Image courtesy of http://www.cnbc.com/2014/02/17/viewers-binge-on-house-of-cards-after-netflix-record-high.html

Adapted by Beau Willimon from a British mini-series of the same name (which in turn was based on a book by Michael Dobbs), ‘House of Cards’ is set amidst the political processes of present day Washington D.C.

Having been overlooked for a position as Secretary of State by President Garrett Walker (Michel Gill), the very man he helped into the Oval office, majority whip Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey) devises a plan to attain an even higher position of power. Aided by his wife Claire (Robin Wright), a woman of similar aspirations and guile, as well as his devoted Chief of Staff (Michael Kelly), Frank utilises his acquired knowledge of allies and opposition, his manipulative skills and his ruthless pragmatism in an attempt to acquire power.

Accompanied by a masterful narration and breaks of the fourth wall delivered by Spacey that illuminate his true intentions, it seems that the more Frank is presented with the political ladder, the worse his desire and actions become to climb it. With a similar antagonistic lead to that of Walter White in ‘Breaking Bad’, and evocative aspects that often underline the true nature of attaining power and the problems that go with it, ‘House of Cards’ is far more than a political thriller. With themes that range from violence, alcoholism and marital problems to coincide with the quintessential ones of manipulation and power, the character development is as engaging as the plot.

With Kate Mara, Corey Stoll, Sakina Jaffrey, Mahershala Ali, Jimmy Simpson and Joel Kinnaman all offering their respective talents in various seasons, even if political thrillers aren’t your usual cup of tea (of which I’d include myself), a few episodes of ‘House of Cards’ and you may be surprised exactly how captivated you are with it. Especially given the current political climate, with Britain set to leave the EU and potentially the most controversial president to date, Donald Trump.

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