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Old 02-18-2013, 10:08 PM   #31
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He was backed into a corner. And the opportunity presented itself, so he took advantage of it. His goal after he got screwed out of the Secretary of State position was to be VP. And Russo was going to ruin that big time. If he wasn't backed into a corner I don't think he would have killed Russo, but at that point he really had not much of a choice. He was going to be screwed by Russo, and the golden opportunity showed up and he took it.
Of course he had a choice. Frank had been making all sorts of clever moves, tricking people, persuading people, calling in favors, etc. As I said, there were other moves Frank could have made to try to stop Russo from implicating Frank. Except for psychopaths, planned murder is a last resort. Frank had not exhausted his options yet.

And even if we ignore the moral issues, murder is much more risky than the other stunts Frank pulled. Corrupt police officials may help cover up a drug or prostitution charge, but they are much less likely to help cover up a murder. And murders have a very high rate of being solved, especially when the person killed is a congressman. So Frank really has to pin his hopes on Russo's death never being investigated as a murder. Considering how rushed Frank's planning was (eg., Russo was on the passenger side of the car, that building almost certainly had video surveillance on the garage entrances and exits, etc.) I think the chances are less than 50% that it will be accepted as a suicide and not investigated further. It was not a smart move, and Frank had been quite smart up until the murder.
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Old 02-18-2013, 10:09 PM   #32
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What did Frank accomplish with the murder that he wouldn't have gotten with Peter simply slinking away in disgrace? Was there some thought that Peter was going to spill the beans? It seemed reckless for a guy who is so cunning.

One thing about the murder is it clearly puts him Tony Soprano territory. Somebody you love to watch but you clearly know is a bad guy.
Up till that point you just saw him as a politician using a lot of tactics even if somewhat underhanded. Now we see him as a bad guy even though everybody else does not. It is still not clear how much his wife knows and whether she would still be behind him if she knew.

Which reminds me of another show:
Spoiler:
It reminds me of Homeland where we did not if he was a true bad guy until late in the season.

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Old 02-19-2013, 06:15 PM   #33
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Whoops!! I almost read that spoiler. I haven't watched the second season of Homeland yet. Although it could have dealt with the first season, but I closed it before reading the sentence.
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:22 PM   #34
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Whoops!! I almost read that spoiler. I haven't watched the second season of Homeland yet. Although it could have dealt with the first season, but I closed it before reading the sentence.
I did an edit. However my spoiler hide was about the first season.
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Old 02-28-2013, 03:26 AM   #35
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I was absolutely taken in by this series, and felt it was the best political drama I've seen on television. Well, until Frank murdered Russo in cold blood. The irony was, the day before I saw that episode, I was trying to get a friend to watch the show, and I described it as a gritty political drama, not a cheesy political thriller where somebody is killed in a conspiracy... oh, rats. All season was spent showing how Frank is a cold, master manipulator. Hell, even I could've convinced Russo the next morning that the best course of action was to keep his mouth shut. The murder was completely out of character, and made no logical sense considering the lengths Frank went to get this far. As was pointed out in a previous posting, the murder of a congressman would be extensively investigated, and he left evidence all over the place (his casual wipe-down is meaningless in a DNA world... his coat fibers alone would be all over the seat, and he left his fingerprint on the garage door button). It's a damn shame, because I was all-in up to that point.
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Old 02-28-2013, 05:13 AM   #36
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Frank is about control. As everything began to unravel, I think he killed Russo to regain a sense of power.
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Old 02-28-2013, 05:56 AM   #37
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And he's never been perfectly in control. He totally f'd up in the vowel speech.

He saw an opportunity and he took it.
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Old 02-28-2013, 01:35 PM   #38
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Frank is about control. As everything began to unravel, I think he killed Russo to regain a sense of power.
Which makes no sense, because Frank has no control over a murder investigation. By killing someone, Frank becomes vulnerable, not powerful.
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Old 03-01-2013, 01:55 AM   #39
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Which makes no sense, because Frank has no control over a murder investigation. By killing someone, Frank becomes vulnerable, not powerful.
If you look at it from an emotional or psychological point of view, like a typical rapist or killer, an irrational or violent act usually stems from an urgent need to feel control and power, even if it's fleeting.
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Old 03-01-2013, 02:31 PM   #40
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If you look at it from an emotional or psychological point of view, like a typical rapist or killer, an irrational or violent act usually stems from an urgent need to feel control and power, even if it's fleeting.
Sure, but as I already wrote in this thread, that psychotic character trait was not built up in Frank over several episodes. The only real evidence of it was the opening episode one scene with the dog, and I felt like they just added that on so they could check off the "psychopath foreshadowing" box on their "How to write TV shows guide". What Frank was shown to be over most of the episodes is a highly intelligent but ruthless person who would take whatever steps were necessary to accomplish his goals in the most clever manner, but without any needless cruelty that is a trait of a psychopathic killer.
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Old 03-02-2013, 01:35 AM   #41
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Sure, but as I already wrote in this thread, that psychotic character trait was not built up in Frank over several episodes. The only real evidence of it was the opening episode one scene with the dog, and I felt like they just added that on so they could check off the "psychopath foreshadowing" box on their "How to write TV shows guide". What Frank was shown to be over most of the episodes is a highly intelligent but ruthless person who would take whatever steps were necessary to accomplish his goals in the most clever manner, but without any needless cruelty that is a trait of a psychopathic killer.
Killing the dog, cheating, manipulating, lying -- personally, I see all of these traits as making someone potentially capable of homicide when things don't go their way.
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Old 03-02-2013, 08:51 AM   #42
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Killing the dog, cheating, manipulating, lying -- personally, I see all of these traits as making someone potentially capable of homicide when things don't go their way.
Why are you flip-flopping? Before you were talking about murder solely for a feeling of power, which is a psychopathic trait. Being a psychopath was not a carefully developed trait of Frank's character in the series. Ruthless and conniving, certainly. Psychopathic, not so much (except for the seemingly tacked on dog killing scene).

Now you are talking about murder as a means to an end. I already covered that -- murder was not the smart plan in this case, there were other, better options that Frank could have used.

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Old 04-11-2013, 12:28 PM   #43
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Just found this show and watched the first ep. Went looking for this thread and I have not read it, for I still can not decide if I am in, and I think some surprises will be ruined if I jump into the thread. However...
it looks like some people are watching it at least, and have somethings to say/discuss. Good! Not enough t.v. for me lately <grin>
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Old 04-11-2013, 01:46 PM   #44
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It's a great show.
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Old 04-11-2013, 05:38 PM   #45
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It's even better the second time around.
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Old 04-13-2013, 04:47 PM   #46
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I had pretty much zero interest in watching this but decided to give it a try. WOW. It blew me away. This is one of the most gorgeous looking shows I've ever seen. The cinematography is as well done as any film. Robin Wright looks stunningly gorgeous. At first I was put off by Frank's accent and breaking the fourth wall -- but they both grew on me quickly.

I cannot wait for the second season!!!!
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Old 04-13-2013, 09:46 PM   #47
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It's even better the second time around.
I'm thinking of watching it again, as soon as I finish another series I have queued up on Netflix. There's a lot going on and I'm sure I'll see stuff I missed the first time around.

I thought this was brilliant and am already looking forward to S02.

The only sucky thing for me (not related to the series itself) is that when streaming through my Tivo on my TV I get some pixelation for the first few moments and then if I have to pause or rewind it starts the momentary pixelation again. Is that just me? I'm wireless, Tivo N adapter, etc, to my router which is upstairs. (DSL)
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:13 AM   #48
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...when streaming through my Tivo on my TV I get some pixelation for the first few moments and then if I have to pause or rewind it starts the momentary pixelation again. Is that just me? I'm wireless, Tivo N adapter, etc, to my router which is upstairs. (DSL)
Netflix has written their software so that it begins by playing back the lowest quality video, which allows it to start playing very quickly over a typical home internet connection. As soon as it can (usually in 15-30 seconds), it swaps over to a higher quality stream, depending on the speed of your connection to Netflix's servers. When you rewind or fast forward it repeats the process since it has to completely restart playback from a different point in the video. The client has no storage of the video that has already been played, so when you rewind, it downloads what you're watching again. On my Roku pausing doesn't trigger it, but I have never used the Tivo Netflix client so I can't compare.
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:24 AM   #49
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ElJay - Thank You so much for that explanation. I appreciate knowing that because I had no idea what the deal was and figured maybe it was because I have DSL, or something about MY equipment.

I like learning something new!
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Old 05-06-2013, 12:31 PM   #50
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Finally wrapped this up over the weekend. I really enjoyed the season, especially Kevin Spacey's performance. Looking to see how Seaon 2 deals with the breaking story, the lawsuit, and possible pregnancy(?)
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Old 05-24-2013, 06:49 AM   #51
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All caught-up this weekend. Loved it. Though there could have been just a few more ninjas, explosions and car chases. I was worried about a dialog-heavy production, but is worked for me. My wife checked-out - too dark for her, apparently.

Oh, and this:
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Robin Wright looks stunningly gorgeous.
I wish they would have explored here softer side a bit more, in contrast to Frank.
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Old 05-24-2013, 11:41 AM   #52
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Finally wrapped this up over the weekend. I really enjoyed the season, especially Kevin Spacey's performance. Looking to see how Seaon 2 deals with the breaking story, the lawsuit, and possible pregnancy(?)
I REALLY want an Emmy for Spacey for this role. I think Kevin Spacey and Laura Linney would make the perfect pair of lead actors for this year's Emmy wins.
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Old 05-25-2013, 07:30 AM   #53
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I REALLY want an Emmy for Spacey for this role. I think Kevin Spacey and Laura Linney would make the perfect pair of lead actors for this year's Emmy wins.
Does Netflix qualify for an Emmy?
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Old 05-25-2013, 09:54 AM   #54
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Joe - I think I read somewhere that it does. My memory doesn't serve me that well anymore, however, so don't quote me on that.
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Old 05-26-2013, 05:51 AM   #55
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We watched 9 on Friday night and the last 4 yesterday. I had already seen and loved the BBC version, so I knew the major plot points (except one biggie that's different so far - maybe S2?). Even so, we love Spacey, so we gave it a shot. Obviously given by the way we watched, we liked it. I do agree with what was posted upthread - Francis Urquhart was more likeable even though I thought he was a bigger bastard than Frank Underwood. I also liked that in the BBC version, they kept referring to the character as "FU". /Beavis laugh
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Old 07-08-2013, 10:06 AM   #56
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i watched all the episodes this past weekend, and i really like this show! I commented to my wife that i love the - i guess it's been referred to as - breaking the 4th wall, because his commentary adds a lot of insight into the character. it's like when you're reading a novel and the narration gives you all this insight into what a character is thinking. That is so difficult to give in a tv show without senseless dialogue. The way its done here is great - sometimes even just a roll of the eyes says it all.

Being in the DC area, my wife and i keep laughing at how they are such a stereotypical "power couple". It was really interesting to see how both of them are devoid of normal feelings. Claire going to their old security guard and offering a hand job - that was just COLD. Their arrangement is not something all together foreign in this area. it made me think of the Clintons, which is why i always laughed when people would say how Hillary was so supportive and strong, and how she "stood up for her husband". that marriage was a business arrangement, very much how Claire and Francis are.

The messed up thing is that this show actually DOES show how a lot of business gets done on Capitol Hill (or in the last few years, how business does NOT get done). it's about power, negotiating favors, and politicking. i've known several former Hill staffers to know that there's a lot of truth to that aspect of the show. it also amused me see Democrats fighting unions, and some of those conversations that were had when they were trying to break the strike.

The murder scene bugged me for reasons other have stated, but it also bugged me that he left Russo in the passenger seat. that seemed way out of character. that left way too much to chance, to raise unnecessary questions. Also, does his aide know? based on Frank's little "we'll never speak of it" declaration, i'm not sure.

oh, and did Claire record that conversation with what's her name that's suing her? i was thinking she HAD to have something in her pocket to record whatever she might say. otherwise, why bother with that visit?

anyway, i'm looking forward to a 2nd season!
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Old 07-08-2013, 03:09 PM   #57
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Just started watching this (Haven't read the thread) and am really enjoying it. l'm up to episode 8, I think. I'm impressed that Netflix did this, it strikes me as as good as anything on HBO.

I'll come back and read the spoilers once I catch up, but wanted to say I had just found this and am really enjoying it.
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Old 07-09-2013, 01:19 AM   #58
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Finished it tonight. REALLY enjoyed it.

Have the BBC version in the queue to watch next, but maybe I'll wait a few days.

Kevin Spacey is absolutely wonderful in this. And breaking the fourth wall is a wonderful way of getting exposition without having to have a clumsy conversation with someone else, who likely should know all of this already. We get into Franks head that way. I liked it a lot.
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Old 07-19-2013, 12:19 AM   #59
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Just finished watching episode 13. Been watching via disc (BluRay) from Netflix

This show is great. Hit right out of the gate and kept moving forward every single episode. Always a new development. Always a new twist. Never disappointed. It's as good or better than anything else that is on "Real" TV.

I'm still mixed on the 4th wall thing. Sometimes, I find it's not needed. He explains things that don't need to be explained that way. Or at all. It's obvious what's going on. Other times, they seem forced. Like when he is in the middle of a conversation with someone. I think it worked better just before he stepped into a room, or out of a room, or when someone else left the room. etc. etc.

Zoe Barnes is a serious hottie. And what's up with Robin Wright's neck? It's got some round scar looking thing. I was always staring at it.

Season 2 speculation? He obviously gets the formal nomination for the Vice Presidency. Does he have to fight for confirmation with the story breaking? Does the story break at all before he gets confirmed? I would suspect it would have to. No way can Zoe continue to get un-noticed access to Underwood when he is VP.


Anyway, it's Emmy nominations were well deserved. Best Actor for Spacey. Best Actress for Wright. Best Series. The trifecta. I wonder if it can win. It's outside the box. But it has big star power with Spacey.
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Old 08-01-2013, 06:31 PM   #60
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Not an easy task from the passenger's seat! But I suppose he could have started it, then moved to the passenger's seat.

I knew that was coming from the moment they pulled into the garage. I wish it hadn't though, I feel like it was over the line.
That or I was waiting for Russo to take an aspirin and hop into bathtub.
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