a Sudanese migrant being processed through immigration.

Harmony. A consistent, orderly, or pleasing arrangement of parts. Congruity.

As Frank discards his speech for truth, a rare occurrence in this TV series, he concentrates on articulating how rare true synchronicity in life really is.

Elsewhere, Frank’s errand boy visits his mother in hospital, fresh from a fight with a union official.

“What’s that?” his mother asks.

“I was in a fight,” her son, the Congressman, replies.

“Did you win?”

“I guess.”

“That’s my boy.”

To me, House of Cards is the television ‘version’ of the movie, American Beauty, where Kevin Spacey plays the dissatisfied married man looking for the simple pleasures of life. Do you remember the plastic bag dancing in the breeze?

Subtle. Fresh. A masterpiece of television drama, surviving the travails of time and technology.

Kevin Spacey’s character, Frank Underwood, is not just the star of the show, he is the viewer’s friend. His intimate ‘fireside chats’ with the viewing audience are insightful, providing us with an understanding of Frank’s ultimate objective.

“Did you think I’d forgotten you? Perhaps you hoped I had.” He looks in the mirror, getting dressed as he speaks. “For those climbing to the top of the food chain there can be no mercy. There is but one rule – hunt or be hunted. Welcome back.”

House of Cards is not to be missed. If you don’t get your hands on the boxed set of the first three series you’ll be an outsider, one of those unlucky ones who’ll know not what your dinner guest is talking about when she starts up about Frank, Claire, and Meechum.

If you’ve already seen it, join the club.

After all, who can resist connivance, betrayal, power, failure, impeachment, sex, innuendo, and murder?

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