Former members of a Russian fake news troll farm say that watching House of Cards helped them understand American political issues. Helping the Russians is certainly not something that House of Cards’ fictional president Frank Underwood would approve of, due to his icy relationship with fictional Russian president Victor Petrov. That said, if there was some way Frank could turn Russian-produced fake news into an advantage for his own administration, he’d do it in a heartbeat. Nobody matters more to Frank Underwood than Frank Underwood.
No matter what end of the political spectrum one falls on, the fact that Russian troll farms attempted to play a role in the U.S.’ 2016 presidential election by circulating fake news is pretty much accepted across the board at this point. Where some tend to push back is at contentions that this meddling was done specifically to help eventual winner Donald Trump, and hurt Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. The investigation into those claims is still ongoing, and the true answer remains up in the air.
Former members of one such Russian fake news factory recently revealed to independent Russian TV network Rain that watching House of Cards was a required activity prior to crafting button-pushing false stories, as those running the troll farm deemed it “necessary to know all the main problems of the United States of America. Tax problems, the problem of gays, sexual minorities, weapons.” That uncomfortable word choice aside, House of Cards has long-been a favorite of real-life politicians, and it stands to reason that it could indeed help educate someone on the basics of the American political system. Provided one ignores all the murder of course.
The Russian trolls in question also do say that attacking Hillary Clinton was part of their mission statement, as was trying to lower the approval rating of then-president Barack Obama. Overall though, the main goal of the trolls was to use fake news to “set up the Americans against their own government to cause unrest.” It’s hard to argue that they didn’t accomplish that, as fake news ended up being one of the most contentious issues of the 2016 campaign.
As for the fictional future of Frank Underwood, Netflix still has yet to officially renew House of Cards for season 6, although it seems like a foregone conclusion that they will do so. For one, House of Cards is one of Netflix’s most popular shows, and it’s doubtful that they would end it without a season that was crafted from the start to be the final one. After all they’ve been through, the Underwoods deserve a proper conclusion to their story.
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