The Unrealism of House of Cards


The second season of Netflix's House of Cards follows Vice President Francis Underwood as he continues his political ascent, powered by the same sociopathic drive featured in season one. The season also includes stories about his wife, the president he seeks to topple, and the journalist who hopes to reveal Underwood's darkest secret. There's a lot that will be familiar to devotees of political drama: thinly veiled allusions to real-world crises, the sausage-making legislative process, and the paranoia haunting high office.

House of Cards works as juicy drama, but it is hard to imagine any actual politician being competent enough to execute as many schemes as the devilish Underwood without exposure or widespread public suspicion. Suspension of disbelief is required, but well worth it.