• Network: Netflix
  • Series Premiere Date: Feb 1, 2013
  • Season #: 1 , 2
User Score
9.0

Universal acclaim- based on 661 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 14 out of 661

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  1. Feb 1, 2013
    10
    Absolutely amazing! Loved it, from the beginning to the end of the first 2 episodes I've watched. It has the David Fincher mood in it, Kevin Spacey's constant neutrality in every bit of the show in a really cold blooded character, and the fluidity in which the story unfolds. Seriously, great show, watch it if you can, or get 1 month free on Netflix just to watch this. Best premiere I've seen in a series for a LONG time, maybe the best since Breaking Bad. Expand
  2. Feb 2, 2013
    10
    THE WEST WING TIMES A 100 WITH DARK HUMOR AND EXCELLENT DIALOGUE. This is a must to watch, DO NOT hesitate to see this amazing show. Spacey you are excellent, the charisma that he has with his wife and uniquely cunning portrayal of blackmailing Washington style jipper jabber. Will define the new generation of television.
  3. Feb 6, 2013
    0
    A stillborn series that began with the embarassing, moronic scene, that can't be anything but self-parody. Spacey's sardonic asides make him look almost pathetic and self-deluded, and I don't think that was the creators' intention. Everything is so tired, boring and numbingly predictable.
  4. Feb 5, 2013
    6
    I can live with the slow pace of the series I'm that person who thinks that 2001 Space Odyssey is hours too short. The writing is incredible as in incredible linear, but hey, I watched it with a cold, so that's good. I can live with the unchanged tone of voice of the whole series it wants to be in it's own world. But what I can't live with is that I didn't make an epic journey. I wasn't swept away by unexpected twists, because there were none. The makers got 50 mil. and 13 hours to explore the characters and make
    them got from A to B or C, perhaps D, hey why not E? It felt as I was
    commuting from Powerrr Corrupts to Powerr Really Corrupts all the time.
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  5. Feb 6, 2013
    6
    High production values but weak storytelling and no sympathetic characters. Kevin Spacey is an amazing actor but 2 things weigh him down here: 1) mediocre southern accent that blunts his usual sharp delivery 2) the device of his character speaking directly into the camera. The latter is really the killer for me. It's as bad as using voiceover. Worse, actually. Breaks the 4th wall and not in a good way. Show the story, don't just look at the audience and tell them what's happening! As others have said, the plot machinations are basically cruel revenge schemes perpetrated by one group of corrupt people against other corrupt people. This happens to appeal to my evil misanthrope side a little. But in general there is not much of anyone to care about in this show. Even the archetypal "spunky young reporter" character ruins everything by using her sex appeal to get ahead. Expand
  6. Feb 9, 2013
    5
    I wanted to love this series. A dark look at the underbelly of politics? Sounds good to me! Unfortunately, it feels like the show is confused. Plot points are introduced, but there's no tension. Everything goes according to plan for Mr. Underwood, and Ms. Barnes, and its boring. Spacey is great for the role, and watching him knock the cards over is entertaining. But, it's too easy. And that's also where his asides fall flat too. He almost gets away with the truisms, and clichés, because he fits that charismatic Southern gentleman role. But, without any struggle, and without offering anything new, the asides just feel...awkward. Simply put, the show's premise is quite interesting, but the illogic of some of the characters, and the ease at which Underwood pulls the strings, leaves the show feeling pretty empty. Expand
  7. Feb 1, 2013
    10
    Brilliantly written, brilliant acted, and David Fincher and his friends have created one of the most thrilling and addicting shows in a long time. I haven't seen a show so stylish and engaging since Breaking Bad premiered in 2008. You will instantly love this show.
  8. Feb 4, 2013
    4
    One of the most contrived pre-credit opening sequences I've seen recently, and the show doesn't get much better from there. It's as if David Fincher's direction to every character had him strapping on a fake Southern accent and saying, "Oh you are just wicked. And privileged. And naughty. Go." Every time Kevin Spacey turns and speaks to the camera, I wonder if anyone on set had second thoughts about how this was going. False, artificial notes ringing all over the place... Expand
  9. Feb 1, 2013
    10
    The pilot was wonderful! The beginning was a bit eh, but it quickly rose from there. A wonderful show worth watching, it's a great thing that Netflix just released all of the episodes at once.
  10. Feb 1, 2013
    10
    Terrific show; Incredible performances, sharp writing, and, of course, David effing Fincher at the helm. This show is destined to be a classic. Between this, and the return of Arrested Development, Netflix has outdone itself.
  11. Feb 2, 2013
    10
    I'd watch the whole series, but I need to sleep. I'm at chapter 5. Well done Netflix, cast, and crew. My subscription is starting to pay off. Not sure why it cost a $100M to make though.
  12. Feb 2, 2013
    10
    Aside from Breaking Bad, House of Cards is better than anything currently airing on TV. Acting, cinematography, music, and plot are as good or better than most big budget Hollywood movies. In fact, I think it's better to think of this as a movie divided into 13 parts instead of as a traditional TV show. House of Cards is the first step (leap) in making broadcast television irrelevant. I have no doubt that some critics have been told to keep that fact in mind. Expand
  13. Feb 2, 2013
    10
    Best political show with West Wing. Shows the underbelly of American politics with no apologies. Love the occasional aside from the main character to the viewer giving a little more in depth information about what is going on. I am hooked. Started the series today and could not stop watching it.Netflix produces better tv than any of the 4 networks could ever hope to. Love that the lead character is from my home state of SC but that part of the state does not like the dems very much lol. Expand
  14. Feb 3, 2013
    10
    I must say that I had low expectations for this show, but boy cell was I wrong. The acting is phenomenal, the writing is excellent, and the entire show is very professionally made. HBO watch out, Netflix proved that it knows how to produce shows. My only warning about this show is that it is very difficult to only watch one episode in one sitting. Once you start watching it you won't want to stop. You've been warned. Expand
  15. Feb 8, 2013
    3
    A show where a one-dimensional sociopath repeatedly (and predictably) outsmarts lesser one-dimensional sociopaths while explaining obvious plot developments to the audience. House of Cards is 13 hours you might regret losing. Then again, if swooning over Spacey's far-too-easily executed schemes is your thing, this might be worth your Saturday. Don't get me wrong: I love shows centered on an anti-hero (Sopranos, Dexter, Breaking Bad). But unlike those, House of Cards fails to give any insight as to why Underwood is such a malevolent SOB; it just expects you to get off on his (and everyone else's) bloodthirsty quest for power. But hey, if you want to lock yourself in a room with a cast of frigid, cynical politicos, buy the subscription. Expand
  16. Feb 1, 2013
    10
    Exciting and creative show. Comparable to any HBO or Showtimes series. Acting, writing, camera work, directing..all are superb. Kevin Spacey always delivers and Robin Wright is excellent.
  17. Feb 1, 2013
    10
    I loved it! Kevin Spacey does a great job. i liked the whole cast of actors. I wanted to immediately watch another episode! But seeing as it is after midnight.... Can't wait to see more. I think Netfix has got a hit.
  18. Feb 3, 2013
    10
    I have thoroughly enjoyed watching this show. Uncompromising, dark but not cartoonishly dark. The show is at its absolute best when its following the gritty mercenary style of Washington politics. I recommend it highly.
  19. Feb 3, 2013
    10
    If you enjoy the quality of dramatic television that HBO offers, then you will certainly enjoy House of Cards. This is Fincher's masterpiece. It's also hard to see anyone standing in Kevin Spacey's way of at least getting nominated for major awards next award season. House of Cards catches you from the very first scene, and doesn't let the grip go until you have burned through all the episodes. Whether you watch them all in a 24 hour period as I did, or spread them out over more time, this is a safe bet for your entertainment enjoyment. Not since HBO's The Sopranos has such a show redefined the boundaries of what this form of entertainment can achieve. Expand
  20. Feb 4, 2013
    3
    It can be entertaining at times, but after six episodes, it just seems to be a little too over the top. Alright- we get it- Washington is a tough and dirty place, and Spacey's character is not to be messed with. Add a little suspense or maybe give him an actual foil, and you might be on to something. Instead... it gets repetitive, and even boring at times. To me this is most certainly NOT the West Wing, because somehow or another I don't think Sorkin needs to show his main character eating ribs all the time as a metaphor for eating everyone up. We get it already, we get it. Now how about making a more interesting and three dimensional story? Expand
  21. Feb 2, 2013
    10
    Terrific first episode to Netflix's first original series. Kevin Spacey's performance is incredible as expected and I'm sure the rest of the season will keep steam until the finale. The new season of Arrested Development will prove that television is just as important on streaming as it is during the weekdays on channels such as Fox and AMC. Hopefully Netflix will purchase the rights to Jericho and continue the story for that as well. Netflix has proved itself as a worthy competitor for the next Golden Globe Awards because this show is a winner. Expand
  22. Feb 5, 2013
    9
    Fantastic series. Watched all of the episodes last weekend. Now I have to wait a year for Season 2. Not that carzy about the Kate Mara character. If you liked this series check out the BBC original.
  23. Feb 2, 2013
    9
    This is a winner! I found Lillyhammer disappointing and i doubted Netflix could turn out product to compete with HBO. But I was wrong. House of Cards production quality is top drawer, the acting is choice, the multiple plot lines intriguing, and the dialogue is smart, well crafted and original. This is NOT a rehash of tired memes the Oval Office, Watergate and the like. It has the quality that HBO USED to have in the days of Rome, Sopranos, Carnivale, Six Feet Under, and Deadwood. Move over HBO what you've been producing these days is mediocre and there's a new kid in town! Expand
  24. Feb 1, 2013
    6
    I watched the first episode this morning, practically as soon as it came online. "House of Cards" is very entertaining, but it has a long way to go to equal the 1990 BBC series on which it is based. The series hews closely to the plotlines of the original series and features some of the more eloquent and cutting original dialogue, it is, for that reason, not quite as suspenseful as it might be. I would normally give this series a seven or an eight, but there are a number of things that hold me back. First, I don't quite believe Kevin Spacey's South Carolina accent. It just doesn't sound quite right. Second, a President makes an education bill the centerpiece of his first hundred days? That's a little bit too inside-the-beltway even for me, and doesn't ring true. Third, and most importantly, I have concerns about the viewing experience. Maybe it will look better on Blu-Ray, but the streaming product is definitely substandard. To an audience used to sharp and vivid HD images, the first episode looks dark and even a little blurry when compared to other programs I have streamed on Netflix. I don't know what's wrong, somebody needs to fix this quick. Expand
  25. Feb 10, 2013
    4
    I was really looking forward to this show, but after 10 episodes I'm really wondering if I will bother to finish it. You know what? It's just not clever. That's so disappointing because the original British version was indeed very clever. I've always loved Kevin Spacey, but after 10 episodes I still see the Southern accent as pointlessly pasted on a cheap, student actor kind of trick. And that damn little reporter wannabe not sexy, not intelligent, not interesting, I don't get it. But the writing, it's just bad. The dialog is ok, but the plot lines are way too simplistic and canned in 10 episodes I've yet to see anything clever. To the normally great David Fincher: please ignore all the high ratings and learn from this vacuous debacle. You can do better. Expand
  26. Mar 15, 2013
    3
    Two types of characters pervade this series and are responsible for the entirety of the contrived plot: the smart and bold character, and the shortsighted, easily manipulated, tunnel-visioned idiot. Would you think the president of the U.S. would be in that second category? He is. As of the stupidity of certain characters isn't contrivance enough, ridiculous circumstances, like an overly simple cover-up of a congressman's DUI incident (in DC nonetheless) form pillars of the plot.

    The story doesn't get anywhere interesting either. None-stop frivolous sex, bribery and blackmail loses its appeal before the halfway mark.

    I finished it only for Spacey and his relationship with his wife. They are odd, disgusting and yet, awkwardly adorable. Other than that, I don't have anything positive to say.
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  27. Feb 5, 2013
    10
    Absolutely phenomenal. Fincher, Spacey, Wright, they've created a masterpiece. As a film student I'm completely impressed with what's being done outside of mainstream cable. In the field of Boardwalk Empire.
  28. Jul 9, 2013
    5
    A decent series that stars off brilliantly but then somehow slows down to become something that would put a crack addict to sleep (and yes, that is a paraphrase). The first 3 to 4 episodes are beyond amazing. The dialogues are brilliant, the editing better than any series one could think of, and the stunning performances of Spacey, Wright and Mara are able to overcome the challenge of their almost unrealistically dark characters. Those episodes are also the ones where viewer will grin with satisfaction as they follow the gloriously Machiavellian schemes of the amoral Francis Underwood. But then, for whatever reason, the story starts to slow down and the implausible plot twist just start piling up. Characters start moving back and forth in their ideas, plans and alliances where in the end, nothing really happens. Its a common technique used in series that need to fill more episodes than the story can hold (Prison Break being a prime example), but House of Cards starts off so well you don't see it coming. Moreover, the editing becomes sloppy, the repetitive conversations make you feel as if you're stuck in a loop and ultimately even the great Francis Underwood gives off the impression of being a bloated fool, something I can't imagine the creators intended him to be.
    House of Cards certainly can't be considered to be a bad series, but its unfortunate that the brilliance of the first episode have to make room for a very average follow up of predictability and emptiness.
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  29. Aug 14, 2014
    10
    While Bryan Cranston as Walter White in Breaking Bad will likely remain my favorite portrayal of all time, Kevin Spacey as Frank Underwood is currently my second. I love this show. The director is incredible and for the most part, the writing and performances are believable ....what a compelling show. I cannot wait for season 3.
  30. Feb 23, 2013
    5
    After a good start (they only gave critics 2 episodes that tells you something) it falls apart. The politics are dumbed down to an insulting level. The plot line is more of a soap opera than a political thriller. By episode 5 6 it's a freakin' mess (those dogs were directed by Joel Schumacher of "Phone Booth" and "Batman Robin" infamy).
    Dumb and dull.
Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 25 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 25
  2. Negative: 1 out of 25
  1. Reviewed by: Emily Nussbaum
    Feb 22, 2013
    70
    I found the first two episodes handsome but sleazy, like a C.E.O. in a hotel bar. Yet by Episode 5 I was hypnotized by the show’s ensemble of two-faced sociopaths. Episode 8 was a thoughtful side trip into sympathy for Spacey’s devilish main character, but by then I was exhausted, and only my compulsive streak kept me going until the finale--at which point I was critically destabilized and looking forward to Season 2.
  2. Reviewed by: Ed Bark
    Feb 6, 2013
    100
    Watch at whatever pace you'd like--immediately. Given its quality, I think you'll be drinking it all in sooner rather than later.
  3. Reviewed by: Tom Long
    Feb 1, 2013
    67
    Fincher's unemotional style comes through in the first two episodes, and the show could use more heat. But Spacey makes it worth watching.