House of Cards Season 5 Shocking Twists By the Numbers

Two words for viewers: "My turn."

By Chris Harnick Jun 05, 2017 3:20 PMTags
Related: Michael Kelly & Neve Campbell Tease "HOC" Season 5

You finally did it. You finally finished House of Cards season five. Take a victory lap, shave, eat something outside your apartment. Live your life! But first, dissect the fifth season with us.

This is your one and only spoiler warning.

House of Cards had it all: trysts (straight and gay!), breakdowns, shoves, Patricia Clarkson and endless schemes. Endless! There were seriously so many, all of them Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey) said he was behind. But was he really pulling all the strings to get Claire Underwood (Robin Wright) to take over the presidency? And do Claire and Frank know exactly what Mark Usher (Campbell Scott) and Jane Davis (Clarkson) are really doing to them? Is Claire truly in power? Will she pardon Frank as she originally agreed? These are the questions.

Previously on House of Cards Season 4

"There's a sense here where they both need each other symbiotically, but they also turn out to be each other's biggest antagonist in a way," co-showrunner Frank Pugliese told EW about Frank and Claire's dynamic. "There's something about if your biggest antagonist is the person you actually also need most that gives us a pretty exciting path to follow."

"But either way, their destinies are inextricably entwined," co-showunner Melissa James Gibson added. "That's the premise of the show, and they are just wrestling with that relationship."

Now, let's take a look at House of Cards season five by the numbers:


Number of trysts: Two. Not counting Claire and Tom Yates (Paul Sparks), there was Frank and Eric Rawlings (Malcolm Madera), his trainer/the actor who played his dead relative in a Civil War reenactment, and Doug Stamper (Michael Kelly) and LeeAnn Harvey (Neve Campbell).

Number of significant deaths: Four? Eric, Tom Yates, LeeAnn (?), Aidan MacAllan (Damian Young).  Viewers saw Frank watching what many assumed was LeeAnn's death. Her car was wrecked, but no body was seen. Is she dead? "Well, I don't think I can answer that question. I'm sorry," Campbell told EW.

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One person who for sure is dead, but his body is "on ice" (per Mark Usher) is Tom Yates, the author who became Claire's speech writer/lover. She poisoned him and he died while they had sex.

"[Robin Wright] was directing that episode as well, so there was the added aspect of her heading back to Video Village and taking a look at [the footage] between takes. But those scenes are always hard. Death scenes are hard. Sex scenes are hard. And… just multiply it," he told TVLine. "But Robin is a great director and a great actress, so I felt very taken care of through all of it. It was fun. It worked out that it was kind of the last thing I [shot]. I don't know if warm and fuzzy was the right word, but it felt like [a nice conclusion to my time] on the show."


Number of falls from grace: Two. Frank resigned from the presidency and Stamper took the fall for Zoe Barnes' (Kate Mara) murder. While he was doing it to protect the Underwoods, it seems like he was also atoning for the murder of Rachel Posner (Rachel Brosnahan).

Number of actual falls: One. Frank pushed Catherine Durant (Jayne Atkinson), his Secretary of State, down the stairs after she agreed to testify in the senate. Hey, she knew too much.

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Number of times Claire was president: Two. Claire was sworn in as acting president after the Senate voted on her as vice president as the race between Frank and Will Conway (Joel Kinnaman) was left in question, then she became president again after Frank resigned.

Number of times Claire terrified/excited us at the same time: One. "My turn."


Number of turtleneck sweaters worn by Usher: Infinite. Even in warm weather, this dude was always wearing a turtleneck!

House of Cards season five is now streaming.