You could almost say that change has come, and you can take that in any which way you like it, but when it comes to this show it most certainly has, new show runners most of all. But it is very much more than that, because with new show runners come new ideas, and some bad ideas some good. So let us get stuck into them.
The show still contains that ruthless edge it has, especially over the two main characters of Claire and Frank Underwood. The way they will do what they deem to be necessary has always added that element of intrigue to the character, and what will be interesting is if they will ever find the line that they will not cross. So when you find out that Claire attacks Donald Blythe to his face and says some things that would make a lot of people shiver to their core, shows that she frankly ceases to care. That needs to continue throughout however long this show goes on for whether it be another season or another twenty.
The surprise in episode 12 will stun a few people, but it is not until the following episode is it all explained do all the pieces fall into place. It is these types of surprises, and those of previous seasons, like why he kills Zoe Barnes, or how he dissects Walkers Presidency the meticulous planning that goes into them. So keeping that style of planning to be seen going through Franks’ head throughout the season needed to remain, and it does. The only difference has been Claire was not involved in its planning, and it is this that we will go into later. The fact that they have kept these plans of Franks going is only a good thing, he is a thinker, who thinks long term, and is meticulous in that.
Generally, most of the stories have been thought provoking, engaging, and will make you want to watch them for a second or third time, to fully see all the little details hidden away within the episodes. You will spot things upon a second viewing, and how the plan that Frank concocts comes together a lot more neater and tidier, and it gives you an idea or even a deeper sense into how his mind operates and thinks.
From, well pretty much the first few minutes of the show you can see slight changes in the characters. You feel they are not the same as from the last season, this never been explained so it must be more of a writing issue than anything, given what I have mentioned before. It just doesn’t allow any early moments in the story of the season to feel enjoyable as it does take a bit of time to almost reintroduce yourself to the characters.
A few of the story threads feel pointless and bolted onto the main story itself. Tom Yates has been one character that felt annoying, and you wanted him to almost just go away. The story of him and Claire gets irritating and feels to be a bit of distraction from the story itself. Several more of these types of stories pop up, the love, whatever it was of Doug and LeAnn, been another that feels bolted on.
Claire, now she has been great in the previous 4 season, and in this season she pushed much more into the forefront. The sheer fact she entered the fourth wall breaks at the very end of season 4 was a wonderful touch, and from time to time her own fourth wall breaks are great. But a character who seems to be unable to make their own mind up, of which I thought she knew what she wanted, annoyed the hell out of me. I thought she was this focused woman, knew what she wanted, knew how to get it, would do what is necessary. But several times in this season she flounders around not sure what she wants. The final choice she makes to not pardon Frank is baffling, how she thinks she can think ahead as far as he does. Frank comes across as someone who thinks so many plays ahead of you while Claire is much more shorter term thinking compared to Frank.
So how much I am looking forward to how this progress’s I am not fully thrilled to see it, I have more nervousness or trepidation within me about what is going to happen. It feels we have hit a crossroad where there is a great route for the story the go, but also a route that is not going to be much fun to watch.
The season was enjoyable, but it is yet another TV show that is starting to stumble around and not be as clinical and enjoyable as its previous. The Blacklist and Sherlock have been two shows that have shared that fate this year alone.
The fourth wall breaks have not proved as fun this season, some feeling long winded and lasting too long, some have people still moving around in the background, or a photographer that doesn’t sit still breaking the whole point of the fourth wall breaks. Some have been fun, the ending with Claire been one.
But what this season has lacked is that moment, yes we get Tom Yates death, and LeAnn’s car crash, nobody seen I may add. We also have Frank pushing Cathine Durant down the stairs to incapacitate her for a hearing. But we do not get the “I pray to myself for myself” moment. The moment that makes you smile in morbid content at how much we enjoy this power couple.