House of Cards (2013–2018)
6 user 26 critic

Chapter 3 

Francis heads for his hometown to deal with a crisis. Zoe negotiates the politics of being a journalist on the rise. Claire finds herself a new business partner.


James Foley


Michael Dobbs (based on the novels by), Andrew Davies (based on the mini-series by) | 6 more credits »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Kevin Spacey ... Francis Underwood
Robin Wright ... Claire Underwood
Kate Mara ... Zoe Barnes
Michael Kelly ... Doug Stamper
Sakina Jaffrey ... Linda Vasquez
Corey Stoll ... Rep. Peter Russo
Kristen Connolly ... Christina Gallagher
Sandrine Holt ... Gillian Cole
Nathan Darrow ... Edward Meechum
Boris McGiver ... Tom Hammerschmidt
Kathleen Chalfant ... Margaret Tilden
Al Sapienza ... Marty Spinella
Murphy Guyer ... Oren Chase
Soledad O'Brien ... Soledad O'Brien
Lance E. Nichols ... Gene Clancy


Francis heads for his hometown to deal with a crisis. Zoe negotiates the politics of being a journalist on the rise. Claire finds herself a new business partner.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




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Did You Know?


Claire says that she planted tulip bulbs in the fall, but tulip bulbs are planted in the winter when it is cold outside. See more »


Francis Underwood: What is the face of a coward? The back of his head as he runs through the battle.
See more »


References Starting Point (2012) See more »

User Reviews

"Humility is their form of pride"
12 January 2019 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

'House of Cards' in its prime (Seasons 1-4) was a brilliant show. Unfortunately it went downhill dramatically in Season 5 and has been even worse, yes hasn't been cancelled and that unfortunately has been a mistake, since Kevin Spacey was fired. The prime brilliance can be seen in the first two episodes, both directed by David Fincher, both great in nearly every way and both among the better-directed 'House of Cards' episodes.

While missing Fincher's touch, which had more of a cinematic quality that could have passed for one of his films (a big compliment), "Chapter 3", the first of twelve episodes to be directed by 'Glengarry Glen Ross' James Foley, is still as an overall episode on the same level as the previous two. In a way, while not quite as strikingly directed (Foley's direction though is still highly impressive, keeping things always engaging), things feel more settled here than in the first two episodes. Found this to be particularly true with the pace, tighter here and a little less mechanical (as seen occasionally in the previous two episodes), and the writing, here continuing to get tighter and sharper.

Visually, "Chapter 3" is very stylish and atmospheric with really quite wonderful photography and locations. Foley directs with control and tautness. The music knew when to have presence and when to tone things down to let the dialogue and characters properly speak, with again some very clever sound quality.

Writing bites, thought-provokes and engages even more than it already did, with Frank's eulogy being a major highlight. The political elements again (namely in Zoe's storyline) aren't heavy-handed, are handled intelligently and didn't go too much over my head, never problems in prime-'House of Cards'. The story is compelling, with Frank's, Claire's and Zoe's storylines being equally as interesting though Frank has the slight edge due to him being the more interesting character.

Characterisation has yet to falter. Frank is at this point of the show at his slimiest and one can see why he further went on to be one of contemporary television's most fascinating lead characters. One of the most consistent elements, as well as the production values, has always been the acting, and it doesn't disappoint here. Spacey, Robin Wright and Kate Mara are all on top form.

Overall, great yet again. 9/10 Bethany Cox

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Release Date:

1 February 2013 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
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