President Frank Underwood will again be running America a few months from now, at least in the fictional world of "House of Cards."
The Netflix original series will return for its fourth season on Friday, March 4, the online video service revealed late Tuesday in an advertising spot that ran during the Republican presidential debate. Playing a trick on the viewers, the ad appeared as an ordinary political spot with the usual pretty pictures of America and a slew of meaningless slogans.
Then the spot segued to show us Underwood behind the desk in the Oval Office, who intones: "America, I'm only getting started." As a not-so-subtle slap to viewers and the voters, the spot ends with the slogan: "FU2016."
Having won a host of Emmy nominations and awards and moving into season four, "House of Cards" is proof that an original series from a service like Netflix can be a critical and popular success. Other online video services such as Amazon Prime and Hulu have followed in Netflix's footsteps, offering their own original programming. The goal is to draw in subscribers who want to watch more than just the standard studio movies and network TV shows, and to counterbalance the offerings on premium channels such as HBO.
Based on a British series, Netflix's "House of Cards" stars Kevin Spacey as scheming politician and now President Underwood, along with Robin Wright as the first lady. The show's first three seasons have followed the couple as they fought their way to the White House, committing deeds that would make even real politicians cringe.
To promote the new season, Netflix has set up a Frank Underwood website touting his beliefs and accomplishments and asking for your support. Underwood is, after all, running for re-election, coincidentally as the actual US presidential campaign gets deep into the season of primaries and conventions.
We'll soon see whether the writers behind "House of Cards" can create a fictional story in 13 episodes that rivals the twists and turns in store for Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump and all the other contenders for the Oval Office.