Posted by Rande Iaboni on February 5, 2013 at 9:14 pm
Well folks, hold on to your hat because the world of television is about to change, and for the better! Yes, I am talking about Netflix’s first original series, ‘House of Cards.’ Instead of having to rely on major network executive approval or advertisements or even ratings, ‘House of Cards,’ is the first of its kind. You could say it is closer to an HBO series if anything else with its lack of commercials and reliance on subscribers instead of people just randomly tuning in, but it’s also got an edge, the entire series is available at once. Yes this may be a sign of younger generations’ lack of patience, we want all of our show now and we don’t want to wait a week at a time, and we certainly don’t want commercial breaks, nope, what we want is 13 straight hours all at once. It is the sort of entertainment that Netflix and other online outlets have helped to create. I mean after all, what could be better than a lazy Saturday in bed with 13 hours straight of television at your disposal.?
And this is just the beginning for Netflix, expect to see more original programming from them as well as the continuation of the cult classic show ‘Arrested Development’ which is slated for new episodes to premiere on Netflix in May (again, all the episodes will premiere at once). It definitely seems like a trend will begin, I mean doesn’t it sound more appetizing to wait for a show to finish all of its episodes and then watch them all at once after they premiere on Netflix? For some it may be too hard to wait that long, but for others, getting the material all at once is too hard to pass up.
Okay so lets say you don’t already subscribe to Netflix, should you order the service for this reason alone? A resounding YES in my opinion. Here are a few reasons why ‘House of Cards’ is a groundbreaking show all on its own:
1. It feels like one long movie. Now, I’m not saying movies are better than television shows, on the contrary, I actually prefer TV to film because it allows characters and storylines to develop properly. But there is a certain urgency to films, because time is limited, the pacing is much more fast paced and the quality is stronger, TV shows can have a bad episode here or there, a movie can’t afford to have a bad hour. And that is exactly how ‘House of Cards’ feels. It is swiftly paced, never a dull moment, and the quality, well it comes as no surprise that David Fincher is behind this project.
2. Which brings me to number 2, David Fincher. Not only does the Social Network, Fight Club, and Se7en director executive produce the show, he directed the pilot episode as well as a few others. And his style is all over this thing. Point blank, if you are a fan of David Fincher you will be a fan of House of Cards.
3. Kevin Spacey is a GOD. I have always been a fan of his work but this is absolutely his best role since American Beauty, and it might be my favorite of his yet. The character of Francis Underwood is so malevolent but yet so likable that it really is a masterpiece in writing and acting. The things he does are so cruel, so vile, yet I find myself agreeing and rooting for him more than anything else. He brings such a southern charm to this evil character, despite Spacey constantly playing villainous roles, I still find this completely against type and positively lovable.
4. The rest of the cast is outstanding as well! I have a newfound love for Robin Wright as Francis’ loyal and just as viscous wife. She is striking and sexy, but oh so dangerous. Kate Mara and Corey Stoll are also huge standouts for me, with Stoll bringing likability to what would otherwise be seen as a sleazeball.
5. The character of Zoe Barnes, portrayed to perfection by Kate Mara, is an inspiration to not just all journalists out there but to young professionals in general. She is the epitome of a go-getter, not afraid to get her hands dirty to find success. Plagued by her young age and gender, she beats the odds.
6. This is the political drama we have all been waiting for. Not since The West Wing has politics been so captivating. One part ‘Scandal’ with a splash of ‘Revenge,’ but without any of that campiness, this is one of the few times the cut throat world of politics is getting an honest portrayal. HBO’s Veep touched on the complexity of it, but as a comedy it only scratched the surface, ‘House of Cards’ dives right in.
And there you have it folks, now I know this is a movie site, but like I said, ‘House of Cards’ feels like a movie that its impossible to not talk about it. So if you have Netflix, get on it right now, I promise you will fly through 13 episodes in a week. And if you don’t have Netflix, well, you better borrow a friend’s account ASAP.