The 10 Most Shocking Moments From ‘House of Cards’ (so far…)

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards

House of Cards wouldn’t be Netflix’s most compulsively watchable series if it didn’t deliver some serious narrative shocks on a regular basis.

Think about it. House of Cards has been making us gasp since the first scene in the first episode, when Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey) calmly strangles his neighbour’s dog after it was hit by a car. Sure, it was a mercy killing, but who wasn’t in shock when Underwood broke the fourth wall to make it perfectly clear just how ruthless he could be.

So in preparation for season 5 of the hit Netflix original series (which starts streaming on Tuesday, May, 30th), let’s take a trip down memory lane and relive some of the most shocking moments from the first four seasons of House of Cards.

*Warning: Spoilers for seasons one through four of House Of Cards ahead:

Frank Underwood is shot and Edward Meechum dies
Chapter 43
Season 4, episode 4

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards - Frank is shot

While making a campaign stop in the fourth episode of season 4, Frank Underwood was shot at close range by Lucas Goodwin (Sebastian Arcelus), the former Washington Herald reporter who had been trying to expose Frank’s ongoing corruption and connection to Zoe Barnes death.

Goodwin emerged from the crowd shooting President Underwood and killing beloved Secret Service bodyguard Edward Meechum (Nathan Darrow). Of course, Lucas was gunned down by the dying secret service man during the assassination attempt proving his unwavering dedicated to the Underwoods.

Claire Underwood’s TV interview
Chapter 17
Season 2, episode 4

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards - Claire TV interview

After revealing to Frank that she was once raped by General McGinnis (Peter Bradbury), Claire Underwood (Robin Wright) took part in a live TV interview with CNN’s Ashleigh Banfield. During the one on one she admitted that she had an abortion after being raped by the General, even though, technically, she didn’t.

The interview was definitely a jaw-dropping moment and a perfect example of how Claire is every bit as ambitious and manipulating as her husband.

Rachel Posner attacks Doug Stamper
Chapter 26
Season 2, episode 13

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards - Rachel attacks Doug

Doug Stamper’s (Michael Kelly) obsession with Rachel Posner (Rachel Brosnahan) almost proved to be his downfall when everything backfired in the season 2 finale. Fearing for her life, Rachel jumped out of Doug’s car and took off into the woods. Doug followed her into the woods and then… Rachel ferociously attacked him with a rock leaving us with that final shot of Doug’s seemingly lifeless body.

Peter Russo’s death
Chapter 11
Season 1, episode 11

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards - Peter Russo Death

Poor Peter Russo (Corey Stoll). The congressman was one of the earliest casualties in the Underwood’s stop at nothing quest for power. After Doug and Rachel (under the direction of Frank) drove the recovering addict to relapse, essentially ending his campaign for Pennsylvania governor, Frank stepped in and ruthlessly finished off the job. Who can forget that scene with Frank leaving Peter in a running car to die from carbon monoxide poisoning, making it look like a suicide.

That Meechum threesome
Chapter 24
Season 2, episode 11

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards - That Meechum threesome

It was the episode that had everyone talking. Towards the end of season 2, Frank walked in on his drunken wife and his Meechum having a laugh. (Remember he had cut his hand on broken glass and Claire had bandaged him up and offered him a drink) Frank helped re-bandage him up and then within a few anxious moments, everybody was kissing one another.

Meechum’s loyalty to the Underwoods is unwavering.

Claire leaves Frank
Chapter 39
Season 3, episode 13

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards - Claire leaves Frank

Season 3 was a rocky one for America’s first couple and by the end of the season 3 finale, viewers watched as Claire left Frank. Viewers were as shocked as Frank, who stood there calling out, “Claire.’

Michael Corrigan’s suicide in Russia
Chapter 32
Season 2, episode 6

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards - Michael Corrigan suicide in Russia

During mid-season 2, Claire went to Russia with Frank on a diplomatic mission to free Michael Corrigan (Christian Camargo), an American prisoner and gay rights activist who went to jail to protest the Russian treatment of homosexuals. When Claire camped out in Michael’s cell to try and convince him to read a statement that would secure his release but exonerate Petrov, he refused. Later, while Claire was sleeping, Michael hung himself from the window of his cell with Claire’s scarf.

Doug kills Rachel
Chapter 39
Season 3, episode 13

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards - Doug kills Rachel Posner

Having recovered from his brutal attack at the end of season two, Doug finally tracks down Rachel in a small town in New Mexico and abducts her. Doug digs a grave before Rachel seemingly talks him out of killing her and viewers watched as Doug gave her a bottle of water and let her go, directing her to the nearest town. After getting in his van and driving in the other direction, Doug stops, makes a U-turn and drives after her. The camera cuts to Doug burying Rachel in the desert.

Claire breaks the fourth wall
Chapter 52
Season 4, episode 13

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards - Claire breaks the fourth wall

In the closing moment of the season 4 finale, Frank addressed the audience as he often had throughout the series. “We don’t submit to terror. We make the terror,” he bluntly said staring straight at the camera. As he spoke, Claire (now the nominated vice presidential running mate) looked at him as though listening, and then she, too, turned and looked right at the camera showing the audience that she was right there with him and ready to go to battle.

“Don’t miss your train, Miss Barnes”
Chapter 14
Season 2, episode 1

The 10 Most Shocking Moments From House of Cards - Zoe Barnes Death

The first episode of the second season of House of Cards had viewers gasping at the screen with arguably the show’s most shocking moment  — or, at least, one that was shocking for anyone who wasn’t familiar with the original British version of House of Cards.

Meeting at a shadowy subway station, journalist Zoe Barnes (Kate Mara) agreed to a “fresh start” to her on-again, off-again relationship with Frank. But, then she continued to press a somewhat incognito ‘F U’ about Peter’s supposed suicide and he abruptly decided to push her in front of an oncoming subway train.

It’s not just House of Cards‘ most shocking moment; it is unanimously considered one of television’s most shocking deaths ever.

Christopher Turner

Christopher Turner

AmongMen’s Editor-in-Chief is a well-respected fashion and style writer whose works have appeared in Fashionism, Fashion Television, MSN, DesignLines, the Kaboose Network, the Disney Family Network and Sun Media. He also has a collection of designer kicks that would make Imelda Marcos blush and lives in Toronto’s trendy east end. Follow him at: @Turnstylin.

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