House of Cards (2013–2018)
4 user 22 critic

Chapter 27 

Frank's approval ratings have plummeted. Doug goes through rehab over his injury. Claire plans to run for Ambassador to the U.N.


John David Coles


Michael Dobbs (based on the novels by), Andrew Davies (based on the mini-series by) | 3 more credits »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Kevin Spacey ... Francis Underwood
Robin Wright ... Claire Underwood
Michael Kelly ... Doug Stamper
Mahershala Ali ... Remy Danton
Elizabeth Marvel ... Heather Dunbar
Derek Cecil ... Seth Grayson
Jimmi Simpson ... Gavin Orsay
Nathan Darrow ... Edward Meechum
Jayne Atkinson ... Catherine Durant
Rachel Brosnahan ... Rachel Posner
Mozhan Marnò ... Ayla Sayyad
Benito Martinez ... Hector Mendoza
Reed Birney ... VP Donald Blythe
Poorna Jagannathan ... Dr. Lanjawni
Kelly AuCoin ... Gary Stamper


Frank's approval ratings have plummeted. Doug goes through rehab over his injury. Claire plans to run for Ambassador to the U.N.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




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Parents Guide:

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Release Date:

27 February 2015 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Reed Birney & Mozhan Marnò also appeared together on The Blacklist (2013). See more »


Frank appears in 2015 on The Colbert Report. The Colbert Report final episode aired in December 2014. See more »


[first lines]
Francis Underwood: [visiting the cemetery] Hey, pop. Been a while, hasn't it? Did you see that motorcade roll up? It's the first time a President of the United States has visited Gaffney. Can you believe it? Oh, I wouldn't be here if I had a choice. But I have to do these sorts of things now. It makes me seem more human. And you have to be a little human when you're the president.
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User Reviews

"And you have to be a little human when you're the president"
14 June 2019 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Absolutely loved the first season, with the one slight disappointment being "Chapter 8". The other episodes ranged from very good to outstanding. The second season was very nearly as good, starting off promisingly and then suffering a slight quality slump between "Chapter 15" and "Chapter 19", the second half of the season seeing the show properly back on form and rivalling the best of Season 1.

Can see completely why Season 3's opener "Chapter 27" would polarise, with it getting much praise here but know of others that didn't care for it. Personally thought that there was a huge amount to like about "Chapter 27" and that it was a very well done episode on the whole. It just falls short of being great, with a starting afresh feel in places rather than advancing forward and it does not always feel very settled. So do agree with that Season 3 is a little bit of a slow starter, but that does not mean at all that it's a bad episode. Far from it, the good things are many and the best assets are absolutely brilliant.

The weak points about "Chapter 27" is that it doesn't always feel settled in story direction and it could have been tauter in places. The three leads are superb, but while everybody is more than competent nobody else stands out in the same way.

Some have criticised it for focusing too much on Doug and underusing other characters, can understand that criticism while not entirely agreeing with it. Definitely do think that there could have been much more of Claire who has had meatier material and much more screen time before and since this episode, but the interpretation of the character when she does appear is still spot on, the over-ambitiousness and icy demeanour coming through.

But actually really liked the way the episode focused on Doug, in the previous two seasons he was always one of the most interesting 'House of Cards' characters, his development became richer all the time and the intensity and vulnerability came through frighteningly and movingly. He continues to be fascinating and both gave me chills and made me feel sorry for him somewhat. The writing for Frank has yet to put a foot wrong, he is someone you don't want to mess with and is as ruthless as ever. Evident in a very eerie opening scene, where you are pretty shocked and repulsed by his behaviour on top of the eeriness of the atmosphere.

Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright are typically brilliant as Frank and Claire, while Michael Kelly knocks it out of the park bringing out Doug's fierce intensity and vulnerability. The direction is sympathetic yet alert enough to still make the episode engaging. The dialogue is still dark, intelligent and sharp, the politics not too heavy handed, and the story is compelling enough if not perfectly done. It is very stylish and classy visually as to be expected and the music complements the tone well.

In summation, very impressive but could have been much better. 8/10

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