Why You Should Watch ‘House of Cards’ This Weekend

Cory Lopez / February 9, 2013

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After a first foray into original programming, the folks at Netflix swung for the fence with House of Cards. And, boy, did they hit it out of the park.

The political thriller, a remake of a BBC series based on Michael Dobbs’ novel, follows a cunning South Carolina Congressman as he schemes his way through Washington, D.C. After being snubbed the once-promised position of Secretary of State, Francis “Frank” Underwood (Kevin Spacey) — with a helping hand from his equally hard-hearted wife Claire (Robin Wright) and a hungry rookie reporter, Zoe (Kate Mara) — plots a masterfully-orchestrated plan to topple the newly-elected president.

Since last Friday, the series’ entire 13-episode first season has been available to Netflix’s 33 million streaming subscribers worldwide. So if the dark, expertly-directed drama is right at your fingertips, what are you waiting for?

Celebuzz has five reasons to tune into Netflix’s already acclaimed House of Cards.

1. Binging can be a good thing. While critics are wary of House of Cards’ all-at-once release, binge-watching has simply become a part of programming culture. Whether coming late to the party on a still-airing series or running through a retired show, many viewers have stopped slowly savoring shows, instead indulging in multiple episodes — or, dare we say, an entire season — in a single sitting. While it may not leave you time to mull over that cliffhanger, a television bender comes with the instant gratification of a full story in one fell swoop.  So, sit back, relax, and splurge on the show.

2. Spacey is spot-on. The actor is one of the main reasons House of Cards can stand among the most elite TV series. He’s a beloved character actor from acclaimed films such as American Beauty, Seven and The Usual Suspects. Spacey’s just-sinister-enough portrayal of the shrewd, ruthless Majority Whip of the House of Representatives — a Democrat with a Southern snarl — is a large part of what has House of Cards watchers coming back for more.

3. For Fincher’s sake. House of Cards is from David Fincher, the brain behind The Social Network, Fight Club, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Not only did he take the directing reigns for the new drama series, but Fincher even threw his Academy Award-winning weight behind the show by executive producing. And it all pays off — the show is shot and directed as beautifully as his big-screen successes.

4. Rooney Mara’s big sister receives raves. After stealing the spotlight on FX’s American Horror Story, Kate Mara has set tongues wagging as journalist Zoe Barnes, an amateur-but-ballsy reporter at the fictional Washington Herald who will stop at no end to land a scoop. And now that she is earning praise for the part, the actress has her little sister, Rooney Mara, to thank. “I read the script…and fell in love with the role,” she told Elle magazine. So she phoned her sister, who was shooting The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo with House of Cards’ director Fincher at the time. “[I] told her how amazing David’s new project was and that I really wanted the part. Two months later, David asked me to play the role,” the actress remembered.

5. The real Washington. Instead of romanticizing inside the powerful city — a la West WingHouse of Cards pulls back the curtain on the Capital City. Sure, some of the manipulations and power plays on The Hill may be amplified up in the name of art, but at least it digs into the too-often-shrouded wheeling and dealing of Washington.

Will you be watching House of Cards? Tell us why, or why not, in the comments.

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