House of Cards

House of Cards Season 3 Episode 7 Recap: Chapter 33

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+Rob Cesternino (@robcesternino) and +Zach Brooks (@brooksza) continue 13 straight days of recapping House of Cards season 3.  Join us for our recap of the 7th episode (Chapter 33) of Season 3 of the Netflix Original series House of Cards.

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  • Keith Dixon

    Rob is cracking me up with his thoughts on Doug and the physical therapist. Some younger women may just find an older guy attractive lol.

    Was I the only one that thought Frank wanted to hook up with Yates? Frank was about to talk about his time at The Sentinel (the last time he got so drunk which led to his sexual encounter with his college buddy), then he tells him to call it a night. As Yates leaves, Frank stops him but then Yates turns back and tells Frank “I have no interests in salaciousness” with Frank looking disappointed. (Also, seeing the two of them get drunk reminded me of when Claire got Meechum drunk last season which led to the “Threechum.” I thought with these two getting drunk it was going to lead to a similar route)

  • Charles Bikle

    That was a pretty good Stefon impression.

    • That’s probably my favorite moment of this HoC podcast season.

  • Joanna Szu

    Here are my thoughts on monks destroying the painting:

    Toiling at their finely-detailed work of art, monks serve as a useful time reference and also offer a metaphorical insight into the principles underlying the mindset of the Underwoods. Completion of their endeavor will take a month, which provides a fairly straight-forward time frame. But what are the writers trying to tell us by opaque sequences of monks painstakingly blowing colorful powder into the grooves of a template?

    Firstly, it is the second religious throwback this season, both of which undeniably put Frank and Claire’s power-hungry maneuvering in a ethical and spiritual context. Secondly, in contrast to the episode featuring Frank spitting on the figure of Jesus, where religion was resorted to as a bastion of moral principles, the significance of monks lies in their connection to even broader categories.

    Grappling with issues going beyond seeking moral guidance on law and justice (in the Jesus episode), the creation and destruction at the hands of Buddhist monks encapsulates two categories: the historical and the transcendental. Similarly to Frank’s and Claire’s obsessive commitment to work, monks are dedicated to reaching their goal. However, the disparity in their and the Underwoods’ attitudes is clear when it comes to preserving the material, historical form. The notion of throwing away the fruits of their efforts may seem as an unconscionable waste of time, but in fact the ritual sacrifice of an object reveals monks’ humility to the order that transcends the human and the historical. Symbolically reinserting the matter (a work of art) shows respect for and acceptance of its insignificance in a larger, cosmic context. But this act proving their freedom and preparedness to acknowledge the futility of earthly efforts and pursuits in the never-ending void of Time, belongs to an order that the Underwoods know next to nothing about.

    The entire subplot about monks with the final sequence subtly giving a glimpse into the categories that are absent from the world of Claire and Frank. As we know the main characters very well, we understand that peace the monks are willing to make with giving up their work will not be the case with the Underwoods. The painting turning into chaos seems a fairly obvious premonition of the fate awaiting Frank’s and Claire’s plans. And what will prove truly painful for them due to their selfish, materialistic worldview will be their complete inability to deal with it.

  • Spencer Mann

    The game that Frank and Thomas Yates were playing was The Stanley Parable. It’s sort of… a satire of bureaucracy, I guess? Basically you go through the game and find multiple creepy and/or hilarious endings. It’s a lot like the Portal games in that you interact with an unreliable narrator and the entire game has kind of a sarcastic tone.