Dee Discusses: House of Cards 3×09

Posted: September 22, 2015 by Dee in Dee, General Media, House of cards, Recaps, Television
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There are spoilers in this review. Duh.

So at the end of last episode there was a slight disaster for Frank. He agreed to give up on America Works, or at least the FEMA money portion of it, in order to prepare for a potential hurricane that could kill civilians. Instead the storm passed by harmlessly. This could have easily disgruntled him, and I’m sure it did, but he then stated he would be running for President after all. Obviously we already knew he planned on that, he was just hoping that America Works would be up and running and he’d have that to lean on. Everyone’s still iffy on Frank considering the way he got to the top. I still maintain it wasn’t smart of him to manipulate that situation last season. He and Claire are brilliant but they don’t see consequences well, they like the game but not the end result all the time. If he waited out the President’s term and was a good VP, he might have inherited it afterward and not had so much trouble to slink through. He wants what he wants it when he wants it. This is what happens, Frank. Also previously on House of Cards, Frank was making progress with Russia, but then Claire got angry at the President Petrov and publicly shamed him for his stance against homosexuality. However, with everyone pushing for peace in the Jordan Valley, Russia did agree to ally with the others. Or at least coexist peacefully while the conflict was being resolved. Also Doug is working for the enemy, Remy and Jackie used to be together but she’s engaged to someone else, and this writer Yates has been working on a book about Frank.

Frank is on the campaign trail publicly now, and he’s doing fairly well all things considered. He has his swagger back. Except remember how being President actually sucks, Frank? So a calamity happens when eight Russian troops are killed by an IED in the Jordan Valley conflict. Panicked, Frank tries to jump in and calm the UN and all the allies involved with it. Israel and Palestine are quick to pin it on each other, and Russia refuses to let anyone come in to investigate. That right there is shady, and Frank sends Claire to talk to the Russian ambassador. He implies that Russia killed their own men to sabotage the mission. This puts the pair of them into a pickle, considering they need either proof that Russia did it to hold them accountable, or to find who really did it and solve the problem. Everything is very tense and serious and this could cause the area to explode all over again in war. So Frank makes a decision to send in a private group of soldiers and try to prove whatever happened. This is against a lot of suggestions, but he can’t really find another way to trick his way out of this. I think what the Underwoods are learning is that they might have been big dogs before, but on the world stage they’re medium sized at best.


Doug has a crisis during this episode where his digging brings up that Rachel is dead. Obviously he’s been looking for her, since she’s the weakness in his position with Frank. But he didn’t want her dead, as he realizes once he hears that she is. He breaks down and falls off the wagon, and goes to Frank once he’s wasted to tell him. Frank supports his friend regardless of the fact everything is terrible, and he feels that Heather Dunbar, who has been using/working with Doug, is partially to blame. It’s silly, Frank. You’re responsible. You neglected him and abandoned him when he needed you and now he has nothing so. Shut your face. Remy is alarmed when a police officer stops him and frisks him, despite him doing nothing suspicious, and he has an emotional moment with Jackie. The end result of the mission with Frank is that the Russians were expecting that and now have proof of the sneaky operation America tried. Uh oh. Also one American died in the mission, and Frank has to write an explanation to his family.

It should be noted that this episode was directed by Robin Wright. She did a great job. I really liked her tight shots in the situation room, the backlit of Frank’s head as he tensely watches the screen, waiting to hear what happens with Russia. So kudos to her. It was a good episode. I do like the Underwoods having consequences to their actions, but I’ll be honest, they’re more entertaining when they’re on top. This season has been a lot of them getting beaten, and they’re villainous, so they deserve it, but at the same time it’s not always fun to see someone crash and burn on their way down. I find myself wanting just one little win, or to see the confident pair that they used to be. C’est la vie. We’ll see what comes of this.


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