The student has surpassed the teacher: it’s Claire’s turn in House Of Cards
Warning: spoilers bellow.
That’s the last line of Claire Underwood (Robin Wright) in the 5th season finale of the acclaimed and binge-worthy Netflix show House Of Cards. Moments after being sworn in as president of United States and with her husband Frances out of the White House, she looks at the hole that Frank left on the flag, stares at the camera (thus breaking the fourth wall- just like Frances Underwood) and says…
That line says something about her. And if you think about it, the line sends a terrifying message about the character of Claire. About her growth, ruthlessness and cunning ambition that is now even greater than the ambition of her husband. She doesn’t even mentions the promised pardon of Frank Underwood to the public, an act that truly scares him to the core.
One might say that the student has surpassed the teacher, but she did learned from the best. Claire’s progression to Shakespearean prime villain has been with style and grace on the inside of her character as much as it’s been on the outside. Her evil progression from the beginning of the season to the very end, is in direct proportion to the possible demise and growth of conscience of Doug Stamper (Michael Kelly). His loyalty to the Underwoods is shaky at the end of the 5th season, an as we witness he could be the possible cause of downfall for her and Frank.
But that last scene of the finale (directed by Robin Wright herself) tells us so much more than – her turn has come. The gaze to the camera says to be wary of her, and her plans in the next season. Her words are a warning not just to her husband, but for everyone who doubted her thirst for power. She finally has found the right plan and has played the right moves. And that is even evident in her wardrobe this season.
Yes, you can see her intentions on the much discussed and beloved outfit choices. As never before Claire’s outfits are now darker and with much more buttons on her dresses and blouses. They almost make her look some sort of general (commander in chief in the making if you will), but while we get to see her full presidential term in the White House in the next season, I think Claire has been one of the most compelling and realized characters of the 5th season.
The season dealt with some current issues that are important and reflecting of today’s US politics (hacking, cyber-attacks, domestic terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism similar to that of ISIS, fear of the Russian influence or invasion), but it also dealt with eliminating the threats that stand in her way. Even when that threat is her lover Thomas Yates (Paul Sparks). You can see the ruthlessness and evil in her eyes during his killing. It’s done face to face and even in mid coitus. Female black widow spiders bite the head of their male partners when they are through with them sexually, and in the 12th episode she was truly that. Done with him. She even dressed in black coat after she was done with poor Tom.
I can’t wait for season 6 of House Of Cards. I can’t wait what kind of monster she will turn into next. Maybe a kind of monster that would make Frank Underwood or Doug Stamper look like a pair of harmless kittens. Or who knows? Maybe they will be her next targets in season 6? We’ll have to wait and see, but for now House Of Cards Is out on Netflix and it’s good and binge worthy as ever.