THIS IS YOUR WARNING THAT THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS. IF YOU DID NOT SEE SEASON 2, EPISODE 1(IN NETFLIX TERMS, CHAPTER 14) OR SEASON 1 OF HOUSE OF CARDS, DO NOT READ THIS REVIEW. INSTEAD, TURN ON YOUR TV, LOG IN TO NETFLIX, AND WATCH!! CLOSE THIS REVIEW AND DO IT RIGHT NOW.
Plot: Zoe, Jeanine, and Lucas’ investigation into Frank Underwood continues while Underwood prepares to be sworn in as the Vice President of the United States.
Throughout the day yesterday, the only real spoiler I heard about House of Cards Season 2 was more or less “The first episode is crazy.” The more I heard this, the more I thought that many of my friends and editorial counterparts were exaggerating. In fact, I still thought that mid-way through the episode, because nothing really new was happening. And then, Frank Underwood threw Zoe Barnes in front of a subway car.
It was brutal.
I found myself thinking about how she died throughout the second episode. I couldn’t stomach it. But then I remembered my thoughts from the last season and it hit me, Zoe Barnes was meant to die. I’m not saying she deserved to die nor am I saying she should have died like that. But Underwood wasn’t lying when he said Ms. Baaaaarnes (no that’s not a typo) was expendable. Though she was a “main character,” it wouldn’t have made a difference if she was dead or alive. She wasn’t an integral piece.
Think about it.
Underwood used Barnes for her journalistic pull. She played the part of publicizing his political ploys. But she could have been any other young, naive, career-minded journalist looking for a chance in the spotlight. Her and Underwood just happened to cross paths, which put her on his radar. If it wasn’t for her loyalty and their affair, Zoe Barnes would have probably died sometime last season.
I’m not saying we as viewers shouldn’t be shocked and maybe a little outraged. We definitely should be. But I’m willing to get over that and accept that Barnes needed to be hit by a subway car in order for the story to move forward. Can you imagine the rest of the episodes being Zoe, Lucas, and Janine going after Underwood with no substantial evidence? Snore, boring. Plus, we all know Underwood would never stand for that. He’s far too intelligent and powerful to let three journalists take him down. Thinking otherwise is an underestimation by a large margin.
Now, what’s going to happen next? Well, Underwood will still have Lucas on his tail. Him getting any close to the truth without getting killed seems highly unlikely. There’s also still the President’s BFF Ray, who might be a little difficult for Underwood to take down. I’m predicting that Underwood will prevail and take the presidency at the end of this season. But who knows, I think it’s safe to say that this show is full of surprises.
In the meantime, if you haven’t finished already, keep watching and check back here for my mid-season and finale reports this upcoming week.